Dear Bayfield School District Family,
Excitement is building in beautiful Bayfield for the 2021-2022 school year!
After two challenging school years, Bayfield School District (BSD) leadership shares in your excitement. We are so eager to welcome back our amazing students, our dedicated staff, and to engage in an academic year filled with fun, learning, and positivity.
The Practical Guide for Operationalizing CDC’s School Guidance went into effect on August 1. As we learned during school years 2019-2020 and 2020-2021, the COVID-19 landscape is always subject to change based on local conditions in our communities and COVID-19 positive cases in our schools. However, we would like to share with our Bayfield Family where we are as of today, August 5.
BSD leadership has carefully considered guidance from federal, state, and local public health authorities. The following communication outlines BSD’s planned COVID-19 protocols as we prepare to welcome staff members and students back into our facilities in a few weeks.
Two terms are important when considering BSD’s planned COVID-19 protocols for the 2021-2022 school year: A recommendation is an action which is suggested. A requirement is an action which must be performed.
As of today, the United States Centers for Disease Control is recommending mask-wearing for all individuals who work within/attend schools when indoors, whether vaccinated or not; this is currently a recommendation, but not a requirement.
At this time, BSD welcomes and recommends mask-wearing for all individuals who enter our facilities, but BSD is not requiring mask-wearing for staff or students, be they vaccinated or not. BSD honors and respects staff members and parents and their right to choose the most responsible decision for themselves and their families.
COVID-19 Vaccination and COVID-19 Testing
As of today, the United States Centers for Disease Control is recommending the COVID-19 vaccination for all individuals 12 years and older; this is currently a recommendation, but not a requirement.
At this time, BSD recommends the COVID-19 vaccination for staff and students ages 12 years and older, but BSD is not requiring the COVID-19 vaccination for staff or students 12 years and older. BSD honors and respects staff members and parents and their right to choose the most responsible decision for themselves and their families.
It’s also our responsibility to inform you that fully-vaccinated individuals may remain in sports and activities which enrich the lives of our young people. Any staff member or student who is not fully vaccinated and has been deemed a close contact with a COVID-19 positive individual may be required to isolate for a 10-day period, i.e., two (2) weeks. This 10-day isolation includes isolation from sports, activities, and school. Please note: Fully-vaccinated students are defined as a student who has received both Pfizer vaccinations in 21 days + a 14-day waiting period = five (5) weeks.
For staff members and families who have made the choice not to vaccinate themselves/12+ student(s) for COVID-19, the state is releasing details on another option next week - a weekly COVID-19 testing program. Any staff member or student who is unvaccinated and willing to participate in weekly serial BinaxNow COVID-19 testing may also avoid a 10-day isolation from sports, activities, and school. When BSD has more details, we will release them to all stakeholders. The BinaxNow COVID-19 testing program is expected to begin sometime after September 7 and will be offered to all students and staff.
If 70 percent of our Bayfield school community (staff members and students) are vaccinated against COVID-19, the recommendations/requirements by public health authorities for our facilities will be greatly reduced. We are so thankful we were able to vaccinate over 70 percent of our BSD staff last spring thanks to the Upper Pine River Fire Protection District!
In 2020-2021, Bayfield School District proudly kept its doors open to students. In 2021-2022, we intend to keep our doors open to in-person learning while monitoring community conditions and adhering to local requirements as they evolve to keep our greater Bayfield community safe.
Specific Requirements for BSD Facilities
Here are additional specific requirements for Bayfield School District in 2021-2022:
- BSD will continue daily school-day symptom/temperature checks for all staff and all students. This check-in is not a change from the 2020-2021 school year.
- Any student who has a fever will be required to isolate for at least three (3) days and any school-aged sibling or student in the household will also be excluded from sports, activities, and school during this isolation period. This statement is not a change from the 2020-2021 school year.
- School visitors (whether vaccinated or not) will remain restricted during the school day. For example, family members will not be allowed to eat lunch with an elementary student at school. This statement is not a change from the 2020-2021 school year.
- Any staff or student with COVID-19 symptoms will be required to isolate for ten (10) school days, as well as, any students in the same household must also isolate. This statement is not a change from the 2020-2021 school year.
- Spectators, without restriction on numbers, will be allowed at sporting, concerts, and activity events. At this time, spectators will not be required to wear a mask. In aligning with the guidance, BSD welcomes and recommends unvaccinated spectators wear a mask. This item is a change from the 2020-2021 school year.
Again, please be advised - the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) and San Juan Basin Public Health (SJBPH) may override state and federal recommendations if deemed necessary based on local COVID-19 outbreak conditions.
While COVID-19 is unpredictable and recommendations and requirements may change, our Bayfield Family will remain strong. We are so excited for a wonderful school year in our Bayfield Schools.
Thank you for your support of the Bayfield School District!
Dr. K. Kevin Aten
Superintendent of Schools
Bayfield School District
"Each Student, Each Day: Wolverine Way"