Good afternoon, principals! In follow up to the memo Dr. Carstarphen sent to all APS families and staff yesterday about the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in APS, some of you may want to send a message to your staff, parents or both. Below is draft language you can use to craft a letter. Thanks.
Dear Boyd Elementary Families and Staff:
We all received a memo from Superintendent Dr. Meria Carstarphen on March 18, sharing that APS has its first confirmed case of COVID-19. Dr. Carstarphen outlined that there is no exposure to students, and, for staff, there was no close contact with the employee who worked at North Atlanta High School. This information is based on an investigation by the Fulton County Board of Health. Also, according to health officials, APS did the biggest public health intervention it could have done, and that was to close all schools in the District to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
I know that receiving the information that an employee in APS has tested positive for COVID-19 has been unsettling for many of you. I want to assure you that Boyd Elementary School and APS are taking this seriously, and we are following the guidance of health officials every step of the way. With regard to this case, health officials have determined that there was no exposure to students and no close contact with employees. In addition, health officials have advised us to practice the following preventative measures shared to stop the spread of COVID-19:
- Practice social distancing by avoiding mass gatherings, and maintaining distance (i.e., no close contact with individuals, maintain a distance of more than 6 feet, and if within 6 feet, less than 10 minutes for any interaction) from others when possible.
- Avoid crowded places where close contact with others may occur, such as shopping centers, movie theaters, and stadiums.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
- Please seek medical attention if you or a family member feels ill or is exhibiting flu-like symptoms.
For staff who are on telework, please remain on telework and self-monitor as recommended by the Board of Health. If you are actively at work, please consult with your supervisor for guidance, but know that we are ensuring deep cleaning of our building during the closure.
In addition, I’d like to share a number of resources provided by public health officials that help shed more light on the Coronavirus and on the steps you can take to stay healthy. APS has compiled information from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the Board of Health, and other health officials on its Coronavirus webpage at www.atlantapublicschools.us/coronavirus. Just scroll down the page and you will find those resources.
Here are quick links to some of the resources on the District’s Coronavirus page:
- COVID-19 and You
- 15 Days to Slow the Spread
- Symptoms of COVID-19
- Stop the Spread of Germs
- What to Do If You Are Sick with COVID-19
Also, the state of Georgia has established a COVID-19 Hotline to answer questions about the virus. That number is (844) 442-2681. I encourage you to take advantage of these resources to learn more about COVID-19 and your health. Let’s work together to keep ourselves and our families healthy.
All the best,
Ian Smith, APR, CPRC
OFFICE OF COMMUNICATIONS AND PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT
130 Trinity Ave, SW | Atlanta | GA | 30303
W: 404.802.2855 | C: 404-603-6934