Update on Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Update on Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Posted on 03/06/2020
handwashingAs of yesterday, March 5, there were two "presumptive positive" cases of Coronavirus (COVID-19) reported in Colorado. One of these cases involved an older, adult woman in Douglas County who was exposed during an international cruise. Click here to read the press release from Douglas County Government. According to the Tri-County Health Department, this individual is currently isolated at her home and has had limited public contact, including with her family members and healthcare providers. Tri-County Health Department staff is monitoring people who may have been exposed.

Reports are now coming in that two additional cases may have been confirmed in Denver.

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) continues to reiterate that risk of Coronavirus (COVID-19) is based on exposure. Like any other virus, no identity, community, ethnic, or racial group in Colorado is more at risk for getting or spreading COVID-19.

Understand the risk (source: CDPHE)

Under current circumstances, certain people will have an increased risk of infection:
  • People who have traveled to areas where widespread community transmission is occurring.
  • People who had direct close contact with someone who was confirmed to have COVID-19.
  • Not all coronaviruses are COVID-19. There are many other kinds of common coronaviruses currently circulating in Colorado and the U.S. that cause respiratory illness. There also are many other kinds of respiratory illnesses (such as colds and flu) circulating right now.
  • Reported illnesses have ranged from mild symptoms to severe illness and death for confirmed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases.
The Douglas County School District (DCSD) continues to be proactive in doing everything we can to minimize the risk of coronavirus in our schools.
  • Our building engineers are checking supplies of hand soap and hand sanitizer throughout our schools multiple times per day, and refilling as needed.
  • We are reiterating to our school leaders and teachers the importance of allowing students time to wash their hands with soap and water, especially before meals and snacks, and after recess.
  • DCSD continues stringent cleaning practices at all of our district schools and facilities.
  • DCSD continues to be in close contact with Tri-County Health Department and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE).
Will DCSD offer remote learning for students?

In the case of a major Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, DCSD would follow the Tri-County Health Department’s lead on any quarantines, closures, or other health measures needed. Our focus would first be on ensuring the safety of students and staff, and then on how education would continue, whether that be via electronic/remote systems, making up missed school days at a later date or other options that may arise as we work with the Colorado Department of Education.

What safeguards are in place to make sure people who travel over spring break are not returning to school with the virus?

As this is an evolving situation, we will continue to monitor the recommendations by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). DCSD students and staff returning from travel to areas with community spread of COVID-19 must follow the guidance provided by the CDC, based on the risk-assessment level for the area they have traveled to. More information about COVID-19 information for travel can be found on the CDC website.

How you can help (source: CDPHE)

Everyone has a part to play in slowing the spread of this virus.

Stay informed with current information from reliable sources

As new information emerges from across the globe, seeking and sharing accurate information during a time of heightened concern is one of the best things we can do.
Practice everyday healthy actions
There is no vaccine for COVID-19, but there are many actions you can take to protect yourself from getting COVID-19. These are the same actions that can protect you from getting any respiratory illness.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, use hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Stay home when you are sick, and keep your children at home when they are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with your elbow or sleeve. If you use a tissue, throw the tissue in the trash and wash your hands.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
We will continue to update families and staff as we learn more about the potential progression. As a community, we must work together for the safety and well-being of all in our DCSD family.

Sincerely,

Douglas County School District
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