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

Entering a New Stage of the Pandemic

Protocols Updated: Jan 17, 2022

In coordination with our medical advisor, pediatrician Amy Evans, SAS is adopting the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) Guidance for In-person Education in K-12 Educational Settings to provide counsel where the CDC does not provide school-specific recommendations. For the purposes of SAS, a residential house (dorm) is considered a household. The CHOP guidelines allow us to look out for our students' physical and mental health needs while acknowledging that a masked school environment where the majority of community members are vaccinated is one of the safest environments a child can be in.

If your child is not feeling well and you have any concern that it may be COVID, please contact our Health Clinic to schedule a test.

Summary of the CHOP Guidelines as they pertain to SAS protocols:

  • SAS will continue indoor masking requirements within buildings and at school activities, regardless of vaccination status.
  • Students and employees with symptoms consistent with COVID-19 are encouraged to contact our Health Clinic to schedule a test.
  • COVID-exposed but asymptomatic staff and students may continue to attend school in person with extra diligence in their masking.
  • Staff and students are encouraged to update vaccinations, per CDC and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) guidance.

As always, our Health Clinic staff reserves the right to make decisions on a case-by-case basis as is needed for the safety of our community.

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. 

2021-2022 Requirements and Recommendations

Updated 1/3/22
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 and boosted.
  • We will continue to wear masks in academic buildings, on school transportation, and in community spaces such as St. Andrew's Chapel, McCrory Hall, and the Robinson Dining Hall servery. At times of high transmission, students may also be required to wear masks in common areas of the residential houses.
  • Masking for athletics and Afternoon Programs will depend on the activity, location, and conditions. At times of high transmission, we may limit the attendance of fans at indoor athletic events.
  • 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.

Please know that we make these decisions with all due 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 allows us to resume the activities that we know are 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 and/or boosted, please upload a copy of their vaccination card to MAGNUS or fax it to our Health Clinic, 931-914-1224. 

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.



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 (including recommended boosters). Students who become eligible during the school year should receive their vaccinations as soon as they are able. Our Health Clinic staff is available to help facilitate vaccinations for all of our students.

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:

  • Masks are required in academic buildings, on school transportation, and in community spaces such as St. Andrew's Chapel, McCrory Hall for the Performing Arts, Wood-Alligood Gymnasium, the Robinson Dining Hall servery.
  • Masking for athletics and Afternoon Programs will depend on the activity, location, and conditions.
  • When students are traveling off-campus with the school, they will be expected to wear a face covering on transportation and when indoors.

Physical Distancing, Classrooms, and Community Gatherings

SAS classrooms are set up to allow for increased 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 in larger spaces and outdoors when possible. 

Hygiene, Cleaning, and Disinfection

Community members encouraged to continue heightened hygiene, including more frequent hand washing and not sharing food, drinks, and utensils. SAS 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 or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

Day Families: If your child presents any of these symptoms, please contact our Health Clinic staff to schedule a COVID test. Please email us to let us know if 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?

Contact our Health Clinic for more information.

Please report absences to

Positive Tests, Quarantine, and Isolation

Day Families: Please consult your family physician regarding length of required isolation. Please make our Health Clinic aware of your child's health status and contact the Academic Dean or Middle School Coordinator to arrange for academic support during your child’s absence.

Boarding Families: Following current CDC recommendations, your child may be asked to isolate based on doctor's recommendations. Our Health Clinic staff will coordinate care and the Academic Dean or Middle School Coordinator will help to arrange academic support. In the event that isolation is recommended, boarding families who are able are welcomed and encouraged to bring their child home 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. We encourage testing prior to return. Students will be tested upon return.

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.

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.