COVID-19 DESE Guidance Master List

Looking for a specific document from the DESE website related to COVID-19? We got you covered.

Here are the versions of documents and current links published by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education and the Department of Public Health as of January 24, 2022. Looking for something specific? Let us know in the comments.

Mask Requirements for Massachusetts Public Schools

Statewide mask mandates is lifted for all public schools as of February 28, 2022. Individual districts may elected to continue to require masks beyond this date. Masks will still be required on school busses, in school health offices and for individuals who are 6-10 days from a positive COVID-19 test.

Please note that any individual who returns to school after a positive COVID-19 test is required to wear a mask for the 6th-10th day following the positive test.

Extension of Mask Requirement through February 28, 2022
Waiver of Mask Requirement for schools with 80% vaccination rates

Educational Programs

DESE has updated the FAQ document for special education program requirements to account for COVID-19 related issues. The February 2022 version of the FAQ includes information on IEP meeting timelines, compensatory services and links to USED federal guidance.

COVID-19 School Testing Programs

School-based COVID-19 testing options include pool testing, testing for individuals with symptoms, close-contact test-and-stay for unvaccinated individuals and a new at-home COVID-19 testing option. Districts must, at a minimum, opt-into the Statewide K-12 pool testing or symptomatic testing. Districts may add on the optional at-home testing kits.

School-Based Testing Programs

DESE/DPH COVID-19 Testing Program Protocols Jan 31, 2021 The Jan 31 version includes updated protocols for the at-home testing program reporting. The highlights are courtesy of DESE staff.

DESE Testing Program Webinar Feb 2, 2022 Slides from the Feb 2 DESE webinar include administration of the at-home testing program, test ordering time lines and information on vaccine clinics. Webinar recordings are also available here.

DESE/DPH COVID-19 Testing Program Protocols Dec 30, 2021. This document includes definitions of close contacts, symptoms and the 5-day quarantine requirement for COVID-19 positive individuals.

Application for Statewide K-12 COVID-19 Testing Program for schools and districts not already enrolled in symptomatic or pool testing.

Consent for Statewide K-12 COVID-19 Testing -> www.cic-health.com/consent/ma
Consents may be collected electronically or through paper-based, printable forms. Several translations of the principal forms are also available.

NEA COVID-19 Testing In Schools includes links to existing state programs, advocacy resources and FAQs.

Child Care Testing Options The Department of Early Education and Care (EEC) oversees testing programs and guidance for license child care programs in Massachusetts.

At-Home Testing Program

At-Home COVID-19 Testing Option DESE/DPH January 18, 2022

District Opt-In for Home Tests Eligible districts must opt-in to receive home antigen tests for all students and staff.

DESE Resources for At Home Testing Program

Sample Home Letters for parents/caregivers with translations from DESE

Positive Test Result Notification for At Home Tests This example language may be adopted for districts to collect positive home test results.

iHealth Antigen Rapid Test Instructions

iHealth Antigen Rapid Test Demonstration Video

Test At Home Graphics for iHealth Antigen Rapid Test Graphics with print and visual instructions for using the iHealth Antigen Rapid Tests. Current languages include Albanian, Arabic, Chinese (simplified), English, French, Haitian Creole, Japanese, Khmer, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish and Vietnamese.

Vaccine Clinics

Schools and districts may host mobile vaccine clinics for adult, pediatric and booster vaccines. Mobile Vaccine Clinics