Evanston Township High School is asking students and staff to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination before the start of school next month.

Employee proof should be submitted by Aug. 2, student documentation by Aug. 5. School starts Aug. 16.

In a message on the District 202 website, ETHS says providing such proof is voluntary. “However,” the statement continues, “students and staff who have not provided proof will be considered unvaccinated … and will be required to wear a mask at all times while inside the building.”

Fully vaccinated individuals will not have to mask up, although they may do so if they wish.

Students are supposed to use their personal ETHS email account to send in a copy of the documentation although copies can also be faxed, mailed in or dropped off at ETHS. The school says to not send in the original vaccination card.

Students who get COVID shots after the Aug. 5 deadline should fill out the proof of vaccination form once they are fully vaccinated. Full vaccination takes effect two weeks after the second shot in a two-dose vaccine such as Pfizer or Moderna, or two weeks after the single Johnson and Johnson vaccination.

“A fully vaccinated school community,” the high school says, “will help ensure regular operations and support in-person instruction and activities at ETHS.”

Jeff Hirsh joined the Evanston Now reporting team in 2020 after a 40-year award-winning career as a broadcast journalist in Cincinnati, Ohio.