I hope you had a relaxing winter break with your family and friends. Once again, our students, staff and families have risen to the challenge and made the most of these unpredictable and ever-changing times we’re living in. I am so proud of the strength, resilience, ingenuity and kindness you have all demonstrated so far this school year and look forward to seeing all we accomplish together in 2022.
Since the onset of the pandemic, our highest priority has remained the health and safety of our students; and, our goal – to provide in-person instruction. As we begin the second half of the school year, we want to provide an update on COVID-19 protocols.
In response to the recent rise in COVID-19 cases, the board has voted to extend the mask requirement for grades K-7 and reinstate the mask requirement for high school students beginning Jan. 3rd. Please be aware that the masking requirement will be in effect during regular school hours only. Masks will continue to be optional for extracurriculars and other after school events. As has been the practice since July, the school board will reevaluate COVID-19 protocols each month and continue to make decisions that are in the best interest of our students, staff and community.
Additionally, on Dec. 27, the CDC and ODH updated and shortened their recommended isolation and quarantine guidelines. The school district will follow this guidance as we progress forward. For complete details on the updated reduced quarantine guidance and "mask to stay, test to play" please view the attachments from the Ohio Department of Health.
In summary, if a student or staff member tests positive for COVID-19, they must isolate for a minimum of five days. Following the isolation period, they may return, masked, to the classroom if asymptomatic or their symptoms are improving. If they have a fever, they should continue to stay home until fever free for at least 24 hours.
The “Mask to Stay, Test to Play” policy has not changed. Those deemed a direct contact, regardless of vaccination or masking status, may remain in the classroom environment if they wear a mask for 10 days after their last date of exposure and remain symptom free during this time. Students involved in extracurriculars that are identified as close contacts may continue to participate without a mask during activity as long as they follow the testing requirements. We will encourage families to obtain their own tests but the district does have a limited number of COVID-19 rapid tests available for students.
We understand that this situation continues to change quickly, and as always, we strive to remain transparent and communicative as soon as new information becomes available. Should you have any questions regarding these policy changes, please do not hesitate to reach out to myself, your child’s building principal or a central office administrator. Thank you for the continued support of our school district.