- All students and staff who will be learning/working in person will conduct a Daily Self-Screen (series of questions)
- Staff and students must stay home if they:
- Test positive for COVID-19.
- Show symptoms of COVID-19.
- May have been exposed to COVID-19.
- Are waiting to get tested, or waiting for COVID-19 test results.
- Quarantined staff and students may only return to school when they have met criteria for return
COVID-19 Health Coordinator: The Westonka Public Schools COVID-19 Health Coordinator is District Nurse Kelly Mattson, BSN, RN, LSN, email@example.com, (952) 491-8104.
Reporting Symptoms to the School: Families are asked to indicate reasons for student absence in Skyward Family Access or via the school attendance line. Parents will be asked to indicate symptoms of illness.
Reporting a Positive COVID-19 Test or COVID-19 Close Contact: Families and staff are asked to directly contact District Nurse Kelly Mattson if a student or staff member has tested positive for COVID-19 or if they recently had close contact with a person with COVID-19. Families can also report this in Skyward Family Access.
Isolation Rooms: School health office protocols will create a separate, dedicated space for the care of students who are ill, while having another space to serve the general health and medication needs of students. Students will be isolated until they can be picked up.
Distance Learning: Students who cannot be physically present in the classroom due to illness or exposure to COVID-19 will participate in distance learning.
What Could Cause Westonka to Change Learning Models During the Year?
- School/District Impact of COVID-19: As required by the Minnesota Safe Learning Plan, if the number of students and school staff who are absent or who are sent home with influenza- or COVID-19-like illness reaches approximately 5% of the total number of students and staff in a school within a single week, Westonka’s District COVID-19 Support Team will consult our Regional Support Team regarding a possible learning model change. [View the COVID-19 Dashboard]
- Community Impact of COVID-19: On a regular basis throughout the 2020-21 school year, Westonka Public Schools and the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) will monitor the community impact of COVID-19. The state could require that the district change learning models at any time based on changing health data. The state has established a data dashboard and guide to be used for learning model determination. Every week, Westonka receives from the state 14-day county case level rates per 10,000 people. The district is also receiving weekly reports from Hennepin County with more localized COVID-19 case data. The Westonka District COVID-19 Support Team, made up of the superintendent, district nurse and a committee of the school board, will closely monitor county and local case data to determine if a learning model change is warranted.
Responding to Positive Cases of COVID-19
If Westonka Public Schools receives a report of a positive case(s) in the school community, the district will work directly with a Regional Support Team comprised of Minnesota Department of Education and Minnesota Department of Health staff on contact tracing. The Regional Support Team will direct communication to families, the quarantine process and testing activities.
Clusters of positive cases could warrant a learning model change. The decision would be made by the District COVID-19 Support Team in consultation with the Regional Support Team.
The District COVID-19 Support Team is made up of:
- Committee of the school board
- District nurse
Due to data privacy laws, the district is not allowed to share any names or personally identifiable information of individuals identified to have the virus. We recognize this can be frustrating. If there is a positive case of COVID-19 in our school community, the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) allows the following level of communication to families:
- All families of a school with a positive case(s) will be notified via email. If the positive case is in a school in the hybrid model, the district will indicate if the positive case attended school on “A” or “B” days.
- All close contacts of the person(s) testing positive for COVID-19 will be contacted individually by Westonka’s Health Services Department and/or the Minnesota Department of Health and provided quarantine instructions.
- Westonka has also launched a public dashboard that tracks confirmed cases of COVID-19 in our schools.
All close contacts of a person(s) testing positive for COVID-19 will be required to quarantine for 14 days after the last day they were in close contact with the person. In certain situations, a shortened quarantine period may be possible. Learn more: COVID-19 Quarantine Process
- Primary Schools: A positive case of COVID-19 in one of Westonka's primary school classrooms (student or teacher) would likely cause the entire class to quarantine and pivot to distance learning. This is due to the length of time students remain in the same cohort throughout the day and the tendency for younger students to break social distancing.
- Middle and High Schools: For positive cases at the middle and high school levels, close contacts (those within 6 feet for 15 minutes or longer and others with direct exposure) would be quarantined.
- Transportation: The Minnesota Department of Health released new guidance Dec. 29, 2020 about the quarantine process in the event a COVID-positive person used school bus transportation. In most cases, close contacts among riders (children and staff) who were on the bus with a person who is positive for COVID-19 include those who were in the same row, two rows ahead, and the two rows behind the positive person for 15 minutes or more cumulatively. All close contacts will be contacted individually and required to quarantine.