COVID-19 Illness, Isolation and Quarantine Guidance

What do you do if you get sick with COVID? Or if your child is sent home from school by the health office? With information from the Albany County Department of Health, the district has a much clearer picture of how to answer these important questions.

All health-related information found below was provided by the Albany County Department of Health (ACDOH). The ACDOH coordinates and directs the public health response for all communicable diseases in the Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk Central School District and for all schools within Albany County. Anytime this information is updated by the county, the updated information will be shared with families and will be posted here.

2021-2022 School Year

Updated: 09.10.2021

Maintaining the health of our entire school population is a priority. Although we are no longer doing daily health attestations, is it imperative that every student and every staff member be evaluated or do a self-evaluation for illness every day prior to reporting to school/work.

We run the significant risk of closing school(s) if our students and/or staff come to school when they are not healthy.

If students or staff are sick they should not come to school that day.

An ill student or staff member. regardless of vaccination status, should only return to school/work when they are free from COVID-19-related symptoms; COVID-19 testing is also highly recommended when a student or staff member stays home because they are ill. 

If a parent sends their child to school with COVID-19-related symptoms, an employee reports to work with COVID-19-related symptoms,  or if your child or a staff member becomes ill during the school day, they must:

  • Be placed in isolation and a family member will need to pick them up. 

  • Remain in isolation for 10 days. This isolation may be shortened by the following:

    • Taking a PCR(lab) COVID-19 test and presenting a negative test result to the school nurse in order to return to school and/or 

    • Presenting a doctor’s note to the school nurse or to their supervisor (staff) with an alternative medical diagnosis (i.e. strep throat, which is a lab-tested diagnosis. “A cold” is not a diagnosis).

The Albany County Department of Health will assign the length of quarantine for any students or staff who are diagnosed with COVID-19 or placed in quarantine due to exposure to a positive case through contact tracing.

NOTE: If symptom(s) are part of a chronic condition, as noted by a medical professional, the child or staff member will only need to complete this process one time and will only need to be completed again if the symptom(s) worsens or additional symptoms present themselves.  This is another reason why completing the health attestation every day is very important.

If the test results are POSITIVE for COVID-19

  • Contact your child’s school nurse if a child tests positive or if you are a staff member, contact your direct supervisor and the Board Clerk, Sue Starr.

  • The county health department contacts the individual/family with positive case to begin case investigation and contact tracing.

    • ISOLATE FOR AT LEAST A FULL 10 DAYS AND UNTIL EACH OF THE FOLLOWING CONDITIONS ARE MET:

      • At least 10 days have passed since onset of symptoms or if you’ve never had symptoms, at least 10 days have passed since your test was taken (specimen collection date); AND

      • The most recent 72 hours have been fever-free without fever-reducing medications; AND

      • Symptoms are generally improving.

  • The county health department will monitor and provide exact return to school/work date.

  • The county health department will notify school and collaborate with school to complete contact tracing.

  • Upon release from isolation by the county health department, the student or staff member may return to school as long as they can provide the required documentation.

  • Required documentation to return:  a release from quarantine from the Albany County Department of Health must be provided to the school nurse (student) or to an immediate supervisor and the Board Clerk, Sue Starr (staff), in order to return to school/work. 

If the test results are NEGATIVE for COVID-19

  • A negative PCR (lab) COVID-19 test result must be provided to the school nurse (student) or to an immediate supervisor and to the Board Clerk, Sue Starr (staff), in order to return to school/work. 

  • The student or staff member is allowed to return to school after providing the above documentation.

Confirmed Exposure

Contact tracing for exposure is completed in collaboration between the Albany County Department of Health and the RCS School District. It is not uncommon for families/staff to be contacted by a member of RCS staff to notify them of exposure to a positive case. Students/staff will be instructed to isolate until contacted by the DOH. Notifications occur by phone call and email.

(A confirmed exposure is when an individual has been notified by their local health department of exposure to a COVID-positive case)

Vaccinated Students and Staff Confirmed Exposure: May continue to come to school/work. Must wear a mask when around anyone at all times for 14 days and a lab COVID-19 test is recommended 3 to 5 days after exposure (complete guide to exposure and contact tracing here).  

Unvaccinated Students Confirmed Exposure

  • Excluded from school/work (notify your child’s school main office and school nurse immediately if your child has been placed in quarantine by the DOH)

  • Placed on quarantine and monitored by your local health department. 

  • QUARANTINE FOR A FULL 10 DAYS AND MONITOR FOR A FULL 14 DAYS SINCE YOUR LAST DATE OF EXPOSURE TO A POSITIVE CASE.

    • A. Remain at your home for the duration of the quarantine period. The quarantine can end after ten days without a testing requirement if no symptoms have been reported.

    • B. Continue to monitor symptoms for the full 14 days. While in the monitoring period, continue to practice frequent hand washing, use of face coverings, and social distancing among household members and when outside your home.

    • C. If symptoms develop, maintain or return to quarantine and contact Albany County Department of Health at (518) 447-4580 for guidance on testing and quarantine. Contact your doctor for guidance on testing and managing your symptoms.

  • Required documentation to return:  A release from quarantine from the Albany County Department of Health must be provided to the school nurse (student)

Unvaccinated Staff Confirmed Exposure

  • Excluded from school/work (notify your direct supervisor and the Board Clerk, Sue Starr, immediately).

  • Placed on quarantine and monitored by your local health department. 

  • QUARANTINE FOR A FULL 10 DAYS AND MONITOR FOR A FULL 14 DAYS SINCE YOUR LAST DATE OF EXPOSURE TO A POSITIVE CASE.

    • A. Remain at your home for the duration of the quarantine period. The quarantine can end after ten days without a testing requirement if no symptoms have been reported.

    • B. Continue to monitor symptoms for the full 14 days. While in the monitoring period, continue to practice frequent hand washing, use of face coverings, and social distancing among household members and when outside your home.

    • C. If symptoms develop, maintain or return to quarantine and contact Albany County Department of Health at (518) 447-4580 for guidance on testing and quarantine. Contact your doctor for guidance on testing and managing your symptoms.

  • Required documentation to return:  A release from quarantine from the Albany County Department of Health must be provided to their immediate supervisor and the Board Clerk, Sue Starr, in order to return to school/work. 

Symptoms of COVID-19 (CDC)

  • Fever greater than 100.0 F

  • Chills

  • Cough

  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

  • Fatigue

  • Muscle or body aches

  • Headache

  • Sore throat

  • New loss of taste or smell

  • Nausea or vomiting

  • Diarrhea

  • Congestion or runny nose

Frequently Used COVID-19 Terms

Potential Exposure: Being in the same household or having come into close contact with an individual who is confirmed or suspected to have a COVID-19 infection.

Close Contact: Someone who was within 6 feet of an infected person for 15 minutes total in a 24 hour period. Contracts are traced starting 48 hours (2 days) prior to the onset of symptoms of the positive case or prior to the positive test result if no symptoms.

Proximate Contact: Being in the same enclosed environment such as a classroom, office or gathering, but greater than 6 feet from a person who has tested positive for COVID-19.

Contact Tracing: The identification and follow-up of individuals who may have come into contact with a person infected with COVID-19.

Case: An individual with a lab-confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis.

Isolation: The process of separating an individual who has a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19 from others for 10 days or more following the onset of symptoms.

Quarantine: The process of separating an individual who has been in close (or in certain instances proximate) contact with someone who is positive from others in an effort to reduce further spread. The quarantine period is for the incubation period; 14 days for COVID-19.

COVID-19 Screening: Screening for COVID-19 includes a series of questions to evaluate symptoms and risk factors for COVID-19.

Diagnostic Test: This type of test detects COVID-19 infection. Examples include PCR-based and antigen-based.

To find a testing site please visit: https://coronavirus.health.ny.gov/find-test-site-near-you