Jan. 1, 2022

Dear Parents, Guardians and Staff

As we prepare to return to in person learning on Jan. 3, 2022 I want to share reminders and provide clarity on how RNESU is making decisions intended to keep our school community healthy and safe.

There have been several changes in responses to COVID over the past couple of weeks, especially around testing and quarantine timelines. This is what we are doing and why:

1. We will follow the Vermont Dept of Health guidance on what to do if a student or staff person tests positive for COVID. https://tinyurl.com/2p9n78t2

  • Stay home and isolate for 5 days
  • Return to school after 5 days ONLY IF you never had symptoms or your symptoms have improved AND you have had no fever for 24 hours without the use of fever reducing medicine.
  • Upon return, you MUST wear a mask at the school through Day 10 indoors and outdoors
  • Have two negative antigen tests performed at least 24 hours apart no earlier than day 4.

Close Contacts will also follow VT Dept of Health Guidance https://tinyurl.com/mrxnc9ss

  • Close contact means being within 6 feet of an infectious person for 15 minutes or more over a 24 hour period
  • Infectious period is two days before symptoms begin or before the positive test result if no symptoms
  • Close contacts who are symptomatic must isolate at home and follow the VDH guidance in the link for positive COVID cases above.
  • There are different responses to being a close contact based on your current vaccination or recent COVID positive status. The page that explains it is here https://tinyurl.com/mrxnc9ss

2. We will continue to offer testing options for students and staff. 

  • Weekly optional PCR test begins again on Wed. Jan 6. for anyone registered. To register your child, please go to LINK
  • Test to Stay for any student whose parents have given permission (consent for Test to Stay is found here LINK)
  • Provide at home test kits as soon as we receive them from the state. Start date to be determined.

In addition to testing, we continue the following steps:

  • Masks are required indoors for all students and staff at all times when indoors
  • 3 feet social distancing indoors
  • Staff Vaccine Mandate 
  • Notification of positive cases to school communities

I will continue to communicate and share the impact of state plans on our district plans as we learn of them.  We were all caught off guard over this break with the test kits that were announced by Governor Scott on Dec 28 and by the change in CDC guidance. The schools were not notified until the public was about test kits going out before the break and we understand not everyone was able to access one. Testing is encouraged prior to returning Jan 3 but not mandatory as not all are able to access tests. 

I wish for each of you a healthy and joyous 2022. Thank you for helping to keep our students, staff and community healthy.

Jeanné Collins, RNESU Superintendent