Prevent COVID - 19 From Impacting Our School

WMRSD - Help Prevent COVID-19 From Impacting our School Community
Posted on 09/03/2020
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September 3, 2020

Dear Families: 

As we prepare to open our schools and welcome students back, we are asking for your help to prevent COVID-19 from impacting our school community.

COVID-19 is most commonly spread through respiratory droplets when an infected person talks, coughs, sneezes, or sings. As a school community we ask for your support to take the following precaution to prevent the spread of the disease: 

  • If your child has a fever or is not feeling well, please keep them home. Please report your child’s symptoms to the school nurse to discuss a plan of action. 

  •  Know the symptoms of the COVID-19:

-Fever (measured 100.4F), or feeling feverish;

-Respiratory symptoms such as runny nose, nasal congestion, sore throat, cough, or shortness of breath;

-General body symptoms such as muscle aches, chills, and severe fatigue;

  -Gastrointestinal symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea, and

  -Changes in a person’s sense of taste or smell 

  •  Prior to arriving to school, please screen your student for:

-Any new or unexplained symptoms of COVID-19 (listed above); this includes even mild symptoms.

-Close contact with someone who is suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19 in the prior 14 days.

  -Travel outside of NH, VT, ME, MA, RI, and CT.  

  • Any person with new or unexplained symptoms of COVID-19 will be excluded from school, instructed to isolate at home, and contact their primary care provider for COVID-19 testing. Symptomatic students or staff can be allowed to return to school when one of the following two conditions is met:

1. The person receives an approved COVID-19 test that is negative, AND the person’s symptoms are improving AND they are fever-free for at least 24 hours off any fever-reducing medications.

Approved tests include:  

  • A PCR-based molecular test 

  • Quidel Sofia antigen testing is conducted within 5 days of symptom onset

  • Your doctor can guide you regarding the appropriate and acceptable test

 2. The person has met CDC criteria for ending home isolation (i.e., if the person is not tested, they are managed assuming they have COVID-19).

  • If a student has close contact with someone who is suspected or confirmed to have COVID19 in the prior 14 days or has a travel-related risk, they are required to complete self quarantine at home for 14 days from the last known exposure. 

Together, with you, we will teach and promote all students to:  

  • Frequently wash their hands. Hand washing for 20 seconds with soap and water or using hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol is the best way to reduce the spread of germs. 

  • Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or their elbows. Afterwards, wash their hands or use hand sanitizer once they discard the tissue.  

  • Not to share personal items such as drinks, food, or water bottles.

  • Practice social distancing by maintaining at least 6 feet between people when outside their homes. 

  • Properly wear a cloth face covering that covers their mouths and noses to protect others when in public areas.

  • Avoid touching their eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands. 

Children may worry about themselves, their family and friends getting sick with COVID-19. Tips for talking to children about COVID-19 can be found here: 

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/talking-with-children.html

For more information on COVID-19 in NH,please visit: https://www.dhhs.nh.gov/dphs/cdcs/2019-ncov.htm.

For the latest information from the CDC, please visit 

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

Our school works closely with the New Hampshire (NH) Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and our protocols and procedures are well aligned with theirs. We recognize that NH DHHS guidelines may be more conservative than those of the CDC, but believe that New Hampshire’s low transmission rate may be attributed to that conservative approach. Our goal is to keep the students and staff in our district safe and to keep our children in school and learning.  With your support and partnership, I’m confident we can attain that goal.

If you have questions about our prevention measures or concerns regarding your child, please reach out to your building administrator or school nurse. We look forward to welcoming our students back!

Sincerely,

Lisa Miller, RN, WMRSD COVID-19 Coordinator

Marion Anastasia,  Superintendent of Schools