Masks Optional on Wednesday and Other COVID Updates

 Earlier this month, DC Health released updated guidance for educational facilities. Under the new guidance, masks are no longer required indoors or outdoors at schools when COVID-19 community levels are low based on CDC metrics.  


Consistent with this guidance and the current low levels in the District, starting Wednesday, March 16masks will be optional for students, staff, and visitors in DC Public Schools, DCPS offices, and on OSSE-DOT transportation. This policy will apply to all school-related activities. 


As we always do, we are working with our students and staff to be sure that all students, staff and visitors are treated with respect and kindness for whatever mask decision they make.  Below are the two social stories we will be reading with all of our classrooms on Wednesday morning.  We’ve also been talking with students all week in preparation for this policy change.


PK – 3rd Grade MY MASK MY CHOICE.pptx

My Mask , My Choice G 3-5

There are a variety of other updates that go into effect as of Wednesday.  Please see below for a summary.  All policies can also be found at

Quarantine and Isolation Time periods

  • Isolation Period (if tested positive) – Must isolate at least 5 Days
    •  Individual can return on Day 6 if:  a)negative COVID test; b) fever free; AND c) symptoms are improving.
    • Individual must wear a mask for Days 6 – Day 10
  • Quarantine Period (if an unvaxxed close contact) – Must quarantine 5 Days.  Individual can return on Day 6 if they have a negative COVID test on Day 5.
    • Suggested to wear a mask on Day 6 – Day 10


PreK Weekly TestingWe will no longer require PK4 testing over the weekend.  The Sunday evening testing is “encouraged”, but not required.


If there is a positive case in a PK4 classroom, the class will do the “test to stay” protocol, and all students in the class will wear a mask for 10 days from the last date of exposure.


If there is a positive case anywhere else in the building we will send a classroom notification letter to all of the families to let them know there is a possible exposure.  It is up to the family to follow the guidance for quarantine based on their child’s vaccination status. 


Asymptomatic Testing will continue each week for 20% of our population.