Dear CSD Families,
I hope each of you had an enjoyable Thanksgiving!
As you may have heard in the news, the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) and the Oregon Department of Education (ODE) announced two updates last week, including revisions to two K-12 outdoor face covering rules that impact schools and a new “test to stay” COVID-19 protocol.
Based on these changes, ODE will be updating their Ready Schools, Safe Learners Resiliency Framework and sharing this information with all Oregon school districts soon. Lane County Public Health (LCPH) will be providing guidance for outdoor masking and test to stay protocols for Lane County school districts. After we receive this additional information and guidance from ODE, OHA, and LCPH, we will evaluate and implement the changes necessary in our school procedures.
I will provide an update later this week as details are offered and plans develop. In the meantime, listed below is some preliminary information from ODE/OHA regarding the face covering rule revisions and the proposed testing protocols.
Outdoor Face Coverings
The revisions to OAR 333-019-1025 and OAR 333-0191015 maintain mask requirements for indoor settings while removing the requirement to wear face coverings outdoors in both K-12 settings and where people from separate households gather.
Test to Stay Protocol
Test to stay protocols are designed to lessen the burden of quarantine on students, families, and staff by providing unvaccinated students and staff an opportunity to continue to participating in in-person instruction during their quarantine period.
- Test to stay is available only for unvaccinated asymptomatic individuals who were exposed in indoor and outdoor school settings where universal masking is fully in place. Indoor and outdoor exposures are reviewed for proximity and duration of exposure.
- Test to stay requires unvaccinated individuals to be tested twice during the 7 days following exposure. First, as soon as the exposure has been identified, with a second test occurring between days 5-7 following the exposure.
- Test to stay is a form of modified quarantine, which allows individuals to attend school during their 7-day quarantine period. However, individuals participating in test to stay are expected to maintain quarantine outside of classroom settings.
- Students and staff participating in test to stay may participate in school-related extracurricular activities during their 7-day quarantine period but must wear a face covering at all times during these activities.
Note: Test to stay may not be used following extracurricular exposures because masking in these settings is optional and the risk of transmission within the cohort is greater. Similarly, test to stay may not be used following community or in-home exposures.