Time in quarantine could be cut in half for Canyons students and employees who were wearing masks during the moments they were possibly exposed to COVID-19 while at school.
Under guidelines released by Utah government and education officials on Thursday, Oct. 8, quarantined students and employees who test negative for COVID-19 after the seventh day from their last exposure — and, importantly, only if they were wearing masks at the time of exposure — can return to in-person learning, activities, and work.
The previous length of the quarantine as mandated by health authorities was 14 days.
The new “Low Risk Test and Return” guidance was recommended by a school medical advisory group and approved by Utah Gov. Gary Herbert and the Utah State Board of Education. Effective immediately, time in quarantine for Canyons students and employees can be reduced significantly if:
- The school verifies the student, teacher or staff member who was exposed and the person who tested positive were both wearing a face mask as defined by the State Public Health Order on masks in schools. Face shields do not count as face coverings under the health order.
- The student or employee tests negative for COVID-19 (the test must be a PCR or antigen test and not an antibody test) at least seven days after the last exposure.Those currently on quarantine may now seek a new test for a possible early return.
- The student, teacher, or staff member does not have symptoms of COVID-19.
Students and employees must meet all three criteria to return from quarantine before 14 days has transpired.
The protocol does not apply to students, teachers, staff, or settings that are exempt from the State Public Health Order on masks in schools.
If the person does not meet all three criteria or chooses not to get tested, she or he should quarantine at home for 14 days from the last day of exposure.
Anyone who has been exposed to COVID-19 and comes back to school must continue to watch for symptoms. If employees or students get symptoms, they should isolate at home and call their healthcare provider.
These guidelines only apply to close-contact exposures that occur at school.
Canyons District recognizes there may be concerns or questions. Please direct questions by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Parents also can call the District Office at 801-826-5000.