COVID-19 Community Information

Protocols for responding to COVID-19 scenarios in school, on the bus, or in community settings.

Protocols Overview

  • Updated 1/4/2022

    Definition Of A Close Contact:

    Close contacts are defined as individuals who have been within 6 feet of a COVID-19 positive individual while indoors, for at least 15 minutes during a 24-hour period.3 4 Please note that the at-risk exposure time begins 48 hours prior to symptom onset (or time of positive test if asymptomatic) and continues until the time the COVID-19 positive individual is isolated. In general, close contacts should follow the testing and quarantine response protocols in Section 2 of this document. However, certain close contacts are exempted from testing and quarantine response protocols as noted below

    Close Contacts Who Are Exempt From Testing and Quarantine Response Protocols:

    The following close contacts are exempt from testing and quarantine response protocols:

    • Asymptomatic, fully vaccinated close contacts: Individuals who are asymptomatic and fully vaccinated are exempt from testing and quarantine response protocols. ( 1/4/22- At this time, fully vaccinated is defined as two weeks following the completion of the Pfizer or Moderna series or two weeks following a single dose of Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine.)
    • Classroom close contacts: An individual who is exposed to a COVID-19 positive individual in the classroom while both individuals were masked, so long as the individuals were spaced at least 3 feet apart, is exempt from testing and quarantine response protocols. 
    • Bus close contacts: Individuals on buses must be masked according to federal requirements. As such, individuals who are masked on buses when windows are open are exempt from testing and quarantine response protocols.
    • Close contacts who have had COVID-19 within the past 90 days:  An individual who has been previously diagnosed with COVID-19 and then becomes a close contact of someone with COVID-19 is exempt from testing and quarantine response protocols if: The exposure occurred within 90 days of the onset of their own illness AND  The exposed individual is recovered and remains without COVID-19 symptoms. 

     Recommended Testing and Quarantine Response Protocols:

    This section outlines testing and quarantine response protocols for individuals – students and staff – who test positive for COVID-19, close contacts who are not exempt from testing and quarantine response protocols, and symptomatic individuals. Each scenario outlines the duration of any recommended quarantine or isolation, the conditions to be met in order for the individual to return to school, and any additional considerations.

    Overview of Protocol Categories:

    • Protocol A: For individuals who test positive for COVID-19
    • Protocol B: Protocol for asymptomatic close contacts
    • Protocol C: Protocol for symptomatic individuals

    Communication:

    Identified school-based close contacts will receive notification directly from the school (school nurse)

    COVID Reporting is done through our COVID Dashboard. This has been the method of communication of cases for the past year. The dashboard reflects the most accurate information and is updated multiple times per day/week as new information is made available.

    If you have specific concerns about your student, the best resource is to contact your school nurse.

    If you have a positive result on an at-home test, PLEASE be sure to report it to both the school nurse and the Board of Health. 

Exposure Protocols

  • Protocol A: For individuals who test positive for COVID-19

  • Protocol B: Protocol for asymptomatic close contacts

  • Protocol C: Protocol for symptomatic individuals

DESE Close Contact Decision Tree- Updated 1/4/22

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DESE/DPH Protocols for Responding to COVID-19 Scenarios - Updated 12/30/21

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