Mask Update: March 2022
Governor John Carney has announced the mask mandate in Delaware for public and private schools and child care facilities ends today, Tuesday, March 1st at 6 p.m. The announcement is consistent with new masking guidance issued on Friday by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and with current downward case trends.
As of Wednesday, March 2, 2022 masking will be optional for students and staff in school buildings and on school buses. If, for any reason, staff members or students feel more comfortable continuing to wear a mask, they are encouraged to do so.
Health & Safety Protocols: March 2022
On Monday, February 28th, Governor Carney announced that Delaware’s State of Emergency will be lifted effective 6pm on Tuesday, March 1st. With the end of the State of Emergency, Colonial is revisiting our Health and Safety Protocols. Beginning March 2nd, Colonial will be implementing the following protocols:
- Masking– Effective Wednesday, March 2, 2022 staff, students, and visitors to Colonial Schools and on Colonial Transportation are no longer required to wear a face covering. Those individuals who choose to continue to wear a mask will be permitted and encouraged to do so. Bullying of those who choose to continue wearing a mask will not be tolerated.
- Contact Tracing – Effective March 2, 2022 schools will no longer be required to conduct school-based contact tracing. School nurses will continue to report positive COVID-19 cases to DPH for students and staff. Parents should report to the school if a student or someone in the household has tested positive for COVID-19. Household close contacts will be reviewed to determine the need to quarantine.
- Social Distancing – Students and staff should continue to social distance, at least 3 feet, to help reduce the spread of COVID-19. We are encouraging the continued use of individual desks in the event that there is a need to return to strict social distancing protocols due to an outbreak or high level of COVID-19 in the school/county.
- Daily Screener – Students and staff must continue to complete a daily screener and monitor for COVID-19 symptoms. If your child is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms they must not come into school that day. Please contact your school nurse to discuss return to school clearance.
- Testing – Knowing your COVID-19 status continues to be an effective way to reduce the spread of COVID-19. Quidel will continue to offer weekly COVID-19 testing for enrolled students and staff who are not displaying COVID-19 symptoms or who have not tested positive for COVID-19 in the last 90 days. If you are interested in enrolling in Quidel’s Testing Program, please visit https://my.primary.health/l/colonial-schools
- Vaccination – COVID-19 Vaccines and Boosters continue to be effective in reducing the spread of COVID-19. Students and staff are encouraged to receive the COVID-19 Vaccine, or booster if eligible. The next vaccine event will be held at George Read Middle on March 16, 2022 from 4PM – 6PM for 2nd doses and boosters only.
- Visitors/Volunteers – Visitors and volunteers should continue to complete a daily screener and not come into school if experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.
- Hand Hygiene – Staff and students are encouraged to continue practicing good hand hygiene (handwashing or use of hand sanitizer) to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 and other germs.
It is important to note that the revised Health and Safety Protocols may need to adjust in the event that an “outbreak” is determined for a specific school or the district/county has a high COVID-19 infection rate. The district will continue to monitor district/county/state data to determine if there is a need to adjust Health and Safety Protocols. School nurses will work with the district and Division of Public Health to determine if an outbreak is occurring at a school and the necessary response.
With the end of Delaware’s State of Emergency, the Division of Public Health is moving to “a more routine infection control model”. We acknowledge that this change makes some individuals extremely happy but creates a sense of anxiety for others. While the use of masks is now optional in school and on transportation, we encourage all families to make an individualized decision regarding personal mask usage that best meets their needs. Families are encouraged to discuss their individual concerns with their school nurse or principal or medical health provider.
We want to thank you for your continued support of prioritizing the Health and Safety of our students and staff.