Dear Clayton Community:
As you are aware, the Governor has lifted the school mask mandate effective March 7, 2022. In addition, our COVID-19 cases continue to take a sharp decrease in our school district. As an example, during the month of December, we had a total of 101 positive cases. In January, we had 80 positive COVID cases. For the month of February, as of today, we have 5 total positive cases. This is a significant drop in COVID-19 cases.
This information, along with the statewide decrease, makes me feel comfortable to announce a face mask optional policy for Clayton Public School District. This policy will take effect on March 7, 2022 in all school buildings and properties. Unfortunately, the mask mandate remains in effect on our school buses. This is because our buses are regulated by the Federal Transportation Department, and they have not yet lifted the mask requirement.
We are waiting for additional guidelines from the CDC and the New Jersey Department of Health on some of the other COVID restrictions that are currently in place such as quarantining requirements and social distancing rules. As soon as the guidelines come out, we will communicate that information to you. My sincere hope is that this is the beginning of us returning to a semblance of normalcy for our staff and students and that we may finally be getting off the “hamster wheel.”
We all understand the impact the pandemic has had on our students and staff. Our students’ mental health is a priority for us in Clayton, and we will continue to promote the social and emotional well-being of our school community.
As always, thank you for your support.
Nikolaos C. Koutsogiannis
Superintendent of Schools