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COVID-19 Updates

Current coronavirus guidelines for Girl Scouts San Diego

Updated as of Monday, Feb. 27,, 2023.

Together, we are entering a new phase in the pandemic, marked by the CDC’s Community Levels measurement tool and the California Department of Public Health’s updates to mask requirements. These changes, detailed below, impact how Girl Scout groups can operate. We’re aware that COVID-19 is still present in our counties and that community levels may rise and fall several times in the next months. Transitioning from one level to another will require the patience and kindness of all our members. Girl Scouts do this well! This chart is designed to help anticipate expectations when levels change.

Please note that San Diego and Imperial Community Levels are low.

Updates at a Glance


HIGH level

MEDIUM level

LOW level


Strongly recommended

Recommended indoors

Optional indoors


Optional in most situations


Always a smart practice!


Recommended indoors

Recommended indoors



Strongly recommended—leaders may rely on parent/guardian screening. Scroll to details below.

Small, stable groups

Strongly recommended




Strongly recommended


Consider for long or large events

Test if symptoms develop

Test if symptoms develop


Maintain improved ventilation when possible

Outdoor spaces

Gather outdoors when practical--it’s more fun, too!


Follow CDC

Follow CDC

Follow CDC

Food service

Limit number of servers

Basic food safety practices

Basic food safety practices


Follow CDC guidance


Offer additional layers of protection for those who are at risk

Girl Scouts San Diego's goals:

  • Protect the health of our members and community
  • Help keep kids in school by reducing exposure and resulting quarantines
  • Safeguard the opportunity to continue meeting in person
  • Model leadership in reducing community spread
  • Include all members who may need additional protection to safely join in
  • Follow health authority requirements as relevant to youth, volunteers, and staff
  • Use the Girl Scout Promise and Law to navigate these unprecedented times

As shown in the Swiss cheese graphic (inspired by the Cleveland Clinic’s version), layers of protection mitigate risk in the community, and for individuals. Thank you for helping your Girl Scout family stay safe and fun for everyone! Contact us at or 619-298-8391 if you have questions. We're happy to help!

Covid Graphic_NEW OPTIONS


During HIGH Community Levels, masks are strongly recommended at in-person Girl Scout meetings, activities, or events. Wear a mask when requested by the troop leader, event director, or camp director. These staff and volunteers are in the best position to determine whether greater protection is needed given the nature of the event, the participants' needs, and the circumstances in the community.


Masks are optional, except when required by local authorities where the activity is taking place, including schools. This may include masking when using public transportation, in health care settings, and similar situations. You may also wish to wear a mask in crowded indoor settings such as theaters.

Do not wear masks (but do keep 6 feet apart) when:

  • Eating or drinking
  • Swimming
  • Sleeping
  • Exempted by a doctor, due to a medical condition. In this case, wear a non-restrictive alternative, such as a face shield with a drape on the bottom edge, if your condition allows it.
  • Other listed situations apply.

See the California Department of Public Health’s mask mandate notice dated Jan. 10, 2022. Consider upgrading your mask for better protection.

Hand-Washing and Sanitation

Wash hands frequently with soap and water. Spend at least 20 seconds.

Use hand sanitizer when hand-washing facilities are not immediately accessible. It's smart to sanitize before and after touching surfaces or items others have recently used. 

Six-Foot Distancing

Stay six feet from others when you can, especially during periods of high spread. This is a smart practice, especially when unmasked, indoors.

Screening Questions

Ensure that screening questions are asked before each event. Use one of these methods (whichever works best for your group):

  • Family Screening. Provide the COVID-19 Attendee Screening Form to guardians in advance. Have guardians ask girls/participants the questions on the form on the day of the activity and request that they keep girls/participants home if any answers are “yes.” Collecting the form from guardians is optional and up to leaders.
  • Hand out Screening Form. Provide the Screening Form to each participant on arrival. Collect and review before participation.
  • Verbal Screening. Ask the questions on the COVID-19 Attendee Screening Form verbally and record the answers on the COVID-19 Attendee Screening Log.       

Tips for easy screening:

  • Use these screening questions forms as a guide.
  • Ask screening questions before guardians leave. If a Girl Scout needs to go home, her adult will still be there.

Collect a COVID Girl and Adult Participation Waiver for each participating family. Troops may do this annually.

Small, Stable Groups

Often called cohorts or pods, small groups of youth can limit infection and reduce the need for quarantine. The best practice is to:

  • Keep your troop, special-interest group, or Take Action patrol separate from other groups in periods of HIGH Community Level..
  • Keep the group size to 14 Girl Scouts and 2 adults. If your troop is slightly larger, include all girls. Do not combine troops. Break very large troops (20+ girls) into smaller groups for meetings.
  • Reducethe number of adults to the minimum needed for safety. LImit guests to times when they're needed for program quality or safety.
  • Keep a roster of all participants, in case exposure notification is needed later.
  • Plan carefully for mixed-group activities, such as badge workshops or service unit events, where participants are not part of the same stable group. 
  • Keep large group gatherings brief. Take additional time and space. Host outdoors when possible.
Vaccination and Testing
  • Girl Scouts strongly recommends, but does not require, vaccines for all eligible adults and youth.
  • Girl Scouts San Diego supports volunteer troop leaders, event directors, and encampment directors who choose to require proof of vaccination and/or a negative COVID test within 24 hours of the event as a requirement for in-person participation.
  • Vaccination or mandatory quarantine is required for travel to some destinations, or to enter establishments in some cities. Girl Scout trips will not include time to quarantine on arrival. As a result, the vaccine will be necessary.
  • Follow the “Swiss Cheese Model” of mitigation no matter your vaccine status.
  • Read our Vaccine FAQs for more.
Ventilation/Outdoor Spaces
  • Hold meetings and activities outdoors when possible. Indoor, optimize ventilation by opening windows and doors, and use child-safe fans. Use air filters, if possible.
  • Consider a space to be "outdoors" if three sides are open.
  • See "About Camping" below, for campout specifics.
  • Keep vehicle windows open. Even a little bit improves ventilation.
  • Reach us at 619-298-8391 or at After hours, press 2, when prompted, to reach our emergency line. Contact Girl Scouts San Diego immediately if anyone connected to a  meeting or activity is diagnosed with COVID and has potentially exposed others. 
  • Follow instructions from your health care provider and/or the agency that notified you of the positive test result. Refer to the CDC’s current guidance on ending quarantine or isolation.
  • Do not share health information with others. Council staff will notify those potentially exposed in a manner consistent with healthcare privacy laws, in conjunction with county contact tracers.
  • Contact your school if your Girl Scout is diagnosed with COVID. There are specific school quarantine rules that must be followed in San Diego County and Imperial County.
About Camping, Meals, Travel, and Activities that Require Approval

Use these guidelines for overnights:

  • Preferred sleeping quarters are "under the stars" or in separate tents.
  • Next best is a cabin or tent that allows for 6 ft distance between campers.
  • Find additional recommendations in our Camping Info packet. 

Meal planning:

  • Use standard food safety guidelines. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reports that there is no evidence of food or food packaging being associated with transmission of COVID-19.
  • Take a Let’s Cook! class to learn about food safety during campouts and cookouts with Girl Scouts.
  • Find additional recommendations in our Camping Info packet. It contains recipes and other ideas--not just for camping.

Travel guidelines will vary depending on destination. Be sure to:

  • Follow CDC guidelines for testing, vaccines, and quarantine at departure, destination, en route, and return.
  • Connect with travelers and their families, to assess comfort with travel during changing times.
  • Consider travel to open-air, uncrowded destinations, such as national parks.
  • Consider delaying or adjusting travel plans, as conditions change.
  • Obtain approval.

Activities requiring approval:


The recommendations above are reviewed weekly. Significant changes from authorities prompt updates in our guidance, and will be published within two weeks. Note that staff members may observe additional protocols to meet Cal/OSHA requirements.