May 18, 2021
The local health department has changed the requirements for quarantine of close contacts. The spacing to determine a close contact at school has also been adjusted. Students who do not develop symptoms of illness are no longer required to quarantine from school. The quarantine practice is still recommended and if a student/family selects to quarantine because they were nearby a person with COVID those absences from school will be “excused” for sure.
There have been recent announcements of change to face masks and quarantine due to close contacts. Most of the face mask changes are connected to individuals who are fully vaccinated. The school district has consulted with multiple sources to determine what is now recommended and what is required for students, staff and visitors at school. At this time the face mask changes do not apply to students and staff inside the schools or on a school bus.
The Center for Disease Control (CDC) is a national health organization and is largely responsible for providing guidance across the country. That organization provided the recent recommendation about face mask use. The CDC’s recommendations are often used by state and local health departments to develop their approach
What are the current requirements for face masks inside the schools or on a bus? All students, staff and visitors are required to wear face masks on a school bus and inside the school buildings.
What are the current requirements for face masks outside on a school campus? Face masks are not required outside, including for athletes during competitions and students at recess. Spectators/visitors are not required to wear face masks at outside events.
Do students have to be quarantined if they are a close contact with another person who has COVID at school? No. The local health department has changed that practice from a requirement to a recommendation. This is because our schools have other mitigation measures (face masks, sanitizing) in place that help to reduce the spread of COVID in the schools and on buses.
Do staff members have to be quarantined if they are a close contact with another person who has COVID at school? Yes. The school district is an employer and is still under the requirements of MiOSHA which has kept the quarantine requirements in place for workers. There are a couple of exempt individuals that include
What are the current requirements for contact tracing? The schools are required to conduct contact tracing for individuals who are around another person that have COVID. This includes both staff and students.
In order for schools to conduct in-person learning for students, we are required to collaborate with the local health department to implement all of the required COVID measures. Schools are also expected to collaborate with the local health department to convey the recommended strategies developed by the local health department. Providing in-person learning at school for students will remain a high priority. We strive to do that in a safe and secure environment for everyone involved. We will continue to monitor any changes to requirements and/or recommendations.
Attachment: Local Health Department Changes to Quarantine Guidelines.
End of Update