PSD Protocols for COVID-19

What happens with COVID cases in PSD? 

There may be cases and outbreaks in PSD that will lead to shifts from in-person to remote education, health department-mandated quarantines for close contacts and possible, temporary closure of individual schools. PSD closely consults with the Larimer County Department of Health and Environment (LCDHE) and monitors the agency’s COVID-19 community data dashboard, as well as PSD's COVID-19 dashboards, when making decisions. 

PSD follows health guidance from public health agencies: 


Testing sites for minors

  • Larimer County testing sites
    • Must be 5 or older to be tested
    • PCR tests (takes 2-3 days typically to get results) ​​​​​​
    • Scheduling a head of time is recommended but walk-ups can be taken if space allows 
  • UCHealth
    • PCR tests, results take a few days
    • Having an appointment beforehand is needed
  • Banner Health - No walk-ins; appointment and phone screening is required
  • Walgreens
    •  No-cost testing for ages 3+
    • Schedule an appointment online 
  • Many physicians or pediatricians' offices will test patients if they’re symptomatic or have been in contact with someone confirmed to have COVID-19

 

Order free at-home test kits

  • CDPHE free test kits - Delivered to your home
  • COVIDtests.gov - Order four free at-home tests per person delivered to you and find information on health insurance reimbursement for purchased test kits


At-home test results


Upload results to the county (LCDHE) here. This is the only way an at-home positive result can be officially recorded for the previous positive in the last 90 days exemption from quarantine.


 

Processes - exposure to COVID or testing positive

One should notify their school or supervisor about positive COVID cases or possible exposures. PSD and LCDHE work together on contact tracing and investigations to determine the appropriate response such as quarantine or if a class needs to shift to remote learning. Learn more about PSD contact tracing and investigations >> 
 

Quarantine protocols 

Note:  Students age 12+ and staff need to be fully up to date with all recommended vaccine doses to be exempt from quarantining. Read more about this CDC guidance here. >> 
 

Quarantine vs. Isolation

Quarantine means stay home  

  • For anyone who is a close contact of someone with COVID-19; health department issues legal orders 
  • To be exempt from quarantine close contacts must:
    • Have completed a full COVID-19 vaccination series AND have received a booster dose, OR

    • Be 5-11 years old and 14 days past their second dose of the Pfizer vaccine OR

    • Be 14 days past and still within 5 months from their second Pfizer or Moderna dose (ineligible for booster at this time) OR 

    • Be 14 days past and still within 2 months of their Johnson and Johnson dose (ineligible for booster at this time).

    • Have a confirmed positive test result for COVID-19 in the last 90 days.

  • Five days from last date of exposure in most instances
    • Those living together and unable to isolate may have different return dates.  Contact your school health office for information on return. Details on quarantine in households >> 
    • Close contacts may return to school on day six as long as they are asymptomatic and able to wear a well-fitting mask through day ten. Those unable to wear a mask must remain out of school for the full ten day isolation period.
  • Cannot participate in PSD or non-PSD athletics, activities, etc. 
  • When PSD COVID-19 Response Teams conduct contact tracing investigations, they submit names of all possible close contacts of a case to LCDHE. LCDHE will verify whether anyone on the list has been fully vaccinated. Those who have a verified vaccination status will not have to quarantine.  
  • Note:  If a close contact begins symptoms, they must remain home and get tested.  If the PCR or molecular test results are negative, return to school once passed their required quarantine AND symptoms have resolved or are improving AND 24 hours vomiting, diarrhea, and fever free without use of medications before returning to school. If not getting tested by PCR or molecular test, follow home isolation for five full days following symptom onset AND the quarantine date listed. To return, individuals must have 24 hours diarrhea, vomiting or fever free without use of medications AND all other symptoms resolved or improved before returning to school on or after day six Per Larimer County Department of Health and Environment, negative at-home tests are not accepted for symptomatic close contacts. They may only be used in Return to Learn.

Isolation means stay away from other people, including in your household 

  • For anyone diagnosed with COVID-19; health department issues legal orders 
  • 5 days from the date symptoms started until symptoms improve and at least 24 hours fever-free without using fever-reducing medicines; can return to activities on 6th day 
  • If no symptoms, isolate 5 days from date you were tested, returning to activities on 6th day 
  • To count the appropriate day of return, Day 0 is the date symptoms started or if asymptomatic, the day tested.  Individuals may return on Day 6, if they have been free of fever, diarrhea, vomiting in the previous 24 hours without medication AND their other symptoms are improved with no new symptom development.  
    • Individuals must also be able to wear a well-fitting mask from Day 6-10.  Those unable to wear a mask must remain out of school for the full ten day isolation period.
  • Cannot participate in PSD or non-PSD athletics, activities, etc. 
  • Testing is not required or recommended to leave isolation because it is possible to test positive for up to 90 days after recovering, even though you are no longer able to spread the virus to others.

Test to Stay in PSD

LCDHE is allowing Test to Stay protocols to be implemented even if participants are not utilizing the CDPHE Test to Stay program to receive tests. PSD schools will allow those who have been identified as close contacts in high-risk school activities or community exposures to stay in school if they follow ALL requirements below.

Criteria for utilizing Test to Stay and returning to school during quarantine period 

Students and staff identified as a close contact in a school or non-household exposure to someone positive for COVID-19 will be able to attend school in lieu of quarantine if they remain asymptomatic and test negative twice per the instructions below.  

This option is NOT available to students/staff identified as close contacts in a household exposure. What is household exposure? An example may be a parent/guardian testing positive and exposing other members of the household in which they live, including students.  

For more information about the program and testing process, visit the Test to Stay in PSD web page. 

 

When asymptomatic close contacts cannot return early  

The option to end quarantine and return to PSD classes and athletics/extracurricular activities early only applies to cases where a student may access a class and/or activity in-person. 

  • In elementary schools, all students in a classroom are shifted to remote education for five days from the last date of exposure to a COVID-19 case. During this time, the educational option is remote learning. Students may not “test back” into class early because the classroom will remain closed to all until a date communicated by the school. 
  •  If an elementary classroom is open to in-person learning, an elementary student could be cleared to complete quarantine early and return to class. E.g. Student is identified as a close contact of a COVID-19 case in their household but there is no case at school, so the class isn’t shifted to remote learning.   

 

How Sick is Too Sick? guidance

 

alt=""For students and staff returning to work or school in PSD following a positive COVID-19 symptom screen, PSD follows this CDPHE How Sick is Too Sick? guidance. If there are questions about when a student can return to school, the school nurse or PSD health staff will make that determination. 

Note: This guidance is NOT intended for cases or close contacts of COVID-19. A confirmed COVID-19 case or close contact should follow public health isolation or quarantine instructions for return to school/work.

Have any of the symptoms below? You need a negative COVID test to return to school. 

When not related to a documented chronic health condition, symptoms that require a negative test to return to school include fever, feeling feverish, shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, cough, sore throat, runny nose, congestion, muscle/body aches, headache, fatigue, new loss of sense of taste or smell. 

If your student tests positive or chooses not to test, they must remain home for five days and wear a mask on days 6 to 10 when they return, per public health requirements. 

 

See below for further guidance on symptom response:

Symptoms which must be fully resolved

 

  • Feeling feverish, having chills, temperature of 100.4 F or greater 
  • Cough
  • Nausea, Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

Symptom response:   

  • Follow home isolation for 5 days following symptom onset.  To return, individuals must have 24 hours cough, diarrhea, vomiting or fever free without use of medications AND all other symptoms resolved or improved before returning to school on or after day 6.  Students and staff must be able to wear a mask for day 6 through 10. 

OR

  • Get a PCR or molecular COVID-19 test and provide documented lab results to the school. 
    • If the test is negative, return to school once symptoms have resolved AND 24 hours cough, vomiting, diarrhea, and fever free without use of medications before returning to school.

    • If positive, follow home isolation for 5 days following symptoms onset.  To return, individuals must have 24 hours cough, diarrhea, vomiting or fever free without use of medications AND all other symptoms resolved or improved before returning to school on or after day 6. Students and staff must be able to wear a mask for day 6 through 10.

OR

  • Take an at-home COVID-19 test.  Write directly on the card (not on a label added to the card) the person's name, date and time test was administered.  Submit photo of the negative result to the school health office. 

    • If the test is negative, return to school if symptoms are resolved AND 24 hours cough, vomiting, diarrhea, and fever free without use of medications before returning to school. 

    • If positive, follow home isolation for 5 days following symptoms onset.  To return, individuals must have 24 hours cough, diarrhea, vomiting or fever free without use of medications AND all other symptoms resolved or improved before returning to school on or after day 6. Students and staff must be able to wear a mask for day 6 through 10.

  • Symptoms must be resolved and not interfere with learning or effective mask wearing. Individuals must have 24 hours cough, vomiting, diarrhea, and fever free without use of medications before returning to school.  Those with a medical mask exemption who do not test or have a positive result must remain out of school the full 10 days, returning on day 11.

  • Students and staff may return if the cough is improved following discussion with health office.  Cough must not interfere with learning or effective mask wearing.

Symptoms which must be improved

 

  • Sore throat 
  • Runny nose or congestion 
  • Headache 
  • Fatigue 
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Muscle or body aches 
  • Follow home isolation for 5 days following symptoms onset.  To return, individuals must have 24 hours cough, diarrhea, vomiting or fever free without use of medications AND all other symptoms resolved or improved before returning to school on or after day 6.  Students and staff must be able to wear a mask for day 6 through 10.

OR

  • Get a PCR or molecular COVID-19 test and provide documented lab results to the school. 

    • If the test is negative, return to school once symptoms are resolved or improving AND 24 hours cough, vomiting, diarrhea, and fever free without use of medications before returning to school.

    • If positive, follow home isolation for 5 days following symptoms onset.  To return, individuals must have 24 hours cough, diarrhea, vomiting or fever free without use of medications AND all other symptoms resolved or improved before returning to school on or after day 6. Students and staff must be able to wear a mask for day 6 through 10. 

OR

  • Take an at-home COVID-19 test.  Write directly on the card (not on a label added to the card) the person's name, date and time test was administered.  Submit photo of the negative result to the school health office. 

    • If the test is negative, return to school if symptoms are resolved or improving AND 24 hours cough, vomiting, diarrhea, and fever free without use of medications before returning to school. 

    • If positive, follow home isolation for 5 days following symptoms onset.  To return, individuals must have 24 hours cough, diarrhea, vomiting or fever free without use of medications AND all other symptoms resolved or improved before returning to school on or after day 6.  Students and staff must be able to wear a mask for day 6 through 10.

  • Symptoms must be improved and not interfere with learning or effective mask wearing. Individuals must have 24 hours cough, vomiting, diarrhea, and fever free without use of medications before returning to school.  Those with a medical mask exemption who do not test or have a positive result must remain out of school the full 10 days, returning on day 11.

  • **Loss of taste or smell can persist for weeks or months. This condition does not need to be resolved or improving before an individual returns to school or care once they have a negative test.