As in the fall, all members of the EHS community will use the smartphone app SafetyApp to monitor their health (temperature, symptoms, etc.) before they come to campus and throughout the semester.
Students, faculty, and staff will be screened:
List of 3 items.
Daily via the app, beginning Sunday, Jan. 10
Upon the Jan. 16 arrival to campus, with medical staff
Daily on campus, via the app
The School will follow a robust testing approach to establish a baseline of good health for our community, identify individuals who may be asymptomatic carriers of the virus, and support symptomatic individuals.
List of 6 items.
Test before arrival on campus.
All students must provide a negative result from a Covid-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test in order to come to campus. Our December 23 email provided information and required testing dates. Additional information can be found on the Preparing to Return to Campus page.
Test upon arrival on campus on Saturday, Jan. 16, and again on Friday, Jan. 22.
Medical staff will conduct the PCR tests on campus.
Test to monitor the community’s health.
Medical staff will conduct periodic surveillance tests using rapid antigen tests, which provide fast results and will allow us to identify potential clusters or developing outbreaks.
Test when a student is ill or has been exposed to Covid-19,
using a PCR test.
Test when a student is to be cleared from quarantine,
using a PCR test and relying on guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
NOTE: Some individuals are exempt from testing if they have been diagnosed with Covid-19 since Oct. 19.
Before students return to campus, they must submit three forms to the Health Center via their Magnus Health records:
Pre-Arrival PCR Covid-19 Test Selection Form (due Tuesday, Jan. 5) Families use this form to notify the Health Center once they have made plans for the students' Covid-19 PCR test.
Covid-19 Declaration Form (due Sunday, Jan. 10) Every family must complete this form. Based on the recommendation of the American Academy of Pediatrics, we are requiring that students who have had Covid-19 be evaluated by a physician before returning to campus.
Negative Covid-19 PCR Test Result (due by Thursday, Jan. 14, 5 p.m.) Students must take a Covid-19 PCR test before their return to campus. They then complete and upload this form along with proof of their negative result through their Magnus Health record. See "Selecting Your Pre-Arrival PCR Covid-19 Test."
Covid-19 Case Response
As in the fall, the School will respond to any case of Covid-19 or any presumptive positive based on the guidelines of local health authorities and the CDC. We will assess, triage, and support students who need to be in isolation and quarantine for any period of time.
As part of the response, we will communicate with parents of students involved. We have limited isolation and quarantine space on campus, and it will be necessary for students to leave campus with a parent, guardian, or emergency contact within 24 hours. We urge all families to consider now how they or their designated contacts could get to campus quickly if needed.
Before a parent arrives, we will care for students in the following ways:
Anyone who tests positive for Covid-19 or who has symptoms consistent with the disease will be isolated from others on campus. The Health Center’s top floor will be dedicated solely to care of students who are diagnosed with Covid-19 or who need assessment or evaluation of symptoms consistent with the virus. The floor is separate from rooms where other sick students will receive care.
When an individual on campus tests positive for the virus or is presumed positive, we conduct contact tracing in which we interview friends, roommates, and others who have been in contact with the individual who has tested positive. Through the interviews, we aim to determine who might have had close contact with the individual. Based on the CDC’s recommendations, close contacts are considered at risk of exposure to the virus and should quarantine for 10-14 days.
Quarantine helps us prevent spread of the virus in our residential program, as a person can be exposed and infected even before they show symptoms or test positive. During quarantine, students will continue to take their classes and participate in school activities remotely.
All quarantined individuals are tested for Covid-19 using a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test. Health Center or other School staff will contact families with the results and discuss the criteria by which students can return to campus life.
We have limited isolation and quarantine space on campus, and it will be necessary for students to leave campus with a parent, guardian, or emergency contact within 24 hours. When students quarantine at home, they should separate themselves from others in the household as if they have tested positive. Here are World Health Organization guidelines that outline how to monitor their health and limit their contact with others. We encourage families to consult with their personal healthcare provider as well.
Communicating With Families
During testing, parents will receive a phone call if their student:
tests positive, or
is involved in contact tracing, or
Please note: If you don’t hear from us, your student did not test positive and was not involved in contact tracing.
REPORTING RESULTS TO THE COMMUNITY Anytime a testing event begins, we will update the Covid-19 Information page in the Resources section of the parent portal of the website with information regarding positive results, contact tracing, etc. Parents should look to that Covid-19 Information page for details as we have them.
As we saw in the first semester, rapid antigen tests sometimes result in false positives. Nonetheless, we will update the Covid-19 Information page with those results and then send an email to all families if the follow-up PCR test confirms the positive result. PCR test results are typically available within one to two days.
We invite parents of students who have health concerns or logistical concerns about attending in person to reach out to the staff at the Health Center (email@example.com). If you or your son or daughter has social-emotional concerns about the return to school, please reach out to Director of Counseling Kristin Hosmer (firstname.lastname@example.org).
We will use polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests in most cases, including the pre-arrival and two tests conducted upon students’ arrival. These are the most accurate tests but results typically take 48-72 hours. For our periodic surveillance testing, which requires faster results to be effective, we will use rapid antigen tests, as they deliver results in a few minutes.
Episcopal is asking families to arrange and pay for their student’s pre-arrival tests. See details on the “Preparing to Return to Campus” page. EHS is partnering with labs locally, regionally, and nationally to provide the on-campus tests and will cover those costs.
We are closely monitoring science and public health recommendations regarding the merits of antibody testing and will facilitate such testing should evidence confirm that immunity is conferred and lasting with a positive antibody test result.
All faculty and staff — whether they live on campus or off campus — will be tested and screened along with students and will be required to do their daily screening of symptoms via the SafetyApp The adult testing strategy is similar and equally aggressive, though slightly different in its specifics.