An individual associated with Harrison Middle School who was at the school last week tested positive for COVID-19 this week. Based on Maine CDC’s investigation, and because of the amount of time that passed between the individual being at the school and becoming symptomatic, Maine CDC has informed us that this is not a school-related case, that our staff and students are not considered “close contacts” (being within 6 feet of an infected person during the infectious period), that there is no need for contact tracing, quarantining, school closure, or implementing our enhanced cleaning protocols. Although Maine CDC also informed us that there was no need for us to notify the school community or any individual of this matter, we notified staff and families out of an abundance of caution and our desire to remain as transparent as possible whenever we receive notice of positive COVID-19 cases in our school community.
Upon learning of the confirmed positive test, we implemented our response protocol by involving our school nurse and communicating directly with the Maine Department of Education and the Maine CDC. In those communications, it was made clear to us that we should not close the school or any portion thereof, and we must avoid any measures that may allow others to identify the individual who tested positive. Please do not contact the school to try to make that determination. We must follow privacy laws and protect the confidentiality interests of every student and staff member, while also ensuring that we are protecting the health and well-being of all members of our school community.
Maine CDC assures us that no individuals at HMS are considered to be at risk for exposure at this time. We are committed to keeping our students and staff safe and appreciate the CDC’s guidance in this area.
Please be reminded of the steps we are taking to help prevent the spread of COVID-19:
· An expectation of daily health screenings for all students and staff members
· Face coverings worn by all individuals in the school
· Adherence to physical distancing guidelines
· Greater access and opportunities for hand washing and sanitizing
· Daily disinfecting of commonly touched surfaces, with deeper cleaning on Wednesdays and weekends
· Increased ventilation and air filtering
· Ionization of air-handling system
Your assistance in helping to reduce the spread of COVID-19 is greatly appreciated. For general COVID-19 questions, dial 211 (or 1-866-811-5695). You can also text your ZIP code to 898-211 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have symptoms of COVID-19, call a health care provider. More information can be found at www.maine.gov/dhhs/coronavirus or www.cdc.gov/coronavirus.