Faith Lutheran School is open and we are committed to keeping children and staff safe and healthy. The school board has met on several occasions to discuss steps and guidelines to ensure these healthy practices. The Washington State Department of Health as well as the CDC have issued guidelines on how to operate schools and child care centers safely during the COVID-19 pandemic, and we have designed our policies to follow these guidelines.
What health officials know about the virus changes frequently, and so does our state’s requirements and operations. We will notify families of any updates to school policies as we comply with evolving guidelines.
In short, the actions we are taking are:
- Health screenings, including a temperature check and a questionnaire
- Frequent handwashing, sanitizing, and disinfection routines
- Isolation space for those who become sick while at school
- Requirement that all teachers and staff be vaccinated
The COVID-19 vaccination is safe and effective, and it is recommended that everyone who is eligible receive the vaccination and boosters as soon as possible to help reduce the spread of the virus.
Symptoms and Isolation Guidelines
Faith Lutheran School is following the State Department of Health’s COVID-19 symptom decision tree for students who have any COVID-like symptoms. Symptoms are divided into two categories:
- If a student has a runny nose, nausea/vomiting/diarrhea, headache, fatigue, or a sore throat then they need to remain home but don’t need to get a COVID test for only one symptom lasting less than 24 hours.
- Students need to remain home and get tested if one symptom from any category lasts more than 24 hours, or in the case of multiple symptoms from the list above, or if displaying any of these symptoms: fever, muscle aches, shortness of breath, loss of taste or smell, or coughing.
Any individual who tests positive for COVID-19 with a viral test (Molecular (PCR/NAAT) or antigen, including self-tests) is required to follow isolation guidelines outlined below. A student, child, or staff who tests positive for COVID-19 is required to:
- Isolate at home or where they are currently residing, regardless of vaccination status.
- The individual may return after 5 full days of isolation if they are asymptomatic or their symptoms have improved and they have had no fever for the past 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medications. Day 0 is the first day of symptoms. For people without symptoms, day 0 is the day of the positive viral test. See the Isolation and Quarantine Calculator.
- Repeating initial tests does not change the isolation protocol; a positive test initiates the isolation protocol. Additionally, individuals who test positive using antigen or at-home tests towards the end of the full 5 days of isolation, and/or on days 6-10, are required to complete the 10 full days of isolation. Testing after day 10 is not recommended.
COVID-19 Mitigation Strategies
- Family members will check child(ren) in/out and answer health screening questions via Brightwheel on the school’s devices, which will be hanging outside.
- A teacher will take your child’s temperature before allowing them to enter the classroom.
- Masks are welcome but not required. As community levels change, we will follow the State’s masking requirement and both CDC and DOH recommendations.
- If you answered “yes” to any of the COVID symptoms at check-in, you will be asked to leave with your child and seek guidance from a healthcare professional.
As we have learned, the COVID-19 virus is ever changing and therefore, so are our COVID policies. Thank you for your understanding and patience.