Covid19 Prevention and Response in UPSD

Updated 8/30/22

NOTE: The Washington State Department of Health made significant changes to Covid-19 protocols specific to K-12 environments for the 2022-23 school year.

In UPSD, the safety of students and staff is always our first priority. The procedures we have in place to protect against Covid19 continue to be effective and substantial evidence shows that kids and staff are safe at school.

 

Face Coverings (Masks) are No Longer Required

Masks will be optional for all students, staff, parents and visitors at schools, on buses, and during school-sponsored activities in most circumstances.  Students and staff may choose to continue wearing a mask. We support this individual choice and will provide masks to those who want them.  Please take time to talk with your student about family expectations for wearing a mask and remind your student to respect the choices made by others.

Masks will continue to be required for students in the following circumstances: 
In health rooms, when showing illness symptoms
When returning to school, on days 6-10 after testing positive for Covid-19
During local outbreaks as directed by the local health department

Also, in some situations, masks may be required on a temporary basis when other mitigation measures are not possible and/or to prevent outbreaks.


Other Safety Measures

We continue to use additional safety measures and mitigation strategies outlined in the updated safety guidelines for schools. These measures include increased ventilation, routine cleaning/disinfecting and messaging around hand hygiene. We will continue to provide access to testing, encourage those eligible to get vaccinated and remind anyone who is sick or has symptoms to remain at home and get tested. 


Responding to Positive Cases 

Preventative measures will go a long way to slow the spread of Covid-19. However, as long as the virus is still in our community, we know that some students and staff will be exposed or test positive for the virus. We have a plan in place to respond when a student or staff member has a confirmed case of Covid19.


1. 
Anyone testing positive for Covid-19, regardless of vaccination status, will be required to remain at home (isolate) for 5 days and should not return to school until: 
a. Their symptoms have improved or they are asymptomatic, AND they are fever free for 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medications
,
b. AND when returning to school days 6-10, the individual should wear a well-fitted mask, consistent with the Washington State Department of Health guidelines. 

2. Students who test positive (or show symptoms) when they are at school will be provided a mask, isolated and sent home.

3. If parents and families wish to monitor potential exposure at school, they may refer to the district dashboard below. Notification letters and emails will no longer be sent home.

4. To protect privacy, we will not release the name- or other identifying information- of infected students or staff members.

How Parents Can Help

Parents can help keep schools safe by getting their students vaccinated against Covid19 and by monitoring the health of their children carefully. Students with symptoms should remain home, see their health care provider and/or get a Covid-19 test. When a student tests positive, parents should contact the school right away or use our new Covid19 online reporting system to report the positive case. Keeping sick students at home is one of the most important things we can do!

If you have questions or concerns about Covid-19 in UPSD, please contact your child’s school, or contact our Covid Support Specialist.  Madison Wells / [email protected] / 253-888-0643