Superintendent Message

Currently Green......Covid update
Posted on 09/27/2021

Whatever your thoughts are about the Coronavirus, there is no denying the impact on our community. As of Sept. 22, Butte County had 30 active cases, with seven positive tests since Sept. 20. Those numbers increased this week as the school has been impacted with several additional students out as close. Currently, Butte County Schools has 18 students out at close contacts and two staff members who tested positive.

The District has updated its Safe Return to School Plan, which can be found on the District’s website under District information. The District will continue the Green (Category 1), Yellow (Category 2), and Red (Category 3) system to inform the public about our response level. We opened the year and are currently in Green, but the District retains the right to change categories based on transmission of the virus.

The goal of the district is to provide in-person learning as much as possible throughout the year. To do that, I have to conduct contact tracing to identify students who may have been exposed to the virus. Our protocol is to gather information from the parent regarding testing results, date of test, and first appearance of symptoms, if any. For a student to be identified as a close contact, the student has to have been within three feet of a positive Covid individual for 15 minutes or longer. If the student is identified as a close contact, the student is quarantined for a minimum of seven days, but needs a negative Covid test to come back to school. If no test is taken, the student is out for 10 days. If a student tests positive for Covid, then the student is out for a minimum of seven days, with a negative test, or 10 days if no test.

Parents have been good in notifying the office when they or their children are impacted by Covid. This helps me determine if I need to do contact tracing. That knowledge also helps me make decisions about whether to recommend to the board a change in categories. Your help is appreciated. While the District is currently Green, and our Safe Return Plan makes masks optional, parents do have the right to let us know that you want your child to wear a mask. Several students and staff members are wearing masks, including me since I recently got ill with a severe cold (I tested negative, by the way). The healthiest I have ever been was last year when masks were required at my previous school. Feel free to contact the school to let us know you are sending a mask and want your child to wear it. With the increase of cases in our community, wearing a mask for a while may be a good idea. Getting vaccinated may also be a good idea. The clinic has vaccinations available for anyone 12 years old and older.

There is a lot of controversy around masks and vaccinations. Much of the argument centers around personal rights being taken away. Yet, there are a lot of policies in place currently that limit what you can do and say, and all of those policies are for safety reasons. Some jobs require hard helmets and steel-toed shoes. Some jobs require gloves and eye and hearing protection. We wear seatbelts when we drive our vehicles. We follow stop and yield signs when we come to them during our drive. We can’t go into a crowded theater or airport and make comments that can create a panic. Simply stated, we follow rules for safety reasons…. whether we agree with them or not. Those rules protect all of us. For me to keep the school open, I need you to take similar precautions to protect yourself and your students, so all of the other students and staff they come in contact with are safe. Setting aside our political differences and beliefs to work together to keep our community safe and the school doors open is what is in all of our best interests. I appreciate your vigilance and letting us know when the virus is impacting your home. I will do my best to keep information flowing your way regarding the school as well.

As always, my door is open to you if you have concerns or questions. Stop by to see me, or call me at 690-3420.