(CBS4) – A group of Jeffco Public Schools parents are petitioning for the end of COVID restrictions and protocols for next school year. The district released changes to protocols starting Wednesday, but some parents say some procedures are still unclear.
“Parents are in limbo and they are strongly wanting to know what it’s going to look like next year. Many parents will not put their parents through another year of restrictions,” said Jeffco parent Lindsay Datko.
Datko is an organizer for Jeffco Unites: Kids First. She has signed a petition calling for changes to a proposed pandemic recovery resolution.
“The resolution states that they will lower the quarantine threshold, but quite simply, quarantines just need to be 100% eliminated at this point,” Datko said.
Superintendent Tracy Dorland announced other changes for the district starting this Wednesday. They will apply to summer operations and the 2021-2022 school year.
The following are changes to COVID protocols at Jeffco:
● Temperature and health screenings are no longer required at the entrance of Jeffco Public Schools buildings. In lieu of screenings, we ask staff and families to utilize this home-screening review and guidance from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE).
● Masks are no longer required at school, indoors or outdoors, for children age 11 and younger and for adults and students 12 and older who are fully vaccinated. “Fully vaccinated” is defined as having received both doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine plus two weeks or having received the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine plus two weeks. Wearing a mask is optional and will be supported for those who wish to continue to wear masks in this group; however, masks are still required for individuals over the age of 12 who are not fully vaccinated.
● We encourage our community to consider receiving a vaccine. People who are fully vaccinated are not subject to quarantine should they be exposed to a COVID case in schools.
● Staff are encouraged to upload their vaccine information into the ESS PeopleSoft system. Instructions for employees are here. Anyone who is fully vaccinated will not be subject to quarantine protocols.
● If a student needs accommodations due to a health condition that prevents them from wearing a mask or receiving the vaccine, the student’s parent/guardian should reach out to the school principal or school nurse to initiate the accommodation process.
● If a staff member is unable to receive the COVID vaccine due to a health condition, please connect with your direct supervisor or Employee Relations for assistance with the accommodations process. Staff accommodations may result in customized protocols for others working with or learning from the staff member.
● Jeffco Public Schools is continuing to advocate with Jefferson County Public Health and CDPHE for removing current quarantine restrictions. The quarantine process will continue to follow CDPHE Guidance for Schools until new guidelines are determined by CDPHE.
For many, the biggest issue still up in the air is quarantine protocols for exposed students.
“We are very strongly advocating that quarantine guideline are eliminated by CDPHE and the governor’s office,” said Dorland.
Parents, including Datko, are anxious to get answers before the start of next school year.
“The understanding and the patience has ended, today,” Datko said.