Family Town Hall Follow Up
April 13, 2021
Shalom Camp Ramah New England families,
Todah rabbah to everyone who attended our town hall meeting last night. We appreciate your tremendous attitude; the questions you posed will help us make even better plans for this coming summer. Our number one message is that camp is going to be EPIC this summer – safe, caring and fun.
Below are a few clarifications/updates to some direct questions raised last night.
Please check our website for updates on our COVID-19 policies and procedures. Things are bound to change as we hone our plans and as the state revises and clarifies its rules. We appreciate your patience as we all work together to provide a safe, caring and spectacularly fun kayitz (summer)!
Opening/Closing Day procedures – We will be announcing these procedures closer to camp and will go over them in town hall meetings in late May/June. We will also guide you in how to prepare your campers for camp and the drop-off procedures.
Testing and quarantining prior to camp – As of now, testing is required for everyone, whether or not you have been vaccinated against COVID. We are requiring a negative PCR test 10 days prior to camp and then 48-72 hours prior to camp. If you are concerned that your testing provider won’t have results in that window, please contact Ed Pletman and we will troubleshoot. If there are insurance issues you need help with, please contact Ed Pletman.
We are not requiring quarantining prior to camp. We want families to follow their local rules and be careful. Special care should be taken within the ten day period and even extra special care should be taken after your pre-camp test. Remember, the best outcome for us is if there is no COVID in camp!
Testing during camp – As of now, testing is required for everyone, whether or not you have been vaccinated against COVID. We are currently planning to test on arrival day, day 3, day 5, day 8 and then two other times during each 4-week session. These protocols may change as conditions change.
Policies for campers who test positive for COVID or are deemed close contacts – The Massachusetts Department of Public Health has determined that those who test positive or are deemed close contacts (which includes the entire bunk) must leave camp for at least eight days and produce a negative PCR test prior to returning.
We are asking parents to think through a plan in the event that this happens. If you live within a few hours of camp, we expect you to come as soon as possible to pick up your child.
If you live farther away (in the greater Washington, DC area, for example), we are asking you to think through who can be available to pick up your child. We know that this may be challenging for some. We are working through possible solutions that will both meet the state regulations and can be implemented by our camp families. We appreciate your patience as we work to develop these solutions, which may take some time.
We believe that during the pandemic it is reasonable to expect that parents will be able to pick up their child within 24 hours. As we work through ways to help families during this initial 24-hour period, we want you to have a plan for your child to be picked up by you or someone else within 24 hours, should that be needed.
We know that there are other questions asked last night that we don’t yet have the answers to. We will be updating our website and sending out more updates in the coming weeks and months to address them. If there is an issue that you feel needs to be addressed now, please do reach out.
Rabbi Ed Gelb, CEO