Glastonbury Public Schools
COVID-19 School Operations
THIS PAGE IS ARCHIVED.
The federal COVID-19 health emergency expired in May of 2023. Glastonbury Public Schools will start the 2023-2024 school year without most of the COVID-19 practices we have followed in the past few years, e.g. masking, isolations, quarantines, and public reporting of the number of cases. However, COVID-19 continues to circulate. As always, students and staff should take simple actions such as staying home when sick, washing hands, and covering their mouths when coughing and sneezing. We will continue to clean and ventilate our schools.
Our district will keep parents informed and adjust our practices if the level of community transmission requires a return to COVID-19 practices to support the health and safety of students and staff.
The Glastonbury Public Schools health and safety practices are developed and informed by state guidance. Our goal is to keep our students healthy and learning in-person as much as possible throughout the school year.
We will use a layered approach to health and safety practices to help protect our students and staff. This includes vaccination, optional mask wearing, testing, and isolation of those who test positive. As always, we will adjust our practices if the level of community transmission requires a different approach.
We encourage all students and staff to be up-to-date with COVID-19 vaccinations and boosters prior to the start of school. According to recent state guidance: "Vaccinations are the first and most important line of defense in preventing respiratory diseases like COVID-19 and influenza from disrupting the continuous operation of schools...Everyone 6 months of age or older can receive both COVID-19 vaccine and a seasonal vaccine for influenza."
Masks are available for students or staff. Mask wearing is optional in our buildings unless you are returning after 5 days of COVID-19 isolation. In addition:
The CDC recommends that anyone with significant exposure (for example, when a household member or other close contact tests positive) but who has no symptoms wear a mask for 10 days and test on day 5 regardless of vaccine status. This is recommended but not required.
We encourage anyone with mild respiratory symptoms and a negative COVID test to wear a mask to protect the health of others.
Many illnesses have symptoms similar to COVID-19. Students and staff should test if they have any such symptoms. COVID-19 testing kits are available free of charge for students and staff and their families. When the school year begins, families may call the school health office to request kits.
Please call the school to notify them of positive COVID tests. Isolate those who test positive to help control the spread of this virus. All people with COVID-19 should undergo isolation for at least 5 full days. Day 0 is the day symptoms began or the day of the positive test. After 5-days of isolation, students and staff may return if they are fever-free for at least 24 hours and other symptoms are significantly improved. Returning students and staff will be required to wear masks for the next 5 days.
Track and Inform
We will continue to track staff and student cases. We will report cases to the CT Department of Public Health. We will inform parents of elementary children if there is a positive case in their class. The COVID-19 dashboard will be updated once daily, Monday through Friday.
Cleaning, Sanitizing, and Ventilation
Cleaning and Sanitizing. We regularly clean and sanitize/disinfect common high-touch surfaces throughout schools such as classrooms, bathrooms, etc. All products used for cleaning and sanitizing/disinfecting are safer for students and staff and have been approved by our Director of Environmental Health and Safety.
Ventilation. We will maximize the circulation of fresh, outside air and air filtration as appropriate for each type/size of school space. We use the highest filtration levels allowable within our air handlers. This includes the use of increased outside air and filtration for air conditioning in the fall and heating when the weather turns colder.
Signs of COVID-19 Illness include:
Fever above 100.4 when taken by mouth
Chills, muscle pain, body aches
Shortness of breath
Cough (or new uncontrolled cough that causes difficulty breathing for students with chronic allergies/asthma)
Diarrhea, vomiting or abdominal pain
Congestion or runny nose
New onset of severe headache, especially with fever
Loss of taste or smell
The CDC recommends everyone 6 months and older (with very few medical exceptions) get the annual flu vaccine by the end of October. Flu vaccines do not prevent COVID-19, but they will reduce the burden of flu illnesses, hospitalizations and deaths on the health care system and conserve scarce medical resources for the care of people with COVID-19.
Flu vaccines and COVID-19 vaccines can be given at the same time. More information is available on the CDC Influenza (Flu) Website.