Coronavirus COVID19 Update #4
Temecula Valley Unified School District 3/11/2020
Postponing School/District Events
Good Evening TVUSD Family,
District administrative staff continues to be in regular communication with Riverside University Health Systems-Public Health (RUHS-PH), as well as federal and state agencies, related to the rapidly changing COVID-19 novel coronavirus situation in order to ensure the safety of all staff, students, and the community. Under the guidance from RUHS-PH (County Public Health), all school districts in Riverside County have been given recommendations to consider when deciding whether to maintain regularly scheduled extracurricular events.
Our top priority continues to be the health and safety of our students and staff, and we take this responsibility seriously. In an abundance of caution to prioritize the health and well-being of all our stakeholders and in keeping with the guidance from federal, state, and county agencies, TVUSD has provided guidance to school site administrators to postpone school and district extracurricular events and activities that meet all components of the criteria language listed below.
Involve large numbers of individuals gathering, and, where the health and identity of attendees are unknown, and, that are held within confined spaces where visitors cannot selectively social distance themselves.
The timeframe for these activities to be postponed is Wednesday, March 11 through Sunday, April 5, 2020. We will re-evaluate protocols following Spring break.
We deeply respect the work that our students, staff, and families have done to plan events and activities and apologize for having to modify, postpone, and in some cases, cancel these activities. Our site administrators will do their best to find other opportunities and/or resources to share the information that was planned at a specific event, and, if rescheduling is available, will pursue that as well.
Each school site will send out a communication to their individual school community advising of the events and activities that are being postponed and/or canceled during the period of March 11- April 5, 2020, based on-site evaluation and established criteria. Examples, but not limited are the following types of activities being postponed: open houses, showcases, banquets, indoor performances, some field trips, etc.
Thank you for your understanding and patience as we navigate this fast-moving and ever-changing community-wide issue. In addition to the distribution of updates, all information TVUSD shares are available on our website at https://www.tvusd.k12.ca.us/covid19. If you have specific questions regarding novel coronavirus, please, visit the Riverside County Public Health website http://www.rivcoph.org/coronavirus or call 2-1-1. You can also call the CDC hotline at 1-800-CDC-INFO.
We are awaiting some additional guidance from federal, state, and county agencies with potential updates regarding direction about events. As soon as we receive any new guidance, we will share it.
Currently, there are no plans to close schools. TVUSD is being proactive and has outlined a plan that allows for distance learning scenarios in the event of a school closure.
Thank you for your continued patience, understanding, and support.
Tim Ritter, Superintendent
Temecula Valley Unified School District
Frequently Asked Questions - COVID-19 and TVUSD Schools
Q: Are additional sanitization procedures taking place at sites and in classrooms?
A: Temecula Valley USD follows all recommended cleaning procedures for educational settings. Custodial leads and maintenance staff have reviewed cleaning procedures and are adhering to all district procedures and nightly inspection schedules. Some of these procedures include actions such as restocking hand sanitizer in school offices, and universal spaces (library, etc.…) and refilling soap dispensers throughout the day.
Q: Are alcohol-based hand sanitizers allowed in TVUSD schools?
A: Yes. For more details from the California Department of Education please click here.
Q: What if my child says the school bathroom is out of soap. What should I do?
A: Contact your school office as soon as possible so custodial staff can address and refill as necessary.
Q: Does the District have an emergency response plan specifically for pandemics?
A: Yes. As part of our Safe Schools Planning efforts, there is a Pandemic Planning Guide. Staff last used these protocols during the H1N1 Flu pandemic. The administrative staff is currently reviewing those guidelines and updating sections as needed. It is important to note, specific pandemic response activities will be highly dependent on emerging data and direction provided by health authorities. As with any emergency plan, this is a living document and will be subject to updates as this pandemic develops.
Q: How are student absences being handled?
A: All absences due to illnesses are excused with parent confirmation, per California Education Code outlined in our District Board Policies and Parent/Student Handbooks. Additionally, our Student Welfare and Success Division are currently monitoring absences and analyzing for patterns. As of today, Temecula Valley USD has not experienced an increase in illness based on attendance rates.
Q. How do school sites handle requests for Independent Study (IS) related to coronavirus fears?
A: If you are requesting independent study for a medical reason, please contact your student’s school site for procedures. Please know these types of independent study requests would require a medical recommendation from a physician, and the District would follow the steps as outlined in District Board Policy. Currently, the risk for our student population to contract COVID-19 remains very low. Vulnerable populations are those with chronic underlying health conditions, recent international travel and known exposure to a person with COVID-19 virus.
Q: Who will make the decision to close schools?
A: If an outbreak occurs that affects our community, and school closures are recommended or ordered, decisions will be made, at the direction of County Public Health following discussions with the school district and Public Health professionals. We will also consider guidance from the California Department of Education. TVUSD is unable to know if or when individuals are exposed to any illness, which is why we follow guidelines from expert agencies like the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the County Public Health.
Q: If, in a worst-case scenario, a school gets shut down, what” distance learning” protocols are being considered?
A: In the event of a school closing, as a result of the novel coronavirus, the District has a plan for distance learning options to best meet the needs of all staff, students, and families. Should this become our reality, we will be communicating clearly with all staff, students, and families regarding the process and expectations for continuous learning.
Q: Are there any plans to alter or cancel travel, field trips, school dances, etc... due to concerns?
A: As of today, Wednesday, March 11, 2020, TVUSD has provided guidance to school site administrators to postpone some events and activities that involve large numbers of individuals gathering, and, where the health and identity of attendees are unknown, and, that are held within confined spaces where visitors cannot selectively social distance themselves. Lastly, we are aware that concern over this new virus can make children and families anxious. Helping children cope with this concern and anxiety requires providing accurate prevention information and facts without causing undue alarm. Therefore, we have linked here for you, “How to Talk to Children about COVID19” resource from the National Association of School Psychologist.
Q: With the upcoming spring break plans, what do families, students, and staff need to know?
A: For information on travel plans you or families might be planning for Spring Break, please consult the US State Department's website for travel guidelines. If someone travels to an area that is currently on the travel watch list, families returning are responsible for self-reporting. https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/traveladvisories/ea/novel-coronavirus-hubei-province--china.html