UPDATE TO COVID-19 FAQS: SYMPTOMS, ATTENDANCE, TESTING AS OF SEPTEMBER 30TH, 2021
The T/E School District Pandemic Team has updated the COVID-19 Response Frequently Asked Questions to include additional clarification and guidance on symptoms, student antigen testing protocol and school attendance. The full FAQs are available in the COVID-19 Resources section of the TESD website at www.tesd.net/COVID2122. It is important to note that these FAQs are general in nature, and the District encourages families to reach out to their school nurse with specific questions and situations. The updated information and resources are included below.
TESD continues to abide by the requirement to conduct contact tracing and report positive COVID-19 cases to the Chester County Health Department (CCHD). The guidance and resources available to the District continue to evolve.
The goal of this message is to provide responses for common scenarios being presented to our school nurses and the Pandemic Team.
If you still have questions after reviewing this information, please contact your child’s school nurse or the District COVID-19 feedback inbox at email@example.com.
Symptoms and School Attendance
What should I do if my child has one or more of the symptoms of COVID-19?
- Keep your child home from school and inform the school attendance office. The attendance office will inform the school nurse.
- Contact your child’s pediatrician for guidance and next steps.
- If your child has a symptom not otherwise explained they will almost certainly need to get a PCR test before returning to school.
My child has one or more of the symptoms listed but they also have a previously diagnosed, chronic condition. Can I send them to school?
No. Your child’s school nurse needs documentation of the chronic condition (migraines, allergies, etc.) before sending the student to school. Please contact your pediatrician and school nurse before sending your child to school.
My child has one or more of the symptoms listed, but I think it is due to another ailment such as allergies or a cold. My child does not have a previously diagnosed, chronic condition, or I have never reported a previously diagnosed, chronic condition to the school. Can I send my child to school?
No. Please contact your pediatrician to discuss the situation.
My fully vaccinated child is symptomatic and awaiting a test result, can I send them to school?
No. CCHD guidance continues to direct that anyone awaiting a test result should stay home and avoid contact with others.
A household member has COVID-like symptoms and is awaiting the results of a COVID test. My child does not have symptoms. Can I send my child to school?
As long as the child does not have symptoms they can attend school. If the household member tests positive, then any unvaccinated household contacts should stay home. When in doubt, keep your child home and contact your school nurse.
My child is partially vaccinated and has been identified as a close contact. Can they come to school, or should they quarantine?
Only fully vaccinated individuals do not need to quarantine after an exposure as long as they remain asymptomatic. If someone is partially vaccinated, they need to quarantine. If needed, please contact your child’s school nurse for quarantine details.
If my child is symptomatic and receives a negative result on a rapid antigen test, do they need a negative PCR test to return to school?
Yes. TESD continues to follow CCHD guidance on COVID-19 testing and a return to school. If a student is symptomatic and receives a negative rapid antigen test result, they will still need to get a confirmatory PCR test before being allowed back in school. The CCHD guidance, shown at the bottom of this page, outlines the response to a positive case as well as the impact on close contacts. TESD has confirmed this requirement with the CCHD. Please send evidence of the negative PCR test to your child’s school nurse.
Can the District conduct PCR testing?
The CCHD is supplying the District with PCR test kits and we anticipate being able to conduct PCR testing, when warranted, starting no later than Monday, October 11. The number of tests provided by the CCHD will determine how many PCR tests the District can conduct. In the meantime, families should continue to contact their child’s health care provider or other community resources for PCR testing. If you need assistance or have questions regarding a child’s return to school after COVID-19 testing, please contact your child’s school nurse.
How can I get a rapid antigen test for my child?
TESD can conduct rapid antigen testing in response to being a close contact, or if symptomatic. We continue to use Abbott Labs BINAX NOW tests to test students and staff who are eligible. There is no cost to families or staff. Testing is being conducted daily at Conestoga High School’s Teamer Field from 12 noon to 3 pm. No appointment is needed.
What do I need to bring to Teamer Field for a rapid antigen test?
We need a signed consent form, and a QR code to scan to make the process efficient. You can download the consent form at this link. You can download instructions on creating a QR code here.
What are the possible outcomes of rapid antigen testing and next steps?
-If the child has symptoms and receives a negative result on the rapid antigen test, they will need a confirmatory negative result on a PCR test before returning to school.
-If the child receives a positive result on an antigen test, it is treated as a true positive and they will need to follow the CCHD guidance of isolating for 10 days and not returning to school until they have been fever-free for 24 hours and are symptom-free.
-If the child does not have symptoms and receives a negative result on the antigen test, they may return to school.
Close Contacts and Quarantine
My child was exposed to someone who is positive, but my child is fully vaccinated. Do they need to quarantine?
No, provided your child does not present with any symptoms. If you wish to obtain a rapid antigen test for peace of mind, contact your school nurse.
My child was a close contact and has to quarantine. What is the earliest they can return to school?
If your child does not have symptoms, they can obtain a rapid antigen test on Day 5, 6 or 7 after exposure, and return to school on Day 8. The school nurse or building administrator will provide you with this date information.
Where can I get a rapid antigen test to exit quarantine?
The District is offering free antigen testing daily at Conestoga High School’s Teamer Field from 12 noon to 3 pm. No appointment is needed. See instructions above.
While there are many scenarios described here, none address my situation. Who do I contact?
Contact your school nurse to discuss your situation – 610-240-1305 (Valley Forge Middle)
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