In response to an increase in coronavirus cases throughout the state, Governor Newsom announced today that 41 counties in California, including Orange County, have now moved into the state’s most restrictive Purple Tier. Even though the Purple Tier designation imposes restrictions on businesses and various social activities, it does not affect in-person instruction for school districts such as ours that have already resumed in-person instruction. According to the California Department of Public Health, IUSD can remain open with necessary precautions already in place. It is important to keep in mind that this guidance is subject to change, based on future state directives. IUSD will continue to work with the California Department of Public Health and the Orange County Health Care Agency to closely monitor the situation and will keep our community informed.
California’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy, released by the Governor in August, relies on a four-tiered, color-coded system to show the status of coronavirus infections by county. It’s based on three metrics — the rate of new cases per 100,000 residents, the testing positivity percentage and a health equality metric. To learn more, click here.
According to health experts, the primary source of recent COVID-19 surges are social gatherings. Schools, due to effective mitigation strategies, have not been a source of COVID-19 surges. IUSD’s COVID-19 Dashboard reflects evidence that our schools are not the source of transmissions and that to date schools are experiencing limited and isolated cases. To learn more about IUSD’s health and safety investments and mitigation strategies, visit iusd.org/2020-21.
What this Means for IUSD Schools, Staff and Families
- IUSD will continue to implement health and safety protocols including face coverings, physical distancing, use of outdoor spaces, smaller cohorts, enhanced ventilation systems, standalone air purification systems for each classroom, and disinfecting protocols. For more detailed information click here.
- Families should continue their daily home screenings.
- Per IUSD and expert health guidelines, keep students home if they are sick, have COVID-19 symptoms or if they or a member of their household has tested positive or are awaiting COVID-19 test results.
- IUSD encourages families to observe the state’s updated travel advisory, released on November 13, which states that “Persons arriving in California from other states or countries, including returning California residents, should practice self-quarantine for 14 days after arrival.” This includes students who may be traveling for the holidays or who have traveled out of state for club sports.
- Youth sports may continue outdoors with physical distancing protocols in place and in accordance with California Department of Public Health guidelines for youth sports. Your student’s school and/or coach will provide further details to student athletes directly.
We understand that missing school for any reason can be stressful. Please contact your school and they will work with you to continue your student’s education and will maintain confidentiality.
Resources to Prevent COVID-19
We’re in this together and it is going to take a concerted effort to help keep our students, staff and families safe. To learn more about how you can help prevent the spread of COVID-19, please visit the Orange County Health Care Agency’s “What You Should Know” webpage, which provides important information in a variety of languages. Also visit the California Department of Public Health’s “Healthier Holidays” webpage for information as we head into the holiday season.
Thank you in advance for your continued partnership in helping to keep our students, staff and community safe.