Groton School plans to make a decision about a fall reopening in late July or early August. The below information applies to a scenario with all or some students returning to campus. The school continues to consider three scenarios: all students returning; a hybrid with some on campus and some learning virtually; and, if necessary, virtual learning for all. We are closely following scientific and governmental resources and recommendations as we move forward.
The School Opening Health Advisory Group, comprised of three trustees who are health professionals, the school physician, the Health Center director, and administrators, is advising on all health and safety considerations.
With guidance from that group, the school is developing protocols for the use of testing, temperature checks, contact tracing, and other measures to protect the community if students are able to return.
Masks will be widely available in dorms and classrooms, and students, faculty, and staff will be expected to wear them. Students will be educated around proper personal hygiene, including thorough handwashing and use of sanitizers.
Social distancing will be required, and traffic patterns will be established to reduce density in corridors and other well-trafficked areas.
If students are able to return to campus, their return will be staggered.
Density will be reduced in classrooms to allow for social distancing, with some classes moving to larger spaces, including nontraditional classroom spaces. We will maintain six to eight feet of distance between students and will limit classes to ten unless the spaces allow for adequate distancing with more.
Some faculty homes will be repurposed as dormitories to eliminate triples.
Chapel services will be broadcast to various locations to reduce the number of people in the Chapel at once. Dining will also be spread to different locations and meal times staggered.
If students are on campus in the fall, they will not return after Thanksgiving until January. Classes during the first half of December will be virtual for all students.
Students will take only five classes per term during the 2020–21 school year. This is a one-year, temporary response to COVID-19 to keep workloads manageable, and graduation requirements will be adjusted accordingly. This less-is-more approach will allow us to pivot more easily to all-virtual learning, should that become necessary.
Visitors to campus will be strictly limited until further notice. The Admission Office will conduct only virtual tours and interviews, and college representatives will visit virtually. Any visitors deemed essential will be required to follow safety protocols.
Parents Weekend will be postponed, with virtual parent conferences available in the fall as needed.
If students are able to return this fall, sports are likely to be intramurals until contact with other schools is safe, and outside spectators will not be permitted.