COVID-19 Protocols for Residential Students for 2021-2022
July 27, 2021
The South Carolina Governor’s School for Science & Mathematics will start the fall semester using normal opening and safety protocols.
We will respond as necessary to any changes in public health recommendations or government regulations.
Mask wearing is optional, but recommended for those who are not vaccinated when indoors or when social distancing outdoors is not possible. We ask everyone to be sensitive to any health issues or mask-wearing preferences others have, especially when entering their office or work area.
Returning to Campus
Students may return to campus only when they are free of symptoms associated with COVID-19 infections.
Returning for fall 2021: Students must present a negative PCR COVID-19 test result obtained within five days of returning to campus OR evidence of a completed vaccine regimen.
Returning after Thanksgiving break, semester break, and spring break: GSSM will provide PCR testing for any student who has not completed a vaccine regimen.
Returning after long weekends or other times off campus of similar length: Students may return to campus only when they are free of symptoms associated with COVID-19 infections.
We will suspend surveillance testing. However, families will still need to provide a signed testing waiver for their student along with other documents collected at the start of the school year should surveillance testing need to be reinstated.
We will not require those who have completed a vaccine regimen to be tested.
As stated above for students who do not have a vaccine record on file at GSSM, testing will be required and provided by GSSM after returning from Thanksgiving break, semester break and spring break, because students may have travelled or have increased exposure. Testing may also be required before special events or when considered necessary to prevent community spread.
GSSM will continue to follow CDC and DHEC recommendations for contact tracing and reporting when someone participating in a GSSM program tests positive for the COVID-19 virus. Those receiving a positive test will complete a reporting form identifying those with whom they have been in close contact with in the CDC-defined period.
Quarantine and Isolation
Students who test positive, or who are confirmed as close contacts with a person who tested positive for the COVID-19 virus and who do not have a vaccination record on file at GSSM, will return home to continue classes virtually.
Students who are deemed close contacts and are isolating at home may take a PCR test no sooner than 72 hours after leaving campus and may return to campus if that test result is negative.
Students who test positive will remain home for 10 days and may return to campus with a negative test taken within 72 hours of their expected return.
Students who have completed a vaccination regimen prior to the close contact event may remain in residence and will be asked to monitor themselves closely for any change in health.
Enhanced building cleaning and sanitizing protocols will continue. Classrooms and meeting room cleaning and sanitizing supplies will remain stocked.
Frequent hand washing and the use of hand-sanitizers will continue to be encouraged.
We will provide plexiglass barriers on some dining hall tables for those who prefer them and in offices where desired.
Personal Health Awareness
We will suspend the daily Reach health survey; however, faculty, staff, and students should not come on campus if they have any COVID-19 symptoms or if they feel ill. In such circumstances, students must contact Health Services to get clearance to leave their rooms.
Students, faculty, staff, and visitors will continue to scan themselves at self-service temperature scanning stations when entering campus.
We will continue to monitor CDC/DHEC guidance and may adjust our COVID-19 safety protocols in response to changing recommendations or regulations.