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Addressing the Novel Coronavirus with our School Community

January 29, 2020 @7:00PM

Dear DUSD Families,

We are continuing to closely monitor the novel coronavirus and want to provide you with an update, as well as address concerns and questions from our school community. While a new virus can cause stress and anxiety, it’s important to turn to factual information from reliable sources, such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Alameda County Public Health Department, for direction on next steps.

As of today, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “for the general American public, who are unlikely to be exposed to this virus, the immediate health risk from 2019-nCoV (coronavirus) is considered low.” This means, Alameda County residents, including our Dublin Unified School District community and neighbors, are at a low risk of becoming affected.  

Unless a public health agency provides guidance to the contrary, the District will not exclude asymptomatic students or staff from a school site based on their recent overseas travel. The District certainly has no right to exclude students and staff based on their race or country of origin. Our students, staff, and families should continue to engage in their regular activities and practice good public health hygiene as this is the height of cold and flu season across our community.  

The Dublin Unified School District is still advising families not to send their child to school if they may be sick. Keeping your sick child home will be a great benefit for the health and wellness of our students and staff. If children are sent to school sick, they can be removed from class and school as deemed appropriate by our staff and nurses. If your child is sick, they must be fever free for 24 hours, without the use of fever reducing medications, before returning to school. 

Below are FAQs from our community.

We appreciate your partnership in this and will continue to keep you informed as things develop. 

Sincerely,

Dave Marken Ed. D. 
Superintendent 
Dublin Unified School District

FAQs 

What resources are available for me to learn more about the coronavirus. 

My child has told me their classmate recently returned from China. What will be done as a follow up to this information?

Unless a public health agency provides guidance to the contrary, the District will not exclude asymptomatic students or staff from a school site based on their recent overseas travel. The District certainly has no right to exclude students and staff based on their race or country of origin. If a child did have symptoms of illness, they can be removed from class and school as deemed appropriate by our staff and nurses.

I’d like to request information regarding an enrolled student’s race, country of origin, or recent travel. Can the District or school provide that to me?

Per FERPA & HIPAA laws, the Dublin Unified School District cannot share confidential student records, including health information, of any type. 

Are students required to wear a surgical mask to school?

No, but they can if they choose to wear a mask.

Should students be wearing N95 masks instead?

N95 masks are not recommended for children because of improper fit. In fact, according to the interim health officer at the Alameda County Department of Public Health, there are no N95 equivalent masks approved for use by children in the United States. 

My student is striving for perfect attendance, but may be experiencing symptoms of an illness. Should I keep them at home?

Yes, the safety and health of our students and staff is our top priority and students who feel sick should stay home. Unfortunately, this does affect having perfect attendance, but keeping everyone healthy is more important.  

What can we do to prevent the spread of infectious diseases, such as the cold or flu?

  • Stay home if you are sick. Keeping your sick child home will be a great benefit for the health and wellness of our students and staff. If children are sent to school sick, they can be removed from class and school as deemed appropriate by our staff and nurses. If your child is sick, they must be fever free for 24 hours, without the use of fever reducing medications, before returning to school.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick. When you are sick, keep your distance from others to protect them from getting sick too.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing. Flu and other serious respiratory illnesses, like respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), whooping cough, and severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) are spread by coughing, sneezing and unclean hands.
  • Washing your hands often will help protect you from germs. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.  Here is a three-minute video from the CDC about proper handwashing: https://youtu.be/eZw4Ga3jg3E
  • Practice other good health habits. Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces at home, work or school, especially when someone is ill. Get plenty of sleep, be physically active, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids and eat nutritious food.