August 19, 2022
Health Office Update: New School Year 2022-2023
Dear parents and guardians,
Greetings from the Health Office. Although COVID-19 is still with us, we have gained valuable tools in decreasing its impact on the overall health and wellbeing of our Poly community. We will continue to utilize multiple layers of COVID-19 risk mitigation to prevent outbreaks, minimize missed school days, and protect students, faculty, and staff.
Indoor and outdoor face masking will be optional, unless under a health order (positive test or close contact). Please respect each community member’s personal preference about face coverings. If your child wears a mask during the school day, please be sure to pack extra masks in case they soil or lose theirs as masks are no longer provided to students by the school.
Up-to-date vaccinations (including booster doses, when eligible) are the most effective strategy to prevent outbreaks, serious illness, and disruption to school operations. They are strongly recommended for all eligible students, faculty, and staff. Vaccinations also provide an additional layer of protection for those who cannot be fully vaccinated, and those who are immunocompromised.
Our North and South Campuses will be open to Poly parents/guardians and invited visitors for school-related events and activities. Negative COVID-19 test attestations and a health screening form prior to arrival to campus is not required. COVID-19 vaccines are strongly recommended.
We expect all students, faculty, staff, and visitors to adhere to the school’s illness policy and parents/guardians to notify the Absence Line of the reason for their child’s absence. Please don’t send your child to school if they are sick.
Students who test negative for COVID-19 but have symptoms should remain home and test again in 24-48 hours to be sure they aren’t infected. If your child continues to test negative but remains symptomatic, they may have another virus/illness. They should remain home until their symptoms are resolving, and they are fever-free without medication for at least 24 hours. Please call your pediatrician if you have concerns about your child’s illness.
At-Home Test Kits
Your child(ren) should get tested when they have been exposed to COVID-19, have symptoms, before and after gatherings, and when they travel.
At-home tests can be ordered at no charge from the federal government at www.covidtests.gov
. Those with health insurance can receive eight free at-home tests each month for each insured member in their household. If you purchase an OTC test from a pharmacy, store or online retailer, and are charged for your test, keep your receipt and submit a claim to your insurance company for reimbursement.
Testing Positive for COVID-19 (or you suspect your child has COVID, regardless of vaccination status)
Notify the Absence Line with the reason for their absence and also notify the Health Office.
If eligible to leave isolation after day 5, your child must wear a highly protective mask indoors and outdoors for a full 10 days. The start date is the onset of symptoms or the first positive test.
Notifying Close Contacts
Following guidance from the Pasadena Public Health Department, Poly’s Health Office will notify families by Lower School classroom, grade level, and/or by activity if their child is a possible close contact for COVID-19.
A COVID-positive student and their family should do their best to help notify any close contacts in their child’s classrooms or similar size settings. A close contact is anyone within six feet of the infected student for 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period.
If your child was exposed to COVID-19, regardless of their vaccination status or if they’ve had a previous infection, you will need to do the following:
Watch for symptoms for 10 days.
Wear a highly protective mask indoors and outdoors for a full 10 days after the last date of exposure.
Test five days after exposure if asymptomatic; if symptomatic, test right away.
Poly will continue to adhere to guidance from the Pasadena Public Health Department, monitor public health conditions, and adapt school practices as necessary.
Thank you for continuing to show great flexibility and resilience as we work together to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus and other illnesses.