This page will serve as a resource for staff as we plan and prepare for changes during the 2021-2022 school year. Our work environment is our student's learning environment. Let's work together to keep us all safe and healthy. Click on the tabs below to learn more about the following:
- Prepare: FPS Risk Exposure Plan and COVID-19 Site Supervisors
- Prevent: Face Coverings, Social Distancing, Vaccinations, Cleaning and Sanitization
- Respond: Testing Information and Quarantine Information
- Resources and Links: FPS COVID-19 Employee Resources, External COVID-19 Employee Resources, Self-Care Resources
- COVID-19 Testing Information (January 18, 2022)
- K-12 Quarantine and Isolation Updates (January 11, 2022)
- Quarantine, Test to Stay, Vaccination and Hotline Updates (November 9, 2021)
- Test to Stay Program (to start October 25, 2021)
- Updated Quarantine Procedures (October 18, 2021)
Franklin Pierce Schools has the following testing available for staff and students:
Rapid Antigen (Binax Now, Access Care Start and BD Veritor)
Who is eligible? Any staff or student* upon request. Suggested reasons for Rapid Antigen Testing include potential exposures, showing symptoms, participation in athletics, etc. We ask that students and staff utilize tests during the recommended testing timelines to maximize the use of the testing supply.
How are they administered? These tests must be self-administered onsite in the company of a nurse or trained staff members.
Test Results: All test results will be available in 10-15 minutes and are reported to the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department.
*Students must have a completed consent form to be tested.
Who is eligible? Students or staff that show COVID-19 symptoms**
How are they administered? If a student or staff shows symptoms at school, the school nurse can administer the test in the school building prior to them leaving the building. If a staff member shows symptoms away from school, they can access a PCR test Mon-Fri 10:30am-12:30pm at Historic Collins (4608 128th St. E Tacoma, WA 98446) or contact Jen Van at (253) 298-3047 or email@example.com.
Test Results: The test is sent in, and the results will be received within 2-4 days. The results will be sent to the staff or student guardian that tested and to Franklin Pierce Schools.
Additional Testing Information:
Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department: Locations for COVID-19 testing can be found at:https://www.tpchd.org/healthy-people/diseases/covid-19/testing-information
Free at home test kits. Every home in the U.S. is eligible to order #44 free at-home COVID-19 tests. The tests are completely free. Orders will usually ship in 7-12 days. https://www.covidtests.gov/
- What is a quarantine?
- Do I have to quarantine?
- How long should I quarantine?
- When should I isolate?
- How long do I isolate for?
- When can I return to school?
- Are Ages 18 or older and completed the primary series of recommended vaccine but have not received a recommended booster shot when eligible.
- Those who have received the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine (completing the primary series) over 2 months ago and have not received a recommended booster shot.
- Those who are not vaccinated or have not completed a primary vaccine series.
- Are ages 18 or older and have received all recommended vaccine doses, including boosters and additional primary shots for some immunocompromised people.
- Are ages 5-17 years and completed the primary series of COVID-19 vaccines.
- Had confirmed COVID-19 within the last 90 days.
*For household exposures this would be the last day the person with COVID-19 is considered infectious.
In certain circumstances, a longer quarantine may be warranted: Quarantine may be recommended for 14 days after the last close contact with the COVID-19 positive person. Monitor for symptoms during this time, and if any COVID-19 symptoms develop during the 14 days, the individual should isolate and get tested.
* Students or staff who opt out of testing or who have accommodations that allow them to attend school and not wear a well-fitting mask or face shield with a drape or wrap are not eligible for modified quarantine. Please see the Test to Stay section of the K-12 Supplemental Considerations document for information on Test to Stay and modified quarantine.
**Negative test results may come from school testing programs, a health care provider, local health jurisdiction, pharmacy, or other community-based test site. At-home tests should be considered in coordination with local public health. Proof of a negative COVID-19 test includes the original, a copy, or a photo of a document or other communication from the test provider or laboratory that shows:
- The first and last names of the individual tested.
- The type of test performed (must be molecular or antigen).
- The date the specimen was collected (must be on or after day 5 post-exposure).
- A negative result.
- 5 days* have passed since symptom onset, or since positive test specimen collection date if no symptoms are present (*note: people who are severely ill or severely immunocompromised may need to isolate for up to 20 days); AND
- No symptoms are present, or symptoms are resolving; AND
- No fever within the past 24 hours without the use of fever reducing medications.
Students and staff should continue monitoring for symptoms and wearing a well-fitting mask around others through day 10 (days 6-10) both in and out of school, including during extracurricular and sports activities.
Individuals who have been in isolation may test on day 5 of their isolation period, but only if the above criteria for completing isolation have been met. An antigen test is recommended. If the test result is positive, they must continue to isolate until day 10. If the test result is negative, they may return to school and should continue to wear a well-fitting mask around others at home and in public until day 10.
Individuals who have accommodations that allow them to attend school and not wear a well-fitting mask or face shield with a drape or wrap must stay in isolation the full 10 days.
Staff who test positive for COVID-19, or parents/guardians of students who test positive for COVID-19, should notify the school immediately upon receipt of the test results. This enables the recommended exclusion of the staff or student from school for the duration of their isolation period, contact tracing to determine if any students or staff were exposed to the person with COVID-19, and notification of the Local Health Jurisdiction.
If a person with COVID-19 symptoms tests negative for SARS-CoV-2 with a molecular or antigen test, they may return to school following existing school illness management policies as long as they are not a close contact of someone with COVID-19 and subject to quarantine. If a person with COVID-19 symptoms tests negative for SARS-CoV-2 with an antigen test, it is recommended they either have a confirmatory molecular test or repeat an antigen test within 48 hours. If the individual is using an at-home test, they should carefully follow all package instructions.
If a person with COVID-19 symptoms does not get tested for SARS-CoV-2 or does not see a health care provider and given an alternative diagnosis, they should follow the same isolation guidance as persons who test positive for SARS-CoV-2. This is irrespective of vaccination status.
- Wednesday, November 17, 2021 from 1-5pm (Pfizer Child Dose 1; Pfizer Adult Booster)
- Wednesday, December 8, 2021 from 1-5pm (Pfizer Child Dose 2; Pfizer Adult Booster)
- Friday, December 17th from 1-5pm (Pfizer Child Dose 1; Pfizer Adult Booster)
- Friday, January 7th from 1-5pm (Pfizer Child Dose 2; Pfizer Adult Booster)
Franklin Pierce School District’s Test to Stay program is a voluntary, parent consent COVID-19 testing program in our schools. The goal of the program is to allow unvaccinated students who are identified as close contacts* at school or school-sponsored events to remain in school if they are symptom-free and test negative for COVID-19.
Previously, unvaccinated students who were designated as close contacts were required to quarantine at home for 10 days. Through the test to stay program, students may be able to reduce the number of days that they are required to quarantine.
Franklin Pierce School District was granted approval to implement the Test to Stay program by the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department and testing will begin in our schools starting Wednesday October 20, 2021. This testing program, combined with disease prevention strategies, can help our schools detect new cases to prevent outbreaks, reduce the risk of further transmission, and protect students, teachers, and other staff from COVID-19.
*A close contact is defined by the Washington State Department of Health as an individual who has spent 15 or more minutes over a 24-hour period within 6 feet of the confirmed case, or within 3 feet in a K-12 indoor classroom setting. Each confirmed case in FPSD is contact traced and families are notified if their student is determined to be a close contact.
Effective immediately, Franklin Pierce School District has reduced the required quarantine period for students who have been identified as close contacts due to an exposure to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. Historically, the quarantine period was 14 days following the last exposure to a positive person. Starting now, the quarantine period will be 10 days.
This change is consistent with guidance from Tacoma Pierce County Health Department and Washington State Department of Health. By updating our protocols, we can allow students the ability to return to school after a 10-day quarantine with no additional testing, as long as the student has not developed symptoms.
All students who are identified as close contacts are advised to:
- Quarantine at home for 10 days following the exposure to a positive person
- Monitor for symptoms daily. If symptoms develop, testing will be recommended, and the quarantine will be extended to 14 days.
- Notify the school right away of a positive test result.
Students who are currently at home quarantining due to exposure to a positive person, and without any symptoms, may now return 4 days sooner than previously advised. See table below for dates. Please contact your school nurse, or health services at 2539-298-3047 if you have questions.
|Previous Return Date:||New Return Date:|
|October 25||October 21|
|October 26, 27 or 28||October 25|
|October 29||October 26|
|November 1||October 27|
|November 2||October 28|
Since the onset of COVID-19 in early 2020, Franklin Pierce Schools staff have worked closely with local public health and emergency management professionals to make sure that the district is preparing, planning and minimizing risks. The resources below offer information about how to access to the FPS Risk Exposure Plan in the event of a positive case, who to contact with questions, and links to each building/department safety plan.
The purpose of the risk exposure plan is to provide a framework for exposure response with Franklin Pierce School District staff. The execution of the plan requires the collaborative efforts of Franklin Pierce Schools District and Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department. By design, the plan must be adaptable and subject to review as information is updated on various types of illnesses and outbreaks and how to best handle them. To view the FPS Risk Exposure Plan, click here.
Each Franklin Pierce Schools building has one or more assigned site supervisors to offer supports and resources for staff with questions about the FPS COVID-19 response. These supervisors are familiar with building-specific planning and collaborate with the district COVID-19 supervisors to address questions and implement best practices. To view a list of COVID-19 Site Supervisors, click here.
- Face Coverings
- Social Distancing
- Facilities Changes
- Cleaning and Disinfecting
- Low Risk: working inside with other people AND physical distancing is maintained between individuals
- Medium Risk: physical distancing between individuals is not maintained OR work in the presence of COVID-19 quarantined or isolated individuals
- High Risk: close proximity between breathing zones (directly breathing exhaled air) OR high exertion activities or respiration (<6-foot distancing) OR work in the vicinity of aerosol generating procedures
- Medical Considerations: documented medical condition that limits PPE use
- Special Circumstances: classroom where seeing mouth movement is required
District positions: All building staff and all support staff participating in low-risk activities, visitors
Minimum mask: 2-ply cloth mask (no gators)
Surgical - available at each location
KN95 - available at each location
N95 - available via request for fit testing through Katie – firstname.lastname@example.org
District positions: All building staff and all support staff participating in medium-risk activities
Minimum mask: Surgical mask
KN95 - available at each location
N95 - available via request for fit testing through Katie – email@example.com
Minimum mask: N95 mask
KN95 mask + face shield (with or without drape) is an approved temporary alternative while waiting for fit testing request for fit testing through Katie – firstname.lastname@example.org
District positions: Any, eligibility is determined by ADA recognized medical condition
Minimum mask: Dependent on position and risk level
Variety of possible solutions - Individual interactive process available via request through Brandy Marshall (email@example.com).
- Request district issued PPE from your COVID-19 Site Supervisor.
- Continue practicing social distancing while wearing a mask.
- Staff can remove their masks in the workplace only when alone in an enclosed room, able to maintain 6-feet distance and are outdoors, or able to maintain 6-feet distancing and are actively eating or drinking.
Under current guidance and mandates, masks are required for all students, staff and all guests. We all recognize that masks can become very uncomfortable, and we sometimes need a break. Mask breaks can be taken as described below.
Staff may take a mask break when alone in an enclosed room.
Staff may take a mask break outdoors while 6-feet social distancing.
Staff may remove their mask while eating or drinking while 6-feet social distancing.
Please remember to wash your hands or use hand sanitizer after putting your mask back on.
Under current guidance, the following scenarios outline social distancing guidelines.
Students in a classroom setting: Minimum 3 feet
Students in commons settings or participating in high-risk activities: Minimum 6 feet
Staff to student: Minimum 6 feet
Staff to staff: Minimum 6 feet
Staff to visitors: Minimum 6 feet
*High-risk activities may include yelling, singing, increased exhalation, and eating or drinking.
Current guidance provides flexibility to, in limited and documented situations, allow for less than the minimum social distancing under the state’s priority to return all students to in-person school and where pedagogical considerations outweigh health and safety concerns. In these situations, building administrators work with staff and COVID-19 District Managers to complete the documentation process required to change the configuration of a room.
Classrooms should remain in the configuration they were placed in prior to the start of school. Our custodial and maintenance teams worked through the summer to maximize our capacity to serve our students in-person in as safe and healthy environment as possible. Please contact your building administrator if you have concerns about how your classroom is configured.
Lunches are organized and managed at each school to accommodate number of students, capacity, and social distancing requirements, with a primary goal towards health and safety for everyone. If you have questions about how lunch is managed at your school, please contact your COVID-19 Site Supervisor.
6-feet social distancing must be maintained
All attendees must wear a mask
Food and beverages must be individually wrapped or single serving. No potluck style meals or open food trays
Staff can remove their masks in the workplace only when alone in an enclosed room, able to maintain 6-feet distance and are outdoors, or able to maintain 6-feet distancing and are actively eating or drinking
- If you are vaccinated and have not already done so, please contact your building administrative team to verify your vaccine as soon as possible.
- If you requested a religious or medical exemption, please continue to watch your district email from updates and next steps. If you missed the deadline to make your request, please contact Brandy Marshall at firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible.
If you are still working towards becoming fully vaccinated, please show your proof of vaccination as soon after your second shot (or single J&J shot) as possible. This will remove your name from our follow-up efforts.
If you have not decided what you are going to do in response to the mandate, please remember these important dates:
If you have missed these deadlines and have decided to get the vaccine, please contact email@example.com to discuss your situation and your options for the gap between October 18th and when you are fully vaccinated.
We will continue to reach out to staff that have not taken action to comply with the mandate. We want to support each staff member in making the best decision for themselves while also providing services to our students with minimal disruptions.
Ventilation has been increased per Washington State Department of Health guidance. The Franklin Pierce Maintenance Team has increased the amount of outdoor air coming into each facility to the extent permissible to maintain thermal comfort. The Franklin Pierce Maintenance Team has replaced filters with the standard MERV 10 designation. MERV 13 filters have been installed when possible.
We have maximized the outside air/recycled air as much as systems allow. Facilities will have continuous airflow two hours before and after occupancy.
School hallways will be taped with markers to indicate six feet of distance for travel through the buildings. Some hallways are marked with directional arrows to limit contact. When middle school and high school students return to school, they will be encouraged to maintain six feet separation during brief passing periods between classes.
Cleaning and Disinfecting
High touch surfaces will be cleaned routinely throughout the day using soap and water. These surfaces include door handles, light switches, etc.
Cleaning during COVID-19 will be a team effort. Teachers and students will be assisting with cleaning desks and chairs between classroom activities.
Nightly disinfection process involves wiping desks, chairs, and other common touch points with Vindicator.
Franklin Pierce School District is using products approved by the Environmental Protection Agency.
Franklin Pierce School District has sought input from Washington State Department of Health and Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department on cleaning procedures.
COVID-19 Exposures and Positive Cases
COVID-19 response protocols are complex and vary based on several personal factors that vary from case to case. We work with the Tacoma Pierce-County Health Department (TPCHD) to determine next steps in every situation.
If you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, please contact a health care provider. If you are at work, leave immediately without coming into contact with others. You are not eligible to return to work until your symptoms have subsided for at least 24-hours or as recommended by your health care provider.
tested positive for COVID-19
been tested and are waiting for your results
been identified as a close contact to a confirmed case of COVID-19
The district works with TPCHD to determine any appropriate quarantines and other mitigating measures that support health and safety in our schools. Quarantines are based on factors such as what masks were being worn, details of social distancing realities (a close contact?), vaccination status, etc. The definition of close contact is someone that you have been less than 6-feet from for more than 15 cumulative minutes in a 24-hour period.
You can minimize your chances of needing to quarantine or contracting COVID by:
- Wear appropriate PPE
- Follow social distancing rules
- Wash your hands and use hand sanitizer
- Stay home when sick, especially with COVID symptoms
- Watch for messages from the COVIDinfo email address
- Check the Staff COVID website
- Talk with your COVID-19 Site Supervisor about questions or concerns
We will follow TPCHD guidance when notifying staff and families of COVID-19 exposure incidents. Medical information, such as test results and vaccination status, is confidential under HIPPA laws.
Information about exposures and positive cases can be found by visiting the FPS COVID Dashboard.