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USD 281 has called off school on Monday November 23rd & Tuesday November 24th. Extracurricular activities will continue as scheduled. If you would like to have lunch, please contact the school where your child attends on Friday November 20th. The meal pick up will be at the High School at 11 am.
Enjoy the extra time off. Be careful and stay safe.
Graham County USD 281Hill City, KS
Grade School Parents,
We will be starting up the bus service to the Junior/Senior high school tomorrow, for kids who need to ride to the high school and walk home. If your child will be using this service, they will be leaving their school provided mask at school and will need to wear their own mask during the trip. Students riding to the Junior/Senior High will also need to get on the first bus in the bus line.
USD 281 Modified Quarantine Requirements
This guide specifically addresses requirements around maintaining continuity of learning in the situation where all students and staff in a classroom are exposed to COVID-19; namely the modified quarantine requirements for close contacts of a case. What this modified quarantine allows is the ability for all students and staff in the exposed classroom to continue physically attending school during their quarantine period. This guide will be updated to reflect the current activity of the virus in our county and are subject to change at any time to protect the health of the students of Graham County USD 281.
COVID-19 is a respiratory disease caused by a coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) which spreads primarily through droplets generated when an infected person coughs or sneezes, or through droplets of saliva or discharge from the nose. Studies show that asymptomatic people and people in the pre-symptomatic phase (2-3 days before symptoms begin) can also be a source of infection.
The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are fever and lower respiratory symptoms including coughing, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing. However, there are many other symptoms that may be associated with COVID-19 including chills, fatigue, muscle aches or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, and diarrhea. The elderly and people with underlying medical problems such as high blood pressure, heart problems, diabetes, or chronic respiratory conditions, are at a greater risk of serious illness from COVID-19. Schools are an important part of the infrastructure of communities, as they provide safe, supportive learning environments for students, employ teachers and other staff, and enable parents, guardians, and caregivers to work. The unique and critical role that schools play makes them a priority for opening and remaining open, enabling students to receive both academic instruction and support as well as critical services.
Current Isolation and Quarantine Requirements:
A Person Under Investigation (PUI) is suspected of having COVID-19 disease. A person who is being tested for COVID-19 is required to be in isolation until test results are received. Possible outcomes of the test result include:
1) If the test result is positive, then the person becomes a case or
2) If the test result is negative and the person has a known exposure, then the person must finish their 14-day quarantine, or
3) If the test result is negative and there was no known exposure, then the person is released from isolation.
Symptomatic cases are released from isolation 10 days after symptom onset OR 72 hours fever free without the use of medication and significant improvement in symptoms, whichever is longer. Meaning, symptomatic cases are in isolation for a minimum of 10 days. Asymptomatic cases are released from isolation 10 days after their positive sample was collected, as long as they remain asymptomatic. If they become symptomatic during the 10 days, then they would begin a new isolation period using the criteria for symptomatic cases.
Close contacts of a confirmed case are in quarantine for 14 days after their last contact with a case while the case was infectious. A symptomatic case is considered infectious starting two days before the onset of their first symptom until they are released from isolation. An asymptomatic case is considered infectious starting two days before the date their positive sample was collected until they are released from isolation.
Defining A Close Contact:
A close contact is someone who has been within 6 feet of a case for 10 minutes or more or had direct contact with bodily secretions (for example, being coughed or sneezed on). Any students or staff that maintained a 6-foot distance from the positive case would not be considered close contacts and would therefore not be subject to the 14-day quarantine period.
If the positive case, or close contacts, or both, always wore cloth face-masks this reduces the risk of developing COVID-19 disease. However, the use of cloth face-masks does not eliminate the risk completely; therefore, close contacts may still be subject to a 14-day quarantine. Any close contacts that wore appropriate PPE, either a fit-tested N95 mask with protective eyewear or a surgical mask with a face shield, would not be considered close contacts. The time for close contact tracing includes any day(s) the positive student or staff attended school and the preceding 48 hours prior to symptom onset (symptomatic cases) or the preceding 48 hours prior to sample collection (asymptomatic cases).
Modified Quarantine Requirements:
These modified quarantine requirements are contingent on the close contacts of a case remaining asymptomatic. Students and staff who have had an exposure but remain asymptomatic should adhere to the following practices prior to and during the school day:
1. Qualifications: To qualify for the modified quarantine, a student must be exposed during school or during a school activity. Contacts from non-school activities including household contacts are not eligible for modified quarantine. Positive cases also do not qualify.
2. Transportation: Students and staff on modified quarantine may not ride USD 281 school transportation to or from school. Parents must provide transportation for their children. If the student is of driving age, they may drive.
3. Arrival and dismissal times: Students and staff on modified quarantine need to arrive at 8:15 am and leave school at 3:20 pm and are required to wear a mask while entering the school.
4. Pre-screen: Modified quarantine students and staff will have their temperature taken when entering the school but will not undergo any further pre-screening by the school. They will be asked to monitor symptoms at home and to notify the school if any symptoms develop and stay home.
5. Medical check-in: Modified quarantine students and staff may be checked on periodically by school medical staff. If the quarantined student or staff becomes sick during the day, they will be sent home immediately. Surfaces in their workspace should be cleaned and disinfected. Anyone who develops illness compatible with COVID-19 during the quarantine period should notify the school or school administration who will work with the local health department to arrange for testing.
6. Wear a mask: Modified quarantine students and staff should always wear a face-mask/face covering while in the school. When in their “quarantined room” and when they are socially distanced, they may remove their mask.
7. Physical separation: When able, modified quarantine students and staff should be physically separated from the general school population through groupings, classroom arrangements, and assigned seating as directed by school administration.
A. In the Jr/Sr high school, the students will be located in the auditorium. They will enter the building through the main entrance to do the temperature scan. In the Auditorium they will be able to social distance with the size of the room. (If discipline becomes a problem, the students will be sent home to complete their quarantine).
B. In the grade school, if a class is quarantined, they will enter the door closest to their classroom and the schedule for that room will be adjusted to make sure that the class will not interact with the other students. If we have a significant number of students quarantined, we will look for an alternate classroom or if needed an alternate site to hold class for the students that are quarantined. The school will provide adult supervision for the alternate site. (If discipline becomes a problem, the students will be sent home to complete their quarantine).
8. Bathrooms: Modified quarantine students and staff may be directed to a designated bathroom by staff. As this is often not feasible, school staff will be increasing cleaning times and all students and staff are encouraged to continue good hand washing and appropriate hygiene.
9. It would also be advised to avoid contact with family members or others who are vulnerable to serious disease such as the elderly or immunocompromised.
REQUIREMENTS FOR THE MODIFIED QUARANTINE:
STUDENTS MUST BRING THEIR MASK-IF THE STUDENT DOES NOT HAVE A SCHOOL ISSUED MASK, THEY MUST PROVIDE THEIR OWN MASK.
STUDENTS MUST BRING THEIR COMPUTER AND ALL BOOKS TO THE QUARANTINE ROOM.
STUDENTS WILL NOT BE ALLOWED TO GO TO THEIR LOCKERS-BOOKS WILL BE KEPT IN THE QUARANTINE ROOM OR ALLOWED TO TAKE THEM HOME.
STUDENTS MUST BRING HEADPHONES OR EARBUDS.
Due to the recent increase in the number of COVID cases in Graham County and at USD 281, the school board has reviewed the Graham County USD 281 Crisis Mitigation: COVID-19 Exposure Prevention, Preparedness, and Response Plan. They have made a change in the document. Masks are now required to be worn at school at all times when social distancing can not be maintained. The BOE made this change while working with the Graham County Health department so we could keep students in school. This change MAY reduce the number of days a student is quarantined and the location where the student is quarantined.
This means that masks are to be worn at all times in the hallways, classrooms, bathrooms, locker rooms and anywhere that students are not able to social distance. If students are able to maintain the social distance of six feet, then the students may remove their masks, but if they can not maintain social distance, they must put their mask back on.
Students will be able to remove their masks during the eating time at lunch , but will be required to put their masks back on when not eating. The students will be spaced out as much as possible during the eating time at lunch.
We have been working with the Graham County Health Department which has allowed us to use a modified quarantine policy at the Graham County Health Department’s discretion. In some cases, this policy will allow students to attend school while under quarantine. There are some qualifications to meet the modified quarantine.
Qualifications: To qualify for the modified quarantine, a student must be exposed during school or during a school activity. Contacts from non-school activities including household contacts are not eligible for modified quarantine. Positive cases also do not qualify.
REQUIREMENTS FOR THE MODIFIED QUARANTINE:
STUDENTS MUST BRING AND WEAR THEIR MASK-IF THE STUDENT DOES NOT HAVE A SCHOOL ISSUED MASK, THEY MUST PROVIDE THEIR OWN MASK.
STUDENTS MUST BRING THEIR COMPUTER AND ALL BOOKS TO THE QUARANTINE ROOM.
STUDENTS WILL NOT BE ALLOWED TO GO TO THEIR LOCKERS-BOOKS WILL BE KEPT IN THE QUARANTINE ROOM AND/OR TAKEN HOME.
STUDENTS MUST BRING HEADPHONES OR EARBUDS TO BE USED IN THE QUARANTINE ROOM.
More information about the modified quarantine will be located on the web page and live feed.
Thank you for allowing us to work with your children.
Graham County USD 281
The Jr. High Basketball games scheduled for tonight, November 3, have been cancelled. #WeAreRingnecks