The Kosciusko school board approved updates to the schools' reopening plan which unveiled COVID-19 policies and procedures for the upcoming school term.
Fully vaccinated students, staff members, and teachers will not be required to wear masks indoors. If exposed to COVID-19 while being asymptomatic, they will not be required to quarantine or face exclusion from school settings including athletic or extracurricular activities. Additionally, fully vaccinated individuals will not have to be tested unless they become symptomatic.
Unvaccinated teachers and staff will be required to wear masks during the school day and at all times while working with students. Maskless teachers and staff will be required to show proof of vaccination.
Unvaccinated students will not be mandated to wear a mask, but it is highly encouraged. Students who wear masks are not required to quarantine when exposed to COVID-19 unless they become symptomatic.
Visitors on campus will be asked to wear a mask. At athletic events, however, masks will be encouraged but not required.
Positive COVID-19 cases
No changes from the 2020-2021 school year. All individuals who test positive may not return to school or extracurricular activities for a minimum of 10 days and must be symptom-free for 72 hours.
Guidelines were adjusted concerning quarantining.
No quarantine is required for anyone exposed to COVID-19 who is vaccinated and asymptomatic.
No quarantine is required for anyone exposed to COVID-19 who is regularly masked and asymptomatic.
Unvaccinated students and staff exposed to COVID-19 may continue to participate in school and extracurricular activities if they receive a negative test result every two days for a seven-day period.
All other unvaccinated individuals exposed to COVID-19 must follow the same quarantine rules of 2020-2021 and quarantine for 14 days and be asymptomatic before returning to school or extracurriculars.
Kosciusko schools will also be continuing preventative measures to stop the spread of COVID-19.
Preventative measures include:
—Cleaning and disinfecting classrooms, hallways, and buses.
—Temperature scanners will be set up at each school to screen for elevated temperatures when individuals enter a building.
—Touchless water fountains will be available for all students and staff.
—Masks will be made available for students and visitors at each school.
—Students will be taught proper hand washing techniques.
—Social distancing will be enforced at all times possible, including a minimum of three feet distance between individuals in the classroom.
—COVID-19 positive cases will be made available weekly on the district’s website at kosciuskoschools.com and in the district’s weekly newsletter.
Superintendent Billy Ellzey said that the district has listened to national, state, and local recommendations to ensure continued quality education for the upcoming school year.
“We are in the midst of preparing again to open school with COVID-19 bearing down on us. We want to update our plan to make sure we are doing what is best for our students, teachers, and staff throughout the district,” Ellzey said during the meeting. “We have looked at advice from the CDC, the Mississippi Department of Health, and our local positions to ensure we have what is best in place for everyone involved. First and foremost, our mission is to provide a quality education, and we want to make sure we are able to do that.”