Dear RSU 19 Families,
This information is to update our families to changes to the SOP for COVID protocols
The Maine CDC and Department of Education have made important changes to the Standard Operating Procedures that we will follow, for positive cases of COVID 19 and close contacts.
The isolation period for a positive case has been reduced to 5 days beginning with the onset of symptoms or a positive test. Students, teachers and staff may return to school if they are asymptomatic or when symptoms have resolved. The RSU will no longer be contact tracing. It is very likely that students/staff will be in close contact with others who have COVID 19, at school or in the community. These students/staff may continue to attend school and school based activities if one of the following conditions apply.
1. The close contact is 18 or older and has received all recommended vaccine doses, including boosters and additional primary shots for some immunocompromised people; or
2. The close contact is 5-17 years and completed the primary series of COVID-19 vaccines; or
3. The close contact had COVID-19 within the last 90 days; or
4. The close contact (staff or student) participates in school pooled testing; or
5. The school consistently observes and enforces a universal masking policy for all teachers, students, staff, and visitors
If students or staff only fall within exceptions 4 and 5 they must quarantine in the community per CDC guidelines.
If an unvaccinated individual is living in a household with a positive COVID case and has continuous exposure they should test on day five of the ongoing exposure. Families should strongly consider keeping children home (5) days for an ongoing exposure.
Please keep your child home if they are sick, please refer to our weekly letter for common symptoms as new symptoms have developed including a scratchy throat. When symptoms develop at school, the Nurse will get your permission prior to testing your child. If your child has symptoms, they are required to stay home until they are well. If they test negative they may return to school after symptoms have resolved or lessened. Contact your school nurse with any questions you may have.
Individuals who test positive for COVID 19 are required to isolate for 5 days from the onset of symptoms or a positive test. The day they begin to have symptoms or have tested positive is counted as DAY ZERO. They may return to school on DAY 6 if they are asymptomatic or symptoms have resolved. Depending on the health of the individual the isolation period may extend beyond 5 days.
The rise in case numbers is putting strains on our health care system, schools and other essential services that we all depend on. It is as important as ever that we all practice the common sense safety measures to prevent the spread of COVID 19.