COVID-19 Support

Holiday Weekend Travel Guidance October 8, 2021

As of March 19, 2021, Governor Lamont modified the state’s domestic travel guidance and removed the mandatory quarantine for domestic travel. While quarantine is not mandated, it is still highly recommended by the Department of Public Health, and the CDC to protect the safety of our students and community. Plainfield Schools asks anyone traveling out of state domestically to monitor symptoms for 10 days upon return from your travel.  Non vaccinated individuals engaging in domestic travel are asked to demonstrate a negative COVID-19 test or quarantine for ten days before returning to in-person instruction. All individuals engaging in international travel must follow the State of Connecticut and CDC guidelines on international travel, which include mandatory testing and quarantine.  The CDC guidelines for international travel can be found here. Questions on testing and travel should be directed to your school’s principal and nurse. 
A Message to Families

In Plainfield our children deserve our best effort to sustain their learning and progress though this health crisis and beyond. Our schools need to remain a safe place to learn. This will take everyone’s support and effort. We have guidance from the State to provide the necessary elements of a safe environment.

A successful 2021 will only be possible with family and community support. Families are a key factor in supervising the health of their children; providing face masks; keeping children home if illness symptoms are present; and, supporting and encouraging their children to accept and cooperate with the safety rules of schools.

Please feel free to reach our to our offices at 860-564-6403 with any questions.  We look forward to a safe and successful 2021.


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Weekly COVID Data Dashboard 2021-2022

In Plainfield, we strive to be transparent as communicate our COVID response with our community.  As part of this transparency, we share our Covid safety data publicly with the community. 

In response to spread, we will use multi-level approach of health and safety strategies to help protect our students and staff. This includes vaccination, wearing masks, keeping social distance, washing hands, and contact tracing.


covid weekly numbers

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Free School Meals for all Plainfield Children

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has extended approval for school districts to continue providing free meals to all children 18 years and under during the 2021-2022 school year. Just like last year, all student meals will be available at no charge. There is no action required (no registration) to receive the free meals.

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The 3 W’s of success: Wear a face covering. 
Watch distancing. Wash hands.

Wear a face covering. Our schools, in compliance with the State of Connecticut and CDC guidance, will require face coverings that cover the mouth and nose for all students and staff, regardless of vaccination status. Students will supply their own face coverings. They will be available for those who forget. Arrangements will be made for parents if this presents a financial hardship. During outdoor activities/classes students will be able to remove their masks. Students will be given mask breaks throughout the day.

Watch distancing. We will maintain social distancing of 3 feet OR to the maximum extent possible in classrooms. We will position desks as far apart as possible. We will use additional lunch waves and alternative spaces to spread students out during lunchtime. Shared bathrooms will have limited capacity.

Wash hands. We will continue emphasizing frequent student and staff hand washing and sanitizing of hands. We will remind students of proper hand washing techniques. We will position hand sanitizer dispensers throughout the schools.

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Periodic Review of Plan

LEAs are required to periodically review and, as appropriate, revise their Safe Return to In-Person Instruction and Continuity of Services Plan at least every six months through September 30, 2023. Each review must include seeking public comment on the plan and developing the plan after considering the public comment. Below are the dates that LEAs must submit a refreshed or updated plan to CSDE via eGMS. 

Review/revisit Dates: 

• June 23, 2021 

• December 23, 2021 

• June 23, 2022 

• December 23, 2022 

TRANSPORTATION

At this time, all public transportation, including school transportation is operating under a DPH and CDC mandate that requires the use of face masks

WILL MY SON OR DAUGHTER NEED TO WEAR A MASK?

At this time, all public transportation is operating under a CDC mandate that all individuals wear a mask on any public transportation, including school buses.

 

HOW WILL YOU IMPROVE VENTILATION ON A SCHOOL BUS?

Under recommendation from DPH and CDC, all buses will have every window opened a minimum of two inches. This will allow consistent outside air to flow into and out of the bus.

WILL SCHOOL BUSES BE FULL THIS YEAR?

We will be operating our school buses at a reduced capacity. This reduction will not be as significant as last school year, but we will find effective strategies on the bus to maximum spacing and distance.

 

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DISTANCING AND COHORTING

According to the CDC and DPH, “Because of the importance of in-person learning, schools should implement physical distancing to the extent possible within their structures but should not exclude students from in-person learning to keep a minimum distance requirement.”

WHEN IS SOCIAL DISTANCING IMPORTANT TO MAINTAIN?

Guidelines for social distancing have been updated for the current school year. Research has shown that distancing is still a critical mitigation strategy, but, social distancing, when possible, should not impact the instructional environment and learning opportunities for students. However, distancing of at least 3 feet distance will be implemented in a majority of school settings.

WHEN IS COHORTING IMPORTANT TO MAINTAIN?

Because Plainfield Public Schools will work to avoid whole classroom quarantine, all classrooms from K-12 will be required to maintain a classroom seating chart for all periods, specials and lunchroom activities. This will allow us to make informed contact tracing decisions on whom might be impacted by a positive case.

WHY IS COHORTING STILL NEEDED IN THE CLASSROOM LOCATIONS?

Plainfield will follow current CDC and DPH guidance and maintain three (3) feet distant in most classroom, while increasing the distance (six feet) during activities where masks are unable to be utilized. Plainfield will require each classroom to maintain a bi-weekly seating chart and small group chart for the purposes of contact tracing within the classroom. Because quarantine guidelines are linked to distance, it is essential that each school maintain bi-weekly seating and small group charts in the event that quarantine guidelines need to be implemented.

 

 

 

CONTACT TRACING and QUARANTINE GUIDELINES

According to the CDC and DPH, “Schools should continue to practice contact tracing procedures.This allows identifying which students, teachers, and staff with positive COVID-19 test results should isolate, and which close contacts should quarantine.”

WILL MY CHILD BE QUARANTINED THIS YEAR?

Under current DPH and CDC guidance, the quarantine guidelines have changed for the upcoming school year. The three main factors that will impact quarantine of student and staff are: vaccination status, mask use and distance from positive case.

 

WILL I NEED TO QUARANTINE IF I AM FULLY VACCINATED?

Our main goal is to have every student in school every day. We want to follow the CDC guidelines to mitigate any unnecessary quarantine periods for students. If an individual is fully vaccinated and is a primary contact to another vaccinated person who is positive AND asymptomatic that individual DOES NOT need to quarantine if they are also asymptomatic.

 

Individuals who were previously diagnosed with COVID-19 within the last three months of contact with a positive case, no longer need to quarantine in accordance with CDC guidelines. Documentation of positive COVID-19 diagnosis will be needed to confirm this exception.

HOW LONG IS A QUARANTINE PERIOD AND CAN I TEST OUT OF QUARANTINE?

Quarantine is 14 days from your last contact with a person who has COVID-19. If you are exposed to someone positive in the same home, your quarantine period does not begin until 14 days of the positive cases first diagnosis. A student exposed to COVID-19 in the home, may need to quarantine longer than 14 days dependent upon testing.

 

An individual can take a COVID test, 5 days AFTER last known exposure, to exit quarantine period early. This test must be a PCR test (antigen test will not be accepted) and documentation must be made available to the school nurse.

WHO IS CONSIDERED A PRIMARY CONTACT?

Someone who was within 6 feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period. An infected period can spread COVID-19 starting 2 days before a positive test is reported.

 

  • SCHOOL EXCEPTION TO ABOVE RULE: Exception:In theK–12 indoor classroomsetting, the close contact definitionexcludesstudentswho were within3 to 6 feet of an infected student (laboratory-confirmed or aclinically compatible illness) if both the infected student and the exposed student(s)correctly and consistentlywore well-fittingmasksthe entire time. This exception does not apply to teachers, staff, or other adults in the indoor classroom setting.

 

 

 

FACE MASKS

According to the CDC and DPH, “When teachers, staff, and students consistently and correctly wear a mask, they protect others as well as themselves.”

WILL MASKS BE REQUIRED IN THE SCHOOL SETTING?

Currently, all public and non-public schools are operating under an Executive Order 13A which does not expire until September 30th. In this order masks are required, regardless of vaccination status, in schools. If current CTDPH guidance and Executive Order remains unchanged, masks will remain mandatory inside school buildings for all students, staff and visitors regardless of vaccination status.

WILL MY SON OR DAUGHTER HAVE MASK BREAKS?

We believe in the importance of student to student interactions and meaningful connections. We will make mask breaks a requirement throughout the school day and increase our opportunities for outside areas to be utilized during the day.

WHAT HAPPENS IF I CAN’T WEAR A MASK?

Plainfield has been successful in working with individuals and families who present documented medical reasons and/or disability reasons that impact the use of masks. We will, in accordance with CDC guidance and Plainfield Board of Education Face Mask Policy, continue to work with these cases to find appropriate and reasonable accommodations.

 

The district will make individual decisions for students with a disability-related exemption from wearing a face covering. The district will work with the PPT team in a collaborative manner to determine the appropriate steps for the student.

 

HOW WILL THE USE OF A MASK REDUCE A QUARANTINE PERIOD?

We believe all of our students need to be in school every day. Current CDC guidelines on quarantine restrictions are directly tied to the use of face masks.

 

 

 

 

VACCINATION

According to CDC and DPH, “COVID-19 vaccination among all eligible students as well as teachers, staff, and household members is the most critical strategy to help schools safely resume full operations.”

WHY ARE VACCINES IMPORTANT?

Vaccines are safe and the number one mitigation strategy we have in keeping our community healthy and schools open. Quarantine guidelines are currently based on vaccination status.

WHO IS ELIGIBLE?

All individuals 12 years of age and older are eligible for a vaccine. Some vaccines are only approved for individuals 18 years of age and older.

HOW WILL MY VACCINATION STATUS IMPACT QUARANTINE?

Fully vaccination status is a critical mitigation strategy and determining factor in quarantine, testing and travel guidelines. Plainfield Public Schools does not require the COVID vaccine for attendance and enrollment in our school system.

 

We have the legal authority to ask the vaccination status of our employees and students and ask for vaccination documentation. In the event, of a potential quarantine, the school nurse will ask for vaccination status and proof. If documentation is unable to be provided or an individual is not vaccinated, then a student or staff will be subject to CDC and DPH quarantine guidelines, regardless of face mask usage. Appendix A

 

School Nurses will be responsible for inquiring and collecting vaccination status information and documentation. Asking for this information DOES NOT violate an individual’s HIPPA or FERPA rights and protections. However, once the documentation is collected and filed in the child’s medical record, this becomes part of the student’s education record and protected under FERPA.

 

HOW TO SCHEDULE A VACCINE?

Please visit the CT.GOV Vaccine Portal for more information


 

VENTILATION

According to the CDC and DPH, “Much has been learned in the past year and a half about COVID-19. This virus primarily transmit through airborne particles and surface to surface/person spread is highly rare and unlikely.”

WHY IS IMPROVED VENTILATION IMPORTANT?

In compliance withDPH Guidance for the Cleaning and Disinfection of Schools during the COVID-19 Pandemic, cleaning protocols in school have been greatly enhanced, and our custodians have been trained on cleaning in a pandemic. Where possible, we will enable no-touch usage of items such as doors, trashcans, and bathroom fixtures.

 

Plainfield will increase the distance between students during times of increase exasperation, such as; band and chorus. It is important to note that increased ventilation is one of many mitigation strategies, it will not solely prevent an individual from potentially needing to be quarantined.

 

WHAT AREAS OF THE SCHOOL DAY WILL WE WORK TO INCREASE VENTILATION?

Plainfield Public Schools will work to improve ventilation in areas where mask use will be limited or not able to be practiced. All cafeterias will have increased ventilation and filtrations. When possible, all air handler units will be operated to bring in as much outside air as possible.

 

Plainfield Public Schools has established a ventilation task force to begin the process of identifying our need areas and purchases improved ventilation measures for specific auxiliary spaces.

WILL DESK SHIELDS STILL BE REQUIRED?

In accordance with current research and DPH guidance, desk shields are no longer an effective mitigation strategy to continue to invest in. The benefit of continuing to implement this strategy does not outweigh the cost of having staff and students continue to be separated by a desk shield. Plainfield will discontinue the requirement to use desk shields.