The Washington Department of Health and Tacoma Pierce County Health Department recently made changes to their isolation and quarantine guidelines that align with the CDC guidance. These changes may enable staff and students to return to school sooner than previously outlined following a positive test or exposure.
Positive Test for COVID-19 (Isolation)
Any student with COVID-19 should isolate at home. This isolation guidance applies regardless of vaccination status.
Effective immediately, any student who tests positive for COVID-19 can return to school when all of the following criteria are met:
- 5 days have passed since symptom onset, or since positive test specimen collection (if no symptoms); AND
- No symptoms are present, or symptoms are resolving; AND
- No fever within the past 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medications (i.e. Acetaminophen or Ibuprofen).
Continue to wear a well-fitting mask around others at home and in public places until day 10, both in and out of school, including extracurricular activities and sports activities.
Close Contacts to Positive COVID-19 Case (Quarantine)
Who Must Quarantine? - Students in the following groups who come into close contact with someone with COVID-19 must quarantine for at least 5 days (day 0 through day 5) after their last close contact:
- Ages 18 or older and completed the series of COVID vaccines but have not received a booster shot when eligible.
- Those who have received the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine (completing the primary series) over 2 months ago and have not received a booster shot.
- Those who are not vaccinated or have not completed the COVID vaccine series.
In order for students to return to school, the above groups must test no sooner than day 5, receive a negative result from an antigen test and be without symptoms. Antigen tests must be conducted at a clinic or pharmacy. Home tests are not accepted. In order to offer this testing option in the future, Bethel School District is currently increasing our COVID test inventory. More information in the coming days.
Who Does Not Need to Quarantine? - Students who come into close contact with someone with COVID-19 do not need to quarantine if they:
- 18 or older and have received Covid vaccine doses, including boosters and additional primary shots for some immunocompromised people.
- 5-17 years of age and completed the primary series of COVID-19 vaccines.
- Had confirmed COVID-19 within the last 90 days.
If a student who is a close contact chooses not to test or does not get tested:
- 10-day Quarantine: Quarantine should last for 10 days after the last close contact. However, if any COVID-19 symptoms develop during the 10 days, the individual should isolate and get tested.
Thanks for your continued support.
COVID-19 Data Dashboard
Washington state law requires children enrolling in public schools to provide proof of immunity to specific communicable diseases. Immunizations shall be provided against Hepatitis B, Diphtheria,Tetanus, Pertussis, Polio, Measles, Mumps, Rubella and Varicella. Beginning with the 2020-21 school year, all students must have medically verified documentation of their immunization status on or before the first day of attendance. The regulation for medically verified records pertain to students in grades that require new immunization documentation. This includes students in preschool, kindergarten, seventh and new enrollees. Medically verified records include one or more of the following:
- A Certificate of Immunization Status (CIS) printed from the Immunization Information System (IIS)
- A physical copy of the CIS form completed with a healthcare provider signature
- A physical copy of the CIS filled out with accompanying medical immunization records from a healthcare provider verified and signed by school staff
- A CIS printed from MyIR
Students will not be able to attend school until the school has a student’s immunization record and immunizations are up to date. Contact your doctor to get a record of your child’s immunization record or you can access it on MyIR. Your child can get immunizations at his/her primary care provider, Free Children’s Immunization Service, and the School-Based Health Center at Bethel Middle School.
Exemptions can be made for medical, religious or philosophical reasons. Personal/philosophical exemptions are not allowed for measles, mumps and rubella. The Certificate of Exemption must be completed by a licensed health care professional in Washington is required for a medical, religious or philosophical exemption. Religious membership that does not believe in any medical care only requires a parent or guardian's signature. For more information on immunizations and forms can be found at Washington State Department of Health.
If you have issues with the forms below please email Communications.
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Students with life-threatening health conditions
If your child has a life-threatening health condition, please take time over the summer break to get your them to the doctor to get orders and medication refills for school.
Substitute House Bill 2834 requires children with life-threatening health conditions to have medication or a treatment order on file prior to attending school. This includes early start programs such as the Bridge Program for 6th and 9th grade students.
Please make an appointment early with your child’s healthcare provider to make sure you can get these documents and refills in time for your child to start school.
You can find all the forms you will need for doctor’s orders on the Bethel Health Services website.
Please have the needed orders to your child’s school by September 1 to ensure the school nurse will have time to prepare your child’s care plan and train the staff.
State law requires children with life-threatening conditions to have a medication and/or treatment order on file prior to the start of school. A "life-threatening condition" is a health condition that could be deadly to the child – during the school day – if a medication and/or treatment order is not provided. School nurses will be responsible for putting a nursing care plan in place.
If your child has a “life-threatening” condition, please have a health care provider complete the required medication and treatment forms based on your child's health condition. All parents who have a child with a life threatening condition are required to fill out the basic packet that includes an Authorization for Exchange of Medical Information and a Contact Information form. Additional forms may be needed based on your child’s health condition. All forms and medications must be provided to your child's school before the school year begins. Upon receipt of the information from your health care provider and medication, the school nurse will contact you to develop an appropriate nursing plan. She will then need to train the staff. Your child may not be able to start school on the first day of school if the orders are not at school three days prior to school starting.