Minimizing COVID Exposures in Schools

Minimizing COVID Exposures in Schools
Posted on 04/09/2021

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April 9, 2021

Dear DCSD Families,

We sincerely appreciate the flexibility of our DCSD families and staff this year as we navigated the COVID pandemic and moved throughout different learning platforms. We are incredibly grateful to finally have all grade levels back for full, in-person learning five days a week.

However, the COVID case numbers in our community are trending upwards once again. Recently, the Tri-County Health Department has directed some of our middle and high schools to transition to remote learning for 14 days. At this time, Tri-County Health may close a school if there are five or more classroom/cohort outbreaks in a 14-day period (in alignment with the CDPHE Criteria for School Closures).

We love having our students in classrooms and want to keep them in school for the remainder of the school year. We are also moving forward with plans to host school continuation ceremonies, graduations, proms, and other important milestone events that our students deserve.

Here are a few ways that you can help us make this a reality.

Get Your Student (ages 16 and older) on a List for the COVID Vaccine
The fastest way for us to circumvent future health department-directed transitions to remote learning (at the high school level) is for students (ages 16+) to begin accessing COVID vaccinations. This will also help students avoid quarantines, which is especially important for our high school seniors, so they don’t miss future milestone events or even graduation due to a quarantine.

Keep Students Home if Showing Even Minor Symptoms of Illness

    PLEASE pay very close attention to individual health and any COVID-related symptoms. If your student is experiencing any health symptoms, please keep them home. Once symptom-free for 48 hours, students can get back to school. We prefer to be overly cautious for a day or two rather than having in-school exposures that may cost numerous kids valuable days of in-person learning or the ability to attend important milestone events such as proms, continuation ceremonies, and graduations due to a quarantine.
      PLEASE NOTE: We are seeing very mild COVID symptoms in most students who test positive. PLEASE do not dismiss mild symptoms as allergies or general fatigue. If your student has ANY symptoms including fatigue that is more than usual for your child, headache, nausea, sore throat, runny nose, etc. keep them home and consider having your child tested for COVID-19. More obvious symptoms are loss of taste and smell, cough, and congestion. Please see the DCSD Health and Safety Mitigations page for more specific information.

Quarantine Information:

  • Quarantine periods begin the day AFTER exposure. We work to get quarantine emails and phone calls out to families as soon as possible upon learning of an exposure in a school.
  • If your student is quarantined, please keep them quarantined. This means students should not be visiting with friends and family outside of your home, and they should not be playing sports or any other organized activities. We know this can be difficult for everyone as kids want to move and be free, however, we must do our best to keep everyone safe.
  • We are incredibly thankful to the many DCSD staff who have received the COVID vaccine. Staff that are past the two-week waiting period after their final vaccine dose do not need to quarantine in the case of an exposure. This has been incredibly helpful in keeping students engaged in learning and reducing our need for substitutes.

    Thank you for your ongoing support. Together we can finish the 2020-2021 school year on a strong and positive note for each and every one of our students.

    Sincerely,

    Corey Wise
    Interim Superintendent
    Douglas County School District

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    In compliance with Titles VI & VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008, and Colorado law, the Douglas County School District RE-1 does not unlawfully discriminate against otherwise qualified students, employees, applicants for employment, or members of the public on the basis of disability, race, creed, color, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, religion, ancestry, or need for special education services. Discrimination against employees and applicants for employment based on age, genetic information, and conditions related to pregnancy or childbirth is also prohibited in accordance with state and/or federal law. Complaint procedures have been established for students, parents, employees, and members of the public. The School District’s Compliance Officer and Title IX Coordinator to address complaints alleging sexual harassment under Title IX is Catherine Franklin, Interim Compliance Officer, 620 Wilcox Street, Castle Rock, Colorado, complianceofficer@dcsdk12.org, 720-433-1285. Complaints regarding violations of Title VI, (race, national origin), Title IX (sex, gender), Section 504/ADA (handicap or disability), may be filed directly with the Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education, 1244 North Speer Blvd., Suite 310, Denver, CO 80204. Complaints regarding violations of Title VII (employment) and the ADEA (prohibiting age discrimination in employment) may be filed directly with the Federal Office of Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 303 E. 17th Ave., Suite 510, Denver, CO 80202, or the Colorado Civil Rights Commission, 1560 Broadway, Suite 1050, Denver, CO 80202.