July 16, 2021
Dear OPA Parents and Staff,
I hope you are all having a wonderful summer break. The OPA staff is busy working on preparations for the upcoming school year, and excited to have our students back on campus for a full day of instruction. We are looking forward to a strong focus on academic achievement, engaging educational experiences and projects based on students’ multiple intelligences, building social and emotional strength, and continuing to enhance and strengthen our OPA community.
As many of you may have seen, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) has released updated COVID-19 Health and Safety Guidance for the 2021-2022 school year. Because OPA is a public charter school, we are required to follow all CDPH health and safety guidelines. Per these new guidelines, facial coverings will be required for all staff and students while indoors. Facial coverings will be optional when staff and students are outside.
The complete mask requirements outlined in the COVID-19 Health and Safety Guidance for the 2021-2022 school year include:
- K-12 students are required to mask indoors, with exemptions per CDPH face mask guidance. Adults in K-12 school settings are required to mask when sharing indoor spaces with students.
- Persons exempted from wearing a face covering due to a medical condition, must wear a non-restrictive alternative, such as a face shield with a drape on the bottom edge, as long as their condition permits it.
- Schools must develop and implement local protocols to provide a face covering to students who inadvertently fail to bring a face covering to school to prevent unnecessary exclusions.
- Consistent with guidance from the 2020-21 school year, schools must develop and implement local protocols to enforce the mask requirements. Additionally, schools should offer alternative educational opportunities for students who are excluded from campus because they will not wear a face covering. Note: Public schools should be aware of the requirements in AB 130 to offer independent study programs for the 2021-22 school year.
- In limited situations where a face covering cannot be used for pedagogical or developmental reasons, (e.g., communicating or assisting young children or those with special needs) a face shield with a drape (per CDPH guidelines) can be used instead of a face covering while in the classroom as long as the wearer maintains physical distance from others. Staff must return to wearing a face covering outside of the classroom.
The CDPH will continue to assess conditions on an ongoing basis, and will determine no later than November 1, 2021, whether to update mask requirements or recommendations.
If you have not already done so, please make sure to complete our Strategic Planning Survey by August 1, 2021. Your feedback is very important to us, as it provides valuable information to help us continue to make OPA a model educational organization.
Please be on the lookout in August for information to complete the Annual Data Confirmation process. We need all OPA parents to complete Data Confirmation to ensure that we have the most accurate information regarding each of our champions. Thank you in advance for taking the time to update your champion(s) information.
School supply lists will be coming out next week and will also be posted on the school websites. Please also make sure to visit our school uniform pages on the school website to make sure your student has the appropriate school uniforms to start the school year. There is also a list of vendors available on the websites.
We look forward to seeing everyone at Meet Your Professor on August 13, 2021, and our first day of school, August 18, 2021. Exact times for Meet Your Professor will be sent out to families in August. Have a great weekend OPA!