COVID-19 & Reopening 2020-2021-Contact Tracing
- How are decisions made when evaluating possible and actual COVID-19 cases?
- What symptoms should we be on the lookout for?
- Who evaluates students for potential COVID-19 symptoms? What happens if a student has symptoms in school?
- What happens to everyone who came into contact with the potential/actual case?
- Do close contacts need to do anything while test results are pending?
- When does the school district contact people?
- If there is a positive case within the schools, who will be put in quarantine?
As part of our multi-layered mitigation strategies, the Ellington Public Schools developed protocols to isolate and contain potential cases within our schools. These protocols were informed by guidance from the State Department of Public Health, Department of Education, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and were reviewed by the North Central District Health Department.
- Chills, feeling feverish, or a temperature 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or higher
- Uncontrolled new cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Loss of taste or smell
- Diarrhea, vomiting, if not associated with a known medical condition
- Sore Throat, if not associated with a known medical condition
Please follow the district's daily screening guide and contact your school nurse with any questions.
Our nursing staff examines each student with possible symptoms. If a student in their judgement needs to be dismissed from school, the student is put into an isolation room and parents/guardians are notified to pick up their child. If this happens, the district has additional cleaning and sanitizing procedures in place for classroom spaces.
Generally, students with high risk COVID-19 symptoms must stay home until symptom free for 24 hours and one of the following is met:
- Negative COVID-19 test (PCR only, not rapid test).
- Alternate diagnosis (e.g. strep throat, flu, etc.).
- In absence of 1 or 2, 10 days of isolation from onset of symptoms.
The public health guidance focuses on those who are “close contacts” of a confirmed COVID-19 case. Close contacts are anyone who spent at least 15 minutes (within one day) within 6 feet of a person with a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19 during their infectious period or having direct contact with an infected person’s droplets (e.g., cough, sneeze).
The infectious period is the day of and two days prior to symptom onset. If a person tests positive while showing no symptoms, the infectious period is considered two days prior to the test.
The school district is working to be open and transparent, while also keeping in mind a student or staff member’s privacy rights under federal law.Those who are determined to be a close contact of a person who tested positive for COVID-19 WILL BE contacted as they will be required to quarantine. Those not affected or determined to be a close contact may be contacted, but this will be situation dependent.
The district is working hard on its contact tracing efforts in order to best determine the information required to make a decision on who within a school or class is required to quarantine. In some cases this may be a whole class, in others it may be a few individuals, but all decisions will be made in conjunction with the local health department.
Quarantine will last for 14 calendars days after the last known exposure to someone that tests positive for COVID-19.