The Bangor School Department 2021 Re-opening of Schools Plan can be found here.
Q – Has Bangor decided about pooled testing of students and staff? If the decision was no, could you please explain the rationale?
A – At this time the Bangor School Department has applied to offer pooled testing services and is awaiting a confirmation start date.
Q – As case numbers rise and more children are affected with the COVID-19 delta variant, for our unvaccinated students under 12, could you comment on the rationale behind not continuing social distancing, specifically not limiting indoor interactions between students in different classes at lunch and specials.
A – The BSD will continue to socially distance students when possible. Classrooms and activities are being planned for student safety. Staff are working to maximize lunchroom safety, cleaning procedures and spacing for students. Lunch times will cycle students through the lunchroom by class allowing us to keep track of students and their close contacts at the elementary school level. Each school is setting up different procedures based on building space and population of students.
Q – Are there options to wearing a mask?
A – Face shields may be an alternative for those students with medical, behavioral, or other challenges who are unable to wear masks/face coverings. Face shields worn in place of a face covering must cover the eyes, nose, and mouth, and extend below the chin and back to the ears.
Q – Are remote learning options available?
A – The BSD will offer in person learning for all students during the 2021/2022 school year. We will provide limited, interim remote learning through synchronous learning only when needed due to cases of the virus that impact our schools. Families who are looking for a long-term, full remote program next year should explore external options like Maine’s virtual charter schools, national virtual learning companies, or homeschool (for more information on these options, contact the Assistant Superintendent, Dr. Kathy Harris-Smedberg at firstname.lastname@example.org).
Q – How can I ensure that my student with an IEP is succeeding?
A – Parents may reach out to the principal of their student’s school or to the office of pupil services by contacting Christy Babin at email@example.com
Q – Will Bangor students be sent home if there is an outbreak?
A – Individuals in the schools who are wearing masks, socially distanced, or vaccinated will be less likely to quarantine. BSD is considering implementing pooled testing which would also further reduce the need for quarantining as an added layer of protection. Students who are close contacts who meet the requirements for quarantine will be contacted by the school nurse.
Q – What is the communication plan in the case of remote learning days?
A – There will be multiple modes of communication. The best way to stay abreast of current conditions and updates is the Bangor app, the official Bangor School Department social media sites, and the principal newsletters. Please make sure you are relying on accurate information. When in doubt, check with your student’s teacher or principal. For a remote day that affects the entire school department you will receive a phone call from the Alert system. https://www.bangorschools.net/for-parents/alert-messaging-system/
Faculty and staff are prepared to move to remote learning if needed. Families should have a plan in place for remote learning. Students in middle and high school should bring their school issued laptops home each night.
Isolation– Process of separating individuals who are infected with COVID-19 from others. Isolation lasts a minimum of 10-days from symptom onset if symptomatic. If a person infected with COVID-19 has no symptoms, isolation lasts a minimum of 10 days from the date of test specimen collection (test). For individuals with severely immunocompromising conditions, isolation is at least 20-days.
Close Contact – In general, being within 6 feet of an infected person (with or without a face mask) for at least 15 minutes (cumulatively in a day), or having unprotected direct physical contact with a person with confirmed COVID-19 during the infectious period.
Direct Contact – Direct contact with any person infectious with COVID-19 in which contact with secretions or excretions cannot be ruled out.
Quarantine – Process of separating and restricting the movement of individuals who were in close contact with someone who tested positive or had symptoms of COVID-19. Persons in quarantine should get tested, and self-monitor for symptoms and seek medical advice if needed.
Community Quarantine – As above, may attend the regular school day but quarantine from activities.
All close contacts should monitor for symptoms for 14 days from exposure, regardless of vaccination status. If symptoms develop, contact your child’s PCP for guidance. While CDC guidelines instruct close contacts to quarantine, all other household members are able to go about their normal daily activities for this period.
Examples of Quarantine Scenarios for asymptomatic close contacts, with universal masking in place
Your student previously tested positive for COVID and recovered within the past 90 days. Quarantine is not required at school or in the community.
Your student is fully vaccinated and is not required to quarantine. For students not enrolled in pooled testing, COVID testing is recommended 3-5 days from exposure and your child should wear a mask indoors until receiving a negative test result.
Your student is unvaccinated and participating in pooled testing at school. Your student can attend school and participate in before / after school activities but must quarantine from community activities. All CDC-recommended COVID testing will be completed at school as part of pooled testing.
Your student is unvaccinated and not participating in pooled testing. Your student may continue to attend school but must quarantine from before / after school activities and from community activities. A COVID test should occur as soon as possible after exposure and again 5-7 days later. A student who tests negative must still complete the full quarantine per CDC guidelines.
Your student is unvaccinated, not enrolled in pooled testing and was exposed in a non-classroom setting. Examples of these settings include the bus, extracurricular activities and the cafeteria. Your student must quarantine for 10 days the date of exposure, from classroom, school, and community activities. A COVID test should occur as soon as possible after exposure and again 5-7 days later. A student who tests negative must still complete the full quarantine per CDC guidelines.