Frequently Asked Questions
DOES RIVENDELL ACADEMY REQUIRE VACCINES?
Rivendell is required to follow state regulations that apply to private schools. Currently, the state does not require students in non-classroom based settings like Rivendell to receive any specific vaccines, including vaccines for COVID-19. However, even though no specific vaccines are required for Rivendell students, the school is still required to keep a record of each student’s immunizations on file.
ARE STAFF MEMBERS AT RIVENDELL ACADEMY VACCINATED AGAINST COVID?
Yes. Currently, I (Catharine Alvarez), am the only staff member. I am tutoring some local students in person, most of whom are too young to receive the COVID vaccine, so I received my vaccines when educators became eligible. I have received two doses of the Pfizer vaccine, plus a third booster dose.
WHAT PRECAUTIONS ARE YOU TAKING WHEN TUTORING STUDENTS IN PERSON?
I use hand sanitizer before meeting with students. When weather permits, I meet with students outdoors. Both the student and I wear masks while we are working together. We maintain distance between us as we are working. If I or anyone in my family has any symptoms that could be COVID, or if I am exposed to someone who tested positive for COVID, I contact my students to arrange remote tutoring via Zoom for the next ten days, and I will be tested for COVID. Students I meet in person and their families are requested to follow the same protocol.
WHAT IS YOUR PERSONAL POSITION ON VACCINES?
In general, I support vaccines and public health policies that encourage people to be vaccinated. If you are on the fence about any vaccines for yourself or your child, I would be happy to talk to you about my personal experience or refer you to reliable information that can help you feel more comfortable with vaccinating your child or getting a vaccine for yourself.
WHAT IF I HAVE A RELIGIOUS OBJECTION TO VACCINES?
Rivendell was founded as a place of refuge for families and students who do not fit into society’s educational system for a variety of reasons. If your children are not vaccinated, whatever the reason, then teaching them in a non-classroom based environment makes sense. You are welcome even if you and I disagree on a number of topics. My goal is to give you space to teach your children in the way that works best for your family. I am happy to offer my recommendations when asked, but I am not here to try to influence anyone else’s choices.