November 10th, 2021
Greetings Meridian Families & Students,
The Meridian School District wishes to recognize and thank the many men and women who have served and currently serve, in our country’s armed forces. Having grown up in a military family, I am fortunate to reflect that it is ordinary people, who have and continue to serve our great nation in extraordinary ways. We honor them for their service, sacrifice, and love of country. Through their service, our Veterans have helped keep America strong, and have protected our way of life for almost two and a half centuries. Tomorrow, I ask that we not only recognize our Veterans but more importantly, celebrate them. Thank you, Veterans!
As we have throughout the COVID-19 response, the Meridian School District continues to closely monitor our local conditions. Coordinating with the Whatcom County Health Department we determined it was necessary to close one 5th grade classroom yesterday to respond to an outbreak of COVID-19 in that classroom. The health department relies on the Washington State DOH’s definition of an outbreak;
A COVID-19 outbreak in a school is considered when the following have been met:
- Multiple probable or confirmed COVID-19 cases comprising at least 10% of students, teachers, or staff within a specified core group; OR
- At least 3 cases within a specified core group meeting criteria for a probable or confirmed COVID-19 case; AND
- Cases have symptom onset or a positive test result within 14 days of each other, AND
- Cases were not identified as close contacts of each other in another setting (i.e., household) outside of the school setting, AND
- Cases were epidemiologically linked in the school setting or a school-sanctioned extracurricular activity.
Mrs. Christiana, IRE principal, and Amber Erdmann, MSD nurse, have been working on contact tracing and connecting with families over the past few days as this has developed. Mrs. Christiana also sent messages to all IRE families last evening. This is meant to be awareness for families in our other buildings. At this time, we have moved one class to remote learning, and we will keep affected families informed if circumstances change.
Additionally, we recognize the challenge of having a typical cold and flu season coinciding with the pandemic and sharing similar symptoms. We are doing our best to maintain in-person learning and we appreciate you double-checking with your child about how they feel before sending them to school. If your child is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms please keep them home and call the office to let them know.
COVID-19 Vaccines for Younger Students
Last week, children 5 years of age and older became eligible for the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. We encourage all families to consider immunizing their child against COVID-19, not just for their individual health, but for the health and safety of our schools and community.
You can now filter the online vaccine locator for “Pfizer-BioNTech Pediatric, ages 5-11” to search for vaccine providers. To find a vaccine location, visit the Vaccine Locator website.
The Whatcom County Health Department will continue to update information on how to access COVID-19 vaccines for kids on their Pediatric COVID-19 Vaccines webpage.