With the holiday season steadily approaching, it is important that we recognize and address the unique challenges ahead of us. Many of us have a rich history of celebrations that include spending quality time with our families and friends. Many of these celebrations occur elsewhere, outside of our homes and local community. However, due to the fact that the number of COVID cases is continuing to climb, some new guidelines and recommendations may end up modifying our traditional holiday plans. Remember that gatherings with family and friends who do not live with you can increase the chances of getting or spreading COVID-19. Keeping this in mind, we are highlighting information from the Washington State Department of Health (DOH) as well as the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) below.
Gatherings in Washington State
- Indoor gatherings with people who don't live with you are prohibited until December 14 unless prior to getting together you quarantine for 14 days or quarantine for 7 days and receive a negative COVID-19 test result.
- Outdoor gatherings are currently permitted, so long as:
- There are five or fewer people from outside your household (people you don't live with).
- The outdoor spaces are set up so that everyone can stay six feet (2m) apart.
Consider alternative ways to socialize, like having a remote potluck or a virtual game night. If you do gather with people outside your household, remember to have everyone wear their mask!
- The CDC recommends against travel during the Thanksgiving period.
- Washington State recommends a 14-day self-quarantine for anyone arriving from other states or countries, including returning Washington residents.
In light of this information, if you don't need to travel, please stay home. Modify your holiday plans to incorporate additional safety layers and limit people gathering from outside your household whenever possible.
Thank you for your continued efforts to keep our community safe. We truly appreciate all of the hard decisions and changes that you have made and continue to make. Because of everyone's individual efforts, we continue to feel confident in the safety of our students, staff, and families. Let's continue to be a community worth emulating!