COVID Protocols

Since the onset of the pandemic, Castilleja has relied on Guiding Principles to shape our policies and planning. We seek to:

  • Prioritize the physical and emotional wellbeing of our community

  • Provide an outstanding education true to our mission

  • Deepen our connections by maximizing on-campus learning when safe to do so

  • Ensure equitable access within a just community

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) most recently updated its COVID isolation regulations on January 9, 2024. The new recommendations move away from five days of isolation and instead focus on clinical symptoms to determine when to end isolation. See below for details.

Click here to view Symptom Protocols.

Testing and Reporting

Testing Recommendations

We continue to follow the testing recommendations of the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and of the Santa Clara County Department of Health. Whenever we return to campus after breaks of a week or longer, we recommend, but do not require, students to test either the night before or the morning they are to return to school. If you need COVID tests, you can find them at the front desk. If you have general questions about COVID, please email, and Jessie Surface (for students) or Jeanne Honig (for employees) will follow up with you within 48 hours.  


1. Report it by completing the appropriate form below:

2. Stay home if you have COVID-19 symptoms, until you have been fever-free for at least 24 hours without using fever-reducing medication AND any other COVID-19 symptoms are mild and/or have significantly improved.​

  • Students: A parent/guardian should email or call the attendance line each day before 8:30am if the student will be absent from school.
  • Employees: Please report your absence to your supervisor before the start of school. Also, please email and, if you are faculty, the absent email as well.

3. Mask Up! Upon returning to campus, you will be required to wear a mask indoors and outdoors for a full 10 days from the onset of your symptoms or a positive test, whichever was first. After the 10-day period, regardless of test result, you may remove your mask. 

  • Students may test out of wearing a mask for a full 10-day period if they have received two sequential negative tests at least one day apart. Day 0 counts as the symptom onset date or positive test date.
  • Employees are required to wear a mask for the entire 10-day period regardless of test results.


  • If you have new COVID-19 symptoms, you should test and mask right away.

  • If you do not have symptoms, are at higher risk of severe COVID-19 infection and would benefit from treatment, you should test within five days. 

  • If you do not have symptoms and have contact with people who are at higher risk for severe infection, you should mask indoors when around such people for 10 days. Consider testing within five days after the last exposure date (Day 0) and before contact with higher-risk people. For further details, see CDPH COVID-1​9 tes​​ting guidance​.​


In line with the Santa Clara County Department of Health, it is strongly recommended that all eligible individuals get vaccinated against COVID and remain up-to-date to protect oneself and others in the community from COVID transmission. 

Employee Vaccination
All eligible employees are required to be vaccinated.

Student Vaccination
Students are strongly encouraged to stay-up-to-date with their COVID vaccinations and boosters. Parents/guardians must submit their students’ vaccination documentation through Magnus Health.

Contact Tracing

Given the current State and County guidelines for close contact exposure, we will no longer send out community exposure notifications and contact tracing emails to students/families. We expect all community members to remain vigilant and stay home if they are feeling unwell.  

If you test positive for COVID and you were on campus anytime within 48 hours prior to your positive test, please notify anyone you were in close contact with that they may have been exposed to COVID.  Being aware of an exposure will allow your close contacts* to test, watch for symptoms, and better protect their family and our community. If you need assistance with this, please email

Close contacts should:

  • Test within 3–5 days after last exposure;

  • Stay home and test if symptoms develop, AND

  • Follow isolation recommendations if the test result is positive.

Regardless of your vaccination status, you can remain in school after an exposure as long as you are not testing positive or experiencing symptoms. It is strongly recommended to wear a well-fitting mask around others for a total of 10 days after testing negative and returning to school, especially in indoor settings.

*A close contact is defined as:
1) In indoor spaces (such as homes, clinic waiting rooms, airplanes, etc.): sharing the same indoor airspace for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period (for example, three individual 5-minute exposures for a total of 15 minutes) during the person's infectious period.
2) In large indoor spaces (such as open-floor-plan offices, warehouses, large retail stores): being within 6 feet of the infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period during the person's infectious period.