New Quarantine and Isolation Guidance for Students
Dear Parents and Guardians,
Today, January 7, 2022, the Illinois Department of Public Health(IDPH), Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) and the DuPage County Health Department announced that they have adopted CDC guidance for PK-12 schools that halves the isolation and quarantine period. The Centers for Disease Control updated its guidance for P-12 schools on January 6.
As a result, effective immediately, Indian Prairie School District will implement the updated guidance. This means your child's return date may now change though you may have been told something differently earlier this week.
Today's announcement does not change the state of Illinois' mask requirement for anyone inside school buildings. The Governor's indoor mask mandate for school is still in effect until further notice.
Students who are currently impacted by isolation now have a revised return to school date. The day your child tested positive or first had symptoms is considered day zero. Your child can return to school on the sixth day after being notified of the test results or having symptoms. Please see the chart below as an example of when to send your child back to school.
Unvaccinated students and not boosted staff members who are close contacts are now required to quarantine for 5 days. The following is a table with the revised return to school dates.
Additional CDC and IPDH Information
In addition, I want to pass along information from IDPH and CDC related to quarantine and recommended isolation periods.
The summary information below is from the following PDF:
What is quarantine?
Quarantine means staying home for at least 5 days after exposure to someone diagnosed with COVID-19. This is because someone can be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 but may not show symptoms. Even though someone may not show symptoms, they can still spread the virus. Quarantine is different from isolation. Isolation is used by someone who has symptoms of COVID-19, or tests positive for the virus that causes COVID-19, even if they don't have symptoms. Isolation helps prevent transmission of the virus by separating people infected with the virus from those who are not infected.
How does this new isolation guidance impact staff and students if they test positive for COVID-19?
• Staff or students who test positive for COVID-19, regardless of vaccination status, should isolate for 5 days after onset of symptoms, or 5 days from specimen collection
date if no symptoms are present.
• Staff or students who test positive for COVID-19 and have no symptoms (or their symptoms are resolving) can be released from isolation after 5 days. To calculate the 5-day isolation period, day 0 is the first day of symptoms or specimen collection date if asymptomatic. If they continue to have fever or other symptoms have not improved after 5 days of isolation, they should wait to end isolation until they are fever-free for 24 hours and their other symptoms have improved.
• Schools should ensure that staff or students who test positive for COVID-19 also do the following:
1) Continue to wear a well-fitted mask around others (including at home) for 5 additional days after release from isolation. If unable to wear a mask when around others, the case should continue to isolate for a total of 10 days.
2) Avoid being around students or staff who are immunocompromised or at high risk for severe disease.
3) If masks need to be removed (e.g., for lunch), ensure 6 feet of physical distancing until 10 days after symptom onset or positive test.
How does the new quarantine guidance impact staff and students who are considered close contacts to someone who tested positive with COVID-19?
For the following groups...
• Ages 18 or older and have received all recommended vaccine doses, including boosters and additional primary shots for some immunocompromised people.
• Ages 5-17 years and completed the primary series of COVID-19 vaccines.
• Confirmed COVID-19 within the last 90 days (you tested positive using a viral test).
...Quarantine is not required. Wear a mask around others for 10 days. Test on day 5, if possible. If a person develops symptoms, they should immediately isolate until a negative test confirms symptoms are not caused by COVID-19.
For the following groups...
• Ages 18 or older and completed the primary series of recommended vaccine, but have not received a recommended booster shot when eligible.
• Received the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine (completing the primary series) over 2 months ago and have not received a recommended booster shot.
• Unvaccinated or have not completed a primary vaccine series.
...Stay home and mask around others for 5 days. After that, continue to wear a mask around others for 5 additional days. Test on day 5, if possible. If a person develops symptoms, they should immediately isolate until a negative test confirms symptoms are not caused by COVID-19.
Thank you for your continued support of our students and teachers. It's been an incredibly difficult year, but we will continue to push forward together.
If you have questions, please contact your Registered Nurse for more information. We know this changing information can be confusing and overwhelming; however, we know we can work together to support our students and staff.
Adrian B. Talley, Ed.D.