March 14, 2020 – Update
We are monitoring the COVID-19 situation closely and are able and will make any necessary changes to our plans as our local context dictates. We are aware of the Governor’s most recent message, just this evening, to limit gatherings of more than 250 people and the guidance to not close schools.
As we stated previously, this is a fluid situation and will keep in contact with any updates. We have several days to observe how this situation unfolds and we are prepared to be responsive as information becomes available. Please know we will adjust accordingly at the direction of our Iowa Department of Public Health and local public health officials.
March 13, 2020 – Update
Central Iowa school district leaders met today, Friday, March 13, to collaborate and develop a consistent message for our broader communities. Representatives from the Governor’s Office and other educational agencies were also present. At this time, we believe it is in the best interest of our families and staff to resume school as planned after spring break on March 23, 2020.
Student and staff safety remains our top priority. We all look to the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) for their expertise and direction. IDPH currently believes the risk to our student and staff population is low.
We will continue to partner with IDPH and follow their standard protocol for reportable illnesses. This may result in a need to close a specific building, district, or region of schools. IDPH will be the primary source for how we make our decisions regarding COVID-19.
In addition to IDPH, we are in continuous communication with the Polk County Health Department (PCHD) and the Iowa Department of Education (IDE). Central Iowa school districts will continue to follow the guidance of these agencies and work together to keep students, families, and staff safe and informed.
All scheduled WCSD activities, Beyond the Bell, and Live Y’ers will continue as planned for next week. If that guidance were to change between now and March 23, we will update you via our usual communication protocols regarding school cancellations: phone calls, email, website, and social media messaging.
In the interim please continue to monitor our FAQ page for the most up to date information. Thank you for your patience and support as we navigate this situation.
Where you get your information about this virus is important. Look for information from reliable and trusted experts. Social media posts often report partial or inaccurate information.
- World Health Organization
- World Health Organization-Coronavirus FAQ
- U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
- Iowa Department of Public Health
- Polk County Health Department
WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP
Families and community members can help by following these simple, easy steps that help prevent the spread of ALL contagious viruses, including COVID-19. Practice the same routine hygiene used to help prevent the cold and flu.
- Frequently wash your hands for 20 seconds or more with soapy water. If unavailable, use hand sanitizer.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- 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.
If you have traveled recently, we ask that you monitor your health and self-isolate if you are experiencing any illnesses and stay home if you are sick.