Health & Safety Measures

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MASKS/FACE COVERINGS

Per the federal order issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on January 29, 2021, all individuals, regardless of vaccination status, will be required to wear a mask over their nose and mouth while on school buses or vans.


Per an order by the Pennsylvania Secretary of Health issued on August 31, 2021 and effective on September 7, 2021, all individuals inside district buildings must properly wear a face covering. Face coverings can only be removed in instances outlined in Section 3 of the order. If students or their families report that a child cannot wear a face covering in school for one of the exception reasons listed in the order, medical documentation from a licensed physician must be provided to the child’s building principal that specifically states the child’s disability or medical condition and that it prevents the child from being able to wear a mask or shield. As per the state order, all alternatives to a face covering, including the use of a face shield, should be exhausted before an individual is excepted from the Order.

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TRANSPORTATION

Masks are required by all individuals on district transportation, per the CDC order.


While the district will work to reduce capacity on school buses when possible, there will be routes that operate at pre-pandemic capacity levels with an increased number of students learning in-person and a decreased number of students being driven to school.


Seats will be assigned, as is usual, and seating charts will be provided to school offices. Siblings will be required to sit together.


Transportation assignments will be emailed to families in mid-August with a short window of time for families to request a change in time for the first day of school. Returning families are asked to complete this online transportation request form by July 29, 2021.

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ARRIVAL/DISMISSAL PROCEDURES

All students and staff will be asked to use the symptom screening checklist (to be shared  via email in August) before leaving for school each day.


Car rider arrival/dismissal windows may be shortened and may return to pre-pandemic times. This information will be communicated to families by their school in August. All arrival/dismissal procedures will be outlined by building in a future communication.


Temperature screenings will no longer be performed at arrival, unless it needs to be added as a mitigation effort in response to higher levels of community transmission.

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CAFETERIA/ FOOD SERVICES

Full cafeteria operations will be restored. Serving line procedures are to be determined by building principal.


Boxed or pre-packaged meals are no longer required.


Secondary dining locations closed in all buildings, unless required to utilize these spaces based on community transmission or local, state, or federal mandates.


Distancing of tables/chairs to the greatest extent possible.


Students eligible to receive one free breakfast and one free lunch per school day. Students will be charged for extra meals or a la carte items.

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GENERAL SCHOOL OPERATIONS

Throughout the district in classrooms, learning spaces, cafeterias, and other areas, desks, tables, and chairs will be distanced to the greatest extent possible, while still allowing for a full reopening for all district students.


Locker use restored for students in grades 3-12.


Classroom windows will be opened when possible to increase fresh air.


Seating charts are required to be submitted to building principals.


Water bottle refill stations will remain active throughout the district. Students will be encouraged to bring a refillable, reusable bottle (no plastic single use bottles) with them to school. Additionally, usage of water fountains may be permitted at the building principal’s discretion.


Most one-way hallways/stairwells return to two-directional hallways/stairwells.


Use of shared classroom materials will not be restricted, with no requirement to sanitize/disinfect after each use.


Locker room usage for physical education classes  at the middle school and high school will be restored.


Elementary Center specials classes resume  in their pre-pandemic locations (music room, art room, library, STEM room, gym).


Large group gatherings will be discouraged/limited, but will be at the discretion of the building principal. Virtual staff meetings will be conducted when feasible.


Nonessential visitors, volunteers, and activities involving external groups or organizations will be limited and at the discretion of the building principal.


Visitors to the school office (parents/guardians picking up/dropping off students or belongings) will continue to have limited access. Virtual meetings between staff and families will be conducted when feasible.


Field trips requests reviewed on a case-by-case basis by building principal in consultation with the Superintendent.


Outside/external groups will be permitted to use/rent district facilities contingent on low levels of community transmission of COVID-19 and staffing availability.


**More building-specific details about operations will be communicated to families in August by the building principals.**

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HEALTHY HABITS

All students and staff will be provided ample opportunities to practice good hand hygiene using soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizer.


Hand sanitizer dispensers remain prominent and stocked in high-traffic and strategic locations throughout the district. Sinks are stocked with adequate supplies of soap and paper towels.


Signs provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Pennsylvania Department of Health and created by the South Park School District will be posted throughout all district buildings and facilities and in common areas to promote proper handwashing and respiratory etiquette. Proper handwashing and respiratory etiquette will be reviewed and reinforced by teachers.


School staff members are expected to model appropriate handwashing and respiratory etiquette for South Park students.

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CLEAN & HEALTHY SCHOOLS

District facilities staff will continue to clean and disinfect all spaces including classrooms, locker rooms, band rooms, training rooms, weight rooms, gyms, large group instruction rooms (LGI room), auditoriums, outdoor spaces, etc., daily, consistent with CDC guidelines and standards.


Facilities staff will focus on high-touch surfaces throughout the day, adhering to any developed cleaning/disinfecting schedules for each district building.


CDC guidelines for responding, cleaning, and disinfecting areas in the event of a confirmed case of COVID-19 will be followed.


Approved cleaning supplies will be stocked and available for teachers/staff for classroom cleaning/disinfecting when needed/requested.


All students, families and staff will be provided with an updated symptom screening checklist prior to the start of the school year and will be required to use the checklist daily before leaving for school. Individuals who are sick will be reminded to stay home.


Students and staff diagnosed with COVID-19 will adhere to isolation requirements set forth by the ACHD, DOH, and CDC. Individuals who are absent for illness (COVID-19 or any other illness) will be required to follow health department protocol in order to return to school.


The district will adhere to contact tracing/isolation/quarantine directives from the Allegheny County Health Department, the Pennsylvania Department of Health, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Administration and school nurses will follow ACHD, DOH, and CDC guidelines and conduct contact tracing when needed, notifying identified close contacts of the exposure and the need to quarantine, generally within 24 hours of the district receiving notice of a positive COVID-19 case, per CDC recommendations. Fully vaccinated people who were in close contact with someone who has COVID-19 but do NOT have COVID-19 symptoms do not need to quarantine or be tested.





Further updates about the district’s operations during the 2021-2022  school year will be provided throughout the month of August.

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