COVID-19 Protocols 

We're in this together!

I want you to know how much I appreciate every single step, plan, precaution, and communication that you and the group are orchestrating and administering ... May God’s wisdom and grace uphold you in this work.

The Rev. John W. A. Jenkins, Current Parent

Guidelines for Employees and Visitors

Updated 8/2/21

Employees and visitors must wear masks when in academic buildings and indoor community spaces, including St. Andrew's Chapel, McCrory Hall for the Performing Arts, and Wood-Alligood Gymnasium. 

Fall 2021 Requirements and Recommendations

Updated 8/10/21
Our COVID policies continue to evolve based on CDC guidelineslocal conditions, and the best information we have available to us from the medical and independent school communities. Our discussions have revolved around finding the right balance between our students' mental and social well-being while protecting our community from the continuing risk of COVID-19. With this in mind:

  • We continue to encourage our students who are eligible to get vaccinated.
  • We will begin the school year masked in academic buildings, on school transportation, and in community spaces such as St. Andrew's Chapel, McCrory Hall, and the Robinson Dining Hall servery.
  • Masking for athletics and Afternoon Programs will depend on the activity, location, and conditions.
  • We will continue to encourage as much outdoor activity as possible. 
  • We will continually reassess these decisions as new and better information becomes available and as conditions in our area require it.
  • Students will not be able to attend school or participate in school activities until their COVID forms have been completed.

Please know that we do not make these decisions without serious consideration for the breadth of concerns and beliefs in our community. Getting as many members of our community vaccinated as can be and requiring masking when we are indoors and together will allow us to begin the year with a resumption of the normal activities that were limited last year (weekend events, day and boarding students socializing together, off-campus trips, etc.) and that we know are so important to our students' mental health and social well-being.

We appreciate your support in this difficult work.

All students must have a completed and submitted Vaccine Status Declaration and Testing Waiver before returning to campus. 

If your child is vaccinated, please upload a copy of their vaccination card to MAGNUS or fax it to our Health Clinic, 931-914-1224. ALL students must provide proof of vaccine OR a negative COVID PCR test taken within 72 hours prior to their return to campus (whether that is for athletic practice, move-in, Proctor training, or orientation).

Guiding Philosophy

St. Andrew’s-Sewanee School strongly believes that students benefit from in-person learning and that social activity is important for adolescent development. We also strongly believe that the central pillar of community is care for one another.

In 2020-2021, SAS implemented strict and successful protocols to minimize online days while keeping our community safe. With infection numbers currently low, vaccination compliance in our community high, and in keeping with the CDC’s current guidelines, it is our intention to be in-person this school year and resume normal social programming.


Vaccination is currently the leading public health prevention strategy to end the COVID-19 pandemic. SAS encourages all students eligible for the vaccine to be fully vaccinated at least two weeks before school starts. Students who become eligible during the school year should receive their vaccinations as soon as they are able. International students who do not have access to the vaccine in their home country will be provided with the opportunity to be vaccinated upon arrival.

All students must have a Vaccination Status Declaration form completed prior to return to campus.

Center for Disease Control (CDC) Statement on COVID Vaccines for Teenagers
American Association of Pediatrics (AAP) Statement on COVID Vaccines for Children 12-18

Find vaccines near you.


Face Coverings

As recommended by the CDC:

  • We will begin the school year masked in academic buildings, on school transportation, and in community spaces such as St. Andrew's Chapel, McCrory Hall, and the dining hall servery.
  • Masking for athletics and Afternoon Programs will depend on the activity, location, and conditions.
  • Employees and visitors must wear masks when in academic buildings and indoor community spaces, including St. Andrew's Chapel, McCrory Hall for the Performing Arts, and Wood-Alligood Gymnasium. 
  • When students are traveling off-campus with the school, they will be expected to wear a face covering when indoors.

Physical Distancing, Classrooms, and Community Gatherings

SAS classrooms will be set up to allow for at least 3 feet of physical distance between students when possible. When it is not possible to maintain a physical distance of at least 3 feet, other mitigation will be in place, such as open windows and doors. Chapel and community gatherings will be held outdoors when possible. 

Hygiene, Cleaning, and Disinfection

Students will be encouraged to continue heightened hygiene, including more frequent hand washing and being discouraged from sharing food, drinks, and utensils. SAS will continue enhanced cleaning and disinfection of shared campus spaces.

COVID Symptoms and Having Your Child Tested

The symptoms currently identified as possible COVID symptoms are:

  • Fever
  • Diarrhea
  • Loss of taste or smell
  • Nasal congestion
  • General flu-like fatigue

Day Families: If your child presents any of these symptoms, please have them stay home. Contact your family physician to arrange for a COVID PCR test. Please email us to let us know that your child will be absent.

Boarding Families: If your child wakes up feeling sick, they should go to the Health Clinic. If they begin to feel sick after class hours, they should contact the Administrator on Call.

If your child (day or boarding) begins to feel ill during the school day, they should see the receptionist in the Bishop Bratton offices. The receptionist will contact the Health Clinic for further instructions

My child has been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID, what should we do?

Day Families: If someone who resides with your child has tested positive for COVID or if you have been notified that your child was in close contact with a positive case, please keep your child home and have them tested 3-5 days after the possible contact and follow your physician's advice.

Boarding Families: If your child is determined to have had close contact with a positive case, they will quarantine on campus for 3-5 days after the possible contact and then will be tested at school and at the school’s expense. If your child’s test is negative and they are not exhibiting any symptoms, they may be allowed to return to normal activities. Boarding families who live in the area are welcome to bring children home for quarantine.

Please report absences to

Positive Tests, Quarantine, and Isolation

Day Families: Please consult your family physician regarding length of required isolation. Please contact our Health Clinic so that we may conduct any necessary campus contact tracing and the Academic Dean or Middle School Coordinator to arrange for academic support during your child’s absence.

Boarding Families: Following CDC recommendations, your child will isolate based on doctor's recommendations. Our Health Clinic staff will conduct campus contact tracing and the Academic Dean or Middle School Coordinator will help to arrange academic support. Boarding families who are able are welcomed and encouraged to bring their child home for isolation to allow them greater comfort.

COVID and Break Travel

Testing and Quarantine

Please remember that boarding students MUST leave campus for Thanksgiving (NOV 20-28), Christmas (DEC 18-JAN 5), and Spring Break (MAR 10-20). Our student residences and campus are not staffed or supervised at these times. With the caveat that the situation is ever-evolving, our current policy is that students returning with a negative COVID test taken within 72 hours of their return will not need to quarantine. Students who are vaccinated and who return without a negative test will be asked to limit their activities and exposure when in the residential houses. Students who are unvaccinated and return without a negative test may be asked to quarantine. Students may remain on campus for Fall Break (OCT 16-19) and are not required to test before returning to campus.

Using Care When Traveling

We ask that ALL families, boarding and day, be extra careful during these breaks to limit their child's exposure and to encourage masking, hand washing, and social distancing. If, at any time, your child has been exposed to someone who tests positive for COVID or is exhibiting symptoms of COVID, please contact our Health Clinic and plan to delay your child's return to campus.

In the Event of General Illness

As always, day students are expected to stay home and boarding students are expected to present at the Health Clinic when showing signs of illness such as fever, cough, vomiting, or diarrhea.

Community Transmission, CDC Guidelines, and Policy Changes

SAS will continue to follow CDC guidelines and monitor community transmission and vaccination coverage to guide future decisions. All policies are subject to change.

Questions or Comments?

Contact Melissa Gilliam, Director of the Health Clinic.


COVID-Related Concerns

Melissa Gilliam, Director of the Health Clinic

Other questions:


Kelley Black, Academic Dean and Associate Head of School


Derek Perkins, Director of Admission and Financial Aid

Financial Aid

Derek Perkins, Director of Admission and Financial Aid

General Health Care

Melissa Gilliam, Director of the Health Clinic

International Students

Derek Perkins, Director of Admission and Financial Aid

Spiritual and Emotional Support

The Rev. Molly Short, Chaplain

Student Life

Geoffrey Smith, Dean of Students


Not an SAS student yet?

Contact the Admission Office TODAY to discuss 2020-2021 enrollment.

Our Experience in 2020-2021

St. Andrew's-Sewanee School students, faculty, and staff were in-person for the majority of 2020-2021. The community followed health precautions in accordance with local, state, and CDC requirements and recommendations.

Although we began the year with strict protocols in place regarding face coverings, campus visitors, student activities, physical distancing, etc., we were able to ease these measures as new information and improving data allowed and as more members of our community were vaccinated. 

Throughout the planning and implementation, we kept our community informed and provided opportunities for feedback and constructive solutions.  Our goal was always to balance safety with what we recognize as the human need for interaction and activity. We continuously reviewed and updated our policies as we lived into our protocols and as parents, students, faculty, and staff continue to raise questions and offer constructive suggestions.


Per current CDC guidelines, employees who are vaccinated or who have recovered from COVID-19 in the past 3 months, do NOT need to self-quarantine following domestic or international travel. Employees who are unvaccinated and who have not recently recovered from COVID-19 are expected to self-quarantine for a full 7 days after travel (domestic or international). The CDC recommends that all unvaccinated domestic travelers and all international travelers (vaccinated and unvaccinated) get a viral test 3-5 days after travel. Even after a negative viral test taken 3-5 days after travel, unvaccinated travelers still need to serve a full 7-day quarantine. If required quarantine prevents you from coming to campus, you must contact your supervisor. Accommodations will be made for those who are able to work from home. Those who cannot work from home may be expected to use sick/personal time during quarantine.