COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions

To ensure the safety and well-being of our community during the COVID-19 outbreak and per the mandate for all K-12 schools from Governor Ralph Northam, the St. Christopher’s campus is closed through the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. Please see below for a list of common questions and StC leadership responses.
 

General Information

List of 7 frequently asked questions.

School Events

List of 5 frequently asked questions.

  • Q. Are StC events being canceled or postponed?

    In accordance with the Statewide JK-12 Closure mandate from VA Gov. Ralph Northam, all on-campus events through the end of the school year are either postponed or canceled. Please see below for detail on several specific events.

    Day of Giving
    Day Of Giving: For All The Saints is rescheduled for Tuesday, June 2, 2020.  
    This year in particular, your gifts on our annual Day of Giving will play a significant role in helping St. Christopher’s maintain its commitment to every boy, every family, and every employee.

    Please honor a great Saint who has made a lasting impact on your life or that of your son or grandson. We are grateful to our families, our dedicated faculty and staff, and every Saint who has walked the halls of St. Christopher’s. Let us all rally together at this time in support of our School.  

    Alumni & Friends Debut Concert Postponed
    The debut concert in the new Arts Center scheduled for April 24 and featuring Mason Bates '95 and a host of other talented artists is postponed. We are working with the performers to schedule a new date, likely for the fall, and will share that information as soon as it is finalized.

    For questions about the Alumni & Friends concert, please contact Director of Development Jane Garnet Brown

    Reunion WeekendPostponed until October 23-24, 2020
    Reunion Weekend, originally scheduled for May 1-2, is postponed to October 23-24, 2020.Once we finalize details for the rescheduled Reunion Weekend, we will share that information with you. 
     
    For questions about Reunion Weekend, please contact Davis Wrinkle '81, Director of Alumni Affairs and Annual Giving. 

    School-sponsored travel
    School-sponsored travel, including Upper School X-Term and the Middle School trip to South Africa, have been canceled. Families impacted by these trip cancelations will receive detailed information later this week. 
     
     
  • Q. Will there be US Commencement and other major end-of-year activities? What about Final Programs for the Lower and Middle Schools?

    We are committed to holding Commencement for our stellar Class of 2020 at the earliest possible date. We are “holding” the following dates on our school calendar and ask all senior families to do the same. The held dates are as follows: June 23-26, July 21-24, and July 28-July 31. Each of these dates represents a Tuesday-Friday sequence in which we would endeavor to offer the Athletic Banquet on Tuesday, potential additional recognition and celebration on Wednesday, a Headmaster’s Brunch and Baccalaureate on Thursday, and Commencement on Friday. The St. Catherine’s Commencement will follow on Saturday. These held dates are tentative and subject to change, based on environmental conditions and restrictions from state or federal entities. Our preference is to hold Commencement-Week celebrations at the earliest possible opportunity.
     
    We will also do all that we can to safely and responsibly offer additional end-of-year activities, such as senior recognition day for our sports teams, the final Beaux Ties concert, and the Junior-Senior Dance and Senior Parent dinner. We will be communicating those tentative dates to Upper School families as soon as possible.
     
    Likewise, we are committed to holding Final Program services for our 5th Grade and 8th Grade boys and families. Once Upper School Commencement dates are determined, we will establish new dates for our Lower and Middle School families.
  • Q. What will the end-of-year calendar look like, now that we know we cannot hold X-Term, Commencement, or Final Programs as scheduled?

    We are continuing discussions at both St. Christopher’s and St. Catherine’s regarding what the school calendar will entail during the end of May and early June. We are fully committed to educating our Saints through the duration of our scheduled term and calendar, though we now know that such education looks and feels very different than what we all originally hoped and planned for. We are exploring new and creative ways to engage our students and families through the end of the year and will be in touch shortly (hopefully next week) with specific details pertaining to the end-of-year calendar. 
  • Q.
    Will the start date of the 2020-2021 school year be changed?
     

    As of now, the planned opening dates for the 2020-2021 school year remain as published for Middle and Upper School. As announced, we will move up the back-to-school date for Lower School one week. Lower School classes will now begin on Tuesday, August 25. We hope to be able to preserve those dates and return to our previous mode of mission delivery this fall. We will communicate any changes to those dates or to our form of mission delivery as soon as those changes are known.
  • Q. What is happening with summer programs?

    As you know, Virginia is under a stay-at-home order through June 10. The Governor has established a phased plan to re-open the Commonwealth. With social distancing remaining in place through Phase 1, St. Christopher’s will be canceling on-campus summer programs through Friday, July 17. If you have already registered for an on-campus enrichment, athletic, or day camp offering between June 8 and July 17, we will be refunding your payment by June 1. However, we will provide Upper School academic, for-credit offerings via distance learning. 

    As the Commonwealth progresses into Phase 2, we are hopeful that we can begin to offer limited activity on our campus. While there is no timetable for that phase as of today, we remain hopeful that camps may resume in either July or August. We will continue to accept camp registration for July and August, committing to refunding any offerings that we must cancel for safety reasons. 

    New Virtual Summer Course Offerings! 
    Our talented faculty have developed new virtual offerings for summer. These new virtual programs are now availble for registration. Please visit www.stchristophers.com/summer for more information and to register. 
     

Academic Technology/Distance Learning

List of 5 frequently asked questions.

  • Q. Whom should I contact if I have technology questions about distance learning?

    Please contact Director of Academic Technology Hiram Cuevas at cuevash@stcva.org
     
  • Q. Whom should I contact if I have issues with technology?

    Please contact the instructional technologist for each division: 
  • Q. Will there be standardized testing at STC this spring--ERBs and PSATs? What about APs and SATs?

    We are engaged in discussions now regarding the appropriateness of offering standardized testing in this altered environment. We are close to making final decisions on whether to continue with ERBs (Lower School and 6th and 7th grades) or PSATs (8th grade) and expect to be able to share information, by divisions, very soon. 
     
    With regard to AP testing, we know that the test has been reduced to 45 minutes, can be taken from home on virtually any device, and will consist of free-response answers to questions. Additional AP updates from the College Board can be found here. 
     
    For SAT exams, both the March and May SAT exam dates have been cancelled. Additional SAT updates from the College Board can be found here. The April 4 ACT has been cancelled and tentatively rescheduled for June 13. Additional updates on the ACT can be found here.
  • Q. Will there be grades during distance learning? What about end-of-year exams?

    Yes, assessments and performance feedback will be provided for students in grades JK-12 through the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. Active class participation and regular in-class assignments and homework will carry heightened significance throughout distance learning. Formal grading will continue for students in Grades 6-12, with Lower School students receiving frequent written feedback, both formally and informally, on work submitted through a digital student portfolio. Lower School faculty will not be using letter grades to assess student work during the fourth quarter, as we feel those grades may not accurately reflect the boys’ learning during this altered time.
     
    Our faculty recognize the unique and challenging nature of this moment and the sudden shift to distance learning, and they will bear those circumstances in mind when assessing student performance this spring. We want to challenge our boys, hold them accountable for their effort and performance in the weeks to come, but we will do so with the grace and compassion that the present situation warrants. Additional, division-specific information on assessments and grading will be provided in the days to come. 
     
    There will be end-of-year, summative assessments as planned in both the Middle and Upper Schools, but they will not be considered “exams,” will not carry the same graded weight as originally planned, and will not be as comprehensive or lengthy as originally planned. Still, we intend to dedicate time at the end of the school year to conduct, via distance learning, assessments of the boys’ overall progress to date. 
  • Q. What do I do if I don’t have a computer or internet access?

    If you do not have a computer or stable internet access at home, please contact your son’s advisor (MS and US) or homeroom teacher (LS). 
     

Practical tips to consider during outbreak

List of 4 frequently asked questions.

  • Q. What should I do if someone in my house becomes ill from COVID?

    Most people who get COVID-19 will be able to recover at home. CDC has directions for people who are recovering at home and their caregivers, including:
    • Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care.
    If you develop emergency warning signs for COVID-19 get medical attention immediately. Emergency warning signs include*:
    • Trouble breathing
    • Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
    • New confusion or inability to arouse
    • Bluish lips or face
    *This list is not all inclusive. Please consult your medical provider for any other symptoms that are severe or concerning.
    • Use a separate room and bathroom for sick household members (if possible).
    • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing; going to the bathroom; and before eating or preparing food.
    • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
    • Provide your sick household member with clean disposable or cloth facemasks to wear at home, if available, to help prevent spreading COVID-19 to others.  Cloth masks should be handled carefully and laundered regularly.
    • Clean the sick room and bathroom, as needed, to avoid unnecessary contact with the sick person.
    • Avoid sharing personal items like utensils, food, and drinks.
  • Q. What are ways to manage anxiety?

    • Attend carefully to self care: healthy eating, sleep, exercise, and seeking support from loved ones.
    • Focus on activities you value, ones that are fun and relaxing.
    • Find ways to connect with others safely.  Social isolation can fuel negative moods and make it harder to manage natural sadness, confusion, and anxiety we feel during stressful times. 
    • Establish routines and create structure in your day. 
    From Dr. Bethany Teachman, Clinical Psychologist UVA
  • Q. What to do if I’m asked to self quarantine based on known exposure to COVID-19 or travel from Level 2,3 areas?

    • Report any symptoms of COVID-19 to your primary care provider by phone.
    • Stay in your room, apartment, or house and limit contact with people as much as possible for the duration of 14 days.
    • Avoid sharing household items such as eating and drinking utensils, towels, bedding, etc.
    • Practice good hygiene with frequent handwashing with soap and water for 20 sec, using hand sanitizer, cough and sneeze into tissue then toss, or into the inside of the arm.  
    • Frequently clean high touch surfaces and areas with recommended agents (see below).
    • Laundry can be done normally, no need to add additional cleaning agents.
  • Q. How should I clean and disinfect?

    From CDC Website:

    For disinfection, diluted household bleach solutions, alcohol solutions with at least 70% alcohol, and most common EPA-registered household disinfectants should be effective.
    • Diluted household bleach solutions can be used if appropriate for the surface. Follow manufacturer’s instructions for application and proper ventilation. Check to ensure the product is not past its expiration date. Never mix household bleach with ammonia or any other cleanser. Unexpired household bleach will be effective against coronaviruses when properly diluted.
    Prepare a bleach solution by mixing:
    • 5 tablespoons (1/3rd cup) bleach per gallon of water or
    • 4 teaspoons bleach per quart of water
     
    Here are some of the registered disinfectants on the EPA's list:

    • Clorox Multi Surface Cleaner + Bleach
    • Clorox Disinfecting Wipes
    • Clorox Commercial Solutions® Clorox® Disinfecting Spray
    • Lysol brand Heavy-Duty Cleaner Disinfectant Concentrate
    • Lysol Disinfectant Max Cover Mist
    • Lysol brand Clean & Fresh Multi-Surface Cleaner
    • Purell Professional Surface Disinfectant Wipes
    • Sani-Prime Germicidal Spray
    • You can read the full list of disinfectants here.
     
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