2021-2022 School Year

Guidelines and Protocols for the upcoming school year.

Return to School Plan

Health Guidelines & Requirements

The Maroa-Forsyth Board of Education, administration, and MFEA collaborated to create this Return to School Plan. This plan was created knowing that information is constantly changing and will require changes as new requirements and mandates are issued. On August 4, 2021, a mask mandate was issued by an executive order by Governor Pritzker for all students PK-12 in public and private schools in the State of Illinois regardless of vaccination status. As a mandate it is required that all students, staff, and visitors must wear an appropriately fitting face mask while indoors at school. Once this mandate has been lifted or changed a new set of school guidance will be distributed.

COVID-19 Protocols

The Maroa-Forsyth CUSD #2 has adopted this Return to School Plan for 2021-2022. The transmission rate for Macon County (as of July 31, 2021) is 6% on a 7-Day Rolling Average. The CDC Guidelines released on July 9th, 2021 recommendations were utilized to make this plan. The Maroa-Forsyth CUSD #2 has adopted this plan on August 9, 2021, and the administration, teachers, and all other staff have been directed to implement this plan.

On August 4th, Governor Pritzker issued an executive order mandating masks be worn by all students, staff, and visitors in schools. After this mandate is lifted a new plan will be released to all families, staff, and the community.

If the current Phase for the region or county is changed the Maroa-Forsyth CUSD #2 will follow all requirements. If any school, classroom, or program hosted or sponsored by the Maroa-Forsyth CUSD #2 is considered an outbreak we will cooperate with the Macon County Health Department and the Illinois Department of Public Health on the necessary steps to ensure the health and wellness of our students.

A student presenting with any one of the following symptoms requires the student to stay home and/or be sent home:

  • Fever >100.4
  • Fatigue Muscle or body aches
  • Headache Shortness of breath
  • Cough (that is not documented as asthma or allergies)
  • Sore throat
  • New loss of sense of taste or smell
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Student is unable to participate in normal daily activities

Who should consider getting tested for COVID-19?

  • Anyone with Positive Symptom Screen for common symptoms at the discretion of a healthcare provider.
  • Anyone with known, prolonged (>15 minutes) close contact (within 6 feet) with positive COVID 19 case WITHOUT face covering should be tested.

Full-Time Homebound Remote Instruction

  • It is recommended that immunocompromised or students with chronic conditions that can be worsened if exposed to COVID students consult their medical provider prior to attending school to determine if there is a need for these students to receive homebound instruction during the 2021-2022 school year. Each case for medically requested Full-time Homebound Instruction will be considered individually.
  • Students on Full-time Homebound Instruction with a medically fragile person living in their household must have the same form completed by the physician of the medically fragile person and returned to school.
  • Full-time Homebound Remote Instruction will take place through an online learning platform. The lessons and assignments will be completed by a third party provider and not a Maroa-Forsyth Teacher.
  • Students that are on Full-time Homebound Instruction will be required to make a semester commitment. During the first semester a letter will be sent to determine if you wish to continue Full-time Homebound Remote Instruction for second semester.

Quarantine Absence Policy

  • A student who has been quarantined by the Macon County Health Department or is quarantining due to an exposure to a positive COVID-19 case will follow the absence policy as indicated in our student handbooks.
  • Students will be able to receive assignments through Google Classroom and will have the number of days they are absent plus one to return assignments.
  • Students should email their teachers questions while they are absent.
  • COVID-19 Test Result Guidance
  • COVID-19 Test Results Pending: A student that has been tested for COVID-19 should not return to school until notified of their results.
  • COVID-19 test positive: A student who tests positive for COVID-19 will be required to isolate per the County Health Department. The MCHD will provide more specific information.
  • COVID-19 test negative: A student that tests negative for COVID-19 may return to school once they have been fever free for 24 hours, without taking fever-reducing medication (ie Tylenol, Advil, etc) and/or have been 24 hours without vomiting/diarrhea. Please refer to IDPH Communicable Diseases in School Guidelines.
  • Not Tested for COVID-19: If any one of the following symptoms are present: Fever (>100.4), fatigue, body aches, headache, shortness of breath, cough, sore throat, new loss of sense of taste or smell, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and/or abdominal pain. The student should stay home at least 24 hours with no fever (without fever-reducing medications) and improvement of other symptoms-whichever is longer. Testing for COVID-19 is recommended by IDPH with any one of these symptoms.
  • Close Contact of COVID-19+ Individual: If a student is considered to be a close contact of an individual that has tested positive for COVID-19, the guardians will be contacted by the school to notify the family of the student’s exposure to a positive COVID-19 case. If students or staff have been fully vaccinated they do not need to quarantine due to a positive Covid-19+ exposure. If your child has not been vaccinated it is recommended to contact the Macon County Health Department for more information.
  • Other diagnosis (not COVID): A student who is diagnosed with an alternate clinical diagnosis or laboratory confirmed condition (ie norovirus, strep throat) should follow provider directions/treatment and return to school per policies and IDPH Communicable Diseases in School Guidelines. A physician’s note will be required to return to school.

Visitor and Vendor Policy

To the greatest extent possible, visitors will be restricted to authorized personnel only. Visitors and vendors are required to have an appointment and check in at the respective office.

Parents who need access to their children are to call the building office upon their arrival and remain in their vehicle until their children are brought to them. Students who are being picked up from school should call the school office in advance and the student will be waiting in the office and be able to exit when the parent or guardian arrives at school.

Maroa-Forsyth School District #2 will limit access to school facilities to all parents, families and visitors to the greatest extent possible. Parents and guardians who need to drop off items for their children must contact building offices prior to doing so.

If a mask mandate is in effect, either issued by the State of Illinois or local requirement, all visitors and vendors will be required to wear a mask at all times while in the school buildings.

Other Methods to Prevent Spread of COVID-19

  • Individual
  1. Proper wearing of a face mask is recommended
  2. Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  3. Stay home when you are sick.
  4. Cover your cough or sneeze into your elbow or a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. Follow with hand hygiene.
  5. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth. If you do, wash your hands afterwards. Wash hands often with soap and water (20 seconds).
  6. If soap is unavailable, use hand sanitizer (60-95% alcohol based).
  7. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe daily (ex: playground equipment, door handles, sink handles, drinking fountains, toys, desks).
  8. Work with school counselors to promote ways to decrease fear, stigma, anxiety and address social emotional needs
  • Environmental
  1. High touch surface cleaning with disinfectant noted to kill COVID19.
  2. Routine environmental cleaning; clean high traffic areas (bathrooms, cafeteria, gym, office) and health office daily.
  3. Post signage throughout campus encouraging frequent handwashing.
  4. Hand sanitizer dispensing units throughout each building.
  5. Increase ventilation - keep windows open when possible, use fans to circulate air.

Personal Protective Equipment for other Individuals within the School

Face Coverings and P.P.E.

Face coverings are recommended to be worn at all times, even when social distancing is maintained by any individual present in any building regardless of vaccination status. All students and staff are required to wear a face covering when being transported in any school vehicle (bus, van, or driver’s education car).

What Constitutes a Face Covering/Additional Resources

For purposes of this section, “face covering” means a cloth face covering, N95 mask, surgical mask, or other material that fully covers the nose and mouth and is approved by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. If a mask mandate is put in place more information will be sent out regarding what requirements are and enforcement.

Consequences for Violating Policy if Masks Become Mandated

An individual’s refusal to wear a face covering in accordance with this policy shall constitute a violation of the District’s applicable rules of conduct, and may subject the individual to disciplinary action and/or prevent the individual from entering the District’s buildings, facilities or transportation vehicles until the individual complies with this policy. Face covering designs and images must comply with the District’s Student Appearance Policy and must not disrupt the educational process, interfere with the maintenance of a positive teaching/learning climate, or compromise reasonable standards of health, safety and decency. The Superintendent or designee shall apply and enforce this policy.

Continuous Monitoring of Local District Data

The District administration will continually monitor our building level data. Decisions will be made based on our building level data as feasible. This includes requirements such as mask mandates, changes to mitigation practices, and school closures.

Communicable Disease Monitoring

Internal

  • RN/LPN will monitor school absentee rates.
  • Document staff and visitor visits into each building.
  • Tracking processes to monitor individuals out sick from school will be maintained by the school nurse.
  • If 10% of the student population, whether it is across a division or entire student population, calls out sick for similar symptoms it must be reported to the MCDPH.
  1. This also applies to faculty/staff illness absences.
  2. If 10% out sick, it may be recommended partial closure to clean and disinfect the entire school for 2 days.

External

  • Refer to above "Community NPI Recommendations”
  • Maintain ongoing monitoring of local, national, and global health trends.
  1. Continue to follow up-to-date communications from the MCDPH, IDPH, CDC, WHO, Office of the Governor, and ISBE regarding community-specific communicable disease concerns, planning, and interventions.

Considerations for Closure of School

  • Correspond with IDPH and CDC guidelines regarding interventions when considering school closure and guidance.
  • MCDPH will be notified when there is a concern with a number of absences due to similar symptoms. Superintendent makes the final decision regarding school closure in consultation with the County Health Department.
  • Ensure communication with parents of medications in school about retrieval, storage, or destruction options. Chart communications in electronic health record.

Campus-wide Considerations for School Administration

  • In the event of ongoing/prolonged community transmission of COVID-19, evaluate community NPls.
  • Maintain 3-foot social distancing/spacing of students in classrooms and in common areas (staggering or limiting number of students in one area such as cafeteria, gym, or playground) to the greatest extent possible.
  • Limit mixing between groups as possible.
  • Restrict nonessential visitors, volunteers, and activities.
  • Consider staggering drop off times or locations and limit direct contact with parents as much as possible.
  • Limit sharing of food, utensils, art supplies, and electronics. Keep a child's belongings separated from others. Use of prepackaged food and supplies recommended.
  • Support faculty, staff, and students who require or choose to have prolonged periods of absenteeism due to community transmission of virus and/or immunocompromised systems. Support other staffing departments in the new climate upon return to school, such as custodial services and new guidelines for cleaning and PPE procedures.
  1. Evidence shows that districts composed of multiple attendance centers, like Maroa-Forsyth CUSD #2, should determine if a class or grade level closure is warranted or the suspension of commons areas rather than closing an entire school. Per research, this has a smaller mitigation effect, but does lead to reduction of a large-scale outbreak.
  2. For additional guidance on school areas and concerns, please refer to ISBE & IDPH transition joint guidance document for specific recommendations

Appendix

Maroa-Forsyth School Families, We are excited to welcome your student back to school this fall. The health and safety of our students, teachers and staff are very important to us. We need your assistance to help prevent and control the spread of disease in our schools.

If your student is exhibiting any one of the following symptoms they should stay home:

  • Fever >100.4
  • Fatigue Muscle or body aches
  • Headache Shortness of breath Cough (that is not documented as asthma or allergies)
  • Sore throat
  • New loss of sense of taste or smell
  • Nausea, Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Student is unable to participate in normal daily activities
  • Any other COVID-19 symptoms identified by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) or Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH).

Students with these symptoms should stay home until the symptoms clear and be fever free for at least 24 hours (without taking fever-reducing medications) and have improvement of other symptoms-whichever is longer. Testing for COVID is recommended (see notes above about when testing in recommended versus when it is not). If a student and/or family member tests positive for COVID, they may return to school when released by the County Department of Public Health. If your medical provider gives an alternate diagnosis, then a physician note is required stating when your student can return to school per school policies and IDPH Communicable Diseases in Schools guidance.

Any student presenting to the health office with the above symptoms will be isolated in the health office and parents called to pick up the child. Please make sure your emergency contact information is correct in Skyward. Students returning to school after an illness may be checked in by the school nurse to verify resolution of symptoms and criteria for discontinuation of quarantine have been met.

Face coverings are recommended for all students, staff and visitors inside the school building at all times. If a state or regional mandate for masks is issued or our local data is such that masks are required information will be sent home to parents/guardians.


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COVID-19 Exclusion Chart arrow_forward

Learn what will happen if a student tests positive for Covid-19 here.