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PHPS Covid-19 Updates

PHPS COVID-19 Updates

Updated January 2021

Masks:

It is due to the high transmissibility of the omicron variant of Covid-19, that we will be asking you to once again send your child to school in a well-fitting mask for the next two weeks starting on Wednesday, January 5th.  Students and teachers will be asked to wear a mask at school, regardless of vaccination status. We will ask all visitors to wear a mask as well.

Room Capacities and Social Distancing:

Given our class sizes and room dimensions, we can accommodate the minimum of 3 feet distance in between our students in the classrooms, as recommended by the CDC K-12 schools guidelines.

Socialization is crucial for our students, so we will be allowing gatherings in communal spaces this year, such as the gym before school, the lunchroom, and the Sanctuary for chapel. We have expanded gathering spaces so they are large enough to allow for distancing greater than the recommended 3 feet in these areas.  Students will wear masks when in groups, except when eating and when outdoors.

We will also be allowing after-school activities which will involve some mixing of students in different grades.  Please keep this in mind as you sign up for these voluntary activities.

Cleaning/Sanitizing/Ventilation:

  • We will continue our daily cleaning protocols from last year and require students to sanitize and wash their hands throughout the day.
  • All classrooms have room filters that will remain in use this year. We also encourage teachers to open windows to allow additional ventilation when it is safe to do so.
  • In addition, we will use outside spaces when appropriate-for lunch or for instructional time.

Contact Tracing:

Due to the scope and the rate of transmission of the Omicron variant, along with varying other factors, determining close contacts of students is difficult and often ineffective. It is likely that when in any indoor setting, a person may be in contact with an asymptomatic Covid positive person. Therefore, we are asking that you continue to monitor your own child and keep him/her home upon noticing symptoms, testing positive, or upon exposure to a Covid positive individual. 

Test to Stay:

The CDC recommends a "test to stay" option for unvaccinated students to help reduce the number of days a student is out of the classroom if exposed to Covid.  Unvaccinated students may stay in school as long as they are asymptomatic and receive two negative tests within a 7-day period. This testing can take place at school as we have a limited number of tests, or at an off-campus testing facility that you choose.  Your permission will be required for us to conduct a test at school. You should receive an email from CrisisGo, our Covid test supplier to give PHPS written consent to test your child. Again, this is optional and only offered to reduce the quarantine period in the case of exposure. Without the “test to stay” option, unvaccinated students are required to quarantine for at least 7 days, returning to school with a negative PCR test on day 8. Please refer to the link provided for more detailed quarantining and isolation guidance for schools.  

We follow CDC guidance for isolating and quarantining students and teachers who have been exposed to Covid-19, have symptoms of Covid-19, or have received a positive Covid-19 test.  The CDC guidance for K-12 schools can be found here: CDC Covid School Guidelines

Screening:

Please conduct daily screenings for your child at home. If your child shows signs of illness, please keep him/her home from school and contact Robyn Poole in the front office.

If your child has been in close contact with a person who has tested positive for Covid, please keep him/her home and contact Robyn Poole rpoole@phps.org. If necessary, we will communicate quarantine requirements to you at that time. We will strictly follow CDC guidelines for quarantining.

Remote Learning:

We will not be offering the option of remote learning for students this year. However, if your child must be home due to a need to quarantine or isolate for more than 4 days, we will provide remote learning opportunities for him/her.

Visiting School:

  • We welcome parents back in our building for scheduled activities and meetings.
  • We will not be asking visitors, including parents, to show vaccine status.
  • We are eager to have parents volunteer for school activities again this year and feel that wearing a mask and being vaccinated are the safest way to allow these important volunteer opportunities that involve close contacts with students to take place this year.  
  • We will still have the dropbox by the front door, so you may drop a forgotten lunch or other item or pick up items left by the teacher for you.
  • If you are picking up your student early or dropping your student off late, please ring the bell at the front door, and Robyn at the front desk will help get your child in the right place or bring your child to you.

Do not send your child if he/she is showing signs of any illness. Symptoms of Covid-19 include:

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

Do not send your child to school if he/she has been in close contact with someone who has received a lab-confirmed positive Covid test. 

If your child has been exposed to Covid or is having symptoms, please call or email Robyn Poole at rpoole@phps.org or 214-368-3886. Each case is unique, so Robyn will walk you through the process and let you know if your child needs to quarantine and when he/she can return to school.