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November 5, 2021
I am writing to inform you that we have had an outbreak of COVID-19 at One City Elementary School. Since our schools reopened for the 2021-22 school year on September 1st, we have had 14 confirmed COVID cases within our school community. This includes four (4) confirmed cases of adults and 10 of children. We have had one (1) positive case at our preschool and 13 at our elementary school. Of the four (4) adults that have tested positive, all have presented proof of vaccination. Currently, 88% of our school staff are vaccinated.
Because we requested all One City families have their children complete a COVID-19 PCR test and submit their test results to our School Health team when the school year began, we identified three (3) COVID cases on or before September 1. This resulted in one of our classrooms being quarantined for seven (7) calendar days, including five (5) school days, from September 2 - 8, 2021, to prevent a spread of the virus and keep our school community safe.
We received a fourth (4th) reported case of COVID-19 on October 25th, a 5th on October 27th and 6th on October 28th. Because we had so many cases reported so close together, we notified you, our staff and our families that we were closing the elementary school on Friday, October 29th to stop the spread and have everyone (staff and families) complete a PCR test through our testing partner at Fitchburg Pharmacy.
After consulting on Friday morning, October 29th, with Public Health Madison Dane County (PHMDC), who have fully supported the steps we have taken to keep our school community safe, we waited to receive test results over the weekend and then reopened our elementary school on Monday, November 1st.
It is important to note that between October 25th and yesterday, November 5th, we received 11 confirmations of positive cases in our school community. Fortunately, we received all of these positive test results while staff and children in affected classrooms and work centers were quarantined at home.
Also between October 25th and yesterday, November 5th, we quarantined three classrooms for the necessary seven days, including five school days. As of today, all three classrooms have completed their quarantine period and returned to school.
We wanted to make you aware of this situation and confirm with you and your family that we are working closely with PHMDC to ensure all of our children and team members can safely return to school. We will continue to work with PHMDC to ensure that we are doing all we can to prevent a future outbreak and to stop the spread of the Coronavirus in our school(s) when positive cases are reported to us.
We also know that several of you have been inconvenienced by our need to close our school on October 29th and move some classrooms into quarantine. We know the timeliness of our communication was an issue for some of you. We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this has caused you or your family.
Please know that our School Health team has been working extended hours to keep our school community safe. Due to our nation’s current public health crisis, our health team is responding to several dozen inquiries and communications from parents and our public health partners each day. To ensure they can rest and we can avoid interfering as much as possible with their family time, our School Health team will be available to respond to emails and phone calls during our school hours: 7:30am - 5:00pm, Monday through Friday.
If you have a One City Scholar (your child) that has been identified as having COVID-19 and is required to isolate, or if your child has been found to be a close contact of a person identified with COVID-19 and therefore is required to quarantine, please follow the guidance you are given by PHMDC and our School Health team regarding the timing of your child’s return to school. If you need a letter for your employer to demonstrate proof of our school closure or need to quarantine a classroom at home, please contact our School Health office and one will be provided to you.
I also want to point out the significant importance of everyone in our school community following our masking, hand washing and social distancing protocols. This includes school staff, students and family members of our staff and students. It is important to be mindful that being “vaccinated” does not mean a person cannot catch the virus or spread the virus to others. Again, all four of the adults in our school community that tested positive for the COVID-19 virus were vaccinated when they got sick.
As we learn more regarding the source(s) of this current outbreak, we will keep you apprised of any changes and developments related to this current situation and any others that may arise.
Please give our COO, David Stephan, a call or text at (510) 529-5698 or send him an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
Thank you for your kindness, understanding, patience and support. We appreciate you.