Color-Coded Masking Protocol; Modified Quarantine

Board of Education Votes in Favor of Color-Coded Masking Protocol; Adopts Test-Out Modified Quarantine
Posted on 09/22/2021
SDOW LogoThe School District of Washington’s Board of Education held a special meeting on Monday evening, September 13, at the Technology and Learning Center.

Modified quarantine, COVID data discussion and COVID discussion were the items on the agenda.

COVID Discussion

The Board voted in favor that beginning on Monday, September 20, the District will follow a color-coded protocol chart that will keep masks optional for buildings in the district that are not being overwhelmed by positive cases and quarantines, but also make masks required for staff and students during a period of 14 days for buildings that have a high percentage of positive cases and quarantines. The ultimate goal is to continue with in-person learning.

Click here for the color-coded protocol chart the District will follow.

The District will start to carefully review when a school's daily absences begin to reach 15-18 percent. At that time, the school will be notified that COVID-related absences are on the rise and there is a possibility that the school may be moving to a Yellow masking status for a 14-day timeframe.

As the District continues to watch the exposure and quarantine rates at the building, it will be taken into account possible school spread, classrooms, and groups of students that may be returning from quarantine as well as other factors.

If the building reaches 18-25 percent of COVID-related exposures, communication will occur with the building that the school will be moving into Yellow masking status for 14 days.

By having the flexibility to move to Yellow status by building, the SDOW will be able to decrease spread and the need to have students quarantine since quarantines are not required for proper mask to mask exposures. The positive individual would still be in isolation, and the SDOW would still alert those that would be close contact; however, the number of quarantined students will decrease.

By pausing the quarantines, the SDOW is able to keep students in-person learning and not move into the next color phase.

For the week of September 6-10, for example, Marthasville and Washington West both fell into that 18-25 percent absent range.

Modified Quarantine

The Board voted in favor to adopt a test-out modified quarantine effective on Monday, September 20, which means a quarantined individual can return to school on the eighth day if they receive a negative test on days five, six or seven.

The previous length for quarantined individuals was 10 days.

The test cannot be a home test. It must be a PCR or Antigen test. Documentation of the negative test must be presented by the individual upon their return to school.

Monitoring should continue throughout the full 14 days and if a symptom develops, the individual must immediately isolate and contact a public health authority or healthcare provider.

This option also allows students to participate in extra-curricular activities.

The SDOW has already received word that Missouri is experiencing constrained supplies of the Antigen tests, so the District will not be able to complete the “test out” tests to ensure there is a good supply of tests for daily testing needs. However, there are Antigen tests available throughout the area.

COVID Data Discussion

Superintendent Dr. Jennifer Kephart gave a detailed look at COVID Data involving the School District of Washington, and also provided survey results from both staff and parents.

To watch the COVID data presentation, click here for the livestream from the meeting. Dr. Kephart’s presentation begins at the 9:25 mark of the meeting.

Color Coded Masking Protocol