FAR HILLS IS OPEN
#FALCONSTRONG AND #FALCONSAFE
We are delighted to begin the 2022-2023 school year free from most of the COVID-19 protocols mandated over the past two years. The latest guidance from the New Jersey Department of Health and the United States Centers for Disease Control move away from individual case reporting and contact tracing to more normal procedures for illness. We will remain a mask-optional campus and will ask that you keep sick children home, whether with COVID-19 or a different illness, to help us control spread.
Please note that Far Hills Country Day School's 2022–23 COVID-19 Protocols outlined below are based on infection rate and current CDC and NJ DOH recommendations. Recommendations may change when parameters change.
As of September 6, 2022, Far Hills Country Day School will:
- require students/faculty who test positive for COVID-19 to quarantine at home for five (5) days [they may return after day five (5) if they are symptom/fever free for 24 hours, excluding loss of taste/smell, wearing a mask for days six (6) to ten (10)];
- require a negative COVID-19 test for students to return to school after being ill with COVID-compatible symptoms (they must be fever- and symptom-free for 24 hours);
- require that students/faculty produce a doctor's note with an alternate diagnosis to return to school if they've been absent for three (3) or more days; and
- allow siblings of positive COVID-19 cases to attend school, regardless of vaccination status.
- If the county is in GREEN status, these students will be encouraged to mask for five (5) days.
- If the county is in YELLOW or RED status, these students will be required to wear a mask for a full ten (10) days.
The Health Office will be in touch with families as needed.
Updated COVID-19 Return to Play Protocol
As of September 6, 2022:
- Students under 12 years of age may resume normal activities unless they develop symptoms.
- Students 12 years of age or older may return to sedentary activities and Physical Education/Athletics practices as follows:
- Students who had asymptomatic or mild COVID-19 infections may return to play with two days of light activity to be determined by the Physical Education staff or coach. By day three (3), they can resume normal activity or play in a full practice if they have no symptoms. A facemask needs to be worn for ALL physical activity—including practices—until ten (10) days have passed from the time of the first symptoms or positive test.
- Students who have had moderate infections need to be at minimum one (1)-day symptom-free (excluding loss of taste/smell) and need a minimum of four (4) days of gradual increase in physical activity with no games before day five (5). A face mask should be worn for ALL physical activity—including games or scrimmages—until ten (10) full days from the positive test or symptom onset have passed.
- Students who experienced severe infections will need a doctor's note to return to play.
- Updated COVID-19 Protocol, Effective March 7, 2022
- 2021–22 Back-to-School Plan
- Fall 2020 Reopening Plan
For nearly two years, we have gathered critical information from public health experts to guide us through the pandemic. Considering all of the important factors in going mask optional as of March 7, 2022, has been no different. The experts we spoke to agree that moving to a mask-optional policy starting March 7 makes sense at this time, given the precipitous decline in positivity locally, as well as the decrease in the severity of the infection. Understandably, the move in this direction is welcomed news for many but concerning to others. There may be members of our community who will prefer to remain masked, and of course, we will respect that decision. Students will be instructed to treat one another with respect regardless of their family's decision regarding masking.
The Governor’s announcement about lifting the mask mandate in schools as of March 7 is one more indication that schools are moving toward more normal operations while continuing with other common-sense measures to keep our communities healthy. If you have any questions, please contact our Health Office.
We continue to be cautiously optimistic as we head into the third trimester of the year. The safety and health of Far Hills Country Day School’s students, employees, and families will continually be our top priority. We appreciate our entire community’s efforts and dedication during this time.
We cannot sing your praises enough. Our daughter LOVED today. You are nothing short of incredible to be able to create this much magic under such crazy circumstances. She didn’t want to go to bed because she kept wanting to tell us snippets about the day. For all of the huge and tiny and important and not seemingly important details that made today such a fantastic day... we are indebted to you. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!
Thank you so much for an amazing first day!! I asked my son to tell me one thing he liked the most and he said he can’t choose one because he loved everything about today. Thank you so much!!
“Despite all of the uncertainty in the world, you have collectively found a way to bring joy and happiness back into a socially distant time. My kids have been beaming with excitement at all of the changes and creativity around them.”
The spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to evolve quickly in the United States, with new information and new cases confirmed daily. Far Hills continues to vigorously monitor and respond to these developments and recommendations from our school physician, the New Jersey Department of Health, the Somerset County Department of Health, and the Bernards Township Health Department. The school also continues to review the public health and travel advisory guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the U.S. State Department. In the face of this rapidly developing global health emergency, our highest priority remains the health and welfare of our students, faculty, and staff.
While there currently is no vaccine for COVID-19, community members can take other important steps to avoid being exposed to the virus and prevent the spread of germs. The CDC recommends the following:
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Cover coughs and sneezes in your elbow or sleeve, not your hand, or use tissues and discard them in the trash.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
- Avoid sharing drinks and food.
- Clean high-touch areas such as door knobs, railings, phones and computers as often as possible with a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
- Use non-contact greetings (nod or bow rather than shake hands or hug).
As a matter of course, the CDC recommends getting a flu vaccine to prevent seasonal influenza, though it is not effective against COVID-19. Use this link to find a location near you. Please check with your physician prior to any action.