• What can I expect at school? Mitigation strategies
    Parkway Community Health Dashboard

    Frequently Asked Questions and Quarantine Guidelines

    We look forward to celebrating a new beginning this year and that we are back full-time, five days a week with more familiar learning experiences for our students and families.

    Our goals for this year are to keep everyone healthy and avoid disruptions to in-person learning as much as possible. In order to do this, we will need to have some safety measures in place to start the school year based on current recommendations and local health conditions.

    Parkway continues to use health guidance and recommendations consistent with the CDC and St. Louis County Health Department plans for K-12 schools and classroom settings. We routinely update our plans as health guidelines change.

    Through ongoing communication with the St. Louis County Department of Public Health, we collaborate to determine quarantines needed as a result of contact tracing investigations and consult with the department as needed related to school operations.

    The following plan will be updated as needed. It will continue to be reevaluated every six months starting in June 2021. Opportunities for the public to provide ongoing input to our plan are listed below.

    Thank you for partnering with us to keep our community safe as we look forward to a successful 2021-22 school year. Additionally, thank you for your ongoing understanding and support.

     

  • Pandemic Response Plan 21-22 

    Face Coverings

    Masks are required inside all Parkway schools and buildings until further notice.

    Masks are optional outdoors for all students and staff, including recess.

    Masks are optional for athletes while engaged in strenuous physical activity indoors.

    Masks are required on all forms of public transportation including school buses.

    Students will be expected to wear a mask unless there is a medical reason the face should not be covered or it hinders their ability to participate in the educational setting.

    Wearing a mask can also reduce quarantine time or eliminate it completely.

    The CDC and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend children wear masks in school, regardless of vaccination status, when there is high community transmission of cases locally. 

    Social Distancing

    In our schools and classrooms, seating and activities will allow for social distancing of at least three feet whenever possible.

    Students will be encouraged to use their own supplies and materials when possible.

    Students will stay together in small groups/classrooms as much as possible and there will be limited mixing of student and staff groups.

    Class time, travel within the building, lunch and recess times will be staggered and/or spread out to allow for at least three feet of social distancing whenever possible. When students travel in the hallways, there will be visual aids to direct students and support social distancing.

    Contact Tracing and Quarantines

    Parents will be notified if they or their child are determined to be a close contact with a positive case, regardless of vaccination status. You can visit our Community Health Dashboard to see the number of cases and quarantines for our schools. This dashboard is updated each day to reflect new information after contact tracing is complete.

    We will collaborate with the St. Louis County Department of Public Health (DPH) and use current guidance to determine isolation or quarantines needed as a result of the contact tracing investigation.

    Properly wearing a mask, regardless of vaccination status, will decrease quarantines and avoid disruptions in learning.

    The following scenarios outline St. Louis County Department of Public Health guidelines for close contact with an individual who tests positive for COVID-19, does not have respiratory symptoms at school, and maintains 3 feet of social distance.

    • K-12 students who are fully vaccinated and remain asymptomatic are not required to quarantine after close contact with a positive case.
    • K-12 students who are not vaccinated are not required to quarantine in most cases if both parties were properly wearing a face covering, maintaining social distance and the positive case did not have respiratory symptoms at school. If both parties were not properly wearing a face covering, a modified or standard quarantine will be required. 
    • Please note that quarantines will be required if additional COVID-19 cases develop as a result of the initial positive case. The determination of quarantine is also based on the length of time an individual was exposed to a positive case. 

    Parents will be notified if they or their child are determined to be a close contact with a positive case, regardless of vaccination status. Visit our Community Health Dashboard for updates on local health conditions in our schools and zip codes.

    The St. Louis County Health Department has added an option for K-12 students attending school to have a modified quarantine in some cases. A modified quarantine applies to students who attend K-12 schools and are exposed to COVID-19 in classroom settings. Modified quarantine is allowed in schools because mitigation practices like masking and other health practices are in place.

    Modified quarantine allows certain close contacts who have been exposed to COVID-19 while in school to continue essential activities (e.g., in-person classroom learning) during their quarantine period, as long as they remain asymptomatic. Per the health department, the goal of a modified quarantine is to allow students to continue attending school without disruption when it is safe to do so while monitoring symptoms.

    Based on these new guidelines, and universal masking at school, we expect to be able to use modified quarantines which will allow students to continue coming to school, regardless of vaccination status. If we see additional transmission of cases (a cluster or outbreak) we would be required to use standard quarantines.

    While quarantines and isolation can be difficult and disruptive to students and families, they are a required health precaution from the CDC and St. Louis County Health Department and a positive strategy to prevent further spread of illness in our schools.

    Isolation requires individuals to stay home and separates those with COVID-19 from people who are not sick. Isolation is usually at least 10 days as long as the last 24 hours of that period are fever-free without medication and symptoms are improving.

    Quarantine also requires individuals to stay home and keeps someone who might have been exposed to the virus away from others. Quarantine is currently 10 days from the last day of exposure to the person with the virus.

    Events, Activities and Visitors

    Large gatherings and school events will be restructured in order to reduce the risk of exposure. For the start of the school year, events will be held virtually and you will receive more information from your school leaders in the coming days.

    Athletic competitions and activities will continue with health protocols in place. Masks are optional for athletes while engaged in strenuous physical activity indoors.

    Field trips will be postponed or adjusted as needed.

    Visitors will be limited inside the school and classrooms to minimize the risk of exposure until further notice.

    Screening and Testing

    Before leaving for school, we recommend families perform an evaluation of their students’ health. If your student is feeling ill, do not send them to school.

    Notify your school of your child's symptoms, and call your health care provider for advice on managing illness.

    Parkway will provide resources and information to parents and staff on how to access COVID-19 testing if needed in our region. 

    Vaccinations

    We highly encourage vaccination for all students and staff. If you are vaccinated, you are exempt from quarantine, per the health department, as long as you do not have symptoms.

    While COVID-19 vaccination is not required to attend school in Missouri, it can protect your child and others at school. Vaccination avoids quarantine so your child can continue learning in-person and participating in important school events, athletics or activities.

    For information on convenient access to vaccination in our region, click here.

    Vaccination is highly encouraged, but not required, for both students and staff.

    If your child is vaccinated, please consider sharing your child’s vaccination record. You will receive more information from your school soon about how to upload your record. Sharing proof of vaccination is entirely voluntary, but it will save you time in the event your child becomes a close contact at school. We will need a record of vaccination to exempt them from quarantine and avoid any disruption in your child’s learning.

    Clean and Healthy Habits

    Schools will follow safety and disinfection guidelines developed by the CDC and the St. Louis County Department of Public Health.

    Each day we will routinely clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces.

    Students will be encouraged to wash/clean their hands often throughout the school day.

    Parkway heating and cooling systems are updated using standards established by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE), which are recommended by the CDC. System operation and ventilation will continue to be monitored and updated based on CDC and ASHRAE guidance. Our upgraded systems utilize the newest technologies and ensure fresh outside air is brought in continually throughout the day, and that components such as fans and filtering systems are working correctly. 

    Riding the Bus

    Due to ongoing staff shortages, parents are encouraged to provide transportation to school if possible. If you need to request transportation, or make a change during the year, you can call the Transportation Department at 314-415-8400. 

    Masks are required on all forms of public transportation, including school buses.

    Accommodating All Students

    Schools will partner with families and students to ensure equity and access to instruction. Accommodations will be made as needed for students who are medically vulnerable or require individualized education plans.

    School nurses and other district personnel will work with families and students with disabilities to ensure they receive continued care, allowing students priority visits and/or private visits with the nurse as needed, so a student can have his/her healthcare needs met and also minimize exposure to ill students.

    Pandemic Response Plan Community Input

    The district continues to receive public input at monthly board meetings and other forums regarding face masks and other COVID mitigation measures for the 2021-22 school year.

    We invite all Parkway stakeholders to tell us how we’re doing on our Pandemic Response Plan. You can do so here.

    In addition, the following opportunities have been provided to Parkway stakeholders to share input on our ongoing mitigation and prevention strategies.

    ESSER Community Survey - June 30, 2021

    ESSER Federal Funds Update Report - Board of Education Meeting- August 11, 2021

    Community Satisfaction Survey COVID Response - October 20, 2021

  • Thank you for partnering with us to keep our community safe as we look forward to a successful 2021-22 school year. Additionally, thank you for your ongoing understanding and support.

     

    Parkway Schools logo