Updated COVID-19 Quarantine Information: March 31, 2021

Yesterday, the PA Departments of Education and Health provided important updates to their health and safety recommendations. We are reviewing this information and will give a presentation with these updates at the Tuesday, April 6 School Board meeting. In the meantime, we are sharing the following two changes, both of which are effective today, Wednesday, March 31, 2021. 

Alternative Options to a 14-day Quarantine

A quarantine can end after Day 10 without testing and if no symptoms have been reported during daily monitoring. However, it is recommended that symptom monitoring continue until day 14. 

If diagnostic testing resources are available, the quarantine can end after Day 7 if a diagnostic specimen tests negative and if no symptoms were reported during daily monitoring.

  • Either RT-PCR or antigen tests are acceptable testing methods for discontinuation of quarantine.
  • The specimen must be collected and tested within 48 hours before the time of planned quarantine discontinuation (e.g., in anticipation of testing delays), but quarantine cannot be discontinued earlier than after Day 7. 
  • In order to discontinue quarantine after Day 7, specimens must be collected on or after Day 5. Specimens collected prior to this date will not be sufficient to allow quarantine to end early.  

 

Individuals can discontinue quarantine at these time points only if the following criteria are also met: 

  • No clinical evidence of COVID-19 has been elicited by daily symptom monitoring during the entirety of quarantine up to the time at which quarantine is discontinued; and, 
  • Daily symptom monitoring continues through quarantine Day 14; and, 
  • Persons are counseled regarding the need to adhere strictly through Day 14 after exposure to all recommended non-pharmaceutical interventions (e.g., masking, physical distancing)

 

If a student is quarantining because there is a COVID positive case in the home, there is still a 14-day requirement for quarantine. Students may return after 14 days if the COVID-19 positive individual is able to isolate in the home, away from others (separate bedroom, bathroom, and eating location).

Student-Athlete Return to Play

Starting today – Wednesday, March 31, 2021 - when a student-athlete returns to school from quarantine, he or she will be permitted to return to full activity for athletics. This also applies to any student who has already returned early and has been on modified practice. They can resume full activity today.

If the student chooses to leave quarantine early based on a negative COVID test, the test results must be submitted to the school nurse and uploaded into the student’s ATS portal before the student can return-to-play. This means the student can return-to-school and return-to-play on Day 8 of his or her quarantine. 

If the student chooses to leave quarantine early and not to take a COVID test, the student must notify the school nurse to return-to-school and notify the athletic trainer to return-to-play. This means the student can return-to-school and return-to-play on Day 11 of his or her quarantine. 

If a student tests positive for COVID, the student is required to submit a clearance note from his or her physician to the athletic trainer.