Letter to Salpointe Families

Update: August 4, 2021
 
Dear Salpointe Students and Families,

The health and safety of our students, families, faculty, staff and community remain among our highest priorities. Together, we have weathered a challenging 18 months and we are hopeful that the worst is behind us.

Taking a look back, from March to May 2020, no Lancer attended school for even one day on our campus. From August 2020 to April 2021, no Lancer attended school more than two days per week on our campus. Even when we were able to return from hybrid learning in late April, Lancers were only on campus four days per week as more than half of our students remained in distance learning. 

For the 2021-2022 school year, Salpointe Catholic will return to in person, on campus learning, five days a week. We want as much normalcy as possible for our 1275 students and 140 faculty and staff. 

Salpointe will do whatever it takes to stay open. With the support of the chairman of the Board of Directors, Pat P. Lopez III, our legal counsel, Michael Slania, and our Salpointe Parent Association Board, we will implement protocols that support this goal. We want to once again provide the signature, hands-on Salpointe experience, addressing the academic, athletic, spiritual, emotional, social and artistic development of every Lancer, and we can only do that in person. 

Pima County Health Department can close any school in which 10% of the student body is positive for Covid, or when there are three separate outbreaks of two or more connected cases within a 14 day period. With only a very few schools open, Tucson schools have had 139 Covid cases and 11 outbreaks over the past two weeks, according to PCHD.

We do not want to be forced to close Salpointe’s campus and cause additional personal suffering and academic challenges for our students. 

The following guidelines are subject to change depending on local COVID-19 and Delta variant transmission numbers, health department recommendations and Salpointe’s vaccination rate.
 
IN-PERSON LEARNING:

The traditional, signature Salpointe experience will take place in person and on campus five days a week. Salpointe will not offer digital or synchronous education this year. All students are expected to attend classes in person, on campus daily.
 
VACCINATIONS:  

Vaccinations are currently the leading public health prevention strategy to end the COVID-19 pandemic. Salpointe will not require vaccination, but we strongly encourage you to get your student vaccinated, then upload a photo of the verification card to myPointe. Please note that verification cards must be uploaded through the parent’s myPointe account. This will help Salpointe determine the level of immunity on the campus. Our goal is a 90% vaccination rate; we have achieved this rate with faculty/staff and we’d like to reach that percentage with students. (We are at 43% today.) Even if your student had a positive COVID test in the past, vaccination is recommended. According to CDC director Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the Delta variant outbreak is “an outbreak of the unvaccinated.” 

Salpointe will host free vaccination clinics on campus from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm on Saturday, August 7 and Saturday, August 28. Friends and family are welcome! To locate other vaccination sites near you, go to www.vaccines.gov and enter your ZIP code or call 1-800-232-0233. Vaccinations are free of charge. 

To encourage a high level of immunity on campus, we are offering incentives for vaccinated students by raffling valuable prizes including one month’s tuition credit or $1000 cash. Upload your verification card to be entered in the raffle. Click here to learn more: Vaccine Raffle

Please consult your healthcare provider as appropriate.

MASKS:  

In addition to vaccinations, wearing masks is the primary mitigation strategy to decrease the continuing spread of COVID-19. The CDC recommends that all students k-12 wear masks when community transmission rates are “substantial” or “high.” Pima County’s transmission rate is currently “substantial.”* 

Therefore, all Salpointe students and employees must wear masks while indoors until the community transmission rate is reduced to a “moderate” or “low” level and/or until Salpointe reaches a 90% vaccination rate. 

*"Low" transmission is considered no more than 10 cases per 100,000 people, or a test positivity rate of less than 5%.
"Moderate" transmission is 10 to 50 cases per 100,000 people, or a positivity rate between 5% and 8%.  "Substantial" transmission is 50 to 100 cases per 100,000, or a positivity rate between 8% and 10%.
“High" transmission is 100 or more cases per 100,000 people or a positivity rate of 10% or higher.

Masks are not necessary for outdoor activities.
 
SOCIAL DISTANCING:  

Salpointe will attempt to maintain three feet of distance between desks in classroom settings, but the school is not able to guarantee social distancing during every activity on campus. For lunch, we will utilize both Foundation Hall and Alumni Hall, reducing the number of students to 320 students/space. Students will also be able to eat outdoors.
 
QUARANTINE/ISOLATION: 

Salpointe will follow CDC/Pima County Health Department guidelines for isolation and quarantine: 

Confirmed positive cases, whether vaccinated or unvaccinated, must isolate as follows:
  • 10 days since exposure AND 
  • Symptom free
Unvaccinated and partially vaccinated exposed (or in close contact) to persons with COVID will be required to quarantine as follows:
  • 10 days OR 7 days with negative COVID test on day 5
  • Symptom free
Fully vaccinated, symptom-free individuals who have been exposed (or in close contact) to persons with COVID do not need to quarantine. However, vaccinated individuals who are exposed (or in close contact) are encouraged to get a COVID test approximately 3-5 days after exposure.

Salpointe’s nurse, Ms. Traci Torres, RN, can provide more specific guidance. See guidelines in the references below.

Students in isolation or quarantine are expected to keep up with school work by contacting their teachers and counselors and by completing assignments posted in myPointe, Google Classroom, etc.

Per Pima County Health Department requirements, Salpointe needs to know if students are in quarantine due to COVID-19 exposure or in isolation due to a positive COVID-19 test. Parents, please inform BOTH the attendance clerk (520-327-1990 or attendance@salpointe.org) and the nurse (520-547-9395 or nurse@salpointe.org) about exposure or positive test results. Salpointe’s nurse will track exposures and positive tests so that Salpointe is aware of any transmission on campus. In the event of an outbreak, Salpointe will work with the Pima County Health Department and take the steps necessary to control the outbreak, including quarantining or isolating individual students or student groups.
 
IMMUNOCOMPROMISED OR VULNERABLE STUDENTS AND EMPLOYEES:

Salpointe wants to proactively protect students and employees who are vulnerable due to pre-existing health conditions or other familial circumstances.  We highly recommend that even when Salpointe lifts the mask mandate, students and employees who have vulnerabilities continue to take precautions.

COVID-19 SYMPTOMS:

Students and staff should stay home from school if they experience symptoms including fever, chills, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headaches or fatigue. 

COLLABORATION WITH HEALTH DEPARTMENTS:

Salpointe will continue to collaborate with Pima County Health Department, Arizona Department of Health Services and CDC on COVID-19 related issues. The school will report student and/or employee positive COVID-19 cases to PCHD. 

CLEANING/SANITIZING PROTOCOLS:

Salpointe will continue the high level of cleaning/sanitizing exercised over the past 18 months.

VENTILATION:

Salpointe will continue to maintain optimal ventilation and air filtration for classrooms and indoor gathering spaces.
 
REFERENCES:
 
___________________________________________________________
How to Upload COVID-19 Vaccination Card to MyPointe

Salpointe Catholic looks forward to having all students return to campus for in-person learning in August. We will not require COVID-19 vaccinations this fall, but we strongly encourage students and teachers/staff to get vaccinated. Please use this student vaccination verification database to upload your student’s vaccination card. This data will help determine our community’s progress in reaching a safe level of immunity on campus and help us determine who should be quarantined in the event of an outbreak. Please note: Vaccination cards can only be uploaded using parent myPointe accounts.
 
1. Scan and save the front of your vaccination card.
2. Sign into myPointe.
3. Click on the yellow banner: “Checklist to Review.”
 
 
4. Choose file/image of the vaccination card and upload it.
 
 
5. Once the file is uploaded, you will see “submitted.” Thank you for helping keep the Salpointe community safe!
 
If you have trouble uploading your student’s COVID-19 vaccination card to myPointe, you or your student can bring the card to the Advancement Office (Room 606). We will scan it and upload it for you. Thank you!

Salpointe Catholic High School

1545 E. Copper St.,
Tucson, AZ 85719
(520) 327-6581
Attendance: (520) 327-1990
© 2021 Salpointe Catholic High School. All rights reserved.