Achieving Excellence Together
Dear BPS Community,
The well-being of our students and staff is our top priority. To that end, our district continues to work closely with the Department of Public Health, Cape Cod Health Care, our local Board of Health, and our school physician, Dr. Kathryn Rudman, to monitor and take appropriate precautions for the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19).
At present, there have been no confirmed cases of coronavirus on Cape Cod. The risk for severe illness due to COVID-19 in Massachusetts and the United States remains relatively low at this time. Nevertheless, we continue to keep a close eye on what is occurring locally, nationally, and internationally to determine our best course of action. Barnstable Public Schools has joined a newly formed task force led by Cape Cod Health Care experts, and participates in daily updates.
Fortunately, our school district has full-time registered nurses in every school. There are many health measures school nurses and staff already implement to promote the health and safety of our students every day, and to provide valuable precautions. These include:
- Promoting vaccines (including an annual Flu Shot)
- Implementing school-wide infection control measures.
- Monitoring illness in the school setting (including communicable diseases).
- Reporting communicable diseases to the MA Department of Public Health and following their recommendations.
- Providing referrals and recommendations to parents/guardians concerning health care and teaching about when it is appropriate for a student who has been ill to return to school.
- Teaching staff and students disease prevention, including good handwashing.
- Recommending cleaning protocols for BPS schools and classrooms.
- Promoting the extra use of sanitizer products as appropriate, especially during cold/flu season.
In addition to the precautionary measures outlined above, Barnstable Public Schools continues to take steps to prepare for and limit exposure to COVID-19.
- We are actively monitoring all new student enrollment by implementing the recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Department of Public Health.
- We are collaborating with the Community Taskforce led by Cape Cod Health Care experts, addressing the coronavirus, with regular communication for updates and guidance.
- As a cautionary measure, we are placing a moratorium on all scheduled school field trips for March and April. Barnstable High School international trips scheduled for this spring are also cancelled, with specific information to follow from Principal Clark.
Families, students, and staff can decrease the risk of contracting COVID-19 by following the precautions outlined below.
- Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, and before and after eating. Use hand sanitizer when soap and water is not available.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.
- Avoid contact with people who are sick.
- Stay home while you are sick and avoid close contact with others. Please do not send your child to school if sick.
- Cover your mouth/nose with a tissue or sleeve when coughing or sneezing.
- Limit non-essential travel.
- If you are traveling overseas, please notify your child’s school and follow the Centers for Disease Control’s guidance: www.nc.cdc.gov/travel.
If you have specific questions regarding COVID-19 pertaining to your school, we ask that you notify Pam Ciborowski, MPH, NCSN, RN Nursing and Wellness Coordinator at Ciborowski_pam@mybps.us.
Thank you for helping us all remain safe and healthy.
Superintendent of Schools