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COVID-19 Dashboard & Information

 
 
A Message from Superintendent Andy Culp
8.12.2021
 

We look forward to welcoming our students back to school on Tuesday, August 17, 2021, when the 2021-2022 school year officially begins.  Last night, the Grandview Heights Board of Education passed a resolution that requires all students and staff to wear a mask K-12 during the school day.  The resolution also requires masking for all indoor school events.  This resolution and corresponding requirements will be revisited at our regularly scheduled Board of Education on November 11th.  This resolution was passed unanimously and can be viewed here 2021-8-2 - GHS Universal Mask Mandate.pdf 

 

Our goal is to keep students in school, receiving in person instruction, for the entire school year while maintaining the health of our students and staff.  We recognize there are many perspectives on issues pertaining to COVID-19 and how to operate during this stage of the pandemic.  The Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Franklin County Public Health (FCPH), Ohio Department of Health (ODH), American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), and Columbus Public Health (CPH) all strongly recommend universal masking for students and staff. 

 

The following are additional reasons that K-12 universal masking is being required at Grandview Heights Schools at this time:

  • Universal masking is proven to be a successful mitigation strategy in preventing COVID-19 spread and therefore keeping students in school.
  • For our unvaccinated students, wearing a mask is the only way to be eligible for a modified quarantine which allows them to stay in school and participate in extracurricular activities provided they do not begin to show symptoms.
  • A traditional quarantine is challenging for families, especially for those who have younger students.  (If the student is not wearing a mask and is exposed, a traditional quarantine is required by FCPH.)  Guidelines for Quarantine After Exposure in K-12 Classroom Settings 8.2021.pdf 
  • A consistent K-12 mask requirement, at all grade levels, also reduces the risk of social stigma, from a mental health point of view, associated with students making mask-wearing decisions. 
 

You can be assured that I will continue to update our community with any/all updates as we learn them.  Please visit https://www.ghschools.org/apps/pages/coviddashboard - our Grandview Heights Schools COVID-19 webpage - for more information.

 

Again, we will continue to monitor and assess the situation regularly.  We are so excited to welcome students back to school on Tuesday. We have a lot to celebrate during the upcoming school year.   Let’s make it a great one!

 

Sincerely,

Andy Culp, Superintendent

 

 

 

  
 

 

 

OHIO DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH GUIDANCE FOR THE 2021-2022 SCHOOL YEAR

8.25.2021

 

The Franklin County Public Health Department (FCPH) released clarification regarding the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) guidance for the 2021-2022 school year. 


Contact Tracing

Contact tracing is expected whether students are indoors or outdoors, as it is still an important step in limiting the spread of COVID-19. Per FCPH, this includes recess or during athletic events such as practices, scrimmages, and games. Having assigned seats and small groups/pods will help with contact tracing.


Modified Quarantine

A modified quarantine allows for a student/staff member to safely remain in the normal in-person classroom setting and participate in extracurricular and sport activities as long as they have no symptoms. To meet the requirements of a modified classroom setting ODH requires:


  • Masking for students and staff (regardless of vaccination status).

  • Strategies to maximize physical distancing indoors (ex. at least 3 feet between desks) and outdoors (including recess).  6 feet must be maintained during lunch or when taking a mask break.

  • Documented COVID-19 prevention policies and procedures.


Social Distancing 

Social distancing continues to be a major factor in meeting the requirements of a modified quarantine. Similar to last school year, in order to utilize the ODH’s guidelines to a modified quarantine, a minimum of three feet social distancing standards needs to be in place. If a school or classroom cannot have at least three feet of social distance in place as a minimum standard, then all close contacts would need to be quarantined outside of school. 


Vaccinations 

Students/staff who have been fully vaccinated (per Centers for Disease Control requirements) will not need to quarantine unless symptomatic. Those who have been exposed will be notified to monitor symptoms and isolate/test if appropriate.


Exposure Requiring Quarantine at Home

If exposure requires a home quarantine, students/staff are prohibited from attending school or extracurricular activities for 10 days. However, they may return to normal classroom and extracurricular activities after day seven if they have received a negative viral (PCR or Antigen) test that was performed at least five days after exposure.

 

Contact District Nurse Amy Elliott, RN, LSN, at amy.elliott@ghschools.org or by calling (614) 485-4002 with any questions or concerns. 

 

 
 

HEALTH AND PREVENTION GUIDANCE FOR THE 2021-2022 SCHOOL YEAR 

Grandview Heights Schools will return to daily, in-person instruction for the 2021- 2022 school year on Tuesday, August 17, 2021. The following information shares how schools will navigate returning to standard operations following the revised health orders.  

MITIGATION STRATEGIES   Schools will use layered mitigation strategies for the health and safety of the Grandview Heights Schools community. 

  • Face Masks: Grandview Heights Schools is requiring K-12 masking for students and staff for all indoor activities.
  • Physical Distancing: Individuals will be physically distanced by three (3) feet when possible. 
  • PPE: Plexiglass dividers will be available for students and staff, including in the school cafeterias.  We will also have masks available upon request.  
  • Hand Washing/Hand Sanitizing: Increased hand washing will continue to be emphasized throughout the school day. Hand sanitizer will continue to be placed in classrooms and throughout the buildings. Students will be encouraged to sanitize their hands throughout the day. 
  • Cleaning and Disinfecting: Routine cleaning protocols will continue throughout all school buildings and buses.  
  • Vaccinations: The Ohio Department of Health continues to encourage our community to get vaccinated against COVID-19. The Ohio Department of Health provides information on the benefits of the vaccine in a school environment. Visit gettheshot.coronavirus.ohio.gov to find available vaccination locations in our area. The COVID-19 vaccine is not required for staff and students.
  • Vaccination Clinics: Similar to other vaccination clinics provided by Franklin County Public Health, a Grandview Heights Schools facility may serve as a vaccination site. 
 
EXTRA-CURRICULAR and ATHLETIC TRANSPORTATION 
 
  • Face Masks: Per federal requirement, face masks will be required to be worn by all students, staff, and school bus drivers while on the bus. 
  • Hand Sanitizing: Hand sanitizer will be available on all school buses. 
  • Assigned Seats: Students will have an assigned seat and will be seated up to the bus capacity. 
  • Cleaning and Disinfecting: Each bus will continue to be cleaned and disinfected daily. 
 
 

BUILDING PROTOCOLS

  • Visitors and Volunteers: Essential visitors and volunteers will be permitted into school buildings, determined by the building principal.
  • Air Flow/HVAC: The building HVAC systems will continue to be programmed to bring in more outside air throughout the day. Final air filtering for district school buildings is through a MERV 13 filter, which is rated for bacteria and virus carriers. 
  • Water Bottle Fillers/Fountains: Water bottle filling stations will be open for use. Water fountains will continue to be closed.
 
 

FOOD SERVICES

All enrolled students are eligible to receive one breakfast and one lunch at no charge for the 2021-2022 school year through United States Department of Agriculture waivers. Lunchroom menus are available here http://www.schoolnutritionandfitness.com/index.php?sid=1406111855424272&page=menus

  • Cafeteria Seating: In order to provide sufficient information for contact tracing, elementary, middle school students will sit at assigned lunch room tables.  All students will have the ability to choose to go home for lunch which must be coordinated with their building principal. 
  • PPE: Table dividers will be available for students upon request.
  • Hand Sanitizing: Students will be encouraged to wash their hands and/or use hand sanitizer before lunch periods.
 
 

HEALTH AT SCHOOL

  • Self-Assessment: Everyone is encouraged to do a self-assessment before entering an Olentangy facility. Please refer to the COVID-19 symptoms listed by the Ohio Department of Health.

 

CONTACT TRACING AND QUARANTINE    Grandview Heights Schools will follow the Ohio Department of Health contact tracing and isolation and quarantine protocols.

  • Contact tracing: The Franklin County Public Health (FCPH) will conduct all contact tracing for highly infectious diseases. Diagnostic and screening testing will continue to be available at nursing clinics.
  • Reporting COVID-19 cases: Staff members and students should continue to report positive COVID-19 test results to the FCPH. Our schools are required to report known cases to the DPHD for anyone physically in our buildings. As is the current FCPH policy, fully vaccinated individuals will not need to quarantine if exposed to a COVID-19 positive individual unless symptoms are present.
  • District Notifications: The communications team will follow the District’s communicable disease notification process and notify impacted classrooms and/or buildings when needed. The communicable disease notification process is set forth by FCPH based on the Classification of Reportable Infectious Diseases in Ohio (ORC 3701-3), which sets a threshold of the number of cases each illness must hit within a classroom or building in order to trigger a notification of possible exposure.  
  • The FCPH is responsible for quarantining individuals who have come into close contact with a person who is positive for COVID-19. Wearing a mask helps keep children in school, since unvaccinated students who are not wearing a mask face a much greater risk of quarantine if they are exposed to a positive case of COVID-19. Students who are not wearing a mask also risk sending other students home to quarantine even if their classmate is wearing a mask.
 

This guidance is based on current public health conditions, recommendations and orders from federal, state and local public health agencies. As with all COVID-19 related matters, it is subject to change based on new developments that may occur at any time.

The Ohio Department of Health released a COVID-19 Fact Sheet: Guidelines for K-12 Student Quarantine and this flow chart with Guidelines for Quarantine After Exposure in K-12 Classroom Settings.  Importantly, for any student that is not vaccinated and is not wearing a mask, but experiences a close contact, WILL be required by Franklin County Public Health (FCPH) to do a traditional quarantine.  Students, if unvaccinated, are only eligible for a modified quarantine if they are wearing a mask.

 
flow chart
 
 
CATS Data
 
CATS data 5-13-2021
CATS Data - COVID-19 Analytics and Targeted Surveillance

The Grandview Heights Schools Leadership Team meets weekly with Elisabeth Root, PhD, faculty in the Division of Epidemiology at the College of Public Health and a team of researchers from The Ohio State University (OSU) regarding its partnership on a pilot project titled CATS Data - COVID-19 Analytics and Targeted Surveillance.  

 

The OSU core team includes:

 

Ayaz Hyder, PhD
Assistant Professor, Division of Environmental Health Sciences
Affiliated Faculty, Translational Data Analytics
College of Public Health, The Ohio State University
 
Anne C. Trinh, MPH
Senior Program Manager
Evaluator and Community Engagement Specialist
Center for Health Outcomes and Policy Evaluation Studies
 

Alexandria (Alex) Jones, MS, RN, CPH

RWJF Public Health Nurse Leader

Assistant Health Commissioner

Director of Prevention and Wellness

Franklin County Public Health

 
With additional support from:
 
David Klein, Assistant Professor, Biomedical Informatics
Sam Malloy, Research Assistant, Battelle Center
Enhao Liu, PhD Student, College of Engineering, The Ohio State University (Lead Developer)
Pranav Padmanabhan, Undergraduate Student, The Ohio State University
Net Zhang, Undergraduate Student, The Ohio State University

 

This partnership will provide our district with data on what is happening within our district’s specific school boundaries regarding COVID-19 cases, spread rates, attendance, etc.  This information will provide the Board of Education and our district with yet another layer of information that will help the Grandview Heights Schools (GHS) make the best decisions possible as we move forward.

 

Data specific to GHS will be updated every Friday. This webpage and CATS Data dashboard are in the development phase, but we are getting closer to being able to share this with our community at large.  We are hopeful to have this information and additional dashboard finalized in the coming week.  Currently, based on CATS Data for Grandview Heights Schools district boundaries, the case count is highest among all the other school districts in Franklin County for COVID-19 cases when compared to other school districts and areas of Franklin County.  This is reflective of our entire community, not just our school age students. 

 

In order to reverse these trends, we need your help!  Please continue to be vigilant in wearing masks, washing hands, and watching your distance between yourself and others.  It's important to remember that behavior outside of our schools can put our staff and students at risk.  When we wear masks and maintain six feet of distance in schools, we keep our students and staff safe.  However, spread of the virus is likely taking place in athletics and social events outside of school.  As a result, we need to recommit to taking the same precautions across our community.   As we’ve stated throughout this process, what is happening in the community will impact our goal to keep students in the classroom.  Working together, we believe we can once again lower the community spread in our area.