CHARLES COUNTY, Md. — In consultation with the Charles County Department of Health, Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) has closed two high schools to students for in-person learning next week. 

Starting Monday, Dec. 20, through Wednesday, Dec. 22, St. Charles and Westlake high schools are closed to students for in-person learning. Students who attend these two CCPS high schools will participate in virtual learning. Staff and teachers at the schools will report to the building Dec. 20-22. Parents of students at St. Charles and Westlake will receive further information by email from their school principals. 

All other schools are open for in-person instruction next week, Dec. 20-22. Winter break for all CCPS staff members and students starts Thursday, Dec. 23. CCPS is moving forward with its planned winter break return date of students and staff on Monday, Jan. 3, 2022. Any changes to this plan will be shared with the CCPS community.

CCPS closed the two schools for students after consulting with the health department about recent COVID-19 positive cases reported among both staff and students at the schools. CCPS COVID-19 quarantine protocols begin at the student level, transition to the classroom and then grade level, and to the building level when necessary. 

Recent COVID-19 data supports a precautionary closure of both St. Charles and Westlake high schools to students at this time to prevent any possible further spread of COVID-19. 

Since Dec. 6, there have been about 50 COVID-19 positive reports at Westlake and about 50 at St. Charles. The contact tracing process has connected some cases at both schools, but connections for many cases have not been determined to have occurred at school. Contact tracing is ongoing and CCPS encourages community members to continue to report positive COVID-19 results to their child’s school. 

Any athletics or extracurricular events for St. Charles and Westlake students planned for the coming week and winter break have been postponed. 

Families of students who attend St. Charles or Westlake can visit either school location for a curbside meal pick-up of breakfast and lunch. Principals will share with their school communities the serving windows. Anyone picking up a meal for a St. Charles or Westlake student will need to show CCPS food and nutrition services staff a student identification number in ParentVue/StudentVue. Curbside meals will be provided Dec. 20-22 for St. Charles and Westlake students only. 

Transportation for any student who catches a North Point or Robert D. Stethem Educational Center bus shuttle from either St. Charles or Westlake will continue this week. Bus drivers will run their regular routes. 

CCPS continues to consult with the Charles County Department of Health and monitor local COVID-19 data and case rates reported to the school system among students and staff. CCPS will consult with the health department any time quarantine decisions become necessary. CCPS encourages parents to assess their child’s health daily before sending them to school. CCPS staff should assess their health before coming to work. 

The health department offers free COVID-19 testing on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Fridays at select locations in Charles County. Click here for locations and times

CCPS posts COVID-19 data on the school system website at Data is updated weekly on Fridays.