Updates to RSSL Guidance Documents, Including Face Coverings and Physical Distancing

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Oregon Department of Education - Oregon achieves - together

To:        Superintendents, Principals, Charter School Leaders, Private Schools,
             Reopening Advisors, School Nurses
Date:    May 28, 2021
From:   Colt Gill, Director of the Oregon Department of Education
Re:       Updates to RSSL Guidance Documents, Including Face Coverings and
             Physical Distancing

Dear District and School Leaders,

I’m writing with several updates to Ready Schools, Safe Learners guidance and supporting guidance documents.

These updates align to Governor Brown and the Oregon Health Authority’s newly revised health and safety protocols for Lower Risk counties and to other updates from the Oregon Health Authority including the creation of vaccinated sections in outdoor and indoor venues.

These revised health and safety protocols may affect your graduation plans. They are responsive to increased vaccination rates in Oregon communities, and thus create more opportunity to gather and celebrate. The Graduation Ceremony Guidance requires schools to follow the Outdoor and Indoor Entertainment Venue guidance. 

Updated Sector Risk Level Guidance

On May 26, OHA released the updated sector risk level category guidance which includes health and safety guidance for Lower Risk counties and reflects the following changes, allowing the option for vaccinated sections for businesses, venues, and faith institutions: 

  • Vaccinated sections with no physical distancing or capacity limits will be allowed for fully vaccinated individuals ages 16 and older who provide verification of their vaccination status.
  • Businesses, venues, and faith institutions may require additional health and safety protocols in vaccinated sections, such as mask wearing for vaccinated individuals.
  • Because children ages 12-15 have only recently become eligible for vaccination, and children under 12 are not yet eligible, all children up to age 15 wearing a face covering will be permitted in vaccinated sections if accompanied by their fully vaccinated parent or guardian.
  • Unvaccinated sections must adhere to all health and safety protocols, including the use of masks, physical distance, and capacity limits.

Additional Guidance Updates

Please review the new documents closely. If you have any questions, our COVID inbox is always open: ODECOVID19@ode.state.or.us

Thank you for your optimism, tenacity and grit this last year. The upcoming graduation ceremonies are a milestone for all of us as we continue to look towards a brighter future.