RESPONDING TO COVID-19 SCENARIOS ON THE VAN or BUS - STUDENTS
4. Student is Symptomatic on the Van/Bus:
In the event that a Student is exhibiting symptoms of Covid-19 on the van/bus:
• Although families are the most important first line of defense for monitoring symptoms, bus drivers and bus monitors also play an important role in flagging possible symptomatic students.
• If symptoms are noticed as the student is getting on the bus and if there is a caregiver present, transportation personnel should not allow student to board the bus. Caregiver should then FOLLOW: “Protocol: Student is symptomatic at home.”
• If student is already on the bus, ensure student is masked and keeps mask on. Ensure other students keep their masks on. Ensure student maintains required physical distance from other students.
• Bus driver/monitor should call ahead to the bus service dispatch. The bus service dispatch should be equipped with appropriate cell phone numbers for school and district personnel (nurse or other medical personnel). The dispatch should contact the school to inform the Shore Nurse (or Health and Related Services Coordinator) of a possible symptomatic child.
• A Shore Nurse (or H & R Coordinator) should meet the bus as it arrives, wearing a mask. If practical, the student with possible symptoms should exit the bus first.
• Nurse (or or H&R Coordinator) should evaluate the student for symptoms (see list above: “Most common symptoms of COVID-19”). If possible (weather permits) this evaluation should take place outdoors, in an area away from entrances that other students and staff are using.
• ** Bus should be cleaned / disinfected.
IF NO SYMPTOMS:
If the evaluation shows the student does not have symptoms, send the student to class.
IF ANY SYMPTOM IS PRESENT/OBSERVED:
• Weather permitting, remain outside with the student.
• Ask other nursing/staff personnel to bring a surgical mask for the student and all preferred PPE for staff involved in student’s care/assessment.
• If weather or other conditions contraindicate remaining outdoors, don PPE, assist student in wearing surgical mask, and walk him/her to the designated medical waiting room.
• There is no specific capacity limit for the medical waiting room, but all students in the medical waiting room must be as far apart as possible, and no less than 6 feet. Strict mask wearing covering the nose and mouth at all times is required for every person in the room. This must be enforced. If a student is symptomatic and is unable to wear or keep a mask on, no other students should use this room. Another outdoor or vacant indoor area will be used.
• Students can work on individual schoolwork or other activities while in the medical waiting room.
• Contact caregiver for pick-up.
o IF CAREGIVER CAN PICK UP DURING THE DAY: Student waits to be picked up in the medical waiting room. Caregivers must wear a mask/face covering when picking up their student. Under no circumstances can symptomatic students ride the school bus with other students to get home. Caregivers and students should wash their hands upon arriving at home and change their clothes, as a precaution.
o IF CAREGIVER CANNOT PICK UP DURING THE DAY: The student should wait in the medical waiting room until the end of the day to be picked up by caregiver. Under no circumstances can symptomatic students ride the school bus with other students to get home.
o Current Massachusetts DPH guidance is that all symptomatic individuals in Massachusetts, even those with mild symptoms, should be tested. An individual who does not wish to be tested should instead isolate for 10 days and until asymptomatic.
Student should get tested at one of Massachusetts’s test sites. Sites may require pre-screening, a referral, and/or an appointment.
Isolate at home until test results are returned.
Proceed as follows according to test results:
• IF NEGATIVE:
The student may return to school based upon guidance from their clinician and necessary management of another diagnosis. Student stays home until symptoms have improved for 24 hours, no fever.
- Student should remain at home (except to get medical care),
- monitor their symptoms,
- notify the school, notify personal close contacts,
- assist the school in contact tracing efforts, and
- answer the call from local board of health or Massachusetts Community Tracing Collaborative.
- Shore will inform DESE by calling the DESE Rapid Response Help Center.
- Most people who have relatively mild illness will need to stay in self-isolation for at least 10 days AND until at least 24 hourshave passed with no fever and improvement in other symptoms. Repeat testing prior to return is not recommended. Return to school should be based on time and symptom resolution. FOLLOW STEPS UNDER: “Protocol: Student/staff tests positive for COVID-19.”