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Return-to-School Guidance for Parents

Accurate as of August 31, 2021

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Notice: This page will be updated regularly. We hope the information on this page makes return-to-school guidance easy to understand. Please reach out to your child's program if you need additional information.

If your child has COVID-19 symptoms, seek immediate medical care

Symptoms may include:

  • Trouble breathing or is breathing very quickly
  • Prolonged fever
  • Is too sick to drink fluids
  • Severe abdominal pain, diarrhea or vomiting
  • Change in skin color - becoming pale, patchy and/or blue
  • Racing heart or chest pain
  • Decreased urine output
  • Lethargy, irritability, or confusion

Decision tree: My child has COVID-19 symptoms. When can they go back to school?

Decision Tree: My child has COVID-19 symptoms. When can they go back to school?

This decision tree will help parents to know when their child may return to school following a healthcare provider evaluation for COVID-19. Download the 'My child has COVID-19 symptoms. When can they go back to ' decision tree .

If your child was quarantined by Nassau BOCES 

As of August 30, 2021, if a student was identified as a close contact to a positive COVID-19 case by Nassau BOCES only, they do not need a note from a medical provider to return to school. The parent must submit a note stating that their child has quarantined for 10 days, is symptom-free and has been without a fever for 24 hours.

[Sample parents' note: My child [Name of Child] has quarantined for 10 days and has been symptom-free during that time, and free from symptoms or fever for 24 hours.]

Parents should continue to monitor symptoms until Day 14.

If your child was quarantined by the Department of Health

If the student was identified as a close contact by the local health department, they must provide a release notification from the health department.

Nassau: https://app.nassaucountyny.gov/DOH/covid-release/
Suffolk: https://health.suffolkcountyny.gov/covidreleaseletters/

Exceptions to quarantine requirements

A student would not be considered a contact if they have recovered from COVID-19 within the last three months or have been fully vaccinated. "Fully vaccinated" means it has been two weeks or more after receiving the second dose in a two-dose series or two weeks after a single dose vaccine. The CDC recommends a test for vaccinated people three to five days after exposure, however, it is not required.

In classrooms, only students who wear face coverings consistently and correctly, and maintain at least 3 feet of social distancing do not need to quarantine after exposure. 

If your child has traveled recently

If a student has recently traveled outside of New York, they do not need to quarantine or get tested before returning to school unless they have COVID-19 symptoms. All students with COVID-19 symptoms need to be evaluated by a healthcare provider, regardless of their vaccination status.