Covid-19 Information Hub

Last Updated – March 22, 2022

Welcome to Montessori Community School’s COVID-19 Information Hub. Our school’s top priority remains the health, safety, and well-being of our students, families, faculty, and staff. We are constantly assessing the efficacy of health and safety protocols and broader environmental conditions as we continue to plan for a safe and productive 2021-2022 school year.

Our goal is to share as much information as possible. Below you will find information on our safety protocols and policies. We will continue to follow the guidelines set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NC DHHS), and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).

Resources

  • Covid-19 Testing Information

    Pediatrician and Primary Care Physician Offices are generally able to provide PCR or Antigen based COVID Testing. In addition, local health departments, pharmacies, urgent care, and other locations also provide testing.

    There may be a fee for any of the listed Testing Centers and please call ahead, as this information is always subject to change.

    Use this Test Site Finder link to find locations near you. Each location indicates the minimum age for PCR or Antigen based tests and how many days to wait for test results.

    NCDHHS is supporting existing testing sites, opening more sites across the state, and increasing access to at-home collection kits for asymptomatic screening. Hundreds of community-based events, testing locations, and home kit options are listed at ncdhhs.gov/GetTested.

    https://www.aspirarmedicallab.com/covid-19  Offering locations in Durham and Cary
    Box of test kits outside (24/7 for their self-service station), swab yourself, put it in the collection box, and go! Not a provider conducted test but the PCR sample is processed in a laboratory. They also have an option for a walk-in, provider conducted, test from 10 am – 4 pm, with minimal to no wait. Typically 24 hrs turnaround for results.

    Pittsboro Pharmacy, connected with Wake Toxicology:
    630 East Street in the Chatham Commons Shopping Center
    Generally has no lines or wait time to get tested
    919-533-6901

     

     


    Durham County Testing Events:

    Stay up-to-date on changes to testing operations by visiting our website a DCoPublicHealth.org/COVIDtesting, Twitter or Facebook.

    Durham County COVID-19 Resource Line (available 8:30am-4:30pm, Monday-Friday): (919) 560-9217

    Orange County Testing Events:

    For the most up-to-date information on testing please visit: orangecountync.gov/testing

    R7 Parking Lot Daily testing will continue Monday through Saturday from 9 am to 6 pm in Chapel Hill:
    R7 Parking Lot, 725 MLK Jr. Blvd. Chapel Hill, NC 27514. Pre-registration is encouraged: https://lhi.care/covidtesting.

    English: https://www.orangecountync.gov/DocumentCenter/View/13709/Optum_Covid19Flyer_R7_WeekdayTesting_ENG.

    Hillsborough Testing Events:  

    IndyCare Hillsborough
    Phone: 919-245-1213
    110 Boone Square St Suite 29A
    HILLBOROUGH, NC 27279

  • Covid-19 Vaccination Information

    COVID-19 vaccines are available in North Carolina to everyone ages 5 and older.

    What you should know:
    – The vaccine is free everywhere in North Carolina.
    – No photo ID or insurance is needed.
    – Depending on where you get your vaccine, you may need to make an appointment.
    – U.S. citizenship is not required or checked.
    – Are children able to get vaccinated? What about pregnant women? Find out the answers in our frequently asked questions about who can get a COVID-19 vaccine.

    Find a vaccine provider near you
    To find an appointment, use the Vaccine Location Tool at MySpot.nc.gov.
    – Individuals can mix or match the booster from any one of the three available COVID-19 vaccines
    – Moderna & Pfizer Boosters available 6 months after 2nd shot
    – J&J Booster available 2 months after single shot

    CDC Updates
    Clinical Questions about COVID-19: Questions and Answers

    COVID-19 Vaccines
    Currently, three vaccines are authorized and recommended to prevent COVID-19:
    Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine (available for 12 years and older)
    Moderna COVID-19 vaccine
    Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine

    Vaccine Benefits

    COVID-19 vaccination will help keep you from getting COVID-19 and is a safer way to help build protection. Wearing masks and social distancing help reduce your chance of being exposed to the virus or spreading it to others, but these measures are not enough. Vaccines will work with your immune system so it will be ready to fight the virus if you are exposed. It also may protect people around you, especially those more likely to get severely ill from COVID-19. The combination of getting vaccinated and following CDC’s recommendations to protect yourself and others will offer the best protection from COVID-19.

    Where can I find answers to my vaccine questions?

    Check out these pages for answers to frequently asked questions:
    Durham County Department of Public Health
    Orange County Department of Public Health
    NCDHHS
    CDC

    For answers to Durham County COVID-19 vaccine questions, call the hotline at 919-635-8150 or email DCoCOVIDvaccines@dconc.gov. Or call the NCDHHS COVID-19 hotline at 2-1-1 or 888-892-1162.

Health and Safety

MCS has a protocol for returning to school after an illness, listed in the MCS Safety Precaution Manual 2021/2022. Please be sure each day to complete the “School Pass” Health Questions on your phone or computer, and report any illness to the school nurse and classroom teacher.

School Nurse: Megan Moore mmoore@mcsdurham.org OR Head of School: Angie Wenger awenger@mcsdurham.org at 919-493-8541

Students and Staff have 3 courses of possible action after illness on how they can return after an illness once they have notified the School Nurse and their classroom teacher, as listed in the MCS Safety Precaution Manual 2021/2022:

1) Proof of negative PCR Covid Test performed in a clinical setting AND May return once symptoms have improved for a 24 hr period & fever free for 24 hrs without use of fever-reducing medicines. A negative Antigen Test in most cases is not sufficient as a mode to return to school after an illness. This is due to a higher level and range of inaccurate results produced by Antigen Testing and also the recent high transmissibility of the Omicron variant. Additionally, due to the increased transmissibility, there is an inability to ensure that there has been no known or suspected exposure to an individual who has contracted COVID-19.

OR

2) Doctor’s written note: Indicating that student or staff poses no risk for contagious illness. It is not necessary for the note to indicate diagnosis. A note based on Telehealth or Virtual visit is not sufficient, as the individual can’t be assessed in person. Once the student or staff provide a note, they may return once symptoms have improved for a 24 hr period & fever free for 24 hrs without use of fever-reducing medicines.

OR

3) Person has not been tested or received Doctor’s note: Learn or work remotely for a minimum of 5 days and return to school when fever-free for the last 24 hours of isolation, without use of fever-reducing medicines AND may return to school with a negative antigen test conducted in a clinical setting or at MCS on Day 6.

Once you obtain the results of a PCR COVID Test Result or Doctor’s Written Note of clearance, please privately message that to the School Nurse.

*MCS has obtained Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendment Certification (CLIA) which allows any trained staff to conduct and interpret Rapid Antigen Test Results & conduct PCR Testing where specimens are sent to Mako Medical Laboratories via courier for processing.

Depending on local conditions and testing availability, Local Health Departments have discretion if they will accept at-home tests for public health purposes. The Durham County Health Department does not allow at-home testing as a mode to return to school after an illness, only a test performed at a Clinical Setting.

Our goal is to share as much information as possible. Below you will find information on our safety protocols and policies. We will continue to follow the guidelines set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS), and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).

  • Safety Steps

    MCS Safety Steps:

    Strong Schools NC Public Health Toolkit (K-12), NCDHHS Guidance
    ChildCareStrongNC Public Health Toolkit, NCDHHS Guidance
    MCS Safety Manual 2021-22; applying guidance from the Durham County Department of Public Health (DCDPH), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)
    – School Pass app Daily Health Questions

    – Weekly Pooled PCR COVID-19 Testing via NC state-sponsored Testing Program in collaboration with Mako Medical
    – MCS has obtained Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendment Certification (CLIA) allowing any trained staff to conduct and interpret Rapid Antigen Test Results & conduct PCR Testing and send specimens to Mako Medical Laboratories via courier for processing.
    – Internal MCS Public Health Group
    – Prioritize Hand Washing
    – Clean/Disinfect Hard Surfaces, EPA approved Disinfectant Sprays
    – Janitorial Staff daily deep cleaning
    – Windows Open
    – Upgraded each HVAC system throughout campus; hospital-grade MERV-13 Filters with i-Wave Cleaning System
    – CO2 Monitor in each classroom to balance best possible ventilation with temperatures (Goal for good air quality in an indoor space is <600-1000 ppm)
    – Box Fan in each classroom
    – Turn on classroom restroom & stove top exhaust fans to draw in outside airflow
    – Frequent outdoor time
    – Outdoor eating unless inclement weather
    – Minimum 3 feet social distancing while masked inside & outdoors
    – All students spaced 6 feet apart during snack and lunch
    – Eat outdoors unless raining or uncomfortably cold temperatures
    – Beginning April 11, masking will become optional indoors
    – Beginning March 7, masking became optional outdoors
    – Flu Shot Clinic onsite (Fall)
    – School Hosted COVID-19 Vaccination Clinics, for approved ages
    – Enrollment Immunization Requirements
    – School Nurse on duty
    – All MCS Staff are CPR, First Aid, AED Certified

  • Face Coverings

    Beginning on Monday, April 11, 2022, Optional Indoor Masking will be in effect. Optional outdoor mask wearing began on Monday, March 7, 2022.

    Overview

    • Wear masks with two or more layers of breathable fabric and a nose wire
    • Wear the mask snuggly over your nose and mouth and secure it under your chin
    • Choose a mask with fabric that blocks light when held up to bright light source
    • Masks should be worn by people two years and older
    • Masks should NOT be worn by children younger than two, people who have trouble breathing, or people who cannot remove the mask without assistance
    • CDC Guidance does not recommend the use of gaiters, face shields, or bandanas. Evaluation of these face covers is on-going but effectiveness is unknown at this time. CDC does not currently recommend use of face shields as a substitute for masks but a shield may be worn in addition to a mask.

     

    How to Clean

    • Masks should be washed regularly. Always remove masks correctly and wash your hands after handling or touching a used mask.
    • Include your mask with your regular laundry
    • Use regular laundry detergent and the warmest appropriate water setting for the cloth used to make the mask
    • Use the highest heat setting and leave in the dryer until completely dry

    For more information, visit CDC’s How to Wash Masks web page.
    For more information, see CDC’s Masks web site. For information on the sources for our mask guidance, see Recent Studies.

  • Hand Washing

    Hand washing/sanitizing should happen as soon as one enters the school. Students and employees will wash their hands as they enter the classroom, before going outside, returning to the room after being outside, after restroom visits, before and after eating and before and after using materials. Signs will be posted to remind students and staff to remember to wash their hands. In addition, teachers will give lessons on the proper method of watching hands. 

  • What happens if a person tests positive for COVID?

    MCS will follow the recommendations of our local Durham County Public Health Department if someone at our school should quarantine. Local public health authorities make the final decisions about how long quarantine should last in the communities they serve, based on local conditions and needs. MCS has been in touch with the Durham County Public Health Department COVID-19 Hotline.

For detailed information about all aspects of our on-campus health and safety plan, please refer to the MCS Families Safety Precautions for 2021-2022.