As 2022 begins, we have a great opportunity to reinforce actions that can help alleviate the risks associated with the COVID-19 pandemic—especially in anticipation of the highly transmissible Omicron variant. The goal of implementing prevention measures is to protect students, teachers, and staff, and maintain in-person learning. Schools are an important part of the community, and they provide safe and compassionate learning environments for students. Schools support social and emotional development, provide access to critical services, and improve life outcomes.
The steps your Columbia School District Board of Education members and administrators took in late November are intended to keep school buildings open and allow students and staff to return to school safely after the winter break. The benefits achieved by continuing in person learning are vast while the risks associated with it can be reduced by implementing proper protocols to curb the transmission of COVID-19.
Coinciding with the CDC and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) recommendations of universal indoor masking for all teachers, staff, students, and visitors (age 2 and older), regardless of vaccination status, the Columbia School District will return to school on January 3rd, 2022 wearing masks for a minimum of two weeks. As Michigan remains in high community transmission, universal indoor masking is a critical prevention strategy for all school districts to allow students to maintain in-person learning. Representatives at MDHHS and MDE site the fact that mask use has been proven to substantially reduce transmission in school settings.
If your child has an exemption from his or her physician, they will be allowed accommodations as arranged previously with your child’s building administrator. Children who arrive at school will be required to have a mask on properly when they enter the building. All children must wear a mask on the bus. Children who do not wear their mask properly, will be sent home.
Please keep your children home when they are exhibiting symptoms. Symptoms can include: Fever (>100.4 F), cough, shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, runny or stuffy nose, loss of taste or smell, and/or abdominal pain. If you or your child have symptoms, please contact your physician. This information is being shared with you in an effort of transparency as we navigate through these unprecedented times.
If you have any questions, please email: ReturnToLearn@myeagles.org .
Dr. Pamela Campbell and the Columbia School District Board of Education