Tiger Family Newsletter Sept. 2021

All the important deets to stay in the know!

May It Be of Benefit

Hello Families,

It's September, the month when fall officially begins! When I was in elementary school, we didn't begin the school year until after the Labor Day holiday, so it always feels a little weird to me when we return in August. Now, with cooler nights and mornings the leaves will turn and it will feel like we should be in school.

Let me just say, "Wow! This has NOT been the return to school that I had been imagining!" It's been a rough couple of weeks as we experienced several positive Covid cases and the resulting Modified Quarantines. I know this was frustrating for many of you. It has been frustrating for our staff as well. However, as I have come to know, Shasta Meadows families have been understanding and supportive. The number of cases, the required quarantine process, and the lack of testing capabilities caused frustration and difficulties for families and school staff alike, but incredibly, you have been gracious as we work through these hurdles and come up with solutions.

Speaking of solutions, our district leadership in conjunction with our district nurse has developed a plan that will equip us to respond much better. I hope that I am clear as I explain what happens when our school is told that a child or adult who has been at school is confirmed positive for Covid-19:

**If the nurse determines that the child/adult was on campus and within 6 feet of others during their infectious period, the students who have been around that person (usually the whole class) are put on Modified Quarantine. If your child is on Modified Quarantine, this means the student can continue to attend school as long as they do not have symptoms AND they are tested twice in the next 7 days with a PCR test to make sure they aren't positive for Covid.

  1. Choice #1- student shows no signs of illness and continues to attend school, a parent signs the testing consent, and we do the oral swab PCR test for you;
  2. Choice #2- student shows no signs of illness and continues to attend school and the parent takes the student to get tested at an outside lab or clinic and proves the school with proof of the test along with results as soon as they are available;
  3. Choice #3- The student does not get tested and remains at home for the quarantine period. If you choose option #3, students can get work from the teacher after it is missed just like any school absence when a student is out sick or for other personal reasons. The work is not created in advance as in the case of a formal Independent Study, but rather, is collected periodically by the parent as it is collected and gathered by the teacher after daily instruction. Parents will connect with the classroom teacher to arrange a schedule for work to be picked up and dropped back off.

So, moving forward (which is what we do after we encounter setbacks), let's all do what we can to prevent the spread of infection. We will continue to wear masks when we are indoors. We will attempt to keep our distance from each other whenever possible. We will continue our protocols for hand-washing/hand sanitizer whenever entering the classroom or going to eat lunch, and now the school will partner with you to make testing easier and more convenient by offering it at school. If you are interested in more details about the testing, please watch the district-released video below. Again, thank you for being kind, supportive partners with us in your child's education.

With gratitude,

Mrs. Gold

Big picture

What is Modified Quarantine?

View this easy to understand flyer: HERE

School Covid Testing FAQs:

  • Is the test painful, inserted in my child's nose, etc? No, this is an oral swab and a small swab (about the size of a Q-tip with a longer stem) is lightly rubbed for 3 seconds in the mouth.
  • Can I be there when my child is tested? Yes, if you would be more comfortable, we can arrange to have you present.
  • What if my child is symptomatic and shouldn't be at school? How can we participate in school-based testing? We will be offering drive-through service (most likely after school hours) for students who are symptomatic and wish to test.
  • Can I use a rapid test instead? We cannot accept Rapid Test results because they are often falsely negative unless the patient is tested at just the right time during viral load. PCR tests are more accurate and are the most widely accepted medical standard.
  • When will all of this end? Your guess is as good as mine on that one. Until then, let's stick together around our common goal of keeping our students on campus for in-person learning while keeping everyone as safe and disease-free as possible.