Muscatine Iowa–A sixth Muscatine High School student tested positive for COVID-19 Oct. 14, according to Muscatine Community School District officials. Though classes will continue as usual, the district has updated their face mask policy, in accordance with updated Center for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations. Under their new policy, the district will not allow staff or students to wear only a gaiter or face shield in lieu of a mask. Staff and students may continue to wear gaiters or face shields in conjunction with masks. Schools will provide masks to students who need them. The district’s message to families and staff follows below.
We received notification that a Muscatine High School student has tested positive for COVID-19. While we must protect the privacy of the person involved, we believe it is best to communicate transparently with you. The Muscatine High School’s school nurse has been in contact with staff and/or students who are believed to have been exposed to the individual. Those impacted directly have been notified before this letter is sent out.
PLEASE NOTE: Muscatine High School works diligently to maintain the safety of students and staff. We remain responsive to advice provided to us by the CDC and Public Health. As they provide the school with updated information, we respond to that information proactively. That being said, the new information being conveyed to us is that “gaiters’ and “face shields” alone are no longer considered sufficient protection against the COVID virus. Therefore, we will no longer be allowing staff or students to simply wear gaiters or face shields for protection. A face mask will be REQUIRED. It may be worn alone, or with a face shield or gaiter, but needs to be worn for the safety of others. If your family only has invested in gaiters or face shields for protection, rest assured that masks will be provided by the school district as students enter the high school. If your student has a medical issue that will not allow him/her to wear a mask please contact the building principal.
All classes will continue as usual. School will remain in-person unless the Muscatine County positivity rate exceeds 15%. To learn more click here to view the report found on our Return to Learn website. Precautions have been taken for these individuals to ensure the safety of the school and district. In addition, we have consulted with the Muscatine County Public Health Department to ensure that this is the safest route in managing this specific case and managing the spread of this communicable disease.
We will also continue to follow all COVID-related safety procedures including requiring masks if social distancing cannot be maintained. Our custodial staff will continue to deep clean and sanitize classrooms and high touch areas each evening.
As a reminder, COVID-19 is transmitted through person-to-person contact and through the exchange of respiratory droplets. Symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, cough, and shortness of breath. (For a complete list of symptoms, visit CDC Coronavirus Symptoms.) If you or any member of your family exhibit these symptoms, please contact your medical provider for advice immediately. Symptoms usually appear 2-14 days after exposure.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends the following best practices to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 click here to view.
We are grateful for the opportunity to serve you and your family, especially as we face this challenging situation together. We continue to ask for your support of Muscatine High School and the Muscatine Community School District by stressing the importance of the COVID-19 mitigation procedures in place so that we may keep our students and staff safe.
Terry Hogenson, Principal & Clint Christopher, Superintendent