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Health & Safety Protocols 2021-2022

Mars Area School District is aware that many parents/guardians have expressed concerns regarding the use of face coverings (masks or shields) and quarantine protocols in the event a student and/or staff member tests positive for COVID-19. We ask that all parents/guardians, please note the following:

Social Distancing


As per the 2021-2022 Mars Area School District’s Health & Safety Plan, the District’s schools will, once again, open for regular five-day “traditional” instruction. Signage and markings will remain in each building to serve as reminders for individuals to continue to maintain proper social distancing.


Face Coverings
  **UPDATED 08.31.21**

In compliance with the Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH) order (issued Aug. 31), all students, staff and visitors to Mars Area School District will be required to wear an appropriate face covering (mask or shield) when in school.
 
For more information regarding the Order of the Acting Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Health Directing Face Coverings in School Entities, click on the following links:
As stated in Mars Area School District’s Health & Safety Plan, approved by Mars Area School Board on July 20, 2021, the District will follow any mandates as determined by the Pennsylvania Governor’s Office, the Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH) and/or the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC). The District’s compliance with the current DOH order aligns with this previously announced and approved plan.

As a reminder, as per a CDC mandate, face coverings are currently required for all students and drivers on school buses.

The District recognizes that wearing a face covering in school may be difficult for some students. Parents/guardians whose child meets the criteria for exemption from wearing a face covering under the DOH order, are asked to contact their child’s building principal as soon as possible, so that the appropriate documentation may be reviewed for consideration. Accommodations for students with medical exemptions will be made in partnership with the student’s health care provider and professional school staff, including the school nurse.

Contact Tracing/Quarantines


As per the DOH, the most protective quarantine period remains at 14 days for those individuals who have been exposed to COVID-19 and are identified as close contacts.

The District’s requirements for those individuals, who have been exposed to COVID-19 and are identified as close contacts, will be determined by vaccination status and/or the use of face coverings.

Fully Vaccinated Students and/or Students Wearing Face Coverings

Students (K-12), who are identified as close contacts and who have been fully vaccinated and/or were wearing an appropriate face covering at the time of initial exposure to a person(s) with a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19, will NOT be sent home and will NOT need to quarantine as long as they remain asymptomatic (Note: For vaccinated individuals, valid proof of vaccination will be required for the above to apply.)

It is recommended that anyone, who is identified as a close contact, be tested within 2-5 days following the initial date of exposure and wear a face covering for 14 days or until he/she receives a negative test result.

Non-Vaccinated Students and/or Students NOT Wearing Face Coverings

Students (K-12), who are identified as close contacts and who have NOT been fully vaccinated and/or were NOT wearing an appropriate face covering at the time of initial exposure to a person(s) with a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19, WILL be sent home and required to quarantine.

All students, who are required to quarantine, will be provided online access to school via Live-Stream Interactive (LSI) Instruction, as they will not be permitted to return to school until 14 days after the initial date of exposure. These students may:

    1. Reduce their quarantine period to 10 days without testing if no symptoms have been reported during daily monitoring. As per the DOH, symptom monitoring must continue through Day 14; or,

    2. Return after Day 7 with a negative PCR COVID Test Result. (Note: The test must occur on Day 5 or later). As per the DOH, symptom monitoring must continue through Day 14.

Note: The guidelines (listed above) only apply to those individuals who have been exposed to COVID-19 and are identified as close contacts. Those individuals, who test positive for COVID-19, are required to quarantine for a minimum of 10 days, as per DOH guidelines. 

Anyone, who develops COVID symptoms, is asked to immediately self-isolate and to contact the DOH for further guidance at (877) PAHEALTH or (877) 724-3258(4). Any parent(s)/guardian(s), whose child tests positive for COVID-19, is also encouraged to contact your child’s building principal as soon as possible.

MASD Quarantine Guidance Flowchart