Last updated on December 31, 2021. This page documents The School for Ethics and Global Leadership's response to the COVID-19 pandemic. It includes information for both accepted and enrolled students.

Information for ENROLLED Students

We are so excited that you are joining us! You can find our Spring 2022 COVID-19 Handbook below. Note that this document is subject to change as we learn more about the pandemic. We will convey additional information and updates over email, in advisor phone conversations, and in videoconferences. As you know, even with our state-of-the-art precautions, it will be possible to contract COVID-19 at SEGL. You/your child can minimize the chances of getting sick by following the information in the Handbook and the additional guidance we provide.

Spring 2022 COVID-19 Handbook

Spring 2022 DC Family Videoconference, 1/13/21

Information for 2021-22 ACCEPTED Students

Congratulations on your acceptance! We are excited to welcome you into the SEGL community. You are at the beginning of an extraordinary journey. We live in challenging times. As you know, the COVID-19 "Delta variant" has upended many schools' 2021-22 operating plans. SEGL plans to run each of its 2021-22 programs (London, Johannesburg, and DC) in full and in person. We believe our curriculum and health protocols are uniquely suited to current events. Of course, there is a (small) possibility that events will mandate a change in plans. And, as is the case everywhere, despite our state-of-the-art precautions students attending SEGL may contract COVID-19. We will not open any of our 2021-22 programs without certainty that we are able to provide a safe, healthy experience.

Frequently-Asked Questions

To assist with your planning, we have compiled the following list of Frequently-Asked Questions. Many of these questions were of particular assistance to our 2020-21 incoming families, who were facing unprecedented uncertainty.

1. Has SEGL canceled any 2021-22 programs?

No. Though we continue to track current events and the latest expert guidance closely, we are not planning to cancel any programs.

2. When will SEGL decide to move forward with its 2021-22 programming?

We have already made the decision to move forward with our 2021-22 programming. Should our understanding of the COVID-19 pandemic warrant a change, we will inform you.

3. If SEGL cancels my/my child's 2021-22 program, will I/my child be able to enroll in other SEGL programs?

Yes. In the unlikely event that we cancel a program, we will make every effort to allow that program's students to enroll in a future SEGL program. For example, summer 2021 students may be able to enroll automatically in the summer 2022 program.

4. if SEGL cancels my/my child's program, will SEGL refund my deposit?

Yes. SEGL holds deposits and other scheduled payments “in escrow” (meaning that we will not spend them) until just before each semester begins. If we cancel a program and you do not want to enroll in an alternate SEGL program, please write our admissions team and indicate your desire to withdraw. We will refund your deposit promptly.

5. What if SEGL cancels a program after it begins?

We will not cancel a program after it begins. If the situation dramatically changes in-semester, however, we may move to online learning until it is safe to return in person. (This is highly unlikely; in such nearly every other school in the country would surely be in a similar situation.) If this were to happen, SEGL will return a prorated portion of transportation and food expenses. Please note that we will not begin a semester if we believe we will need to move to online learning just a few weeks into the term.

6. What if SEGL thinks it is safe to begin/continue a program, but I do not?

In sending in your enrollment agreement, deposit, and tuition payment(s), you are effectively trusting us to be good stewards of your/your child’s health. We are confident that our 12-year track record demonstrates our firm commitment to student health and safety. (We invite you to check in with current and previous families to confirm this!) With this in mind, we believe our assessment of whether it is safe to begin/continue a program will track closely with yours. We will not begin/continue a program unless we are convinced it is safe to do so. However, in the unlikely instance that your judgement differs from ours, you would be welcome to withdraw your child or move your child to our online learning platform. You would not be eligible for a refund in either case.

7. Is there a possibility that SEGL might delay/extend my/my child’s semester?

This is unlikely. At the same time, it is difficult to predict the future. If this were to happen, we are confident that we would be able to communicate and manage practical details so that you/your child would receive the full benefit of an SEGL semester.

8. I’m worried that my/my child's semester will be canceled. May I/my child transfer into another semester?

At this point we are confident that we will be able to run all of our programs in full. Although you are welcome to request a switch into another semester, historically our yield has been extremely high and therefore it is unlikely that we will be able to meet your request.

9. Is it possible that SEGL will offer a full semester of online education as an alternative to/replacement for an in-person semester?

This is unlikely. In the event that we cancel your/your child’s semester before it begins, we plan to provide a special in-person option at a later date. (For several logistical reasons, we cannot create such an opportunity unless we cancel a semester.)

12. What safety precautions will you take to ensure COVID-19-related safety?

As you can read in the COVID-19 Handbook (linked above), we will take every precaution that the best experts recommend. Though it is difficult to project what “state-of-the-art” will mean at the start of your/your child’s semester, we are confident that we will have the resources to provide second-to-none health and safety protocols for you/your child. That said, just as there is some chance that you/your child will contract COVID-19 at home despite your best efforts, there is also some risk that you/your child will contract COVID-19 while with us. You should only enroll at SEGL once you have assessed your family’s tolerance for this risk.

13. Has SEGL dealt with any cases of COVID-19 this year? what happened?

In Washington, DC, yes. And as a result we are even more prepared for the coming year. Our first encounter occurred in November after two students reported symptoms. We immediately followed our COVID-19 Handbook's protocols and limited additional cases. All symptoms were mild, spirits remained high, testing was frequent, our quarantine house (and faculty dorm parents) performed ably, and all students were soon COVID-19 free. All students were able to complete all academic work, in part by videoconferencing in to all classes. The culprit was likely a low-risk, off-campus student encounter, and so we reduced these opportunities going forward. We also tested more frequently and tightened our indoor mask-wearing protocol. Our second encounter occurred in early February when a spring semester student unwittingly brought COVID-19 to campus despite our tight pre-arrival protocols. We quickly isolated the student and the student's roommates in separate rooms in our quarantine house, and videoconferenced them in to all classes. The student experienced only mild symptoms and the student's roommates were not infected. Our third encounter occurred in early April when a spring semester student unwittingly brought COVID-19 to campus after Spring Break. (The student's parents acknowledged that they had allowed the student to spend time unmasked with a friend who later tested positive.) As before, we quickly isolated the student and the student's roommates in separate rooms in our quarantine house, and videoconferenced them in to all classes. The student experienced only mild symptoms and the student's roommates were not infected. In Johannesburg, no. The entire African Leadership Academy campus has also been COVID-19 free during our residency there. This is unsurprising given that COVID-19 levels in South Africa were significantly lower than levels in the United States. (Those levels rose this past summer but are now again lower than in the U.S.) In London, no. We followed the UK government's strict COVID-19 protocols, as well as our own guidelines, and had a productive, meaningful summer experience.

14. Does SEGL require all students to be vaccinated now that vaccines are widely available for students in my/my child's age group?

Yes. We know that some families are wary of the COVID-19 vaccines, and that the vaccine is currently available only under "emergency use authorization." However, we trust the scientific consensus that the COVID-19 vaccines are safe, and that vaccination is the surest way to keep our students and faculty healthy this coming year. We also recognize that your family may be in a special circumstance; please contact us as soon as possible if you may not be able to meet this requirement.

15. My/my family’s financial circumstances have changed significantly as a result of the COVID-19 epidemic. May I/we apply for new/additional financial aid?

Yes. Your family is always welcome to update its SSS financial aid information. We have allocated a modest amount of additional financial aid for significant COVID-19-related hardship (for example, a parent losing a job). Although given the state of our world we cannot promise additional financial aid to everyone who applies, we will do everything we can to ensure finances are not a barrier to enrollment.  Please contact our admissions team if you have questions about additional aid.

If you have additional questions, please contact our admissions team.