Dear Catholic School Community:
I am writing to offer you an update on applying for waivers for a return to campus in Butte, Colusa, Placer, Sacramento, Solano, Sutter, and Yolo counties. Last month, Governor Newsom announced that any school located in a county on the state’s COVID monitoring list could apply for a waiver to be able to offer in-person instruction for students through the sixth grade. Per the directive, individual counties’ offices of public health must create a waiver application form, and then review applications in consultation with the California Department of Public Health.
The information that the counties need is already included in our Return-to-School plans, which we updated to match the state’s revised requirements. As required per the application, we are holding listening sessions regarding our plans with our employees, CSACs, and parish councils at all schools, and schools are sending a copy of their Return-to-School Plan to all parents.
Problems with the state’s COVID-19 infection reporting system led to their data being inaccurate, which has delayed the waiver process for us. Most counties have begun accepting applications pending the data being corrected, and we hope that the state will have fixed its problems by next week. If you would like to view your school’s plan or see where we are at in the waiver process, we have created a portal site that we will update regularly: www.scd.org/2021schools
We cannot predict when we will receive waivers for a return to school. We also eagerly await guidance on other issues that the CDPH does not address, including ways that we can use our schools to support students in need even if the county remains on the monitoring list. We do not know whether waivers will be extended to middle schools and high schools.
Please continue to do your part by remaining vigilant - we all have a job to do in slowing the growth of COVID. Even after we are back in class, we must keep our kids, teachers and our entire school communities safe by being as careful before and after school as we are on campus. In the meantime, we continue to cultivate faith, community, and growth in service to Jesus Christ and His students.
Thank you for your support of Catholic education.
Superintendent and Executive Director of Schools
The Diocese of Sacramento