COVID-19 Recent News & Updates

Health Update and March Testing Dates

Dear Colleagues, Families, and Students, 

We have learned that an Upper School faculty member has tested positive for COVID-19. The faculty member has been in quarantine at home and not on campus since learning of a family member’s COVID-19 diagnosis on Feb. 14. The faculty member is following all DA and Durham County Department of Public Health guidelines for isolation and return to the community. Given the timing of the case, no students, faculty or staff were identified as potential close contacts.   

Through six months of school, we have managed to prevent on-campus transmission through our protective protocols and keep each other safe. While North Carolina’s COVID-19 case counts are dropping and vaccine distribution accelerating, the virus remains a significant threat to our community’s health and to the continuity of our on-campus learning. 

Please continue to avoid potential exposures. Wear masks. Wash hands. Stay home if you are sick. In the event of a positive diagnosis in your household, contact Gem Gates and Hunter Babwah at health@da.org immediately.  

As I shared on Jan. 18, our plans and expectations for Spring Break and the remote week that follows will prioritize health and safety, streamline learning for all students and reduce the chance of unplanned disruptions in March.

Travel, Gathering and Returning to School

The CDC and NCDHHS are clear in their recommendations to avoid travel and gathering with people outside your household. If you do plan to gather with people beyond your immediate family, follow the CDC recommendations to keep you safer. If you choose to travel during Spring Break and/or the week after it, please keep your student(s) home for 10 days after your return. Students may also return to campus after 7 days with a negative result of a PCR test administered 5 days after returning home.

COVID-19 Testing on Campus

Once again we will host drive-through PCR testing sessions in collaboration with Express Test NC at the times below. All are welcome. Preregistration is strongly recommended (online appointment slots will be posted soon at this link).

  • Monday, March 15 from 8 a.m. to noon
  • Wednesday, March 17 from  8 a.m. to noon
  • Thursday, March 18 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Thank you for your continuing attention and collaboration. Both matter deeply to the smooth and healthy functioning of our school. 

Best,

Gem Gates, Nurse Consultant  

Michael Ulku-Steiner, Head of School