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New Updates for Jan. 2

January 4, 2022

Happy New Year! I hope that everyone was able to relax and recharge oved this vacation. School will be open on Monday, Jan. 3rd. Because of the rise in cases, we will be adding several mitigating measures to ensure that we are opening in the safest possible way.  

First, we will be conducting voluntary testing on all staff members on Monday and Tuesday. Any staff member that tests positive will be sent home immediately and will follow the new isolation protocol below. Next, we will be asking our staff members to do a visual screening of all students as they enter the building on Monday. Any students that are exhibiting symptoms will be offered testing to the families and students will be sent home until symptoms subside. Finally, we will be offering free at home kits to families if they would like to test their children at home. An alternative to this, we will be offering voluntary testing of students in each building next week. We want to keep students safe and in school and getting ahead of any possible cases is an important step in our district.

The health departments have been very busy this week. This is a long email but all parts are very important. Please read this carefully and keep it for future reference. There is some information that is very positive for our students. 

 

New Quarantine and Isolation Rules

The Saratoga County Health Department has changed the rules for quarantine and isolation periods to five days. Complete information is on their website but the important changes for schools are summarized below.  The links are very important so please save this email for future reference. 

If you or your child have a symptom of COVID-19, stay home and get tested. Do not send your child to school. You can either test at home using a rapid test or at a clinic, doctor’s office, or testing site. Wherever and however you test, try to separate the person with the symptoms from others until you get the test results.  Similarly, even if you or your child does not have any symptoms of COVID-19 but has tested positive, stay home/do not send your child to school and separate the person with the positive test result from others.  

If the positive test result came from a home test, report your positive result to Saratoga County using the link on Saratoga County’s website labeled “Report Positive Covid-19 Self-Tests” found here. You don’t need to report test results obtained elsewhere.    

Keep the person who tested positive for COVID-19 home for 5 full days (with day 1 starting on the day after you felt the first symptom or, if you don’t have symptoms, the day that you got tested). Keep the positive person separate from others as much as possible (for tips on how to do this, see here). After 5 days of isolation, you can resume normal activity so long as (1) you wear a mask around others for an additional 5 days, (2) you have no symptoms or your symptoms are improving, and (3) you haven’t had a fever for at least 24 hours without using fever-reducing medication. Otherwise, continue staying home until conditions 1 through 3 are met.     

You will need paperwork to show your school or employer that you were absent because of a positive COVID-19 test regardless of where the test was administered. Visit Saratoga County’s website to fill out forms that generate such paperwork automatically. Additionally, be sure to notify anyone who you may have been in close contact with before testing positive, so that they can determine whether they should quarantine. The school will continue to contact trace for in-school and after-school activities. For more detailed information about isolation and quarantine, please go to Saratoga County’s website here.  

All siblings in the household of a positive case must be quarantined for 5 full days (with day 1 starting on the day after the positive person felt the first symptom or, if they don’t have symptoms, the day that they got tested) if they are not fully vaccinated. If they are fully vaccinated but also showing symptoms, they should stay home and get tested.  If the test comes back positive, the above rules should be followed. Quarantined siblings will also need paperwork to return to school. For more detailed information about isolation and quarantine, please go to Saratoga County’s website. 

Test Kits for Schools/Families

Gov. Kathy Hochul has announced that schools will be given test kits to use to keep students in school. In the coming days, school districts will be receiving an allotment of rapid tests that New York State has purchased for distribution. These tests are being provided to help achieve our mutual goal of keeping children in the classroom. South Glens Falls Central School District will be using these tests in a variety of ways.

  • Test to Stay – With this new supply of tests, we will be able to continue our TTS strategy in school.  Healthy, unvaccinated students will test to stay in school during their quarantine period.  
  • Surveillance Testing – SGF has been testing athletes, students in high risk activities, and students who may have been in contact with a positive person since the beginning of the school year. The tests will be used to monitor students and staff in classes where there are exposures that do not necessarily meet the rules for quarantine and for preventative testing.
  • First week back – These tests can also be used for at-home testing for families that want to test their children during the first week of school. Because we do not have these tests in our possession yet, we will be sending out information early next week for pick up times and places for interested families. 

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