COVID Testing Update 1/18/22

Red Raider Community:

I wanted to take a moment to explain the multiple changes to the guidance regarding COVID positive cases and isolation. The most important change of note is that we are no longer doing Test to Stay (TTS) because there is no longer a requirement for contact tracing per NYS guidance. Our entire energy will now be focused on symptomatic students.

We are going to continue testing symptomatic students who become sick during the school day. If your child is sick prior to the start of the school day, regardless of whether or not there is a known exposure to COVID-19, it is very important that students who are sick do not attend school. We will be supplying test kits for students requiring tests (as supplies last). Below are the most up to date recommendations from the NYS Department of Health:
If a student has COVID-19 symptoms:

  • Regardless of vaccination status, if a student has COVID-19 symptoms they must have a lab negative NAAT, lab antigen test, or two negative Over-the-Counter (i.e., at-home or take-home) antigen tests taken 36 hours apart, in order to return to school. 
  • If parents/guardians are presenting the district with two negative Over-the-Counter antigen tests, they must also present the attached attestation form signed by a parent or guardian. 
  • In addition to a negative test result(s), students must be well enough to:
    • Participate in school; 
    • Not have rhinorrhea (runny nose) or cough severe enough to make mask wearing difficult or unhygienic; 
    • Be fever-free for 24 hours without use of fever-reducing medications; and
    • Meet other school or district requirements to return to school after a non-COVID illness. 

If a student tests positive for COVID-19:

  • Regardless of vaccination status, if a student tests positive for COVID-19 they must isolate for a full five days. Students may return to school after day five if they are asymptomatic or if symptoms are resolving. 
    • For example:
      • Day 0: Symptom onset or tested positive.
      • Day 1: Stay home
      • Day 2: Stay home
      • Day 3: Stay home
      • Day 4: Stay home
      • Day 5: Stay home
      • Day 6: Return to school if asymptomatic, or if symptoms are resolving
  • Please also note:
    • There is no exemption to the testing requirement for symptomatic students. 
    • Students with symptoms that are attributable to pre-existing medical conditions (e.g., migraines, allergies) and are not new or worsening do not require school exclusion or testing. 
    • If a healthcare provider makes a diagnosis of a confirmed non-COVID-19 acute illness (e.g., laboratory-confirmed influenza or strep throat) AND COVID-19 is not suspected, then a note signed by the healthcare provider explaining the alternate diagnosis may be provided to allow a student, teacher, or staff member to participate in school without COVID-19 testing. 

Although there is no longer formal contact tracing, we will continue our due diligence with regard to notifying impacted staff and families if we learn about a positive case. In some situations, this will involve a general notification alerting staff and families that there was a positive case in a particular class or school. This type of notification will ask staff and families to monitor for symptoms, but will not necessarily result in anyone being identified as a close contact and excluded from school. Each situation will be unique to itself.

We realize this is a lot of information, we continue to rely on our families as partners. Our main priority as a school district is to continue to provide in person instruction, while keeping all students and staff members healthy and safe.

My best,

Attestation Form