Fall 2021 COVID Plan Under Review
The district is collaborating with the Alachua County Health Department and medical experts from UF Health to update its COVID plan for the 2021-22 school year. We will continue to monitor the course of the virus locally, including positivity rates, hospitalizations and vaccinations, so that we can make changes to our COVID strategies if necessary.
A draft version of the COVID Plan is available below. The updated plan will be shared with the School Board during its regular meeting at 6 p.m. on August 3, which will be held at the Alachua County Administration Building at 12 SE 1st Street. More information about that meeting will be available at sbac.edu/boardmeetings.
Update: Masks temporarily required for ACPS employees, vendors and visitors
8/2/2021 UPDATE: Due to rapidly rising COVID cases in the community and among employees, Alachua County Public Schools will require indoor masking by all employees, vendors and visitors at district facilities. The requirement will be in place regardless of vaccination status.
The requirement will take effect Tuesday, August 3 and last through Friday, September 17. The district will then reassess the COVID data to determine if the requirement should remain in place.
Florida recently recorded the highest number of COVID cases since the beginning of the pandemic. The state also has the nation’s highest hospitalization rate. Cases among ACPS employees have risen significantly over the last two weeks, and one individual passed away this past weekend due to COVID-related complications.
“With rates as high as they are, I felt the district had to take action to reduce the spread of COVID in our community and schools,” said Superintendent Dr. Carlee Simon. “The state has taken some options out of our hands, but this is something we can do to protect students and staff.”
The district will continue to work with the Health Department to offer free vaccinations for students and staff. That includes vaccine clinics at schools during the school day. The district is also working on an agreement with the Alachua County Education Association, which represents district employees, to offer a $100 incentive for employees who are already vaccinated and those who get vaccinated by September 17.
“By taking these steps, I believe we can keep more of our students in school and more of our employees at work,” wrote Simon in an email to employees. “More importantly, we can reduce the number of people affected by COVID. The sooner we do that, the sooner we can get back to normal.”
A copy of the Superintendent’s email to employees is available at: https://bit.ly/3A1FX9R