Update to COVID Mitigations | Actualización de mitigaciones de COVID

  • School District 15

    Date: August 11, 2022

    RE: COVID Update for the 2022-23 School Year

    As part of our preparations for the start of the 2022-23 school year, we want to update families on COVID-19 safety mitigation protocols we will use to begin the school year. Over the summer, the Illinois Department of Public Health and the Illinois State Board of Education adopted the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Guidance for K-12 Schools. This guidance contains several updated practices from what we had in place at the end of the 2021-22 school year.

    COVID Updates

    • As we did at the end of last year, when community transmission is high, masks are recommended but not required.

    • Students and staff may choose to wear masks throughout the school day.

    • Students and staff members who test positive for COVID are asked to report the positive cases to their building nurse. Nurses will follow up by providing guidance regarding the dates of return to school and required masking.

    • Those who test positive will continue to isolate for five days following the onset of CDC-listed COVID symptoms or from their test date (if symptom-free).

    • They are able to return to school on day 6, fully and consistently masking for an additional 5 days or isolate at home for a full ten days.

    • We will not provide remote access to classrooms. Instead, teachers will provide work for students as they do for any other absence.
      (When students are absent for acceptable reasons, make-up work will be allowed. Students are responsible for obtaining and completing missing assignments or parents may contact their child’s teacher directly regarding homework assignments. After returning to school, students will have one day to make up homework for each day absent. Again, teachers are not required to provide homework assignments prior to the child leaving for vacation or in advance of an absence.)

    • SHIELD Testing will not take place at the ESC or schools this year. Symptomatic staff members and families can obtain a COVID at their doctor’s office.

    • Free at-home tests are available through USPS. You can order the tests here or by calling (800) 232-0233.

    • The COVID dashboard will remain on hiatus.

    • D15 is still required to report positive COVID cases to CCDPH.

    • Nurses will continue to instruct grades 1-3 on proper hand washing and respiratory etiquette.

    • Rooms will be cleaned daily. Rooms will be disinfected if a positive COVID case is reported.

    • A letter will be sent to staff and parents to inform them of a positive case(s) in the building.

    Additional Updates

    • We will be returning to pre-COVID classroom seating arrangements and within the lunchroom.

      • Students who are positive during their 6-10 days following onset will be provided with a location at least six feet from others during lunch.

    • We are no longer providing a Remote Learning Option per ISBE mandate that schools return to full in-person learning.

    • If a sensitive medical circumstance emerges prompting a parent to contact you about homebound tutoring accommodations, please contact Ann Scully in our Student Services Department. As we have previously communicated to parents, we will meet with the family to discuss appropriate accommodations based on (doctor documented) medical necessity reviewed by our certified school nurses. These accommodations will be considered and formalized through either the IEP or 504 depending on the circumstances.

    Staff Absence Due to COVID

    • Per the Governor’s Executive Order (each order can be reissued for a one month increment) allow staff required to isolate due to testing positive for COVID to do so without using their sick days. To qualify for this benefit, the employee must submit proof of a positive COVID test, which includes their name, date of the test, and the results.  This documentation MUST be from a medical provider - home tests can NOT be accepted.  Please submit this to Jamie Serna in Human Resources.

    Other Illnesses (as outlined within the Parent-Student Handbook)

    • Staff and students are still required to stay home when they are ill. Individuals may return to school upon resolution of symptoms.

    • Monkeypox is spread by close physical contact, direct contact with fluid from lesions, and respiratory secretions. At this point, no cases in children have been identified in Illinois. The Health Services Department will receive additional training related to this new health issue.