Covid19 Prevention and Response in UPSD

Updated 5/16/22

NOTE: The Governor's Office in conjunction with the Washington State Department of Health made significant changes to Covid-19 protocols specific to K-12 environments.

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

 

Face Coverings (Masks) are No Longer Required

Beginning on Monday, March 14th, 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 and “Covid19 isolation rooms” 
When returning to school after an infection without a negative test result
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 physical distancing to the extent possible and messaging around hand hygiene. We will continue to increase ventilation, provide testing, encourage those eligible to get vaccinated and message that anyone who is sick or has symptoms remains at home and take advantage of testing. 


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) 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 use of fever-reducing medications
,
b. AND If returning to school days 6-10, the individual is required to wear a well-fitted mask or face shield with a drape during days 6-10 of their isolation period, consistent with CDC guidance, OR test negative with an antigen test any day after day 5 before returning without a mask. Testing beyond day 10 is not necessary.  At-home tests are allowed.  All test results must be shared with your student's school (names of the student, date of the test, the result of the test, the brand of test, photo of test result).

2. Students who test positive (or show symptoms) when they are at school are immediately isolated and sent home. Each school has a special “isolation room” for student use while they wait to be picked up by a parent or guardian.

3. Families will be notified if their student may have been potentially exposed to a positive case of COVID19.  This is an evolving process and will look different than it has in the past.

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 monitoring the health of their children carefully at home. 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