The IPS COVID-19 protocols for the 2021–22 school year were created based on updated guidance from the Marion County Public Health Department, the Indiana State Health Department and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

These protocols are subject to change based on new guidance from the health departments/organizations listed above. 

Face Masks

  • Masks are required for all students and staff — regardless of vaccination status — in all IPS buildings.
  • Students are still encouraged to provide proof of vaccination status to IPS given that:
    -Mask guidance may change later in the school year.
    -Vaccinated students who are not symptomatic are not required to quarantine if there’s a possible exposure.
    -Vaccinated students (ages 12 and older) can voluntarily provide proof of vaccination status. Click HERE to learn how to submit proof of vaccination documentation for students.
  • Staff should continue to provide proof of vaccination status per HR protocol given that:
    -Mask guidance may change later in the school year.  
    -Vaccinated staff who are not symptomatic are not required to quarantine if there’s a possible exposure.
    -Vaccinated can provide proof of vaccination to the IPS HR Department. Click HERE to learn how to submit an official vaccination record for staff.
  • Masks are required on IPS buses for all students, staff and drivers, regardless of vaccination status. This is a federal Transportation Security Administration (TSA) mandate.

Contract Tracing/Quarantine 

  • The IPS COVID-19 dashboard on the district website will track positive cases throughout the district and schools will notify families and staff of any positive cases at their location.
  • Contact tracing and quarantine procedures will be followed for those who have been in close contact with anyone who tests positive for COVID-19. Close contact is defined as being within 3 feet of a person who tested positive for COVID-19 for 15 minutes or more.
  • Vaccinated students and staff members who are asymptomatic are not required to quarantine.
  • Quarantine periods will expire after 14 days post exposure. 
  • A symptomatic staff or student without a positive exposure to COVID will require a negative PCR test or a release from a medical provider to return.
  • Seating charts will be maintained in all classrooms, cafeterias, and school buses so that contact tracing can be conducted.
  • COVID-19 symptoms must be monitored at home for students and staff. Those displaying symptoms must remain at home.

COVID-19 Symptoms Checklist

The following are the COVID-19 symptoms parents and staff should check each morning before attending school or work. Those who have these symptoms should stay home.

  • Fever/Chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of Breath
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle/Body Aches
  • Headache
  • Loss of Taste/Smell
  • Sore Throat
  • Sinus Congestion

Cleaning/Sanitizing/Hygiene & PPE

  • All high-touch surfaces will be cleaned and sanitized frequently in school and office buildings and on buses.
  • Hand sanitizer will continue to be available.
  • IPS will stock disposable masks for emergency use in schools and on buses.
  • Proper hand washing, cough, and sneeze protocols are required.
  • No-touch water bottle filling stations available in schools.

Social Distancing — Classrooms/Cafeterias/Buses

  • Schools will continue to cohort students as much as possible and practice social distancing of 3 feet when possible.
  • Seating charts will be maintained in classes, during lunch periods, and on buses for contact tracing.
  • Students will be able to eat in school cafeterias but will have assigned seating. Masks are not required for students while eating and drinking. 

Student Quarantines & Learning

  • Students who must quarantine due to COVID-19 will receive classwork from their individual teachers via Schoology.
  • While in quarantine, students are expected to complete classwork via their school-issued device. 

Visitors & Volunteers

  • Masks are required for all visitors — parents/guardians, community partners, volunteers —regardless of vaccination status while indoors. If outdoors, masks are required only if socially distancing is not possible. 
  • Visitors/Volunteers will be asked to conduct a symptom check before entering a school building.
  • Visitors/Volunteers will not be permitted to eat with students/staff during breakfast or lunch.

PE & Recess

  • Students can remove masks during active play outdoors only — regardless of vaccination status — if socially distanced.

Athletics & Extracurriculars

  • Student athletes are not required to wear masks during practice and games. 
  • Band, orchestra and choir groups must limit the duration of practice and performance to no more than 45 minutes.
  • Bands and orchestras must be socially distanced between string and percussion instruments (with face masks if not vaccinated), and wind instruments (without masks).
  • Choirs must maintain social distancing and wear face masks if not vaccinated.
  • Public attendance at games and extracurricular performances is allowed. IPS will consider these public events and follow MCPHD guidance of asking attendees to wear masks if they are not vaccinated.


  • Currently for ages 12 and older, receiving the COVID-19 vaccine is the best way to protect yourself and others from the virus.
  • COVID-vaccine sites are conveniently located throughout the community. 
  • IPS will continue to host vaccination clinics throughout the school year. Dates, times and locations will be provided on the district website and via district communication to families and staff.