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Facemask Update

Facemask Update

Dear Highland Families,

As communicated previously, the district continues to assess and monitor reported COVID-19 cases among our students, teachers and staff. We appreciate everyone’s cooperation with the two-week mask requirement following the holidays. That period of time allowed us to better gauge the rates of infection in our schools and to provide an added layer of protection during this latest COVID-19 surge.

When school resumes on January 18, we will return to masks strongly recommended in the school setting. We will continue to monitor positive cases and student/staff absences each day and will communicate any adjustments, as needed. Masks remain a federal requirement on all school district buses (including extracurricular trips). That requirement has been extended by the Department of Transportation through March 18.     

In an effort to prioritize resources during this recent surge, the Medina County Health Department will no longer require school districts to conduct school-related contact tracing. School districts will continue to report positive cases to the health department, ensure that students and employees returning from isolation follow the face-covering guidelines through day ten (10), provide general classroom exposure letters, along with building and district notifications as required by Ohio orders and continue to monitor local positive case numbers in consultation with the MCHD.  

The updated isolation and exposure guidance from the Ohio Department of Health can be found here. The new changes, in part, include: 

  • Regardless of vaccination status or symptoms, anyone who tests positive for COVID-19 must isolate for at least five days. 
  • However, if symptoms are improving, isolation may end on the sixth day following either symptom onset or a positive COVID-19 test if the person consistently wears a mask for the next five days.

We realize you may have questions regarding this new information and our school nurses will do their best to assist you. The Medina County Health Department can provide specific guidance and additional information and we encourage you to reach out to them at 330-723-9688.

We have a limited number of at-home rapid antigen test kits for distribution. Test kits will be prioritized to students and staff who are symptomatic or who have been in close contact with an infected individual. Contact your child’s school office for test kit information.  

Our goal remains to keep our students and staff safely in school, in person, five days a week. Please assist us in this effort by keeping your children home if they are ill or exhibiting any symptoms of the virus.

Thank you,

Catherine Aukerman

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