NYSDOH CONTACT TRACING PLAN

  • Introduction: 

    As required by the guidance issued by the New York State Department of Health, school districts must notify the state and local health department immediately upon being informed of any positive COVID-19 diagnostic test result by an individual within school facilities or on school grounds, including students, faculty, staff, and visitors.

    In the case of an individual testing positive, the school district must develop and maintain plans to support local health departments in tracing all contacts of the individual, in accordance with the protocols, training, and tools provided through the New York State Contact Tracing Program.

    Confidentiality must be maintained as required by federal and state laws and regulations. Responsible Parties must cooperate with all state and local health department contact tracing, isolation,and quarantine efforts.

    In accordance with this guidance, the Jamestown City School District has established the following plan for contact tracing.

    Daily Health Screening:

    If a student or staff member experiences any of the following symptoms, they should not come to school. They must remain home and obtain medical guidance:

    • Temperature 100.0 degrees Fahrenheit or higher
    • Sore throat
    • New cough that causes difficulty breathing 
    • Diarrhea, vomiting, or abdominal pain
    • Severe headache, especially with a fever

    Staff will be required to complete a daily online or paper COVID Daily Health Screening Survey. Parents will be required to confirm that they complete daily screening at home, and that they will not send their child to school if they present with any possible symptoms.

    Students who ride the bus will have their temperature taken by district personnel before boarding the bus.  Students with a temperature of 100.0 degrees or higher will not be allowed to board the bus.  All other students will have their temperatures taken upon arrival at school.  If a student’s temperature is more than 100 degrees, he/she will be referred to an isolation area supervised by the school nurse for further screening and evaluation.

    If Students or Staff become Ill with Symptoms of COVID-19 at School:

    Any student or staff member who presents with a temperature, signs of illness, and/or a positive response to the health screening questionnaire to be sent directly to a dedicated isolation area where a secondary assessment will be completed by the school nurse. Students will be supervised in the isolation area while awaiting transport home and will be separated by at least 6 feet. Students will be escorted from the isolation area to their parent/guardian. Students or staff will be referred to a healthcare provider and provided resources on COVID-19 testing.

    Transporting Home:

    • Students will be escorted from the isolation area to the parent/guardian.
    • Staff will provide the parent/guardian with a student assessment checklist and COVID-19 parent letter. 
    • Symptomatic students or staff members must follow CDC’s Stay Home When You Are Sick guidance unless otherwise directed by a healthcare provider or the Chautauqua County Department of Health.
    • If the student or staff member has emergency warning signs such as trouble breathing, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, new confusion, inability to arouse, bluish lips or face, the district will call 911 and notify the operator that the person may have COVID-19.

    Return to School after Illness:

    The district has established protocols and procedures, in consultation with the local health department(s), about the requirements for determining when individuals, particularly students, who screened positive for COVID-19 symptoms can return to the in-person learning environment at school. This protocol includes:

    • If they have been diagnosed with another condition/not diagnosed with COVID-19:
      • Healthcare provider written note stating they are clear to return to school,
      • Students must be afebrile and off of pain reducing medication for at least 24 hours,
      • Symptoms have improved.
    • If student/staff have symptoms consistent with, are diagnosed with, or test positive for COVID-19:
      • It has been at least ten days since the individual first had symptoms.
      • It has been at least three days since the individual’s symptoms improved, including cough and shortness of breath.
      • It has been at least three days since the individual has had a fever, without using fever reducing medicine.
      • Must have a written note clearing a person to return to school.

    The district will refer to DOH’s “Interim Guidance for Public and Private Employees Returning to Work Following COVID-19 Infection or Exposure” regarding protocols and policies for faculty and staff seeking to return to work after a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19 or after the faculty or staff member had close or proximate contact with a person with COVID-19.

    The district requires that individuals who were exposed to the COVID-19 virus complete quarantine and have not developed symptoms before returning to in-person learning. The discharge of an individual from quarantine and return to school will be conducted in coordination with the local health department.

    COVID-19 Testing:

    If there is a confirmed case of COVID-19 within the school, the district will follow the direction of the Chautauqua County Department of Health. 

    If a student or staff member has confirmed or suspected exposure to COVID-19, they are to follow health department guidance on quarantine and isolation. As it is not currently recommended that schools perform testing for COVID-19, the district will refer staff or students with possible symptoms to their own healthcare provider, urgent care center or other locations that are approved to administer testing for COVID-19.

    Testing must be ordered by a healthcare provider and can be performed at UPMC Chautauqua/WCA, The Chautauqua Center at 107 Institute St. Jamestown, NY and WellNOW Urgent Care at 15 S. Main St. Jamestown NY.  The COVID Hotline at 1-866-604-6789 can provide additional information. The district will work in partnership with the Chautauqua County Health Department to identify and refer staff or students to an appropriate source for testing. 

    If a student or staff member becomes symptomatic with COVID-19 symptoms during quarantine or isolation they will follow the guidelines above for managing illness and return to school.

    In the event that a large-scale testing will need to be conducted at the school, the district administration will work with the following providers:

    Christine Schuyler, Chautauqua County Commissioner of Social Services and Public Health Director

    Contact Tracing:

    The district will notify the state and local health department immediately upon being informed of any positive COVID-19 diagnostic test result by an individual within school facilities or on school grounds, including students, faculty, staff, and visitors of the district. 

    To assist the local health department with tracing the transmission of COVID-19, the district has developed and maintained a plan to trace all contacts of exposed individuals in accordance with protocols, training, and tools provided through the New York State Contact Tracing Program.  

    Districts may assist with contact tracing by:

    • Keeping accurate attendance records of students and staff members
    • Ensuring student schedules are up to date 
    • Keeping a log of any visitor which includes date and time, and where in the school they visited
    • Assisting the local health departments in tracing all contacts of the individual in accordance with the protocol, training, and tools provided through the NYS Contact Tracing Program

    If/when COVID-19 cases are discovered in the school, the district will consult with the Chautauqua County Health Department for appropriate actions.

    Confidentiality must be maintained as required by federal and state laws and regulations. School staff should not try to determine who is to be excluded from school based on contact without guidance and direction from the local health department. 

    School Closures:

    A closure refers to contingency plans, protocols, and procedures for decreasing the scale or scope of in-person education and/or closing the school. The district will collaborate with the Chautauqua County Department of Health to determine the parameters, conditions or metrics (e.g., increased absenteeism or increased illness in-school community) that will serve as early warning signs that positive COVID-19 cases may be increasing beyond an acceptable level. 

    At a minimum, the plan will incorporate the following:

    • Some conditions may warrant the district, in consultation with state and local health departments, to reduce in-person education or closing the school and plan for an orderly closure; such conditions may include:
    • Schools in New York will close if the regional infection rate rises over 9% after Aug. 1. Schools will close if the 7-day rolling average of the infection rate is above 9%.
    • Our region of New York is currently in Phase 4 of reopening. Because of this, the district can reopen if the daily infection rate remains below 5%, using a 14-day average, unless otherwise directed from the Chautauqua County Department of Health. 
    • If the infection rate rises about 9%, the district must wait until the 14-day average is below 5%
    • Once schools open at Phase 4 with below 5% for a 14-day rolling average, schools can remain open even if the rate continues to rise until it reaches 9% for a 7-day average.
    • The district will be notified by the Chautauqua County Department of Health on the situation.
    • Administrators will consider closing school if absentee rates impact the ability of the school to operate safely. 
    • The district may choose to modify operations prior to closing to help mitigate a rise in cases. If infection rates are rising above 5%; consider modifying school operations for medically vulnerable students and staff if they are participating in in-person activities. We will consult with our medical director and the Chautauqua County Department of Health when making such decisions.
    • The district will determine which operations will be decreased or ceased and which operations will be conducted remotely; include a process to conduct orderly closures which may include phasing, milestones, and involvement of key personnel.

File DOWNLOAD