When the world turned upside down back in early March 2020, we at the School of Lost Borders (SOLB) - like so many organizations - found ourselves staring at a wave of questions and considerations that were well outside of anything we'd faced before. We're sure each of you can relate in your own ways. In response, SOLB created the Coronavirus Response Council ("the CRC") to attempt some sense-making out of the rapidly changing information.

In spite of all the challenges, we were immensely grateful to offer many of our programs at half capacity during the summer and fall of 2020. It was validating that the protocols put in place only seemed to strengthen a container of care amongst participants. It was also reassuring, that the ceremony and the land seemed undaunted by the changes…perhaps expanding to hold us closer… even as we had to physically move further away from one another.

Beginning in January 2021, the CRC began meeting again to review the current terrain as SOLB entered a new season of programs changing the website as new information became available. Below is our most recent update as of April 2nd, 2021:

The Vaccines are here!  Many states have begun to open immunization appointments for the general population.  At the same time, Covid variants with greater transmission rates have been on the rise, and various countries and regions have seen increases in cases. The school continues to follow federal, state, and county regulations closely as well as CDC requirements and recommendations.  Following is an update in regards to the school’s policy on vaccinations, and quarantines after air travel.

General protocol: For the foreseeable future, we will be doing what we’ve learned how to do over the last year:  Running socially distant programs safely. 

  • Encouraging everyone who comes to a program to lower their exposure level starting 10 days prior to the program.
  • Encouraging traveling alone by car and only allowing carpooling in extenuating circumstances.
  • Requesting quarantine after air travel.
  • Asking people to arrive prepared and avoid local business to minimize local spread.

Protocol for Vaccinated folks:

What should I expect if I’m vaccinated and want to come to a program?

Per CDC guidelines, vaccinated participants will still be required to be a minimum of 6 feet apart (without wearing a mask), from non-vaccinated folks, and to wear a mask when closer than 6 feet.  However, they are not required to distance themselves from other vaccinated people in the group.

Do I still have to quarantine post-flight if I am vaccinated?

As of April 2, the CDC has released quarantine and testing requirements for domestic travel within the US.

For international travel the following quarantine guidelines are in effect:

  • 7 days of quarantine with a viral test during days 3 -5 that turns out negative (total quarantine is 7 days).
  • 10-day quarantine for those who do not get tested. 

We are aware that the quarantine protocol makes it hard for people to attend who rely on flying from other countries, and we hope that these general guidelines will relax more as cases come down. There are many great Rites of Passage organizations around the world, please contact us for more information if you are from abroad and would like to consider a program with another ROP organization.

We are grateful that, even with these restrictions, we are able to guide once more.  Several of our staff are already vaccinated and others are in the process.  We will continue to keep an eye on state and federal policy changes, rapid testing and vaccination considerations as well as ongoing safety including staying abreast of local emergency resources where programs are offered. Feel free to reach out with any questions and please stay tuned to our website for the latest information about programs to come!

Our commitment to the safety vow has long been the container that allows everything we do to flourish and thrive. We remain in solidarity with all of humanity in expanding this call to care for the safety, health, and well-being of the collective.  With this in mind, the School will cancel programs if a COVID surge occurs in the area where the program was scheduled to take place (according to State and local mandates and local ICU capacity).

In addition, our COVID Backcountry Protocols, last updated in September 2020, continues to stand and will be updated as needed. You can access it below:

For general inquiries about Covid protocol or safety Contact Us. 

We are looking forward to being in the field again, and to sit in circle with you.
- The Covid Response Council (Emerald North, Will Scott, Scot Deily, Petra Lentz-Snow)