COVID Resources BStudents are attending school in-person for five days of instruction. Staff regularly meet with state and local officials to monitor health and safety data. If local conditions require CCPS to reconsider full, in-person instruction, CCPS will work with staff to implement alternative learning options for students.

 

Free COVID-19 Preventative screening available for students, staff

Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) offers free weekly COVID-19 preventative screenings for students and staff. To participate, parents and staff must complete a one-time registration with the state health department contractor, 20/20 GeneSystems.  Click here to access the registration portal.

The test used is an anterior nasal swab PCR test. Results are provided to parents and staff in the portal within 48 hours. Users can sign up for email notifications. Only positive results are shared confidentially with the CCPS Office of School Safety and Security for follow up to ensure sick students or staff are not coming to schools.  Click here to read more about the free screening.

CCPS tightens COVID-19 testing procedures at schools

CCPS has protocols in place for the testing of sick students and staff by a school nurse. Students with a known COVID-19 exposure who want to test out of quarantine after seven days with a negative COVID-19 test must visit their doctor, use an outside vendor or test through the Charles County Department of Health. The health department offers free testing three times a week. Families may also elect to quarantine their child for 10 days and return to school without testing. Staff who are exposed outside of school cannot receive a COVID-19 test at school to end a quarantine early. Staff should visit their doctor, use an outside vendor or test through the health department on day seven, or wait until day 10 to return to work without a test.

Rapid tests will only be administered by nurses at their discretion for students or staff who display severe COVID-19 symptoms. Any student or staff member who pre-screens as potentially positive for COVID-19 will be offered a PCR test. Staff and students may not return to school or school activities until the results of the test are known. Additionally, individuals who refuse the PCR test after pre-screening as potentially positive will be presumed COVID-19 positive and excluded from school and school activities for ten days. 

Field trips restricted to regional areas, CCPS looking to expand opportunities

CCPS in-person field trips for students are currently limited to regional locations that include Charles County and southern Prince George’s County. This does not apply to the high school athletics program – most regular season events are scheduled in Southern Maryland and these students are required to undergo weekly COVID-19 screening if they are not vaccinated. CCPS is looking to possibly expand field trip opportunities. 

CCPS has standard operating procedures in place that require COVID-19 symptomatic students to be picked up from school within one hour of parent notification. Field trip permission forms will require parents to consent to being available to pick up their child during a field trip if they become symptomatic. Limiting field trip travel will also assist staff in the contact tracing process, if needed.

Limited volunteer program participation

Schools are currently limiting the number of volunteers to aid with field trips and other school-related activities. Volunteers are still required to complete a background check, and consent to completing the CCPS prescreening health questionnaire before coming into contact with students or staff. Each school has a designated volunteer coordinator who oversees the volunteer process. Community members interested in volunteer opportunities should contact their child’s school for specific details.

Instruction for sick, quarantined students

Schools have instructional plans for students who are out of school, either from COVID-19 or another illness, or have been asked by CCPS to quarantine. All instructional plans for schools are posted on individual school websites.

Sick individuals should stay home

Limiting the number of people who enter a school building — particularly those who are not inside of CCPS schools daily such as students, staff and teachers — will aid staff who conduct COVID-19 contact tracing.

Staff in the CCPS Office of School Safety and Security oversees contact tracing for every positive case of COVID-19 reported to the CCPS Office of School Administration and the Office of Human Resources. School staff assist with contact tracing, as well.  

The safety of schools is a community effort among staff, teachers and parents. CCPS asks parents to complete the COVID-19 prescreening questionnaire daily before sending their child on the bus or to school. The questionnaire is posted here on the CCPS website. Staff are also asked to assess their health before coming to work.

Parents with a sick child should keep their children home, and not send their child to school or on the bus. CCPS also asks for children to be kept home if they have been exposed to a COVID-19 positive person in the last seven days (and are not vaccinated), live with someone who is COVID-19 positive (and are not vaccinated), are in quarantine due to another exposure or waiting for a COVID-19 test result. Staff are also asked to follow the same guidelines.

Testing rule for student athletes, Grades 6-12 extracurricular activities

CCPS has testing requirements for high school student athletes, as well as students in Grades 6-12 who participate in specific extracurricular activities. These students are required to either:

  • Provide proof of having been fully COVID-19 vaccinated (completion of the vaccine series, plus 14 days) to their high school athletic director or activity sponsor; or
  • Participate in the free CCPS COVID-19 screening program.

Athletes or students in identified extracurricular activities who do not provide proof of a full COVID-19 vaccination or fail to participate in the screening program will not be allowed to participate with the team or group, at practice or at games/events.

Parents of students participating in the screening program must complete a one-time registration and consent for their child. As part of the program, students will be tested weekly for COVID-19. The screening is done by the Maryland Department of Health contracted provider 20/20 GeneSystems.  

Testing schedule

Staff and CCPS students are eligible for free weekly COVID-19 screening, regardless of participation in athletics or extracurricular activities. The following list outlines the screening schedule for all schools and centers.

Monday

  • Henry E. Lackey, La Plata, North Point and Westlake high schools, General Smallwood Middle School, Dr. Samuel A. Mudd, Mary B. Neal, Malcolm and Billingsley elementary schools.

Tuesday

  • Maurice J. McDonough, St. Charles and Thomas Stone high schools, Milton M. Somers Middle School, Dr. James Craik, Gale-Bailey, Dr. Thomas L. Higdon, Indian Head, J.C. Parks and Mary H. Matula elementary schools.

Wednesday

  • Henry E. Lackey, La Plata, North Point and Westlake high schools, Theodore G. Davis Middle School, C. Paul Barnhart, Walter J. Mitchell, Mt. Hope/Nanjemoy and T.C. Martin elementary schools.

Thursday

  • Maurice J. McDonough, St. Charles and Thomas Stone high schools, Piccowaxen and John Hanson middle schools, Berry, Arthur Middleton and J.P. Ryon elementary schools.

Friday

  • F. B. Gwynn Educational Center, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, Robert D. Stethem Educational Center, Mattawoman, Matthew Henson and Benjamin Stoddert middle schools, Dr. Gustavus Brown, Eva Turner, Daniel of St. Thomas Jenifer, William A. Diggs and William B. Wade elementary schools.

Face mask requirement use for staff, students and visitors to schools, buildings, centers and CCPS facilities

CCPS requires mask use for anyone inside a CCPS building. This applies to everyone, including individuals already vaccinated against COVID-19. The mask mandate is in effect until further notice. Masks are also required on CCPS transportation for bus drivers, attendants and any student using CCPS bus services. 


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