Nov. 16, 2020 – COVID-19 Guidance Update

Posted by Dr. Elizabeth Keenan on 11/16/2020

As we shared last week, Governor Parson announced revised guidance for quarantining students or staff members who are exposed to COVID-19. The new guidance, which runs counter to current CDC guidelines, reflects a change in determining close contacts and assessing exposure in school settings. It would be a departure from the protocols we, and our partners at the St. Louis County Department of Health (DOH), have been following to ensure the health and safety of our learning community. After evaluating the new guidance, the DOH has indicated that the current process and protocols for school-related exposure WILL NOT CHANGE. SSD will continue to follow the guidance from the DOH and evaluate school-related exposures to COVID-19 on a case-by-case basis and make decisions that we feel are necessary to ensure the health and safety of our learning community.

Now that many SSD students have returned to in-person learning, we need to have the flexibility to mitigate risk in a way that will sustain in-person learning over time. Quarantines based on exposure, which is still the current CDC recommendation, are an important part of that strategy even though they result in short-term learning/working from home. We believe our current practices related to exposure and quarantine are a critical piece in keeping the virus out of our schools, and we will continue to support our students and staff members who need to quarantine as a result of exposure at school. Navigating this pandemic is a challenge for everyone. Taking care of our students and staff is a top priority, and we will maintain our current approach as we believe it’s an important part of keeping them healthy and safe.