COVID-Times - WHPS Weekly Update 12/18/2020

Written by Seth Pozzi on .

WHPS families: 

Christmas and New Year's holidays begin less than a week from now. Los Angeles and much of the country are now dealing with the ramifications of Thanksgiving gatherings: We Need Everyone's Help
We need to be serious about protecting each other and safeguarding the WHPS community; this is not a time to travel, gather, or bend the rules. If you do any of these things, you must plan for a 14-day quarantine before returning to school. The post-gathering quarantine is not required by law, but it is required by WHPS right now if you are returning to school in person. 
Be Prepared for Potential Short-Term Class Closures
We have been working tirelessly since June 2020 to ensure as seamless a school year as possible for the children. This has included working with families on how to be safe off campus and continuous hiring of qualified substitute teachers, while meeting the many staffing COVID-19 guidelines and limitations. However, as COVID-19 cases continue to rise, it is possible that we may exhaust our available staff, and we ask that families be prepared for potential classroom closures and switching to remote learning.
Top questions addressed in this post:
  • How bad are things looking?
  • What is the current travel, gathering, and exposure quarantine guidance?
  • When might teachers get vaccinated? 
  • What about children?
  • Will the vaccine be required?
Weekly Update: 12/18/2020
LA COUNTY COVID METRICS. We remain in the most restrictive Tier 1 (widespread)
  • Southern California remaining ICU capacity = 0%
  • 1 in 80 LA County residents has COVID & IS INFECTING OTHERS 
    • Doubled since Thanksgiving
    • 10x October numbers
  • New COVID-19 cases per day per 100K84.4 (up from 41.8 from last week)
    • Last week: 12,819 daily cases
    • 2 weeks ago: 7,854 daily cases
    • 14,418 total daily cases on 12/17
    • 1,745 health care worker cases (up 2x from last week)
  • Adjusted case rate per 100K: 42.2 cases (up from 26.9 last week)
  • Positivity rate: 11.4%
  • Health equity positivity rate:  17.0% 
  • Hospitalizations: 4,864 (up from 3,433 last week)
QUARANTINE UPDATES - Alert WHPS immediately of any of the following:
  • 14 Day Quarantine Required for:
    • Any non-household gatherings
    • Travel (including travel within CA - e.g. Northern California)
    • Known exposure (being within 6 feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period)
  • 10 Day Quarantine Required for:
    • Confirmed COVID positive individuals
  • Symptoms:
    • Quarantine/Isolate immediately if you develop COVID-like symptoms.  Don't wait for the positive test result before quarantining from household members.
DPH said it's their extreme hope that by fall 2021, there will be enough people vaccinated (75-85% of population) that we may have herd immunity. This would interrupt community transmission, and it could look more like normal times.  
  • Best Estimate: Widely available to the public in late spring or early summer.


  • LA County has received 82,875K doses (Pfizer) this week (each person needs 2 doses).
  • Another allocation will come later this month; we don't know how many doses but expect ongoing flow.
  • They are establishing processes to ensure fair and equitable distribution.
  • Vaccinations will begin rolling out in phases (more info. coming soon)
    • 1st Phase - 1A (tiered by risk level)
      • Healthcare workers 
      • Long term care residents
    • 2nd Phase - 1B (essential workers - very large group)
      • Education/childcare
        • Teachers expected to get priority
        • Not yet clear if it would be required
      • EMS providers
      • Food/agriculture/sanitation
    • 3rd Phase - 1C (1/3 of the adult population)
      • Other high-risk groups (65+ and certain health conditions)
    • Children (prioritized below most adults due to lower risk of serious complications) 
      • Will be studied as vaccines roll out
      • In the meantime: masks & distancing!
    • We will be sharing any additional vaccine FAQs next week.


If all the news and restrictions have you feeling a little down, this will definitely warm your heart and end your week on a high note! Watch the show for your child's division or watch them all. Download a copy to keep forever or click the link from your phone or tablet to view. Enjoy!

Thank you for your continued support.

Head of School 
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