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We are excited for the start of the 2021-2022 school year and our return to learning! We look forward to a productive year together learning safely and in person. The 2021-2022 school year begins on Thursday, Aug. 19, 2021, and you can find back to school information on our website at www.tulsaschools.org/backtoschool. Despite the continued challenges of managing the pandemic, we have safety practices in place, and we will have a wonderful year.
Please be assured that we continue to work with the Tulsa Health Department to closely monitor health conditions and their impact on schools and safety. I am writing this afternoon to share some additional details about our COVID-19 safety guidance and protocols. In addition to important work to improve ventilation and other practices in our buildings, we need your help and partnership to keep our students in school learning safely this year.
As we shared on Monday evening, our expectation is that all adults and students – regardless of vaccination status – wear a mask, and we will follow the federal order requiring masks on school buses. Masks will be available at all schools and sites for students and team members who need them.
Layered Safety Measures
- At-home health screenings: Parents will be asked to complete an at-home health screening with their children prior to coming to school. Click here for our at-home health screening questions.
- Quarantine: We will continue the contact tracing and notification process and recommend quarantine periods based on the most current guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Click here to view the latest quarantine and isolation protocols.
- Limiting building access: While parents will be able to access our school buildings during our student orientation days*, we will unfortunately be limiting non-staff visitor (including parents) access to our buildings effective on Thursday, August 19. Visitors who are in our buildings will be expected to follow our safety guidance and protocols.
- COVID-19 rapid testing: We are continuing our partnership with the Tulsa Health Department to conduct in-school COVID-19 rapid tests of randomly-selected staff members and students in grades Pre-K-12 once a week. This program is designed to help identify asymptomatic COVID-19 cases early and ensure that affected individuals are separated from others so that we can limit spread of the virus.
- You can create an account here on Project Beacon to opt your child into the COVID-19 rapid testing program. This is completely optional, but we hope you will include your child in the program and support COVID-19 prevention efforts at Tulsa Public Schools. Click here for more information about our rapid testing program.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that children ages 12+ be vaccinated for COVID-19 before returning to school, and we strongly encourage parents to visit vaccinate.oklahoma.gov to schedule an appointment for your child and for you if you have not already been vaccinated.
We know that there are families in our community whose children and/or family members have specific health conditions and families who are particularly concerned about potential for COVID-19 exposure in a classroom setting. We want to ensure that those families have a virtual learning option, and we intend to open a transfer window for Tulsa Virtual Academy. We will share more information about that transfer opportunity on Friday, August 6.
We are continuing to share information and updates on our website at www.tulsaschools.org/BackToSchool. You can also find information about health and safety plans at www.tulsaschools.org/safety.
We look forward to seeing you for a safe start to the school year on Thursday, August 19!
*Students entering pre-kindergarten, kindergarten, 6th grade at middle schools, 7th grade at junior high schools, and 9th grade at high schools will have orientation days from Monday, August 9 - Wednesday, August 11. These orientations will be in-person and parents should contact their child’s school for more information.