Dear Families, Upper School Students, and Faculty,
Last week, we reported three positive tests for COVID-19: two faculty members and one Upper School student. The affected individuals wore masks, observed social distancing, and were unaware of their exposure when they interacted with other members of the Maret community. They informed the School promptly of any concern so that we could respond appropriately and swiftly.
In response, we asked FiveMedicine to perform another round of testing on campus on Friday. I am pleased to report all 70 tests came back negative. We have also learned that each of those who decided to quarantine due to possible exposure to COVID has either tested negative or completed the required quarantine period without developing any COVID symptoms. This very good news strongly suggests that our health and safety measures have been effective at mitigating community spread. It is important to note that no case of COVID transmission has been linked to activity on the Maret campus.
“Standing Together” is the expression we use at Maret to describe how we will get through this pandemic intact. I want to reemphasize the importance of each of us showing compassion to every person who has to deal with this illness. As stated in our Return to School Guide:
Understandably, this pandemic has caused a great deal of anxiety, fear, and stress, but it is important that we not allow those feelings to lead to social stigma. Blaming those who have had the disease, instead of the disease itself, does not help our community, and can, in fact, cause harm if people become more likely to hide symptoms or avoid reporting illness. Standing Together means taking good care of one another in word and in deed.
For my part, I promise you that I will continue to be as transparent as possible while of course respecting confidentiality when required to do so.
While many were disappointed that we had to shorten our COL-Hybrid experience by a few days, still I am very pleased that we had an opportunity to learn what works well—and think about what might be improved. Yesterday, we surveyed every 6th through 12th grade student to gather their input. Our hard-working team is already considering adjustments that could be applied when COL-Hybrid resumes.
Feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions. In the meantime, our hearts go out to all of those in our community—and around the world—who have been afflicted by this terrible virus.
It is my sincere wish that you are able to enjoy some relaxing downtime over the Thanksgiving holiday.