Letter to Parents

Letter to Parents concerning Coronavirus (or COVID-19)
Dear Hayward Families,
  
The Hayward Community School District values the health and well-being of our students, staff, and families. We work throughout the year to promote healthy schools. Safety is our number one priority.

You may have heard in the news this week about increased cases of seasonal influenza (flu) in Wisconsin. You likely also heard about the release from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), encouraging schools and communities to begin planning in the event that Coronavirus (or COVID-19) spreads locally.

At this time, there is still only one (1) confirmed case of COVID-19 in Wisconsin. The immediate health risk from this virus to Sawyer County residents is considered low at this time. For the most up to date information, please visit Department of Health Services’ webpage https://www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/disease/covid-19.htm) and Centers for Disease Control COVID-19 Information.

The Hayward Community School District has been proactive in its planning. District leadership has met to discuss our school district preparedness plan, and our district is ready to respond to increased illness in our schools should we experience that. If we have a situation of significantly increased illness, or if there were local cases of COVID-19, we will work closely with Public Health and Sawyer County and will follow and adhere to their directions.

The Hayward Community School District takes routine steps to reduce the spread of illness in our schools. Our school nurses closely monitor and track absence rates and analyze the data across schools for trends. Our facilities staff completes targeted and more frequent cleaning and disinfecting of specific spaces in our schools. Our office staff works to engage parents and guardians to ensure students who are ill stay home and know how to get well. Additionally, our district nursing staff works closely with the Sawyer County Health Department.

Please note, parents and guardians should work closely with school nurses and office staff about absences due to illness. Student illness details (e.g., fever, cough) help our nursing staff track trends. When reporting an ill student on the school absence line, please let us know if your child has the flu or symptoms of another illness as this helps us monitor illness trends and implement appropriate prevention steps. There may be some instances when a student's illness triggers an attendance form letter.

Please know that while we are also mandated to track attendance closely, that the health of your child (and of others) takes precedence. If you have specific questions about an attendance letter, please talk to your building principal.

We also wanted to stress the importance of avoiding assumptions or stereotypes about who may be sick. The Hayward Community School District will not exclude people from school or other activities based on their race, country of origin, or recent travel. Public health professionals are the decision-makers regarding isolation or quarantine of individuals at risk.

While much attention has been paid to COVID-19, seasonal influenza (flu) and other respiratory viruses are common in Wisconsin at this time of year. We encourage you to talk to your students about ways to stay healthy. This includes washing your hands often, covering coughs and sneezes, and staying home when you are sick. It is also not too late for your family to get their flu shots.

The COVID-19 situation is constantly evolving and changing. We understand there is uncertainty involved in this situation. We will continue to update families with new information or guidance as it is made available. We encourage you to contact a district nurse or the Public Health Department if you have further questions.

Sincerely,

Craig Olson,
Superintendent Hayward Community School District
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