Dear Andover Students and Families,
I am pleased to report that classes will resume in person tomorrow, as planned. Results from today’s testing (both in dorms this morning and during student arrivals this afternoon) showed a total positivity rate of 2.5%. We believe it is safe and the right decision to resume in-person learning, based on now three rounds of testing over the last week and based on our results compared to the Massachusetts overall 7-day positivity rate of 23% and compared to the reported positivity rate among vaccinated persons of 3.5%. For a number of reasons, the official rate among vaccinated persons is likely to be an underestimate.
We will continue twice-weekly mandatory testing for students until further notice. If future results signal a turn in the wrong direction, we will revisit our decisions around classes, dining, athletics, and other campus programming.
Reminder for boarding families: If your child tests positive at any point, you will be informed immediately and asked to bring them home. Reminder for all students: If you test positive and are feeling well enough to participate in classes, you will be able to access your classes remotely.
Here is what to expect this week:
- Classes resume in person, with remote options for those who test positive or who are in quarantine. If a faculty member needs to teach a class remotely, their students should plan to meet in their designated classroom during their class period.
- Athletics and co-curricular activities resume in person. Until further notice, spectators are not permitted at any home competitions.
- Paresky Commons is open for dining starting with breakfast on Monday. Those who are in quarantine may pick up “grab and go” options in Susie’s.
- Masking is imperative indoors.
- Masking rules for dorm residents: While students who are not in quarantine may remove their masks in their dorms, masks will continue to be required for all students in the dorms when an adult is present.
Here is what boarding students who arrived today can expect (unless you have been granted an exemption due to a recent confirmed diagnosis and subsequent clearance of COVID-19):
- To follow the same reentry process followed by your peers last week
- To attend class remotely
- To wear masks in the dorms during your five-day arrival quarantine
- To pick up meals from Paresky/Susie’s
- To enjoy the outdoors as much as possible, while eagerly awaiting the opportunity to join your peers in athletics and other co-curricular activities after completing your quarantine
I am especially grateful to everyone who responded this weekend when help was needed. All students, house counselors, our medical team, and faculty and staff volunteers went above and beyond to uphold our commitment to meet our educational mission while protecting the health of our campus community.
Thank you for your support and understanding.
Raynard Kington, MD, PhD, P’24
Head of School