Coronavirus Updates

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Groton School is closed to those who do not live, work, or study on campus. This page is updated periodically with news and communications related to the virus' impact on the school.

Groton School continued its hybrid model during spring term, welcoming most students to campus who could arrive safely and abide by both Groton School and state of Massachusetts protocols—while also providing virtual learning for those who could not or chose not to return. 
 

List of 9 items.

  • Testing and Screening

    Groton School is partnering with the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, which is providing RT-PCR COVID-19 testing, processing our tests, and guiding our testing protocol. Students, faculty, staff, and campus family members are tested weekly. All community members report their health status each morning via a screening app, which also will be used for contact tracing if necessary. Each night, students' temperatures are taken and recorded in the screening app, along with their evening health status.
  • Mask Requirements

    All students, faculty, and staff are provided with face masks regularly, and they must wear them in any common spaces.

    Virtually every space is considered a common space—including small study rooms, corridors, and restrooms. Mask-wearing will be the expected norm and strictly enforced.

    Students do not have to wear masks in their own dorm rooms but do need to wear them in dorm common spaces. 
  • Dormitories

    Students have access to only their own dorms, and many activities have been organized by dorm group to reduce student interaction.

    Nightly check-in with faculty on duty occurs one-on-one or in small groups, avoiding handshaking and other physical contact. 

    To reduce density in dorms as much as possible, day students will not be affiliated with or have access to dormitories. They will nevertheless fully participate in academic, co-curricular, and afternoon programs, and have spaces on campus where they can store belongings and gather.
     
  • Reducing Density

    Reducing the density of shared spaces helps facilitate successful social distancing. In classrooms, we will maintain at least six feet between students and will limit classes to ten unless spaces allow for adequate distancing with more students.

    Traffic patterns have been established to help maintain physical distancing in corridors and other well-trafficked areas.


    Dining times are staggered, and students will be assigned to eat in particular groups at designated times. The Dining Hall has been reconfigured to allow for distancing, and grab-and-go options are available to further reduce density.

    Additional spaces are designated for gathering, including tents on the Circle, where students can eat or spend time during free periods.

    Chapel capacity is limited and services streamed. In the Chapel itself, social distancing will be enforced.
  • Academic Schedule

    Students took only five classes per term during the 2020–21 school year, a response to COVID-19 to keep workloads manageable. The less-is-more approach allowed scheduled time for community gatherings, club meetings, and other activities. Long Weekends were canceled, and virtual advisor-parent conferences replaced Parents Weekend.
  • Athletics

    Groton played a limited schedule of interscholastic athletic competitions during spring term, under strict COVID-19 protocols for both Groton and opposing schools.
     
    Contests were scheduled only if both schools agreed to adhere to precise health and safety protocols and to enforce them.
     
    Among Groton School’s rules and expectations:
    • Our teams will only play schools that have COVID-19 testing regimens similar to Groton’s.
    • We will test all of Groton's competing athletes twice a week, two days before and two days after the games. Our opponents will do the same for either all athletes or, at a minimum, those playing contact sports such as lacrosse and baseball. Game plans are subject to change at any time, based on COVID-19 test results.
    • No outside spectators, including parents of players from either team, will be allowed at any games played at Groton School. Spectators from within our community—students, faculty, and staff—are allowed in small groups at outdoor games only and are expected to adhere to masking and social distancing protocols. No outside spectators are allowed at most ISL schools. 
    • All athletes—and everyone on campus—are required to wear masks.
    • Visiting players will not be allowed to enter any Groton School buildings. Outside restrooms will be provided for visiting players, coaches, and referees and are for their use exclusively.

    How have afternoon activities differed?
    Every student has activities five days a week. Some varsity athletes and students in theater have a sixth day. All students take two activities—one for three or four days a week and the other for two days a week. Students may opt for traditional team sports, strength and conditioning, dance, theater, or a wide array of less typical offerings, such as yoga, photography, Ultimate Frisbee, trail walking, fishing, and birdwatching.
     
    Can students play club sports?
    Students have not been permitted to play club sports if they planned to be on campus. To minimize the risk to all members of our community, Groton students who wished to play club sports off campus or participate in jamborees or showcases, whether they are boarders or day students, were required to study virtually. This policy applied not only to athletes, but also to students who wished to participate in drama, debate, music, or other events off campus.
  • Leaving Campus

    Boarding students will not be permitted to leave campus, with limited exceptions for medical appointments, approved by the Health Center, or family emergencies, approved by the Deans' Office.

    Boarders will not be allowed to attend off-campus activities, such as club sports, and the same guidelines will apply to day students unless they opt to study remotely.
  • Visiting Campus

    Visitors to campus are limited until further notice. The Admission Office is allowing some visits with modified tours for prospective families, by appointment. Please click here to schedule an in-person visit or see our schedule for virtual information sessions. 
  • Admission Information

    Groton welcomes visitors to campus this summer, with pandemic precautions in place, and also offers information sessions via Zoom. All Groton admission counselors and staff have been vaccinated. It is our expectation that visitors will be vaccinated or will have a recent negative test for COVID-19. 

    Please click here to schedule an in-person visit or see our schedule for virtual information sessions. Interviews for entry in fall 2022 begin in September.