What to do if a Student Becomes Sick at School or Reports a New COVID-19 Diagnosis Flowchart
- Student(s) displays signs of infectious illness consistent with COVID-19.
- Teacher or staff excuses student(s) from classroom, cohort/pod or area within the school and notifies COVID-19 designated POC.
- COVID-19 POC takes student(s) to designated isolation room/area until transportation can be arranged to send student(s) home or to seek emergency medical attention.
Note: If multiple ill students must be placed in the same isolation room/area, ensure mask use and that they maintain at least 6 feet of distance between them.
- COVID-19 POC notify parent(s), guardians, or caregiver(s) of ill student(s).
- Parent(s), guardians, or caregiver(s) pick up student(s). The student(s) should consult with their healthcare provider for evaluation and determination if testing is recommended.
Student negative COVID-19 test result.**
- Student(s) return to school following existing school illness management policies.
Student positive COVID-19 test result.
- A student(s) is newly identified as having COVID-19.
- COVID-19 POC initiates list of close contacts*** of the ill student and communicates the possible exposure to teacher(s), staff, and parent(s), guardian(s) or caregiver(s) of student(s) in the school.
- Exposed area(s) (e.g., classroom) closed off for up to 24 hours. Cleaning and disinfection of area performed by appropriate staff.
- Administrators work with local health officials to assess transmission levels and support contact tracing efforts.
- Close contacts*** are notified, advised to stay home (quarantine for 14 days), and to consult with their healthcare provider for evaluation and determination if testing is recommended. The best way to protect yourself and others is to stay home for 14 days if you think you’ve been exposed to someone who has COVID-19. Check your local health department’s website for information about options in your area to possibly shorten this quarantine period.
- Administrators or COVID-19 POC communicate with teacher(s), staff, and parent(s), guardian(s) or caregiver(s) the importance of COVID-19 mitigation strategies (e.g., staying home when sick, washing hands, wearing masks, social distancing).
- Members of the student(s)’ household are requested to quarantine for 14 days.
- Student(s) returns to school after meeting criteria for ending home isolation.****
Additional flowcharts are being created to cover more topics (such as cohorting, quarantine, isolation, and testing among cohorts) and actions based on the number of cases in a school.
Note: COVID-19 POC is the designated point of contact (a staff person that is responsible for responding to COVID-19 concerns, such a nurse)
* Scenario based on geographic area with community transmission of SARS-CoV-2 the virus that causes COVID-19.
** With no known close contact
*** Close contact is defined as someone who was within 6 feet for a total of 15 minutes or more within 2 days prior to illness onset, regardless of whether the contact was wearing a mask.
**** Student can end home isolation after meeting all of the following three criteria: at least 10 days since symptoms appeared, at least 24 hours with no fever-reducing medication, and symptoms have improved.