This school year, Massachusetts public schools are more than ready. From strategies to accelerate student learning to our continued commitment to diversity, we're doing more to make sure every student has the supports to go further — every step of the way.
All schools are required to be in-person, full-time, five days a week. Masks are no longer required indoors or while using school transportation. However, school districts may decide whether to lift or maintain local mask requirements on buses or vans. Vaccines have been approved for everyone 5 years old and over and schools can participate in three state-funded testing programs.
Massachusetts school districts will receive approximately $2.8 billion in state and federal pandemic relief money over the 2021–22 school year and fall 2024. The money is primarily in the form of federal coronavirus relief funds, and districts can spend it on a wide range of priorities in order to meet students' academic, social, emotional, and mental health needs.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture extended school meal waivers for all students across the state through the end of the 2021-22 school year. Families in need of food assistance can also consider applying for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). SNAP outreach materials are available online in 11 languages.
We know that students have a wide variety of strengths and areas of growth. We're encouraging districts to accelerate learning as outlined in our Acceleration Roadmap, which sets three priorities: fostering a sense of belonging for students in school, working to understand student strengths and needs, and providing access to grade-appropriate work.
Massachusetts parents have access to high quality educational options for learners of all ages. These options include traditional public schools; charter, vocational/technical, and virtual schools; Early College and innovation pathways; adult education; and other programs. Learn more about your options, how to find a school, and resources for families.
The pandemic has affected different students in different ways, and in some cases, students' mental health has suffered. If you have specific concerns about your child, let their teacher and school counselor know. You can also find resources at Handhold MA.
More information about special education during the 2021-22 school year can be downloaded in these FAQs.
Remote learning is not an option this year, unless a district has created a virtual school within its district, if a child is enrolled in a Commonwealth Virtual School, or if a child requires a home/hospital tutoring program.
For updates on COVID-19 in Massachusetts see the Mass.gov COVID-19 Updates and Information website.
In some cases, the information you might be looking for can be found by contacting your local school district, because they know the details about your child's individual school. You can also visit our family webpage to access a range of topics for parents and guardians.
Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
75 Pleasant Street, Malden, MA 02148-4906
Voice: (781) 338-3000
TTY: (800) 439-2370
Disclaimer: A reference in this website to any specific commercial products, processes, or services, or the use of any trade, firm, or corporation name is for the information and convenience of the public and does not constitute endorsement or recommendation by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.