Boston Public Schools could be changing its COVID protocols in the new year, including a potential temporary mask mandate.

In a message to BPS families Thursday, Superintendent Mary Skipper thanked the community and wished them a restful holiday break.  Also included in the post is the possibility of changes to COVID protocols. A decision will be made by the end of the week.  According to, the letter, which was posted to the BPS Facebook page, did not include any mention of a potential mask mandate, but a letter to families that same night did note that a temporary mask mandate for the first two weeks following the break was under consideration.

You can read the message below:

BPS Community, as we begin winter break and close the book on 2022, I would like to take a moment to share my gratitude for our community. We are made up of students, families, educators, and staff who represent an extraordinary diversity of identities and cultures.

Students: I have been so impressed by your dedication and commitment to being the leaders of tomorrow. I know that you are ready to continue to learn and grow in 2023, and I promise that we are committed to meeting you where you are on your learning journey. Know that I, along with our dedicated educators, will be standing with you every step of the way.

Families: Thank you for all that you do! You have been actively engaging with me and my team in discussions about the future of our district and our schools, and students’ experiences.

I’m thankful for our parent groups who are working with us to find solutions to the challenges facing our students. Your voices are essential because our district serves many students from different backgrounds, cultures, and ethnicities, and you know what they need better than anyone.

I hope this winter break allows you to rest and spend quality time with your loved ones! I look forward to continuing the conversation in 2023!

Educators and staff: I am so grateful to come to work with you every day and see all your talent and dedication to your work. I am so impressed by your deep commitment to shaping the future of our district so that we can make a difference in the lives of our students and families. I hope this break gives you an opportunity to enjoy some time with your families and rest and recharge for a big 2023!

Whether the holidays are about spending time with the ones you love, supporting those going through a difficult time, or just recharging and resting, I hope you have a safe, healthy and peaceful holiday season.

For me, I am excited to spend time with my husband, children, and grandchildren over the holiday break. And finally, while you are away on your winter break, we will continue to meet with the Boston Public Health Commission to discuss any possible changes to our COVID protocols.

We will let you know about any changes to our protocols at the latest by the end of next week. This will ensure that we are using the most up-to-date data when making any decisions.

Thank you to the BPS Community for all you have done in 2022! I promise that in 2023, I will redouble my efforts to provide our young people with high-quality academics and continue ensuring they have all the support they need to thrive.

Have a wonderful holiday break!

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