COVID-19: Our Plan

Last Updated: 9/14/2021 6:30 PM

Posted August 6, 2021

Our Plan

As we continue to navigate through the pandemic, our objectives for the 2021-2022 school year include welcoming all children to their classrooms, keeping all children learning in their classrooms, and caring for the academic, social, and emotional needs of the students of Wyoming City Schools.

Use of Masks

In May, we shared the COVID-19 mitigation measures that we anticipated using during the 2021-2022 school year, including the use of face coverings as directed by public health authorities. Over the past few weeks, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Ohio Department of Health (ODH), and Hamilton County Public Health (HCPH) have updated their guidance on the use of face coverings in K-12 schools. All are in support of the use of face coverings in K-12 schools:

  • CDC recommends universal indoor masking for all staff, students, and visitors to K-12 schools, regardless of vaccination status

  • Per ODH, universal mask usage in classroom settings allows unvaccinated students and staff to bypass quarantine, ensuring a less fractured learning environment

  • HCPH supports schools that choose to implement universal face coverings

In order to accomplish our objective to keep all children learning in their classrooms as safely and consistently as possible, Wyoming City Schools will start the school year with universal masking for all students, staff members, and visitors inside our school buildings.

Additionally:

  • All students and staff will be required to wear masks while riding school transportation (daily routes, transportation related to extracurriculars, etc.).

  • Students will remove their masks when eating lunch in their cafeteria. Social distance will be maximized at lunchtime but it is anticipated that students will be sitting within six feet of each other. We will use portable air cleaners in our smaller cafeterias and follow the steps recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in all spaces as much as possible.

  • During athletics and other extracurricular activities, this masking plan will also be in place with masks worn indoors with the exception of practice and competition times. Masking and social distancing will be used to the extent possible during indoor sports and other indoor activities, such as band and theater, to protect students who are not fully vaccinated. Students should refrain from these activities when they have symptoms consistent with COVID-19. Coaches and advisors will remain masked while indoors. All indoor spectators and audience members are required to wear a mask upon entering our facility and required to wear a mask while inside our school buildings. Masks are not required for outdoor events. Click here to read the Wyoming City Schools Athletics COVID-19 Guidelines.

  • Mask use will be optional while students and staff are outdoors before, during, or after school and during outdoor recess or other outdoor activities. School buildings will be establishing more specific protocols for transition times within the building and during arrival and dismissal.

  • All visitors are required to wear a mask upon entering and while inside our school buildings. Masks are not required outside school buildings.

  • A teacher may, at times, remove their mask when it is educationally necessary as part of their specialized role, such as speech and language therapy.

  • At times when no students are present, staff members may wear a mask based upon their vaccination status. Wyoming City Schools is supportive of vaccinated individuals who choose to wear face coverings due to community transmission rates or any other reason.

Additional Prevention Measures

Additionally, we will continue to implement the following mitigation measures:

  • Maintain the setup of our classrooms and shared spaces to maximize physical distancing to the greatest extent possible

  • Supply hand sanitizer and continue hand hygiene practices

  • Clean and disinfect our facilities

  • Monitor and maintain our heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems to ensure proper operation and indoor air quality; continue the proper use of MERV 9-11 filters in systems and targeted use of portable high-efficiency particulate air cleaners; and introduce outdoor air when and where appropriate

  • Partner with HCPH to perform contact tracing in combination with isolation and quarantine

  • Communicate about COVID-19 cases found in our buildings

  • Enforce limits of 2 students per seat on buses when possible

Daily Symptom Assessment

To keep COVID-19 infections out of schools, it is essential that students, families, staff, and visitors monitor their health on a daily basis and stay home when sick. We will not use Daily Home Health Screening Forms this year. Anyone who has symptoms of infectious illness, such as cold, flu or COVID-19, should stay home and seek testing and care.

Monitoring & Reporting

Staff, students, and families are asked to self-report to their school clinic staff if they:

  • Are having symptoms of COVID-19

  • Are being tested for COVID-19

  • Test positive for COVID-19

  • Are exposed to someone with COVID-19 within the last 14 days

Vaccination

Achieving high levels of COVID-19 vaccination among eligible staff, students, and household members is one of the most critical strategies to help schools safely resume full operations.The vaccines have proven to be exceptionally effective at preventing serious illness and death, even when people contract the Delta variant. If you or your child are eligible to be vaccinated, please get vaccinated. Vaccination is the best way to protect your family, friends, colleagues, and yourself.

Weekly Evaluation

We will continue to monitor public health guidance, virus mutations and evolving science, legislative action, community transmission rates, and our own school-based data, including case counts, vaccination rates, and more. When an adjustment to our mitigation strategies is advisable, we will implement and communicate any changes as quickly as possible.

During this pandemic, we have learned so much and proven to be flexible, resourceful, and resilient. We have seen the extraordinary ways that our Wyoming school community works together to celebrate successes and support each other. We're looking forward to continuing to partner with our entire community to grow, support, and celebrate each student in Wyoming City Schools.