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The Salida School District has released COVID-19 updates for the 2021-2022 school year. Last school season the Salida community pulled together during the COVID-19 pandemic to make in-person learning a reality for students. Following the dedicated success of last year, Salida Schools will be in-person again for the ‘21-’22 school year.

COVID-19 continues to be a reality for the community, yet the community is going into the new school year knowing far more than we did 12 months ago. The availability of a vaccine has drastically changed the battle against the disease.

Salida Schools strongly recommend a vaccine for everyone age 12 and over, who are eligible to be vaccinated. The vaccine has been proven to be safe and effective in preventing COVID-19 disease, especially severe illness and death. It also helps reduce the risk of people spreading the virus that causes COVID-19. Even as the Delta variant moves through our communities, the vaccine continues to prove effective at minimizing the impact of COVID-19.

Image courtesy of the Salida School District.

Vaccines are available locally at a number of convenient locations, for no cost. Those interested are asked to reach out to one of the school nurses if you would like help finding a vaccine clinic or distribution center.

The district continues to cooperate with public health officials to keep kids safely in school. Expect guidance and responses to change as needs shift. Schools will continue to adjust procedures as they monitor the impacts of COVID-19 within the community, and the district is committed to reducing invasive practices.

The district has a number of layers of protection in place to protect students, staff and the community. Each layer is not perfect on its own, yet together they help to minimize the spread of illness. These include:

  • The HVAC units have been updated with HEPA-type filters and the air flow in buildings has been increased to filter an entire building’s air supply every 10-12 minutes.
  • All students and staff will continue to use hand sanitizer to prevent the spread of germs and viruses.
  • The custodial team will continue to meet high standards of cleaning and disinfecting school buildings.
  • Rapid COVID-19 testing is available with school nurses. The nasal swab test is free, can be administered at the schools and read in 30 minutes.
  • All adult visitors to school buildings must wear a mask while on school property.

In addition to the above, at the beginning of the ‘21-’22 school year, the district has set the following student expectations:

  • All students are strongly encouraged to wear a mask as per current guidance.
  • In collaboration with public health, students can opt into a free, regular COVID testing program through their school to increase protection.
  • Everyone riding a bus to school will be required to wear a mask while on the bus per current Department of Transportation guidelines.

Most importantly says the school district:

  • If your child is sick, the District asks to keep them home. This goes beyond COVID-19. If someone has a fever or other symptoms of being sick, please help protect others by staying home. Your student will be sent home if they are symptomatic or have a fever. For non-COVID illnesses, students need to be symptom-free for 24 hours before returning to school.

Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash.

Superintendent Blackburn explained “Last year was a learning experience for all of us. Again this year, when we learn more about managing the risk of COVID-19, we will adjust our procedures, working towards greater normalcy for our students and community.”

Any student or staff member who tests positive for COVID-19 will follow isolation precautions at the time of infection. The District will continue to protect the privacy of students, staff and families, and will not share the name of an infected person; however, they will communicate any possible exposure at school with impacted families.

The district reassures parents that it will continue to listen to the experts and apply that information to make decisions for the community. The district welcomes community feedback on their response to COVID-19 with their leadership team. Click here to fill out a feedback form.