MISD 2022-23 COVID-19 Guidance
Dear Parents and Families
We are writing to share new information from the Washington State Department of Health about COVID-19 health and safety guidance for schools this year. Schools are required by state law to follow these guidelines.
Washington state updated its COVID-19 school and child care guidance on August 5, 2022. Following these safety measures reduces the spread of COVID-19 and achieves our ultimate goal of keeping students and staff in school throughout the year. This letter explains how the updated guidance impacts your family and the community as we prepare for the start of school next week.
Health and Safety Requirements for this year:
Students and staff who show symptoms of COVID-19 are required to stay home and get tested for COVID-19.
Please notify the school about your student’s/child’s positive test by calling and/or emailing the attendance line when you report the absence. Your school nurse will be in contact with you.
Students and staff who test positive for COVID-19 are required to isolate at home for 5 days. If symptoms improve and they have had no fever for 24 hours, without the use of fever-reducing medications, students and staff can come back to school on Day 6 and are encouraged to test before returning. As a reminder, Day 0 is the day of symptom onset, or the day testing positive in the absence of symptoms.
Repeating initial tests does not change the isolation protocol; a positive test initiates the isolation protocol. Additionally, students and staff who test positive after 5 days of isolation must continue to stay home on days 6-10, unless a negative rapid test is obtained during that time frame. Testing after day 10 is not required or recommended. Our MISD nurse and healthroom teams will help families navigate each situation.
Students and staff should wear a well fitting mask when returning to school on days 6-10, except when eating or drinking. Individuals returning to school from isolation should also remain masked for sports and other extracurricular activities.
Mercer Island School District will utilize our District COVID-19 Dashboard to track COVID-19 cases and outbreaks. This will be updated daily to reflect COVID-19 cases in each building and will be the primary notification method for families. Should we see a significant uptick in cases in specific classrooms, families will be notified by email.
To reduce the spread of COVID-19, free COVID-19 testing for students and staff is available through:
COVID-19 vaccinations remain the best protections for everyone against hospitalization and severe disease from COVID-19. The vaccine is now available for children 6 months and older. Booster doses are also available for children 5 years and older. You are encouraged to vaccinate your children if they are eligible, in consultation with your healthcare provider. MISD has hosted COVID-19 vaccine clinics since first vaccines were made available to the public. We will discuss future clinics with our COSTCO partners.
We look forward to creating safe and healthy spaces for our students and staff when they return next week.
Fred Rundle Karla Rimmer
Superintendent MISD Lead COVID-19 Nurse