To Our David Douglas Families,
We hope you and your students are avoiding the heat and enjoying the summer break so far. We know it is still early in the summer, but we want to provide some information about our plans for opening the new school year in September.
Both the State of Oregon and the federal Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have released their new COVID-19 safety guidance for schools. An overview of the Oregon Ready Schools, Safe Learners (RSSL) guidance was provided to the David Douglas School Board last week.
As required by the state, the David Douglas School District is planning to return to full-time, in-person instruction for all students every school day.
The health and safety of our students and staff are our highest priority. To protect everyone’s health, we will open schools using safety measures that we have all grown familiar with:
- Physical distancing
- Face coverings
- Ventilation and airflow
- Hand washing
- Staying home if ill or exposed to someone with COVID-19.
By far the best way to keep yourselves and everyone else protected is for all staff, all eligible students (ages 12 and up) and all family members to receive their COVID-19 vaccines. These free vaccines have proven incredibly effective at both preventing illness and preventing the spread of the virus.
In addition to keeping you safe, the vaccines also protect you from the consequences of any potential outbreak in a school. If a case of COVID-19 is discovered in a school, any non-vaccinated person who was exposed to the infected person may be required to quarantine for at least 2 weeks. However, those who have been vaccinated may not be required to quarantine and can continue to come to school every day.
There are many opportunities in our community to receive your vaccine. You can track those opportunities here.
However, we also recognize that not everyone is going to be vaccinated. Therefore, we will follow RSSL guidance by trying the best we can to create at least 3-feet of distance between people while indoors. But we know that this will not always be possible. So we will also follow RSSL advisory guidelines by requiring face coverings when students are present and indoors.
In addition, we will continue to encourage hand hygiene, keep indoor spaces well ventilated, cohort students when practical, offer rapid COVID testing for staff and students, and maintain a space in buildings to isolate staff or students who are showing signs of COVID-19.
We will continue to communicate with you in the coming weeks as the new school year approaches and as plans become more specific and/or change. We hope that COVID-19 cases continue to decline and that vaccination rates continue to climb. We encourage everyone to get themselves and their eligible students vaccinated before the school year begins.