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Tuesday, October 19, 2021

Ventura County Public Health COVID-19 and Schools FAQ

Ventura County Public Health has developed a COVID-19 and Schools Frequently Asked Questions document that answer questions such as "Is it mandated that a COVID case or contact stays home for a certain amount of time"?  

If you are looking to see where we are with regard to our numbers in the County, we recommed using this Blueprint Metrics of Ventura County (10-24)

Plan for Handling Sick Persons

View our COVID-19 Scenario Chart for protocols when we have a person with COVID-19 symptoms or when a person has had close contact with a COVID-19 positive case. 

  • At each school, a CARE Area (COVID Appraisal, Response, & Evaluation) will be equipped with appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE). All sick persons with potential COVID-19 symptoms will be evaluated in this area.
  • The teacher will send students who are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 to the CARE Area.
  • Students and staff that present to the school health staff with a fever of 99.5 Fahrenheit (using a non-contact thermometer) or 100.3 Fahrenheit using (a regular thermometer) and a cough and/or shortness of breath and/or gastrointestinal illness will be considered a suspect COVID-19 case and referred for testing.
  • For those students that do not have a usual source of health care, the school health staff will coordinate with the Ventura County Public Health (VCPH) to arrange for same-day testing.
  • Only a small percentage of students and staff who have COVID-19 infection will fit the above description. School nurses and health technicians will identify any additional suspect cases to refer for testing.
  • Students on home quarantine will be provided with distance learning options to continue their education.
  • VCPH, VUSD staff, and our families will be notified of a positive case of COVID-19 while maintaining confidentiality as required by State and Federal laws.
  • In consultation with VCPH, areas used by a person suspected of being infected with the virus will be evacuated, cleaned, and sanitized in accordance with standard disinfection procedures.
  • A District liaison will contact VCPH to determine if class/school closure (partial or full) is required. Furthermore, it will be determined if the office or area where the person was based will be closed until disinfection can be completed and the occupants of those areas quarantined for 14 days.
  • School district liaisons will work with VCPH on contact tracing for confirmed COVID-19 in a student, teacher, or staff member in VUSD.
  • Staff who have direct contact with students will be tested every two months, unless this guidance changes.
  • Families will be notified by the school, through ParentSquare, if a student or the teacher in the classroom has tested positive for COVID-19. That communication will include further details on next steps.


COVID-19 Testing and Reporting

The Ventura Unified School District will work with Ventura County Public Health when there is a suspected case of COVID-19.  Students/staff will be referred out for testing at one of the many free testing faciilites available in the County. For more information see our Testing and Reporting Chart

Consideration for Partial or Total Closure

  • School district liaisons will work with VCPH to coordinate testing of large groups of staff and students, as needed.
  • Any decision to close a portion of, or the entire school, would not be made without prior consultation with VCPH Depending on the facility's size and physical layout, current guidance dictates that when there are multiple cases in multiple areas at a school or when at least 5% of the total number of teachers/students/staff are COVID-19 positive, we close that site.
  • VCPH may dictate that school closures are warranted for other reasons.
  • The entire District may also be closed if 25% or more of the schools/facilities have closed due to positive COVID-19 cases within a 14 day period.
  • In the event of a temporary closure of a classroom, portion of, or the entire school or District, parents/guardians would be immediately notified through ParentSquare and provided with options and instructions for distance learning.
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