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Responding to Cases or Symptoms

Symptoms Without Close Contact with Someone with COVID-19

What to do if your student has a symptom or symptoms of COVID-19 but has not had close contact with someone with COVID-19.

Steps for Parents and Guardians

  1. Keep your student home from school
  2. Notify your school
  3. Determine if a COVID test is necessary

Students with only one of the following symptoms

If a student or staff member has ONLY one of the following symptoms (headache, sore throat, nausea or vomiting, fatigue, diarrhea, congestion, or a runny nose) AND no fever within the past 24 hours (without using medication) and symptoms have significantly improved they can return to school or work. ​

If the student has more than one of these symptoms or one of these symptoms that lasts longer than 24 hours, they must isolate and get tested for COVID-19. ​

An illustration representing a person with a pain in their head
Headache
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Fatigue
An illustration representing a person with pain in their throat
Sore throat
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Diarrhea
An illustration representing a person with dizzy marks above their head and liquid coming from their mouth
Nausea or vomiting
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Congestion or runny nose

Students with the following symptoms should get a COVID test

If a student or a staff member has a fever, muscle or body aches, difficulty breathing, new loss of taste or smell, or cough, they need to stay home and get tested for COVID-19. ​

An illustration of blue person with thermometer
Fever >100.4 F or chills
An illustration of a person with a cross out over their nose and mouth
New loss of taste or smell
An illustration of person with pain on their shoulders
Muscle or body aches
An illustration representing a person coughing
Cough (new, changed, or worsening)
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Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath

When can my student return to school?

Negative COVID-19 Test Result

  • 24 hours after fever has resolved (without medication)
  • AND other symptoms have significantly improved.
  • OR alternative named diagnosis.

Positive COVID-19 Test Result

See process for a positive COVID-19 test result.How will student learning be supported?

What communication will families receive?


Positive COVID Test Results

What to do if your student has a positive COVID-19 test result. Confirmed COVID-19: a person (with or without symptoms) who received a positive result from a COVID-19 laboratory test.

Steps for Parents and Guardians

  1. Keep your student home from school
  2. Notify your school
  3. Work with contact tracing team to determine next steps

Step 1: Keep your student home from school

When can my student return to school?

Has COVID-19 Symptoms

  • At least 10 days from when symptoms began
  • AND at least 24 hours after fever has resolved (without medication)
  • AND symptoms have significantly improved.

Does NOT have COVID-19 Symptoms

Can return to school building after isolating for 10 days since the date of positive PCR COVID-19 test collection.

Step 2: Notify your school

School staff will notify the SPS contact tracing team.

The SPS contact tracing team will contact the family of the student with a positive COVID-19 test to collect information about the student (e.g. vaccination status or potential symptoms) and determine when the student can return to school (see step 1). 

SPS contact tracing team will begin investigation process to determine if there was potential exposure at school with any close contacts. 

SPS notifies families when there is a positive case in their student’s classroom.

Step 3: Work with the SPS contact tracing team to determine next steps

The SPS contact tracing team will contact family of student directly via phone or email with confirmed COVID if the student is symptomatic or asymptomatic and determine when the student can return to school (see step 1). How will student learning be supported?

What communication will families receive?


Close Contact with Someone with COVID-19

What to do if your student is a close contact of someone with COVID-19 at school. Students identified as close contacts are notified during the contact tracing investigation via email and phone call. 

  • Fully vaccinated close contacts should be tested for COVID-19 5 – 7 days after known exposure and monitor for symptoms for 14 days following the last exposure. 
    • However, if a fully vaccinated student has symptoms they would need to get tested and can return to school with a negative test, no fever within 24 hours (without medication), and their symptoms have significantly improved.
    • If a fully vaccinated close contact receives a positive test result or does not get tested for COVID-19 they cannot return to school until at least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared and have not had a fever within 24 hours without medication AND symptoms have significantly improved.
  • Unvaccinated close contacts with no symptoms can return to school after 7 days from the last day they had close contact with the person with COVID-19 IF no symptoms develop AND after receiving a negative test result for COVID-19.
    • The test should occur no sooner than on or after day 5 post-exposure.
    • Families should continue to monitor for symptoms until day 14. 
    • If symptoms develop, they should isolate their student and get them tested. Unvaccinated close contacts with symptoms should get tested for COVID-19.
    • If they test positive or do not get tested they can return to school after 10 days have passed since the first symptoms appeared IF there is no fever within 24 hours without medication AND symptoms have significantly improved.

Fully vaccinated OR have tested positive in the past three months and recovered

Has COVID-19 Symptoms

Student should get a COVID-19 test.

Negative COVID test

They can return to school after:

  • A negative test result for COVID-19.
  • No fever with the past 24 hours (without medication)
  • AND Symptoms have significantly improved.

Postive COVID test (see steps for positive test above). 

Does NOT have COVID-19 Symptoms

 Can remain at school however, they should: 

  • Get tested 3 to 5 days after known exposure 
  • Continue wearing a mask in all public indoor settings 
  • Watch for symptoms for 14 days after close contact 

Not vaccinated and not had previous positive COVID test

Has COVID-19 Symptoms

Student should get a COVID-19 test.

Negative COVID test

They can return to school after:

  • A negative test result for COVID-19.
  • 14 days from the last day they had close contact with the person with COVID-19 if no symptoms develop AND they do not test positive 

Positive COVID test (see steps for positive test above). 

Does NOT have COVID-19 Symptoms

  Can return to school after: 

  • 14 days from the last day they had close contact with the person with COVID-19 if no symptoms develop AND they do not test positive 
  • Monitor for fever, cough, shortness of breath and COVID-19 symptoms. If symptoms develop, isolate and get your student tested 

How will student learning be supported?

What communication will families receive?


Who is a Close Contact?

In general, a close contact is defined by: 

  • Been within 6 feet (2 meters) of a person confirmed to have COVID-19 for a combined total of 15 minutes or more within a 24-hour period. 
  • Live in the same household as a person with COVID-19
  • Cared for a person with COVID-19
  • Been in direct contact with saliva or other body secretions from a person with COVID-19 (for example: been coughed on, kissed, shared utensils, etc.) 

If a student in a K-12 indoor classroom:

  • Any students who were less than three feet away from the case for a total of 15 minutes or more within 24 hours during the case’s contagious period. 
  • Any students who were between three to six feet away from the case for a total of 15 minutes or more within 24 hours during the case’s contagious period if masks were not consistently worn correctly. 

Teacher and staff in a K-12 classroom:

  • Any teacher or staff who was less than 6 feet from the case for a total of 15 minutes or more within 24 hours during the case’s contagious period. 

Close contacts in all the settings below include any students or teachers/staff who were less than six feet away from the case for a total of 15 minutes or more within 24 hours during the case’s contagious period. 

  • Lunchroom, breaks, recess 
  • Sports, performance arts, or other extracurricular activities 
  • Transportation 
  • For staff, consider interactions with colleagues or additional meetings (e.g. staff meetings, parent-teacher conferences, break rooms) 

SPS will notify you if your student is close contact.


What is the Covid protocol regarding Academics?

For academic support during a quarantine absence, please email teachers directly indicating that you will be out during this time. Your teacher will post instructional plans on Schoology each week to support learning while students are absent. For assistance with technology support please refer to the information on the SPS website linked here: https://www.seattleschools.org/student-portal/


Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash