Branson School in Marin County has suspended in-person classes and shut down its campus after officials learned students recently attended parties without masks or social distancing, according to a letter to families posted on the school website.

First reported by the Marin Independent Journal, the parties over Halloween weekend took place in San Francisco and Marin, the school confirmed, and the letter from Head of School Chris Mazzola indicated the events were in violation of a COVID-19 code of conduct the students and families signed.

The letter went on to say the school is moving to full-time remote instruction effective Tuesday until further notice.

“In light of the news that some members of our community have not been abiding by our Code of Conduct, we cannot with confidence tell our employees, students or families that our campus provides an environment that is safe,” Mazzola wrote.

Branson School is the second in Marin County to revert back to remote learning after students violated COVID-19 protocols. On Oct. 19, Marin Catholic High School in Kentfield shut down its campus just two weeks after reopening when it found students attended a big party and participated in sleepovers.

Branson moved up its scheduled bi-monthly coronavirus testing from Friday to Thursday this week, and Mazzola said he would make a decision on a reopening date based on the results.


By Kelley Wheeler

Kelley Wheeler is a Metro reporter covering political issues and general assignments. A second-generation journalist, worked with all major news outlet, she holds a vast expeirience. Kelley is a graduate of USC with degrees in journalism and English literature. She is a recipient of Yale’s Poynter Fellowship in Journalism.

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