Health & Safety Plan

The health and safety of this community is our number one priority, and we have put in place procedures and protocols designed to mitigate the risk of COVID-19 exposure and spread. We continue to monitor the situation in Houston and will keep you informed and provide additional resources as we navigate this ever-evolving situation together. 
 
Sent to all parents, faculty, staff, and high school students
 
Dear St. Catherine’s Community,
 
Please be advised that we have made some adjustments for clarification to the 21-22 Health & Safety Plan. Please click here for the updated version of the plan and refer to page 6.
 
Together Responsibly,
 
 
Susan Tracy
Head of School
 
 
Sent to all parents, faculty, staff, and high school students
 
Dear St. Catherine’s Community,
 
Thank you all for your partnership in observing healthy practices as students return to campus for this school year. As the reality of COVID-19 continues to evolve – bringing new guidance from the CDC, Texas Education Agency, and the Archdiocese – we have made some revisions to our 21-22 Health & Safety Plan in the form of an addendum.
 
 In the updated plan you will find new information regarding:
  • masking protocols for indoor sports and dismissal periods;
  • at-home health screenings;
  • the school’s COVID-19 notification procedures and positive cases within a household;
  • COVID-19 exposure protocols;
  • the definition of close contact within the indoor classroom setting; and
  • quarantine protocols for fully-vaccinated students and employees. 
 
The revised plan will go into effect tomorrow, August 24th.
 
We are all doing the best we can with the knowledge that we have, and are counting on each other to act in the best interests of our students, families, and employees. St. Catherine’s encourages all vaccine-eligible individuals to get fully vaccinated. We also ask that you maintain healthy practices at home. It requires the vigilance of everyone in our community to ensure the safety of our school environment.
 
Knowing that you are acting with consideration for all members of the St. Catherine’s community helps me believe that we will endure this stage of the pandemic together.
 
Together Responsibly,
 
 
Susan Tracy
Head of School
 
 
Sent to all parents, faculty and staff
 
Dear St. Catherine’s Community,
 
An important part of our summer work has been to develop a comprehensive Health and Safety Plan to provide a safe learning environment for all students, faculty, and staff. Our planning and decision-making was done in conjunction with leaders in infectious diseases and pandemic preparedness to understand the current COVID-19 situation in Houston as it pertains to children. Following the guidance of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and endorsed by professional societies such as the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society (PIDS), we are prioritizing in-person school attendance for the educational and social well-being of our children.  
 
The newly released guidance advocates for the universal masking of all staff and children older than 2 years, and vaccination for all eligible persons. Importantly, universal masking is recommended regardless of vaccination status.  
 
Multiple challenges exist for the beginning of the 2021-2022 school year related to COVID-19:
  • Children under 12 years of age cannot yet be vaccinated
  • Large numbers of eligible individuals are unvaccinated
  • Emergence of a new hyper-transmissible variant contributing to a 3rd surge in the US
  • Recent increases in cases in children and young adults
 
However, studies support the safety of in-person school when strategies to mitigate infection (masking, distancing, ventilation, hand hygiene) are implemented. In fact, in those studies COVID-19 transmission in schools is rare and children have lower rates of infection when mitigation measures are in place. Combined with vaccination of all eligible persons, these prevention strategies will keep students in school and reduce the risk of infection.  
 
To begin the school year we will use the recommended tools to promote a safe return to in-person learning. We will remain vigilant in our review of the changing landscape of the COVID-19 pandemic and will make adjustments accordingly. Any changes will be communicated to the St. Catherine’s community.  
 
Please review the attached 2021-2022 Health and Safety Plan, then read and return the attached COVID-19 Parental/Guardian Acknowledgment form to Emily Blackman at eblackman@stcathmont.org by Friday, August 6, 2021.
 
Together Responsibly,
 
 
Susan Tracy
Head of School
 
 
 
Health & Safety Plan
2021 - 2022