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Sinai Temple’s Evolving Response to COVID-19

SINAI TEMPLE

COVID Protocols- Frequently Asked Questions

November 8, 2021 

What are Sinai Temple’s COVID protocols for indoor programs starting January 1, 2022?

The COVID protocols below will be implemented for all indoor activities at Sinai Temple.

  • All individuals, 18 years old and older, will be required to provide proof of full vaccination.
  • All individuals, 17 years old and younger, will be required to provide proof of full vaccination or a negative PCR test, taken on a weekly basis. This will be the protocol until August 15, at which time children ages 5 and up will be required to be vaccinated. 

Will a negative PCR test gain entry after January 1?

  • For 18+:  negative PCR tests will not gain entry. Only proof of full vaccination will be accepted.
  • All individuals, 17 years old and younger, will be required to provide proof of full vaccination or a negative PCR test, taken on a weekly basis. This will be the protocol until August 15, at which time children ages 5 and up will be required to be vaccinated. 

What types of exemptions will be considered?

  • Medical: Requests for medical exemptions will be critically reviewed and considered by a panel of Sinai Temple medical professionals.  Each request for exemption, regardless of the reason, will be evaluated individually.  Anyone requesting a medical exemption will be required to complete an application and submit documentation from a medical provider indicating the reasoning for and proposed duration of the exemption.  For more information on this process, contact Jessica Green, Executive Director, at jgreen@sinaitemple.org or 310-481-3219.

What types of exemptions will not be considered? 

  • Religious/ Ideological: We will not accept religious or personal belief exemptions. The Talmud teaches “One who saves one life, it is as if they have saved an entire world.” This value of pikuach nefesh, the saving of a life, is the highest principle to which Jews adhere. There is no exemption for avoiding a vaccine that can save even a single life.    
  • Past History with COVID: Documentation stating that you have had and recovered from COVID will not be considered or accepted.  

What are the rules regarding mask wearing?

  • Indoors: In accordance with County rules, everyone, regardless of vaccination status, must- for now– wear a mask in all indoor settings.
  • Outdoors- vaccinated adults only (e.g., on Pilot Plaza): masks are not required.
  • Off-site outdoor programs: mask wearing will not be required but is strongly recommended due to the proximity of vaccinated and non-vaccinated individuals.

How did Sinai Temple arrive at these decisions?

In the first week of November, we convened fifteen doctors from our community representing several medical specialties:  infectious diseases, pediatrics, cardiology, Ob/Gyn and internal medicine.  They shared their on-the-ground knowledge and points of view on COVID related topics. All participants confirmed the high efficacy of the vaccine, and consensus was that vaccination is the best preventive treatment strategy, offering a direct path towards holistic wellness and a return to a semblance of normalcy. Following a robust and respectful dialogue, Sinai Temple’s Clergy, Executive Director and key lay leadership weighed the diverse perspectives and proffered recommendations from the medical experts to arrive at these protocols.

Additionally, these protocols are aligned with Los Angeles’ citywide SafePassLA requirements for catering and party/gala hosting, recreational activities, lectures, film screenings, live music and concerts- all hallmarks of life at Sinai Temple.

Will there be opportunities to learn more about the vaccines and the updated protocols?

Yes. Sinai Temple, ST Religious School and Sinai Akiba Academy are jointly offering these two programs:

  • Vaccine Efficacy and Safety for Adults and Children: Your Questions Answered)

Thursday, December 9, 2021 at 7:00pm

This evening will feature medical experts who are members of the Sinai Temple community who will address your questions about the updated COVID protocols, as well as vaccine efficacy and safety. The program will take place virtually and we will take questions from the community.

  • COVID Vaccines: Facts vs Fiction

Wednesday, January 5, 2022 at 7:00pm

This evening will be a dialogue and Q&A with Sinai Temple’s own Dr. Carey Strom in conversation with Dr. Archana Chatterjee, Dean of the Chicago Medical School and a doctor who sits on the FDA’s Vaccine’s & Related Biological Products Advisory Committee, as well as the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society Board and the American Board of Pediatrics Sub-board of Pediatric Infectious Diseases. The program will take place virtually and we will take questions from the community.

How can you upload a vaccination card?

  • SAA parents and students:  email a copy of the front and back of your vaccination card to June Lahpai at jlahpai@sinaiakiba.org.
  • Non-SAA Temple members:    CLICK HERE to upload your vaccination information
  • If you’re having trouble uploading your vaccination, email covidvax@sinaitemple.org.

    What are the COVID protocols for offsite outdoor activities?

    We will continue to explore meaningful offsite outdoor engagement opportunities to bring our community together. All individuals, regardless of vaccination status, may participate in off site, outdoor programs.  Mask wearing will be encouraged.

     

    For SAA and Religious School Families

    Are children required to get vaccinated this school year?

    We strongly encourage all children who are eligible to be vaccinated as soon as possible, however, it is not required to complete this current school year.

    What are the implications for students who become fully vaccinated during this school year?  What changes in the school are anticipated following student vaccinations?

    The Sinai Akiba Academy leadership is excitedly planning for this new prospect of fully vaccinated children. For more information contact Dr. Lindner (mlindner@sinaiakiba.org) or Rabbi Feig (afeig@sinaiakiba.org).

    What is the date by which parents must provide proof of full vaccination for their child/ren for the 2022-2023 school year?

    For SAA and Religious School child/ren to be able to start the new school year, documentation of full vaccination must be submitted by August 15, 2022.  Please note that the 2022-23 enrollment agreement will stipulate that full vaccination is required for enrollment for grades K-8.

    Will the SAA ECC students require vaccination?

    At this time, it is unclear when vaccines for ECC children will be approved. Until that time, we will continue to monitor news of emergent developments.  We will continue weekly PCR testing and mask wearing for children and parents, and we will enforce vaccination for parents coming on campus.

    Who should be contacted for more information about these COVID Protocols?

    SAA families:  Dr. Lindner (mlindner@sinaiakiba.org) or Rabbi Feig (afeig@sinaiakiba.org).

    All other Sinai Temple families:  Jessica Green, Executive Director, at jgreen@sinaitemple.org or 310-481-3219.