COVID-19 Health and Safety
Updated August 18, 2022
The District will start the 2022-2023 school year as a mask-recommended environment for all PK-12 students, staff and visitors in our buildings.
- Masks Following Quarantine/Exclusion - Under current CDC guidelines, students and staff returning from quarantine after five days are encouraged to wear a mask until their quarantine period is complete.
- Masking may be necessary in specific classrooms or activities when required as a reasonable accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, or the Missouri Human Rights Act. Such decisions will be made in accordance with the procedures required under the applicable law.
Current public health guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention no longer includes guidance for social distancing.
All students will return to normal lunch service in their respective areas; Lunch options/choice items will be available in each cafeteria.
Another school year in the midst of a pandemic brings challenges, opportunities and last-minute changes, requiring patience and flexibility. As changes arise, Clayton will communicate using its automated system for phone calls, emails and texts. Please make sure your contact information is up to date in PowerSchool, as well as your emergency contacts, and watch for updates to ensure you stay informed.
- Positive Cases - Positive cases reported to the District will be logged and tracked (by school) on the District’s data dashboard.
- Three or More Positive Cases in a Class - The District will send a notification to families if/when there are three or more positive cases in the same class/classroom and strongly encourage masking in that class.
Exclusion from School
The District will comply with lawfully-issued Orders and Guidance from the County Health Department, the Missouri Department of Health and Human Services, the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and/or the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education with respect to students and staff who test positive for COVID-19 or who have been exposed to COVID-19 cases, in accordance with the Orders and Guidance that exist when such positive test or exposure to a positive case occurs.
- Positive COVID-19 Cases - A student (PK-12 students) or staff member who tests positive will need to stay at home for a minimum of five days. On day 6 (or thereafter), if they have NO symptoms or their symptoms are resolving, they can return to school if all of the following apply:
- They have been fever-free for at least 24 hours without using any fever-reducing medication. If they have a fever, they must continue to stay home until the fever resolves.
- They do not have a runny nose.
- They have no more than a minimal, non-productive cough (i.e., not disruptive; not coughing up phlegm).
- Current CDC guidance recommends students and staff continue to wear a well-fitting mask around others at home and in school/public through day 10, regardless of when they end their 5-day isolation period.
- Exposure to COVID-19 Cases - Regardless of vaccination status, students or staff who are exposed to a positive case of COVID-19 may continue coming to school/work, should monitor for symptoms and take appropriate actions if they develop any symptoms of COVID-19. As testing remains a key mitigation strategy, we encourage antigen (rapid test) testing on day 5 or shortly thereafter.
The District maintains a COVID-19 Data Dashboard on its website. The Dashboard tracks active and cumulative cases of COVID-19 by building.
Continuity of Instruction
The District will work to support the learning of students who are quarantined due to exposure to COVID-19.
Vaccinations and Testing for Students and Staff
The District will offer on-site testing and vaccinations for students and staff throughout the school year.
Cleaning/Maintenance/Indoor Air Quality
Schools will follow cleaning procedures recommended by the CDC, using EPA-registered disinfectants. Electrostatic sprayers are used to spread disinfectant on surfaces and in hard-to-reach spaces. Frequently touched surfaces are being cleaned multiple times during the day.
The HVAC systems in each of the District’s schools are designed to maximize outdoor air intake (fresh air) in each building while also managing temperature and humidity as too much of either one can promote the growth of mold and mildew and make the building and its occupants uncomfortable.
In addition to the filtering systems already in place, the District has installed Needlepoint Bipolar Ionization systems at each school which will further enhance air purification in each building. In addition to significantly reducing the spread of viruses like the flu or common cold, testing has shown this system reduces the airborne amounts of SARS-CoV-2 by more than 99 percent.
Staff will be provided with face coverings and may be provided with other PPE according to their needs and job duties.
Wipes & Sanitizers
Hand sanitizing stations have been added throughout all buildings. Classrooms and offices will have hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes readily available for use on a regular basis throughout the day.
Handwashing and Respiratory Etiquette
Students will be encouraged to wash their hands often, including when entering classrooms, before lunch, after recess and after any activity outside of the classroom. We will take extra care to give students these opportunities to wash their hands during the school day. In locations where access to soap and water is limited, alcohol-based hand sanitizer will be available. A limited number of students will be allowed in the bathroom at the same time. See related health protocol video.
Students will also be taught and encouraged to use appropriate respiratory etiquette, such as:
- Covering a cough or sneeze by coughing and sneezing into a tissue or elbow;
- Disposing of tissue immediately in a nearby receptacle; and
- Washing/cleaning of hands and nearby surfaces.
Staff and students/families must use self-check measures to monitor their health closely for symptoms of COVID-19. Adults or children who are sick or display symptoms of COVID-19 must stay home to prevent the spread of illness. They must also keep their school office informed.
Sick Students and Staff
Students who come to the nurse’s office feeling sick may be sent home. Health services staff using the following decision tree when treating students ot staff with COVID-19 symptoms:
Visitor In Schools
The District will allow visitors during the school day.
Adjusting Events and Activities
Large gatherings such as school assemblies, dances and events may be restructured, rescheduled or canceled, as needed, in order to maintain social distancing guidelines, reduce the risk of exposure and meet capacity limits set by public health orders. Athletics and activities may be adjusted or canceled to comply with changing public health guidance.
Social Emotional Learning
The social emotional learning of staff and students is critical during school entry. Some students and staff will return with signs of trauma related to their experiences during this global pandemic. The Office of Student Services will be working with counseling teams, district social workers, and building teams to prepare resources and activities to deepen the social and emotional competencies of our community and create space where staff and students can process, heal, and ultimately build healthy, meaningful connections.