Anne Arundel County, Maryland, Schools Superintendent George Arlotto announced Monday that, starting Nov. 22, all public school employees and high school student-athletes will be required to certify vaccination for COVID-19 or undergo weekly testing.
“We still need to finalize some parts of the plan, but announcing an effective date now allows our employees and families of our high school students to begin to either gather the necessary information or become fully vaccinated by Nov. 22 if they choose to do so,” Arlotto said in a statement.
The school system also said protocols for submitting vaccination certifications, or arranging weekly testing, will be announced by mid-October. The county is also working out contracts with a vendor to provide testing for unvaccinated students.
Testing for symptomatic students has been available for Anne Arundel students since last spring.
“We’re seeing what other school systems around the state and region are seeing, and it’s not unexpected,” Anne Arundel Co. schools spokesman Bob Mosier said.
“We are distancing to the extent that we can, but we knew that we were going to have students closer than six feet and, in some cases, closer than the three feet that is allowed by the CDC if students are masked.”
In addition to the new requirements, Anne Arundel recently joined Montgomery County in adapting homecoming events to the pandemic reality and pushing its yearly celebration outdoors.
Also Monday, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser announced all D.C. student-athletes 12 and older, as well as all school employees, will need to be vaccinated against the coronavirus by Nov. 1, with no option to be tested regularly instead.
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