Brookings-Harbor School District will implement the new “Test-to-Stay” protocol announced Nov. 23 by Oregon Department of Education and Oregon Health Authority. Here is some information about how this protocol helps keep students in school after an in-school exposure while minimizing risks of COVID-19 transmission.
Highlights of the Test to Stay Protocol
OHA’s test to stay protocol allows unvaccinated students and staff to continue to participate in in-person instruction in Oregon’s K-12 schools during their quarantine period. The risk of transmission is minimized in school settings because the required testing is combined with several layers of mitigation including universal masking, physical distancing, cohorting, and ventilation.
- Parent consent must be obtained before the district can test a student for COVID.
- Test to stay is available only for unvaccinated students and staff who have had an indoor classroom, bus, or cafeteria exposure. Outdoor exposures will be considered case-by-case and it is unusual that there are circumstances that make it a close contact.
- Test to stay requires unvaccinated individuals to be tested twice during the 7 days following exposure. First, as soon as the exposure has been identified, then with a second test occurring between days 5-7 following the exposure.
- Test to stay is a form of modified quarantine, which allows students to attend school during their quarantine period. However, individuals participating in test to stay are expected to maintain quarantine outside of classroom settings.
- Students participating in test to stay may participate in school-related extracurricular activities during their quarantine period but must wear a face covering at all times during these activities.
- The CDC considers test to stay a promising practice for minimizing quarantine and maximizing school days in school for students.
- Note: There may be instances where OHA determines that there is a high risk of transmission and may implement a home quarantine for exposed individuals.
If your student has an in-school exposure, the District Nurse and/or Oregon Health Authority will inform you if test-to-stay is an option for your student. The student must have consent on file for testing in order to participate. Students who do not have consent on file may not be tested. These rapid tests use a lower nasal swab, not a deeper swab. For more information about the BionaxNOW test, see their website. Participation in the test to stay is optional and families who refuse to participate may quarantine their student at home.
If you have not already done so during online registration and would like to complete a consent form for your student, you can download one at www.brookings.k12.or.us/consent/ and print, sign, and return to your school office; email, or fax it to the District Nurse; or login to your PowerSchool parent portal to fill out the COVID testing consent form available there.
If you have any questions, please contact District Nurse Kaitlyn Koepnick at firstname.lastname@example.org or (541) 469-7417 (phone), (541) 469-0413 (fax).
David Marshall, Superintendent
December 3, 2021