Dear King Philip Regional parents and guardians,
I am writing today to share an update regarding the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education’s (DESE) latest masking protocols.
Today, DESE voted to extend its mask requirement in schools until at least January 15, 2022. The original mask mandate issued by DESE on August 25 had put into place a mask mandate until October 1 and was then extended through November 1.
DESE’s 80% vaccination threshold protocol for schools, which went into effect October 15, remains in place. Under this protocol, if a school demonstrates a vaccination rate of 80% or more of all students and staff, then vaccinated individuals in that school would no longer be subject to the mask requirement. Those who remain unvaccinated would be required to continue wearing masks.
At this time, the King Philip Regional Middle School reports 71% of students as fully vaccinated and King Philip Regional High School reports 79% of students as fully vaccinated. We encourage those who are eligible and wish to receive the vaccine to do so to help us reach the vaccination rate threshold of 80%. Once that threshold is reached, the King Philip administration will submit an attestation form to DESE to rescind its mask requirement.
By getting the vaccine, you are doing your part to stop the spread of COVID-19 and assisting us in meeting the vaccination criteria needed to rescind the mask mandate. To find vaccination sites near us, click here.
Parents/guardians should also note that masks are still required for any sports-related activity for student-athletes and coaches when indoors, in alignment with guidance provided by the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA), and when students ride on any district bus or visit a district health office under the Department of Public Health’s mask advisory.
We will continue to share additional updates from DESE regarding COVID-19 and masking protocols. We are grateful for your understanding and cooperation as we continue to adapt to any changing health and safety guidance.
Paul A. Zinni, C.A.G.S.