State Watch

Students, staff at DC schools must test negative for COVID-19 to return after Thanksgiving

Students and staff returning to Washington, D.C., public schools after Thanksgiving break will have to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test before they can get back to the classroom, city officials said.

The requirement, which D.C. schools have also used to ease returns to in-person learning after other seasonal breaks, is in practice this Thanksgiving “to support a safe return” after the holiday, according to the mayor’s office

Schools are distributing test kits in the days leading up to the holiday, and families can pick up extra tests at any of the District’s COVID Centers, located in each of the city’s eight wards. 

The tests need to be taken on Sunday, Nov. 27, and results must be uploaded the same day to the D.C. Public Schools online portal to clear the student for class on Monday.

Students and staff who test positive, regardless of vaccination status, won’t be allowed to return to in-person school activities until completing an isolation period, which is typically 5 days, unless symptoms persist, according to guidance from D.C. Health.

The same test-to-return policy will be in effect for schools’ winter break in December.

Tags COVID-19 COVID-19 testing D.C. Muriel Bowser Thanksgiving Washington D.C.

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