Protocols for COVID-19 Symptoms, Infections, and Exposures

  • Symptoms of COVID-19

    If anyone shows any symptoms of COVID-19, it is extremely important that they not enter any school or district building. They should contact their healthcare provider for guidance. COVID-19 symptoms include fever (100.4˚F or higher), cough, loss of taste or smell, chills, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, headache, muscle pain or body aches, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, and nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea.

    Students must have a signed COVID-19 Testing Consent Form on file before being tested at school. 

     

    1. COVID-19 Positive Students and Employees

    A student or employee who  tests positive for COVID-19 must stay home from school until:

    • They isolate for 10 days after the onset of symptoms, or for 10 days after the positive test result, AND they have no fever for at least 24 hours AND their other symptoms are improving

    Student-athletes who test positive for COVID-19 must be screened by a medical provider before returning to participation on sports teams.

    2. Symptomatic Students and Employees

    A student or employee who has any symptoms of COVID-19 or who tests positive for COVID-19 must stay home from school until one of the following is true:

    • They receive a documented negative COVID-19 test (PCR/NAAT) AND they have no symptoms.

    OR

    • They isolate for 10 days after the onset of symptoms, or for 10 days after the positive test result, AND they have no fever for at least 24 hours AND their other symptoms are improving

    OR

    • They receive written permission to return to school from a medical doctor, osteopathic physician, physician assistant, or an advanced registered nurse practitioner.

    Student-athletes who test positive for COVID-19 must be screened by a medical provider before returning to participation on sports teams.

     

    3. Students and Employees Exposed to COVID-19

    Students and employees who have been in direct contact (a total of 15 minutes or more within six feet) with someone who tested positive for COVID-19 should not attend school, school-sponsored activities, or be on school property until:

    • They receive a documented negative COVID-19 test (PCR/NAAT or antigen) after four days from the date of last exposure (Day 0). The test is given on Day 5 or later AND they have no symptoms

    OR

    • Seven days have passed since the date of last exposure AND they have no symptoms. They return on Day 8.

     

    4. Full Vaccination and Previous Infections

    Students and employees who are exposed to someone testing positive do not need to quarantine if the school has verified that they are fully vaccinated for COVID-19 or had a previous COVID-19 infection in the last 90 days.

    If anyone has symptoms after direct contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19, they should follow the procedures in #1 for symptomatic students and employees.

     

    5. Household Contacts

    A student or employee who lives in the same household as someone who tests positive for COVID-19 must quarantine for a full 14 days, beginning from the day the person tests positive or has symptoms, unless they are fully vaccinated for COVID-19 or had a previous COVID-19 infection in the last 90 days.

     

    Day 5 Testing to End Quarantine

    Beginning immediately, the Alachua County Health Department will be providing Day 5 COVID rapid-testing for students who have been identified as close contacts with a COVID case at school. The testing will be conducted at the Health Department facility at 224 SE 24 Street in Gainesville.

    The testing is available Mondays through Fridays from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. Testing at the Health Department is free.

    If your child has been identified as a close contact with a COVID case at school, you will need to make an appointment for testing during regular Health Department business hours, Monday-Friday from 8 am to 5 p.m. Again, these hours are just for making the appointment. The number to call is (352) 420-8993.

    Schools will be sending the Health Department a list of close contacts each day. Your's name will need to be on that list for you to make an appointment.

    Families will receive documentation from the Health Department about their child's results. Assuming the results are negative and your child has no symptoms, that documentation will be enough to re-enter school.

    You still have the option of having a Day 5 test done by your healthcare provider or at a local pharmacy or other healthcare facility. Home tests will NOT be accepted.

COVID-19 Decision Flowchart

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