During the COVID-19 Pandemic
(Updated February 2, 2021)
The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way we live, gather, and educate our children. As a community of educators charged with growing life-long learners, we take seriously our commitment to the health and safety of all our students and adults alike. Partnering with parents, guardians, and students, we all collectively strive to do what’s best for our entire community.
Mid-Pen is committed to returning to campus once California and San Mateo County allow it and as long as we can do it safely and responsibly. Since most of what we do as educators occurs within Mid-Pen’s campus, we established guidelines that set our expectations for behavior and conduct off-campus. This Community Agreement represents best practices and common sense proscriptions meant to ensure that we remain as safe and healthy as possible, in addition to requiring strict compliance to state and local public health guidelines.
Please take some time to review this document and our reopening plans with your children. We expect a careful read by parents/guardians, students, and adult staff of our community. At the end of the document, we ask for your signature confirming receipt and understanding of this Community Agreement.
Parties and Large Gatherings
- Gatherings that include more than 3 households are prohibited
- All gatherings must be held outside in the Purple Tier, and indoor gatherings are strongly discouraged in Red, Orange and Yellow Tiers.
Mid-Pen expects students and families to adhere to the Stay Home Order and the following best practices:
- Students: We expect you not to host or attend any gatherings with members outside of your household. While we all feel the desire to see each other and our friends, it is crucially important that we do not put others at risk by potentially spreading the virus. If you spend time with one or two friends, make sure that you’ve taken all reasonable precautions by being outside, staying six feet apart, wearing a mask, and washing your hands frequently.
- Parents/Guardians: Please be sure you know where your children go, with whom they spend time, and how that time is spent. Encourage your child to follow common-sense and state guidelines regarding physical distancing, mask-wearing, and hygiene.
- Adults: We expect all our adult community members to follow the same guidelines as our students, meaning we too should not host or attend gatherings with members outside of our households. Similarly, we need to take common-sense precautions and follow state-ordered rules when leaving home (maintaining six feet of physical distance, wearing a mask, and washing hands frequently).
Current limits regarding physical distancing make it challenging to safely carpool and travel to and from campus. Please follow these guidelines when traveling to and from campus:
- Do not carpool with anyone outside of your household. Siblings who attend Mid-Pen and live together can continue to carpool.
- The school will have single points of entry and exit. Please make sure to follow directions carefully for entering and exiting the main building.
- Due to local and state rules, shuttling to and from Caltrain (and other public transportation sites) is no longer feasible. We will not be able to offer shuttle service for our students until physical distancing measures are relaxed.
It is worth noting that other schools have had issues with students attending parties with their friends and acquaintances. As a result, those schools had to go back to distance learning mode for 14 days to ensure the entire community’s safety. One or two students or families not following our guidelines will result in the same response from Mid-Pen.
While many of us will forgo traveling during the pandemic, we realize that some families may find it necessary to travel away from their homes to high-risk areas. Mid-Pen will follow county and state guidelines with regards to travel and will ask families to do the following:
- If anyone in your household will travel away from home, please contact the school to let us know. Be sure to include the date on which any traveler will return to the household.
- If a student traveled away from home to another state or country, that student will need to quarantine for 14 days. If someone else within a student’s household has traveled, please try to quarantine from the rest of your family as much as possible.
- The student will be required to be tested seven (7) days after returning and submit a negative test result before returning to campus. If the student or employee does not test, then they must quarantine for 14 days.
High-risk areas are defined as any state with greater than a 5 percent positivity rate per Johns Hopkins School of Medicine COVID-19 Testing Tracker.
Please be mindful with regards to travel. Limit travel away from the household as much as possible. If travel becomes necessary, please follow common sense and current state guidelines regarding physical distancing, mask-wearing, and frequent hand washing.
Mid-Pen has partnered with Agile Force to conduct COVID-19 testing of our students, their families, and adult staff. Our first community test date is January 19.
Once we return to campus, we will continue testing every week. Students and staff will be required to get tested to come to campus. Parents, guardians, and immediate family members of Mid-Pen students are eligible for testing.
Agile Force will set up testing facilities on Mid-Pen’s campus. Please follow their directions carefully when undergoing a COVID-19 test.
Our reopening plans involve both on-campus and distance learning days. During distance learning days, students are expected and required to attend any class meetings, Core classes, and all-school assemblies via Zoom. It is our best vehicle for communicating news, updates, and important information to students.
We encourage (and do not require) virtual meetings of clubs, affinity groups, and other activities. These events allow students to connect and keep themselves socially active.
We ask our community members to consider two of Mid-Pen’s values in particular: Responsibility and Respect. Mid-Pen is a close community and needs everyone to demonstrate responsibility for oneself and others and respect for the needs of our entire community.
Failure to adhere to Mid-Pen’s Community Agreement will result in a serious conversation with students and their families about our community values. Such violations may also result in the following:
The school may require a student to engage in distance learning, at least until it is clear that they are healthy and uninfected by COVID-19.
Egregious violations of this agreement, especially regarding parties and other large gatherings, may necessitate the entire school to return to distance learning.
- The Head of School (or another Mid-Pen designee) may engage the family in a conversation about their fit with our community.
Mid-Pen faculty and staff are excited to return to in-person learning. Our Reopening and COVID-19 Safety Plan and Community Agreement represent careful thinking about how best to provide for the safety and health of our community.
We ask that you review our Reopening Plan and Community Agreement as a family. Keep in mind that our responsibility and respect for each other will help to keep us safe and allow us to continue with in-person learning. We can and will get through this together.