North Santiam School District
Message from Superintendent Gardner
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November 1, 2021
As you will see from today’s COVID report, we had an increase in cases and quarantines last week. Some of the students placed in quarantine were due to one or both of the students involved not properly wearing their face mask consistently. The 3 feet exception only applies if ALL students in that space are wearing their masks properly. A student that doesn’t wear their mask properly will lose the 3 feet exception and could be susceptible to quarantine from any positive case within 6 feet of them (if more than 15 minutes). These students also have the potential to impact more people if they test positive because the 3 feet spacing moves back to 6 feet, and automatically encompasses all students within that space (after 15 minutes).
To address this, schools have begun surveying teachers to determine which students are regularly not wearing masks properly. We are communicating with those students’ parents. At the same time we are emphasizing to our staff the importance of continuing to address this with students in classrooms. We ask for your cooperation as we strive to limit quarantines.
We genuinely appreciate the efforts of all of our families, and we recognize that some parents may not be aware that a child is not wearing a mask properly or consistently at school. Our intent will be to raise awareness of all parties (school staff, parents, and the student) and to minimize days out of school for as many students as possible. Our hearts are with the students who have worn their masks, yet are moved into quarantine by another student’s lack of effective mask wearing. We are all in this together as we move through these difficult times.
As we move into the colder and wetter season, it is imperative that students who are symptomatic stay home. COVID is pervasive in our communities, and we stress that cold-like symptoms may often be COVID. As our nurses are connecting with families who have tested positive, they are reporting a wide variety of symptoms, including: stuffy nose, runny nose, sore throat, congestion, headache, fever, cough, fatigue, loss of taste and smell, vomiting, diarrhea and body aches. This implies that our pre-COVID approach of “powering through” mild cold symptoms is not advisable in our battle against this virus. Please keep your students home until symptoms resolve in accordance with the OHA guidance, available to view at this link available on the District’s website.
As a reminder, a student who tests positive with a laboratory-confirmed result (home tests do not qualify) will be excluded from quarantine requirements for 90 days, after completing the initial isolation.
Our goal remains to hold in-person school for the entire year. We want to acknowledge that the majority of all our students continue to be responsible and wear masks throughout their school day and we sincerely thank them.
November 1, 2021
NSSD Weekly COVID Report for 10/25/21-10/29/21
To view the data on the District website, click on the dashboard photo
Optional Weekly COVID Screening
>>>Reminder- test samples are due at school drop boxes by noon every Tuesday. Please include your student's full name and date of birth instead of initials as previously indicated. Additional testing kits are available in school offices<<<
The District has opted into the free, optional screening program offered to all Oregon K-12 students by the Oregon Health Authority. This is a weekly saliva at-home COVID screening test that parents can opt into. Participation in the program and all results are confidential, however, positive COVID-19 results must be reported to the local public health authority for case investigation and contact tracing. Parents can find more info and the consent form on the District Website or by emailing Santiam Hospital at email@example.com. Please note this is only a screening program. Parents who wish to test their child as the result of contact tracing or an onset of symptoms will need to contact their health care provider. As more testing sites become available locally, we will send more information.
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Should they go or should they stay?
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Dates to remember for November!
Nov. 5 - NO SCHOOL, Grading Day
Nov. 8-10 - Conferences occur (times vary by school)
Nov. 10 - EARLY RELEASE (times vary by school)
Nov. 11 - NO SCHOOL, Veterans' Day
Nov. 12 - NO SCHOOL (school conferences comp time)
Nov. 24-26 - NO SCHOOL, Thanksgiving Break