COVID Protocols for the 2021-2022 School Year
August 18, 2021
Dear Crestview Cougar Families,
We are looking forward to starting the new school year beginning August 18th. Of course, there are questions about what this school year will look like with the continued challenges of COVID-19, and hopefully, this will clarify our protocols for the 2021-2022 school year.
The Crestview Local School District is committed to the providing a safe and healthy environment for students and staff while still working diligently to promote in-person learning. To that end, we continue to have ongoing conversations with the Richland County Health Department (RCHD) to ensure a healthy, as well as an educationally impactful, school year.
While the RCHD strongly recommends that students and staff wear face coverings during the school day, face coverings will not be required when we begin school on August 18th; they are currently optional for students and staff.
The one exception to optional face coverings is for school transportation. At this time, federal mandates require students and staff wear face coverings while on buses. While there has been some debate over a provision of the Ohio Revised Code that indicates that school buses are not public transportation, we have been advised by legal counsel that the federal order from the CDC supersedes any conflicting state law. Specifically, the CDC Order states that “persons must wear masks over the mouth and nose when traveling on conveyances into and within the United States.” Code of Federal Regulations 42 CFR 70.1, generally defines a conveyance as an aircraft, train, road vehicle, vessel… or other means of transport, including military.” Therefore, school buses fall within the definition of “conveyance” and masks will be required on school transportation until further notice.
Other important aspects to keep in mind as we begin school are:
The physical distancing of 3 feet or greater will be utilized to the greatest extent possible. We recognize this may not be possible in all our buildings or classroom settings and that our staff must balance this with maintaining effective and nurturing environments. Please note that the answer to the initial question in the flow chart linked below, “does the school have all of the following in place?” will be “No.” We do not require the masking for all students and staff regardless of their vaccination status, nor can we guarantee physical distancing in all situations at all times.
We NEED students to stay home when they are not feeling well or displaying symptoms of COVID 19: or other flu symptoms like fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, the new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, or diarrhea, and muscle weakness.
Although we love having guests, parents, and grandparents in the building, we will limit traffic flow and ask that students walk themselves to the classroom after the first day of school. In addition, we will continue to ask parents to call the school office when picking up students for appointments or when leaving school early.
The Richland County Health Department will manage the isolation of individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19. One may expect to be isolated/quarantined for up to 10 days from the positive test date.
The Richland County Health Department, under the Ohio Department of Health guidelines below, will be managing the quarantining of individuals who are determined to be close contacts of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. The Crestview Local School District will work closely with the Richland County Health Department, and to the best of our ability, determine close contacts that take place in a school setting or at a school-sponsored event.
Please also know that the district will continue to promote healthy practices such as physical distancing, hand washing, deep cleaning, etc.
Again, we are looking forward to a very successful school year for all of our students, and we appreciate your support in this effort. Please continue to check our school website at https://crestviewschools.net for up-to-date and timely information throughout the school year;
It's a Great Day to be a Crestview Cougar!
James M. Grubbs Jr.
Superintendent, Crestview Local School District