January 2022 Health & Safety Update

Change in Quarantine Guidance
General Student Isolation / Quarantine Reduced to Five Days

On January 7, IDPH adopted CDC's new guidelines for isolation and quarantine for schools.

If your child is currently in isolation or quarantine and has a new return-to-school date, you will see that new date in PowerSchool soon, and will receive an email with that information.

Ex: If your child was asymptomatic and tested positive on Tuesday, January 4 or before, they should return to school on MONDAY, January 10. (Those who tested Wednesday, January 5 can return Tuesday, January 11, etc.)

New Test to Stay Procedures - Starting Monday, January 10

With the success of our winter break PCR testing, District 34 is adding PCR tests to our test-to-stay protocol for close contacts as well as those with mild symptoms.

The process for test-to-stay for all unvaccinated close contacts who have opted into SHIELD testing when exposure is in the school setting, as well as for those with mild symptoms (allergy symptoms, mild cold symptoms) is as follows:

  • Test with a BinaxNOW rapid test at school as soon as we identify them as close contact or they have symptoms. If they are negative, they can stay in school.

  • The student will receive four Ravina Health PCR tests to take home with instructions that parents must complete the online waiver (you only need to complete it one time). Your child will receive an information sheet that outlines your testing schedule:

  1. Test 1 taken the same evening as identified and dropped off at the drop box or collection bin at school* the next day
  2. Test 2 - 48 hours after test 1 and dropped off at school the next day
  3. Test 3 - 48 hours after test 2 and dropped off at school the next day
  4. Test 4 - 48 hours after test 3 and dropped off at school the next day

*Lyon, Attea and the D34 administration building have drop boxes outside. Other schools have collection bins inside the school.

We appreciate your help in managing the test-to-stay process so that we can meet our goal of keeping students in school, in person, as much as possible, in the safest environment possible.

Positive Case in Your Home?

If you experience a COVID case in your household, there are a few things you can do to keep your family healthy and increase our ability to keep your child in school when they are close contacts:

  • Isolate the positive case as best you can and maintain distancing as much as possible.
  • Wear masks. At this time, double masking or KN95 use is recommended. If you need additional masks for your family, please reach out to your school.
  • Keep windows open to increase air flow.
  • Reach out to your school health office if you have questions.
  • Get family members vaccinated/boosted when eligible. With the Omicron variant, data has shown that vaccinated individuals who test positive have mild cases, and vaccinated students have more options to remain in school when they are close contacts.