Pine Crest School COVID-19 Updates

This webpage includes details and updates regarding Pine Crest’s COVID-19 mitigation protocols. The multi-layered approach outlined below is based on best practices and lessons learned, and our dedication to keeping our students and teachers healthy, safe, and together. 

It is important to note that we may decide to introduce and discontinue various protocols throughout the year based on regional infection data; trends within our peer independent schools and South Florida public school districts; and rates of infection on our campuses. 

Employees and families are encouraged to visit this page as often as you would like to stay informed, and to contact the Health Office at healthoffice@pinecrest.edu, 954-492-4170, or 561-852-2828 if you have questions or personal circumstances you would like to discuss. 

2021-22 COVID-19 Protocols

Updated: December 30, 2021

Before Coming to Campus: Personal Responsibility

To mitigate the spread of COVID-19 on our campuses, we must rely heavily on our families and employees to act responsibly and do their best to protect the community at all times—whether on campus, while participating in off-campus activities, or at home. This includes following the guidance of medical professionals and staying home from school whenever an individual is feeling unwell. Any employee or student who is ill or has been exposed to a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19 must stay home and contact the Health Office and their Division Office (parents/guardians for students) or supervisor (employees), regardless of whether or not they have been fully vaccinated. Vigilant daily monitoring for COVID-19 symptoms at home will remain essential throughout the school year. If you have any questions or doubts as to how a particular situation should be handled, please err on the side of caution and contact the Health Office for guidance. A Health Office nurse or member of the COVID-19 Compliance Team will contact families and employees directly to discuss next steps and plan a safe return to campus.

Masks

In recognition of the new and evolving situation related to the Omicron variant and relying upon the information available to us today, we have decided to begin the second semester of the 2021-22 school year with a mask requirement for all students in grades one through twelve and all faculty and staff while indoors, both vaccinated and unvaccinated, regardless of whether there is an opt-out waiver on file.

Ultimately, we hope to be in a position to make masks optional again for the entire community as soon as we can safely do so. As we have done throughout the pandemic, we will revisit our masking policy frequently and will share changes with you as they occur.

Vaccines and Privacy

Although the COVID-19 vaccine is not mandatory for employees or students, we encourage all eligible members of our community to get vaccinated.

A fully-vaccinated person is someone who is two weeks past the second dose of a two-dose vaccination (mRNA), or two weeks past the first dose of a single dose vaccination (J&J). Those who are more than six months out from their second mRNA dose or more than two months after the J&J vaccine must be boosted (if eligible) to be considered fully vaccinated.

Regardless of their vaccination status, all Pine Crest administrators, teachers, staff, and students will be expected to continue to follow the COVID-19 health and safety protocols established and communicated by the School at all times. 

Mitigation Protocols for All

  • Teaching and learning will continue to take place in person, on campus.
  • Desks, tables, and chairs are distanced three feet apart wherever possible.
  • Plexiglas dividers remain in reception areas, dining halls, and classrooms where social distancing is not physically possible.
  • Frequent hand washing is encouraged.
  • Cleaning crews continue to conduct daily sanitation of classrooms and common areas.
  • The dining halls will continue to be in use with to-go options, outdoor seating, and Plexiglas for indoor seating.
  • All visitors must have approval before coming to campus.

Close Contacts, Contact Tracing, and Testing

  • Individuals who are identified as being in “close contact” with a person who has a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19 will be notified by the Health Office/COVID-19 Compliance team and guided in one of two directions:

If Fully Vaccinated:

  • Fully vaccinated individuals are not required to quarantine after an exposure to a positive/suspected case of COVID-19, however, they must wear a mask while around others for 10 days after exposure. "Fully vaccinated" is defined as completing the primary series of Pfizer or Moderna vaccine less than six months ago or the J&J less than two months ago, or receiving the booster if beyond the respective timeframe. Employees/students who are fully vaccinated should inform the Health Office and provide them with documentation reflecting the vaccination status. If fully vaccinated, employees/students will be required to test on day five (5) after exposure and then isolate off-campus if positive.

If Unvaccinated or Not Fully Vaccinated:

  • Unvaccinated individuals and those who are not fully vaccinated who are exposed to a positive/suspected case of COVID-19 have two options: 
  1. Pine Crest requires that unvaccinated individuals who have had “close contact” with someone who has a confirmed or suspected positive COVID-19 case must self-isolate off campus for five (5) days from the date of exposure. This includes individuals who completed the primary series of Pfizer or Moderna vaccine more than six months ago or the J&J more than two months ago and are not boosted.
  2. To return to campus, an employee/student must first take a COVID-19 test on day five (5) of self-isolation, and email the results to healthoffice@pinecrest.edu. Please do not return to campus for any reason until cleared by the Health Office. Once cleared, the individual must wear a mask on campus when around others for five days.

Travel

Regardless of an individual’s vaccination status, all travel outside of the continental United States—including travel to any United States territories (e.g., Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, etc.) and in international waters (e.g., travel to the Bahamas even if the individuals do not disembark the boat)—must be reported to the School in advance of the trip. Please complete this travel survey or contact the Health Office at healthoffice@pinecrest.edu or 954-492-4170 to notify the School of any upcoming international travel. We appreciate and expect our families’ and employees’ adherence to this requirement and the below protocols, as they are in place for the safety of our community, like all of our COVID-19 protocols. 

Vaccinated individuals may return to campus after international travel without a quarantine period. However, to be permitted to remain on campus, vaccinated individuals must take a COVID-19 PCR test three (3) to five (5) days after their return to the United States and email the result to the Health Office (healthoffice@pinecrest.edu) for confirmation. Failure to comply with these testing requirements will result in a mandatory quarantine period of seven (7) days, which shall run from day five (5) after the individual’s return from international travel, provided however that if an individual tests positive at any point after international travel, an additional quarantine period will be required.

Unvaccinated individuals must quarantine off campus for seven (7) days after returning from any travel outside the continental United States, including travel to any United States territories (e.g., Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, etc.) and in international waters (e.g., travel to the Bahamas even if the individuals do not disembark the boat). In addition, such individuals must take a COVID-19 PCR test on day five (5) or later and email the results to the Health Office (healthoffice@pinecrest.edu) for confirmation before returning to campus. If an unvaccinated individual chooses not to undergo a PCR test, the quarantine period will be fourteen (14) days after return to the United States.  

If any individual (vaccinated or unvaccinated) tests positive for COVID-19, our regular protocol for positive individuals will apply.

2021-22 COVID-19 Dashboard

Frequently Asked Questions

Questions?

If you have questions or concerns regarding Pine Crest's health and safety practices and policies, please contact the Pine Crest School Health Office at healthoffice@pinecrest.edu, 954-492-4170, or 561-852-2828.

Standing Together

As a school community, we must all stand together in preventing the spread of COVID-19. 

To respect the privacy of our employees and students, Pine Crest will not share data or details on any individual’s vaccination status. We ask that families and employees demonstrate the same respect for others’ privacy by refraining from making assumptions or judgments about an individual’s vaccination status or asking any questions about whether or not someone in the community is vaccinated. Similarly, we expect everyone in the community to respect the decisions of others regarding masking once we are able to make masks optional. No one should be questioned, confronted, or ridiculed for their decisions around vaccines or masking. 

Pine Crest School upholds a firm commitment to every member of our community, which includes faculty and families from all over the world. It is and always has been our practice to extend kindness and respect to all, regardless of race, ethnicity, or national origin. 

The strength of our community comes from embracing our diversity and working together to ensure that our campus is a respectful and inclusive environment for working and learning.