Colonial School District to open with revised health and safety plan

During its August 25th meeting, the Colonial School Board of Directors approved a revised Health & Safety Plan for the 2022-23 school year. The plan stipulates that masks will continue to be optional and that the district will continue to monitor COVID-19 cases reported from each building, however, there will no longer be a 3% positivity threshold that will initiate a review of masking requirements. Students in the Colonial School District are set to return to the classroom on September 6th.

In regards to what will happen when someone within the district’s schools tests positive, the plan stipulates the following:

Students or staff who test positive will be required to stay home from school for five days. Missed class work will be shared with students via the Google Classroom at the elementary level and via Canvas at CMS and PWHS. Upon return to school after a positive test, students and staff will need to wear their masks indoors for an additional five days. This is based upon Montgomery County Office of Public Health and Centers for Disease Control guidelines.

Testing of students and staff who become symptomatic during the school day will be offered through the nurses’ offices provided test kits are available, and as long as parent permission is granted for the test. The district has been receiving an allocation of tests from the county but quantities are limited.  

Cases will continue to be monitored in each building through our COVID-19 dashboard, which will be updated once a day in the afternoon during the school week. The district will not send emails home every time a positive case is identified in a classroom or on a bus. If a trend emerges where numerous students/staff in the same areas have infections, the district may communicate via email to families to make them aware and so they can monitor for symptoms and so further spread can be mitigated. 

Other plan components include:

– Emphasizing to students the importance of washing hands and other hygiene practices (ex: sneezing or coughing into one’s elbow).
– Discontinuing the grouping of students in pods or cohorts.
– Lunches will return to normal without the social distancing requirements.
– Volunteers will be welcome in our schools, but anyone who is experiencing symptoms will be asked to stay home. 
– School cafeterias will resume finger scanning as a method of payment during breakfast and lunches. To learn more about the finger scanning process, please click here.

You can review the entire Health & Safety Plan here.