August 26, 2022

Greetings SOCCCD Employees:

District leadership has made a strong effort to monitor the case rates for COVID-19 throughout the summer. Based on the data available through the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and the Orange County Health Care Agency (OCHCA), we are experiencing a steady decline in positive case rates. Additionally, public health authorities have continued to relax guidelines related to the spread of COVID-19. Considering current information and trajectories, the following adjustments to COVID-19 guidelines will be made: • Beginning on Monday, August 29, 2022, mask coverings will no longer be required, but highly recommended. This applies to all indoor and outdoor settings, with the exception of Student Health Centers. • Individuals are encouraged to consult with their healthcare provider and decide whether to continue to wear a mask indoors based on their own risk assessment and risk tolerance. • Those not yet comfortable going maskless indoors may continue to wear masks while learning or working in the district at any time. Doing so protects yourself, protects others from you if you have COVID but don't know it, and helps destigmatize mask-wearing for those who may need to. Please continue to exercise healthy practices such as frequent hand washing and sanitizing and continue to keep masks handy as we navigate through the ongoing presence of COVID-19 and its variants. Your health and safety remain a top priority and thus, our efforts to monitor updates from public health authorities will continue. Given the prevalence of COVID variants, our guidelines could be subject to change again in the future. If that occurs, we will ensure clear and timely communication. Thank you again for your patience and cooperation. Other related updates can be found in the Return to Work Guidelines available on the District’s website.

Dr. Julianna Barnes Chancellor