As sent via Skyward:
Hello ASA Families,
We learned this morning of a positive covid case in the 5th grade. Unfortunately, due to our class setup that means staff for 5/6 and specials are all potentially close contacts. If you are the parent of a 5th or 6th grade student, please do not send them to school today. We will be calling parents to pickup students for 5th and 6th grade today. We apologize for the late notice, the office only found out about this ourselves this morning.
7th and 8th grade is unaffected by this but because of staffing, ASA Middle School will have to go to distance learning for the next two weeks Mar 1-12th. 7th and 8th grade will be accommodated in classrooms for today (Fri) but will also be joining the distance learning for the same two weeks. We are taking this measure to prevent further outbreak and potentially longer distance learning periods if we can nip this in the bud right away. The close contact guidance from MDH is as follows:
The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH), in partnership with ASA, has identified your child, in the 5th grade, as a close contact of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. Your child had close contact at the ASA Middle School on Feb 23 or 24.
[Option 1 (14 days)] As a close contact, the safest option is for your child to stay home from school and not take part in any activities/sports for 14 days, which is Feb 27-March 12. Your child can return on March 22 as long as they do not develop symptoms during this time and other requirements for ending quarantine are met. See Close Contacts and Tracing (www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/close.html). Testing is recommended at least five days after the last time your child was in close to the person with COVID-19. If they get tested too soon, the test may not be able to detect the virus. However, testing does not shorten the quarantine period, even with a negative test result. Other children living in your home, if not named above, can continue to go to child care, school, and other community activities.
[Option 2 (10 days)] As a close contact, your child will need to stay home from school and not take part in any activities/sports for 10 days, which is Feb 27-March 12. Your child can return on March 22 as long as they do not develop symptoms during this time and other requirements for ending quarantine are met. See Close Contacts and Tracing (www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/close.html). Testing is recommended at least five days after the last time your child was close to the person with COVID-19. If they get tested too soon, the test may not be able to detect the virus. However, testing does not shorten the quarantine period, even with a negative test result. Other children living in your home, if not named above, can continue to go to child care, school, and other community activities.
- Fever of 100.4
- New cough or a cough that gets worse
- Difficulty/hard time breathing
- New loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
- Nasal congestion/stuffy or runny nose
- Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
- Muscle pain
- Extreme fatigue/feeling very tired
- Severe/very bad headache
Please talk to your doctor or other health care provider about getting your child tested, or visit Find Testing Locations (https://mn.gov/covid19/get-tested/testing-locations/index.jsp).
- If your child’s test result is negative during the quarantine period but they are experiencing symptoms of sickness, they still need to stay home until their symptoms are improved and they are fever free for 24 hours. People who have close contact with someone who has the virus may still get sick up to 14 days later.
- If your child’s test result is positive, notify [insert designated school/child care/youth program name and phone number] as soon as possible. A positive test means your child may need to stay at home longer than 14 days. People who test positive can give the virus to others. Your child needs to stay at home, in one room and away from others as much as possible for at least 10 days from the date their symptoms started, or from the date they were tested if they do not have symptoms, and until they feel better. The 10 days starts when the symptoms begin. If your child starts to have ANY of the symptoms above, have them stay home, in one room of the house and away from others right away, and as much as possible
- If your child develops symptoms or tests positive for COVID-19, everyone who lives in the house needs to stay home for at least 14 days. The 14 days start on the day they are able to stay separated from the child who has symptoms or has tested positive for COVID-19. People who cannot stay separated from the child will need to stay home 14 days after the child who is positive finishes their 10-day isolation. After 10 days, it is thought that people are no longer able to spread the virus to others. This could mean staying home longer than 14 days.
The following information may help families:
- Close Contacts and Tracing: COVID-19 (www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/close.html)
- Quarantine Guidance for COVID-19 (www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/quarguide.pdf)
- Home Screening Tool for COVID-19 Symptoms (www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/schools/homescreen.pdf)
- COVID-19 Attendance Guide for Parents and Families (www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/schools/attendance.pdf)
We are sorry for the problems this may cause your family. We want to keep children in child care/school as much as we can, and as safely as we can. To stop outbreaks and to keep child care/schools open, we need to do everything we can to stop community spread of COVID-19.
We learn more all the time about how COVID-19 spreads. We now know the virus spreads easier when people share a small space, and the risk of spreading increases the longer people share that space. Face coverings help us protect each other, but they are just one way we can try to stop the spread of COVID-19. Keeping close contacts of someone with COVID-19 away from healthy people is another important way to stop the spread.
Resources that you may find helpful:
- What to Do if You Have Had Close Contact With a Person With COVID-19 (www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/contact.pdf)
- Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) (www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/index.html)
- CDC: Coronavirus Disease 2019 (www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html)
Resources related to employment concerns:
- Families First Coronavirus Response Act: Employee Paid Leave Rights (www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/pandemic/ffcra-employee-paid-leave)
- Worker protections related to COVID-19 (www.dli.mn.gov/sites/default/files/pdf/MN_worker_protections_related_to_COVID_19.pdf)
- Minnesota Statutes section 144.4196 (www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/cite/144.4196)
Employers should be aware that Minnesota state law has employment protections for people in isolation and quarantine for public health purposes.
If you have questions, contact the first office.
Thank you for helping to keep our school community safe.
Kevin Fitton – Executive Director