I would like to take this opportunity to provide you with information regarding what Kingston K-14 is doing to ensure the health and safety of our students, staff and community regarding the COVID-19 virus, commonly known as Coronavirus. It is very important to remember that there are no confirmed cases in our area at this time.
With the coronavirus being labeled a pandemic, many of our families have questions regarding the virus and the impact on our school community. I want to assure you that we are in close communication with local and state officials and internal teams, as well as continuing to monitor the websites of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) in order to stay on top of this evolving situation. Below are common questions we are receiving from our families and the public, along with our responses.
When would It become necessary for schools to close?
The decision to close schools (if necessary) will be based upon input from public health officials, the most current situation reports, and made when it is determined to be in the best interest of our students, staff, and community. Ifwe are required to close schools, teachers are working on alternative methods of instruction. We realize that many of our families are not covered by quality internet service so there will be multiple ways of completing work that is given.
How will we keep families, staff and students informed regarding coronavirus?
Any district updates will be conveyed through regular district channels – including letters, handouts, School Messenger, the district website, and social media. We will not send letters home on a daily basis but will try and update our social media pages with information from the CDC on a daily basis.
What is the protocol for cleaning and disinfecting schools?
- We are sanitizing all classrooms daily with new state of the art Protexus Electrostatic sprayers the district purchased last year. These allow the disinfection of all surfaces in minutes and provides a uniform coverage of all surfaces.
- We are sanitizing areas, surfaces and objects that are touched often. These surfaces include bathrooms, desks, countertops, doorknobs, and handles.
- We are sanitizing our buses after each run using our Protexus Electrostatic sprayers.
- Staff have been directed to prioritize cleaning common and high-traffic areas multiple times a day.
- We bring in additional staff each year during the “flu season” or times of high sickness to prevent the spreading of germs.
Will school events and travel be canceled?
School events, including athletics and local field trips, are not canceled at this time, but that remains a possibility. We are aware that some state and regional events are being cancelled and will have to cancel as these events are cancelled.
What can I do to protect myself and my family?
Take the same precautions recommended for during flu season, including:
- Staying home when sick.
- Covering coughs and sneezes with tissues, coughing and sneezing into the inner elbow.
- Practice good hand washing with soap and water as often as possible, and if soap and water are not available, use alcohol-based hand sanitizers.
- Cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched objects and surfaces.
When should a student or staff member stay home?
If students or staff experience fever of 100 degrees or higher, cough and/or difficulty breathing, the CDC recommends they should stay home and contact their health care provider immediately. Students and staff members should be fever free without medication for 24 hours before returning to school or work.
Where can I turn for more information?
- Our school nurses and teachers have been working with students on how prevent the spreading of germs prior to the onset of this disease. We will continue reinforcing these procedures.
- Center for Disease Control
- Missouri Department of Health
- You can also talk to your medical provider or contact one of our school nurses. We are also attaching several informational documents form the CDC.
Please know that we are continually monitoring this situation closely, staying in regular contact with the CDC, health organizations and other experts. We will continue to adjust our operations according to the recommendations of health authorities as the situation develops. If you have questions, contact your child’s school or the Washington County Health Department.
Also, on March 11, the MO DHSS opened a statewide public hotline for citizens needing guidance regarding COVID-19. That hotline is operated by medical professionals and is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The phone number is 877-435-8411.
Superintendent of Schools