Update on COVID-19 Absences

  • For the 2021-22 school year, the state of Florida allowed students who were out due to COVID to be counted as ‘present’ in school. However, the state no longer allows that exception, which means that if your student is out due to illness, including COVID, it will be counted as an absence.

    As always, your child’s school will need a note from you or a healthcare provider for an absence to be excused. 

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COVID-19 Symptoms

  • Anyone who has symptoms of infectious illness such as COVID-19 should not attend school.

    Families should be on the alert for signs of illness in their children and keep them home when they are sick.

    Symptoms at School

    If a student develops COVID-19 symptoms while on campus, their school nurse can provide rapid antigen testing in the school clinic. Students will only be tested if they have a signed consent form on file, and after parents are called for confirmation. 

    If the student has a positive rapid test result, the school will follow the protocols for positive cases.

    If there is a negative rapid test result, the nurse will offer to perform a PCR test for confirmation. The student with symptoms must stay home while the PCR test is sent for lab processing.

     

    Returning to School (DOH Rules)

    Anyone with symptoms consistent with COVID-19 should not attend school, school-sponsored activities, or be on school property until:

    • They receive a negative diagnostic COVID-19 test and is asymptomaticOR
    • Five (5) days have passed since the onset of symptoms, they have had no fever for 24 hours, and other symptoms are improving; OR
    • They receive written permission to return to school from a medical doctor licensed an osteopathic physician or an advanced practice registered nurse

    Most at-home COVID tests cannot be used to return early (Option A), according to DOH guidelines.

    Some at-home tests that are collected at home and then sent to a laboratory, done through a mobile application, or monitored by a medical provider and reported to the Florida Department of Health are sufficient. For additional assistance, call the Alachua County Health Department at (352) 420-8993.

Positive Test Results

  • Anyone who tests positive for COVID-19 must stay home from school, regardless of whether or not they have symptoms. Parents should also consult with their child’s healthcare provider for care. 

    For the 2021-22 school year, the state of Florida allowed students who were out due to COVID to be counted as ‘present’ in school. However, the state no longer allows that exception, which means that if your student is out due to illness, including COVID, it will be counted as an absence.

    As always, your child’s school will need a note from you or a healthcare provider for an absence to be excused. 

    Returning to School (DOH Rules)

    Anyone who has received a positive diagnostic test may not attend school, school-sponsored activities, or be on school property until:

    • The student receives a negative diagnostic COVID-19 test and is asymptomaticOR

    • Five (5) days have passed since the onset of symptoms or positive test result, they have had no fever for 24 hours and other symptoms are improving; OR

    • The student receives written permission to return to school from a medical doctor, an osteopathic physician, or an advanced practice registered nurse.

    Most at-home COVID tests cannot be used to return early (Option A), according to DOH guidelines.

    Some at-home tests that are collected at home and then sent to a laboratory, done through a mobile application, or monitored by a medical provider and reported to the Florida Department of Health are sufficient. For additional assistance, call the Alachua County Health Department at (352) 420-8993.

ACPS COVID-19 Decision Flowchart

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