COVID Infection Levels and Mask Recommendation

From Newton Public Schools:

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website, Middlesex County, along with most of Massachusetts, is now in the “high” community level for COVID-19. You can access current Newton-specific COVID data on the Newton HHS website:

City of Newton COVID Case Data

Newton Public Schools COVID Case Data

Given the increase in cases in our community, the Newton Public Schools STRONGLY recommends students and staff wear a mask. A well-fitting mask is very effective in reducing the transmission of COVID.

For reference, when a community level is “high,” the CDC recommends the following:

  • Wear a well-fitting mask indoors in public, regardless of vaccination status (including in K-12 schools and other indoor community settings).
  • Stay up to date with COVID-19 vaccines and boosters.
  • Follow CDC recommendations for isolation and quarantine, including getting tested if you are exposed to COVID-19 or have symptoms of COVID-19.
  • Maintain improved ventilation throughout indoor spaces when possible.
  • If you are at high risk for severe illness, consider taking additional precautions.

Newton Public Schools will continue to notify families of COVID cases using our regular frequency of notification (based upon grade levels.) Families should use this data to assess their own level of risk based upon their family’s circumstances.

COVID Testing

  • You can still opt-in to the at-home COVID rapid antigen testing program. Opt-in through your Aspen parent/guardian account: Aspen. Follow these instructions once you are logged in.

Isolation and Quarantine Reminders

  • If you test positive for COVID, you must isolate for a minimum of 5 days after symptom onset (or a positive test if asymptomatic). Return to school is based on time and symptom resolution. Individuals must wear a well-fitting mask on days 6-10 at all times following a COVID infection, unless eating, drinking, or outside.
  • The CDC and MA DPH state that individuals exposed to a positive COVID case should mask for 10 days following exposure, REGARDLESS OF VACCINATION STATUS. A rapid antigen or PCR test on Day 5 is recommended.