School Community Health Update

SCHOOL COMMUNITY HEALTH UPDATE: 01/14/22

Schools received updated, detailed isolation & quarantine guidance from NYSDOH last night.  Important points are listed below, along with links to the NYSDOH guidance and FAQs.  

We understand that the frequent changes may generate confusion, if not frustration, though we welcome the opportunity to keep students and staff in-person.  In the meantime, if you have any questions regarding COVID-19, please contact our School Nurse’s Office (315-344-2414 x28008).

- The 10- to 5-day conditional reductions in quarantine and isolation are summarized in this useful table.  School medical staff will communicate with families of students in isolation during days 0-5 to review student health and the conditions for their return.

- If your child tests positive for COVID-19, please continue to notify the School Nurse’s Office.  Return to Play protocols for student-athletes are being simplified and shortened.  A revised form will soon be available.

- There is a marked shift in emphasis from contact tracing to testing and vaccination.  If your child is a direct contact or displays symptoms of COVID-19, please contact the School Nurse’s Office.  We currently have antigen tests available and expect ongoing shipments.  Our goal is to make testing available upon request to any student with symptoms, or that had recent direct contact with a positive.

- If your child is not vaccinated or boosted, you are encouraged to visit the St. Lawrence County Public Health website to schedule a vaccination or booster.  Please take note that the new guidance prohibits vaccinated, direct contacts that are not boosted, but eligible for a booster, from participating in afterschool activities/extracurriculars during days 0-5.  A request to allow a grace period on the implementation of this restriction has been made, though the future is not clear.  In the interim, we encourage all eligible students to receive a vaccination booster as soon as possible.

- As we receive additional information, we hope to be able to implement a Test To Stay (TTS) program in the near future to keep unvaccinated direct contacts (often our youngest learners) in school each day.  In anticipation, this draft policy #5693 Test to Stay, is made available for public review, as it will be integrated into our Return to School document prior to any TTS program.  Please contact the district office if you have feedback regarding this amendment.

Useful links:

NYSDOH Guidance: New York State’s Approach to Isolation and Quarantine 

NYSDOH FAQs for Schools