February 28, 2022
Dear OPA Parents, Guardians, and Staff,
During a press conference earlier today, Dr. Mark Ghaly, California Health and Human Services Secretary, announced that California’s indoor mask order for schools will be downgraded to a “strong recommendation” on March 12, 2022. Also, in a joint news release, the governors of California, Oregon and Washington cited declining case rates and hospitalizations as the basis for easing face-covering requirements for students and staff on public and private school campuses.
We are pleased that on March 12th, OPA families will have a choice regarding which option for masking is best for their student(s). However, until March 12, 2022, staff and students are still required to wear masks at all times while indoors, on campus.
Under the health order, school districts and charter schools can establish safety plans that are more restrictive than the guidelines put forth by the CDPH, as can county health care agencies. But they cannot be less restrictive. Therefore, masks are required indoors at both of our OPA campuses until March 12, 2022. After March 12, 2022, masks will be highly recommended for all staff and students, both indoors and outdoors.
If you do not want to have your student wear a mask indoors on campus between now and March 12, 2022, you may request that your student participate in short term independent study or switch to virtual learning.
We understand that many families are frustrated with the continuation of the indoor mask order at school for the next two weeks, but as a public school, we are required to follow all health orders from the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and the Orange County Health Care Agency (OCHCA), or we risk serious ramifications, such as losing our insurance.
Thank you for your patience and cooperation, as we continue to try to ensure the health and safety of our OPA Champions, families, and staff. As we get more information, we will share it with you. Have a wonderful evening.