COVID-19 Communications

COVID 19
Total Active Cases

114

Updated: 01.18.22

Face Coverings

Face coverings will be optional for all students and staff during the 2021-2022 school year. Face coverings must comply with each schools dress code, if chosen to be worn.  Health Services will continue to work closely with Polk County Department of Health, monitoring best and safe practices regarding COVID-19 precautions.

Sick Policy

Lake Wales Charter Schools has a sick policy that addresses symptoms and situations that require absence. Students and staff displaying symptoms known of COVID-19 will be required to have a negative COVID-19 test or a doctor’s note with symptom improvement before being allowed to return to school or work.

Students who have tested positive for COVID will be required to complete a minimum 10-day isolation period beginning from symptom onset or the positive test date (whichever came first). Once 10 days have been completed, if symptoms are improving and the student has been fever-free for 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medications they will be allowed to return to school. If symptoms have not improved by day 10, they will need to continue to isolate until symptoms improve and they have been fever-free for 24 hours. 

Staff are considered essential workers and will be required to complete a minimum 5-day isolation period if they test positive for COVID. The 5-day isolation will begin from symptom onset or the positive test result date (whichever came first). Once 5 days of isolation have been completed, if symptoms are resolving and the staff member has been fever-free for 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medications, they will be allowed to return to work. The staff member will be required to wear a mask for an additional 5 days following the 5-day isolation period. If symptoms are not gone or resolving, the staff member must stay home until they have been fever-free for 24 hours and symptoms are improved. However many days are left in the 10-day period following the positive test or symptom onset, the staff member will be required to wear a mask, while on campus. If symptoms have not improved by day 10, staff will need to continue to isolate until symptoms improve and have been fever-free for 24 hours without fever-reducing medications. 

Contact Tracing and Case Investigation

At this time the Polk County Department of Health has communicated that contact tracing will not be necessary. 

Outbreaks and School-wide Closures

If the Florida Department of Health identifies a COVID-19 situation that meets their “outbreak” guidelines their epidemiology department may close a classroom for a timeframe determined by current health guidelines. A school-wide closure could happen if 10% of the entire school population contracted COVID-19 at the same time.

Pre-K Programs

Pre-K programs will follow current DCF COVID-19 guidelines for any COVID-19 positive students. Pre-K Programs will follow the Lake Wales Charter Schools mask policy.

Transportation

Buses will be transporting students at full capacity. Bus drivers will be required to assign seats and keep a seating chart to aid COVID teams with contact tracing. Buses will continue to be cleaned/sanitized daily as they were in the 2020-2021 school year.

Isolation Rooms

Every school will have a designated space for sick/symptomatic students to sit and wait for parent pick up. While in the designated space, students displaying known COVID-19 symptoms may be asked to wear a face covering. If the student does not have a face covering, one will be provided to them. To return to school, the student will need to have a negative COVID-19 test or a doctor’s note with a date of return.

Cleaning of Campuses

Lake Wales Charter Schools have contracted with a cleaning company to provide nightly cleaning to all 8 locations and will evaluate this cleaning company quarterly.

Daily Health and Temperature Screenings

Staff and students will be asked to self-evaluate for COVID-19 symptoms before coming to school or work. If symptoms are present, they should refer to the Student/Staff Sick Policy during COVID-19 for further guidance. Students and staff will continue to be encouraged to practice good hand hygiene & cough etiquette.

Volunteers & Contracted Services

Lake Wales Charter Schools updated the Volunteer & Contracted Services procedures during COVID-19 at the end of the 20-21 school year. At this time, no changes have been made to those procedures.