YWCP COVID-19 Health Safety Plan
(as of March 1, 2023)
The Young Women’s Choral Projects prioritizes the health and safety of its choristers, staff, families, patrons and guest artists. As the COVID situation evolves, our approach will evolve as well; however, since singing is a higher risk activity, some of our protocols are more conservative to create the safest choral experience we can.
Full vaccination against COVID-19 is required for participation unless there is a documented medical or religious exemption. YWCP strongly recommends that all choristers are up to date on COVID boosters as well, when eligible.
Immunization status, like all other medical information, will be kept confidential by the YWCP office. Proof of vaccination will be required from all new program participants.
Given the current low level of COVID-19 transmission in San Francisco and neighboring counties, YWCP is changing our masking protocols to “masks recommended” during YWCP activities.
We will continue to monitor the case rates in the community, and reserve the right to amend this policy in the future as needed to protect YWCP staff and choristers.
For singers who wear a mask during rehearsals, we encourage the VocalEase mask, as it allows for the most uniformity of sound.
Singers wearing a mask during a concert will be required to use the VocalEase mask at that time.
Ventilation and Cleaning
Our rehearsal venue, Calvary Presbyterian Church, allows us to have large rooms with HEPA filters, and many open doors for ventilation. We will utilize both of these during all rehearsals, as well as use outdoor spaces for breaks.
Hand sanitizer will be available at the check-in table.
Before arriving at any YWCP rehearsal or performance, we ask that singers do a self-screening for symptoms of illness.
Anyone experiencing any symptoms of illness (frequent coughing, runny nose, sneezing, fever) should not come to rehearsal. If your child has allergies and not other COVID symptoms, she may attend rehearsal. Please tell the rehearsal coordinator if you are sending your child with any non-contagious symptoms that could be misinterpreted as COVID-19.
At the present time, YWCP does not have an online option for rehearsals.
We understand that choristers may need to take more absences due to illness or quarantining this year. YWCP will be flexible with total absence hour requirements if a chorister must stay home or be quarantined because of COVID-19.
Important: If any YWCP chorister has been diagnosed with COVID-19, please report it to YWCP.
Please note YWCP’s policy for choristers returning to rehearsals:
- Choristers may return to rehearsals after a positive COVID test once they have a negative antigen test.
- If choristers have just ONE negative test, they will be asked to wear a mask through Day 10 OR until they receive a 2nd negative test after 48 hours
- Choristers with TWO negative tests 48 hours apart may return on a mask-recommended protocol.
As of this point, we will not require COVID testing before each rehearsal. We will communicate about testing before all YWCP performances.
More information on our COVID Health and Safety Committee
To help minimize the impact of COVID-19 at our activities, we formed a COVID-19 committee in 2021 composed of staff, parent and board members, whose backgrounds include medicine, public health law, psychology, and education. We are committed to following the guidelines of the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), San Francisco Department of Public Health (SFDPH), and Centers for Disease Control (CDC), but recognize guidelines are a floor and not a ceiling for precautions.
More information on the VocalEase masks
In the summer of 2021, YWCP purchased special VocalEase singers’ masks for all choristers. YWCP will provide these masks for new 2022-23 singers, and will have a limited stock of replacement ones for returning families, who will cover their cost.
These masks offer a lightweight, comfortable fit designed for expressive speech and singing as well as superior filtration (preliminary testing shows 62-67% aerosol filtration – above the highest performance (Level 2) standard of the ASTM Standard Specification for Face Barrier Coverings (ASTM F3502-2)), while completely eliminating the muffled sound. Medical professionals have checked the materials in the mask and none is shown to cause skin irritation.