The Tipton County Board of Education announced its plans to handle and combat COVID-19 in schools this upcoming year.
When Tipton County Schools open in August, masks will be encouraged although not required. Masks, along with proper use instructions, will be made available through our school nurse clinics as needed.
Tipton County Schools will encourage social distancing of 3 feet or more when possible.
Handwashing and Respiratory Etiquette
Students and staff will be reminded of the importance of hand washing and/or the use of hand sanitizer, as well as properly covering coughs and sneezes, through regularly scheduled emails, PSAs, signage, social media posts, and callouts.
Temperature checks upon arrival to school will not be required at this time. We ask that parents/guardians monitor their children’s health and do not send them to school if they are exhibiting signs of illness. Students or staff who may need their temperature checked during the school day should see the school nurse.
Contact tracing in combination with isolation and quarantine
Contact tracing will be done through the Tennessee Department of Health. Students and staff who are considered exposed and in need of quarantine will be notified by the Department of Health. We will cooperate with the Department of Health as requested.
Diagnostic and Screening Testing
Tipton County Schools will begin testing employees only on a volunteer basis at the beginning of the school year. There will be scheduled mass testing times after breaks (i.e., Summer, Fall, Thanksgiving, Christmas and Spring) and daily testing available for employees who may have been exposed or who may be exhibiting symptoms of Covid-19.
Efforts to provide vaccinations to educators, other staff, and students, if eligible
Tipton County Schools will continue to partner with the local health department to provide ongoing information to staff, students, and parents regarding vaccination information and scheduling. At this time, close to 50 percent of our teachers and staff have chosen to be vaccinated.
Appropriate accommodations for children with disabilities with respect to health and safety policies
Tipton County Schools will continue to support children with disabilities and provide services to them that are appropriate for their individual needs and are neither detrimental to the health and safety of them nor other students and/or staff.
Students who are sick or exposed to Covid-19
Tipton County School students should stay home when they have signs of any infectious illness and see their healthcare provider for testing and care. Proper documentation from their healthcare provider will be necessary in order to excuse their absence. If a student has a positive Covid-19 test, the parent should notify the school nurse or administrator who will then notify the Covid-19 contact designee (Sherrie Yarbro). The TN Dept. of Health will be notified, and we will follow their direction regarding contact tracing and which students should quarantine.
Cleaning and Maintaining Healthy Facilities, Including Improved Ventilation
Tipton County Schools will be cleaned to the highest level possible through our janitorial contracted service provider. Extra cleaning will be done throughout each building, especially on frequently touched surfaces (light switches, doorknobs, bathrooms, etc.).
Special UV light filters have been installed in our HVAC systems to help prevent the spread of viruses and lessen airborne allergy triggers.
Playgrounds and PE equipment may be used unless we are informed differently by state or local government.
Students and staff must wash their hands thoroughly before and after use of any shared PE equipment or playground apparatus.
We will continue to use the water fountain bottle fillers at this time in lieu of direct contact with the fountain.
It is recommended that students bring their own water to school or a bottle that can be filled.
Buses will be equipped with cleaning and disinfecting supplies. Masks are not mandatory but encouraged.
Tipton County Schools will follow the recommendations and guidelines from TSSAA.
Breakfast and lunch will be served in the cafeterias for all students. Until further notice, visitors will not be allowed in the cafeteria.
Meals will be free to all TCS students for the 21-22 school year. Community and school “drive thru” meals will not be available.
School-Aged Child Care (SACC)
In order to adhere to a 1:10 ratio, capacity will be limited based on the number of SACC employees at each site, which has been impacted by the availability of applicants. Parents will be encouraged to register for a five-day enrollment and will be placed on a waiting list if the site is full.
Due to possible ailments of which we may not be aware, we will limit the addition of extra people in our buildings. All visitors will be kept at a minimum, including parents/guardians. Visitors, other than those representing outside agencies who have regular business in a TCS building, will be asked to make an appointment.
Parents/guardians of Preschool, PreK, and Kindergarten students will be allowed to walk their students to their classrooms until Aug. 25.
Parents/visitors will not be allowed to eat lunch with students at this time.
Extended School Day
All extended school day programs will be open with the same guidelines as the regular school day.
These guidelines and procedures will be reviewed continually as we monitor the impact COVID-19 has on our schools. We will also follow executive orders issued by the governor and local authorities, if applicable.