Letter from Head Nurse Diane Wallace 5/18/21

East Providence School Department



Kathryn M. Crowley

Superintendent of Schools

Dr. Celeste Bowler, Asst. Supt.

Dr. Sandra Forand, Asst. Supt.

May 18, 2021

Dear Parents/Guardians, Teachers and Staff,

We have received new information on mask wearing and vaccinations in the past few days.  Beginning today, Governor Daniel McKee has declared that Rhode Islanders may remove their masks in certain situations.  This came after the CDC presented new guidelines on mask wearing.

The East Providence School Department follows CDC guidance.  Students and staff in all East Providence Schools will continue to wear masks indoors and maintain a safe social distance whether vaccinated or not.

May 13, 2021, the CDC updated their guidance for fully vaccinated people:

Anyone who is fully vaccinated can participate in indoor and outdoor activities – large or small — without wearing a mask or physically distancing.

*Except in school settings.  See following guidance:

Fully vaccinated people no longer need to wear a mask or physically distance in any setting, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.

The science is clear:  if you are fully vaccinated, you are protected, and you can start doing the things that you stopped doing because of the pandemic.

Over the past few weeks, cases have continued falling dramatically and a growing number of studies have shown three big things:

  1. Our vaccines are working in the real world. Studies show them to be > 90% effective in the real-world

settings in preventing mild and severe disease, hospitalization and death.

  1. Our vaccines have proven to be effective against the SARS-CoV-2 variants currently circulating in the country.
  2.  If you’re vaccinated, you’re less likely to spread the virus. A growing body of evidence suggests that fully vaccinated people are less likely to have asymptomatic infection and to be able to transmit SARS-CoV-2 to others.”

**The CDC still recommends a mask is worn regardless of vaccination status:

If you travel, you will still be required to wear a mask on planes, buses, trains, and other forms of public transportation traveling into, within, or out of the United States, and in U.S. transportation hubs such as airports and stations.

**Schools should still continue to follow the CDC school guidance.

This guidance does not apply to healthcare settings (e.g., hospitals, long-term care, doctors’ offices). Guidance for residents and staff of healthcare settings can be found in the Updated Healthcare Infection Prevention Control Recommendations in Response to COVID-19


This guidance also does not apply to correctional facilities or homeless shelters.

Fully vaccinated people should still wear well-fitted masks where required by federal, state, local, tribal or territorial laws, rules and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance

***If you have a condition or are taking medications that weaken your immune system, you may NOT be fully protected even if you are fully vaccinated. Talk to your healthcare provider.  Even after vaccination, you may need to continue taking all precautions.

To clarify, the East Providence School Department will continue to follow the CDC guidelines for mask wearing.

All students, teachers and staff are required to wear an appropriate mask (No gators, no masks with valves) while in school.


For those who would like to schedule an appointment for you or a family member, the following lists several ways to schedule an appointment.  There will be two clinics for East Providence persons ages 12 and over.

One clinic is scheduled at Martin Middle School on Friday, May 21, 2021 at 5:00PM to 8:00PM.

The registration link is: https://www.vaccinateri.org/appointment/en/reg/5901660462

The second clinic is scheduled at Riverside Middle School on Wednesday, May 26, 2021 at 5:00PM to 8:00PM.  The registration link is: https://www.vaccinateri.org/appointment/en/reg/5126669079

The above links are only for the two dates listed.  If these dates are not convenient for you, you may access Rhode Island’s registration site at Vaccinateri.org or call 844-930-1779 to speak with someone from RIDOH to schedule an appointment for your vaccine

State run vaccination sites for ages 12 and older are at:

Sockanosset Cross Road

Dunkin’ Donuts Center

Other sites are:




Stop & Shop

I hope this information is helpful!  Stay safe and well!


Diane M. Wallace, RNBSN

Head Nurse East Providence School Department

School Nurse Riverside Middle School


401-585 4186

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