Earlier this year, District staff had the opportunity to respond to a brief, pulse-check survey. The survey was designed to get general input about what the District does well, and where we need improvement.
An area that employees felt we could most improve is in listening to your input and acting on it. The Circuit is a direct response to that. It is not a newsletter. It is a two-way communication tool. While we will drop some updates around the edges, each monthly issue will be built around asking for your input on one, very specific issue or question via the Rapid Poll. Then the following month The Circuit will have a response to that feedback. We will summarize what we heard from you and communicate any actions that were taken as a result.
Check back at this page for continuous results and responses.
May 2021 Rapid Poll Summary
Topic: COVID safety in District buildings
Strategic Plan Focus Area: Health and Wellbeing
Last month we asked you about COVID safety. Here are the results:
- 171 total poll responses
- Representation from all 18 buildings
- 89% of responding staff feel safe inside our buildings
When asked (Question 3) what improvements can be made to keep buildings safe:
- 39 total staff members selected better air circulation
- 31 said improve social distancing
- 25 people chose better mask enforcement
- 17 said better safety training
- 16 said more safety supplies
On May 10 Patt Komar sent to all staff results of air flow studies of all buildings:
We have received the results for all our buildings which can be found on our website at: Air Changes per Hour Study – David Douglas School District
We had 87 open-ended comments in all, with 36 of them essentially saying that protocols and staff are working well and people feel safe. The remaining 51 comments were spread among a couple dozen areas.
The 2 largest number of comments about the same topic:
Positive Case Communications
We had a few comments/questions about notifying staff and communities when there is a positive case identified within a school. We follow communication guidance from the state and Multnomah County Health Dept. Here’s the process:
- Positive COVID cases are reported to the schools directly through parents, staff, or through our Local Public Health Authority (LPHA). All reported cases are confirmed through the LPHA records. If we have a confirmed positive case within one of our school cohorts, we work with our lead nurse consultant from the Communicable Disease Team (LPHA and Multnomah Educational Service District) to identify all students and staff who are in the same cohort/s as the positive staff/student. This is done through cohort attendance records.
- Once the cohort/s have been identified, we work with our lead nurse consultant and health department to confirm the positive case, dates of possible school exposure, the required quarantine period and then communicate with all staff and students in the impacted cohorts.
- We also send a letter to the school’s general population notifying them of a positive COVID exposure in the school community. The identification of the individual with a positive COVID case is highly protected medical information. Careful steps are taken to give the community the information they need while keeping this person’s identity confidential.
- All quarantined staff and students are monitored for the development of COVID-related symptoms during the quarantine period.
A handful of staff wondered if we could require all staff and/or all eligible students and visitors to be vaccinated. The legality of whether we can require vaccines is untested, though we know some public universities are doing so. We are choosing to not require it at this time. We recognize that, while they were thoroughly tested and proven safe and effective, the vaccines were approved under emergency use, which may cause apprehension among some. In addition, we would want to include our bargaining units in any discussions about such a requirement.
The vast majority of our staff is now fully vaccinated. Combined with social distancing and continued mask wearing, we believe our schools are safe. We did hear from some staff who believe social distancing and mask wearing mandates are not being fully enforced, and we ask that all staff please continue honoring and enforcing these practices for everybody in the buildings.