Updated COVID-19 Health & Safety Protocols from Baker School District

By on Friday, November 26th, 2021 in More Top Stories Northeastern Oregon News

First, revisions to OAR 333-019-1015 remove the outdoor face covering requirement for K-12 settings. This does not result in a major shift locally, since masks were only required outdoors most recently when 6 feet distance couldn’t be maintained and Winter Sports don’t take place outdoors.

Second, it was announced that a new Test to Stay program will allow unvaccinated individuals who are exposed to COVID-19 while at school but are asymptomatic to stay in school as long as they have two specifically timed negative tests during a 7-day quarantine period. Individuals qualifying for Test to Stay will still need to quarantine outside school, and Test to Stay cannot be used following community or in- home exposures. As before, asymptomatic vaccinated individuals do not need to quarantine following an exposure. The Baker County Health Department will retain local authority over quarantines.

Baker School District leadership met with representatives from the Baker County Health Department earlier today to discuss the new guidance and how to coordinate the implementation of Test to Stay. More information is still needed, and ODE has communicated that an updated Ready Schools Safe Learners Resiliency Framework will be released in the coming days that incorporates the two changes announced today. The District will continue to work closely with the health department as guidance emerges and keep the community informed.

“In conjunction with the other health and safety protocols we follow, we are thankful for a Test to Stay option that will help us keep students and staff in school and maximize learning while we continue to work through the pandemic,” says Superintendent Mark Witty.

About the Baker School District

Nationally recognized Baker School District 5J (BSD) is a major employer in Baker City, OR, serving 1,700 students locally with an additional 3,000 online students across the state of Oregon. Through enterprising, collaborative endeavors, BSD is creating an innovative educational foundation for future Oregonians. BSD believes strong school collaboration with local partners enables us to create vibrant communities that support lifelong learners.

The Baker 5J schools enhance community vitality by providing opportunities for rewarding, individual educational experiences.

BAKER CITY – (Release from the Baker School District) Earlier today (Tuesday, November 23, 2021) , the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) and Oregon Department of Education (ODE) announced two important updates to COVID-19 health and safety guidance.

First, revisions to OAR 333-019-1015 remove the outdoor face covering requirement for K-12 settings. This does not result in a major shift locally, since masks were only required outdoors most recently when 6 feet distance couldn’t be maintained and Winter Sports don’t take place outdoors.

Second, it was announced that a new Test to Stay program will allow unvaccinated individuals who are exposed to COVID-19 while at school but are asymptomatic to stay in school as long as they have two specifically timed negative tests during a 7-day quarantine period. Individuals qualifying for Test to Stay will still need to quarantine outside school, and Test to Stay cannot be used following community or in- home exposures. As before, asymptomatic vaccinated individuals do not need to quarantine following an exposure. The Baker County Health Department will retain local authority over quarantines.

Baker School District leadership met with representatives from the Baker County Health Department earlier today to discuss the new guidance and how to coordinate the implementation of Test to Stay. More information is still needed, and ODE has communicated that an updated Ready Schools Safe Learners Resiliency Framework will be released in the coming days that incorporates the two changes announced today. The District will continue to work closely with the health department as guidance emerges and keep the community informed.

“In conjunction with the other health and safety protocols we follow, we are thankful for a Test to Stay option that will help us keep students and staff in school and maximize learning while we continue to work through the pandemic,” says Superintendent Mark Witty.

About the Baker School District

Nationally recognized Baker School District 5J (BSD) is a major employer in Baker City, OR, serving 1,700 students locally with an additional 3,000 online students across the state of Oregon. Through enterprising, collaborative endeavors, BSD is creating an innovative educational foundation for future Oregonians. BSD believes strong school collaboration with local partners enables us to create vibrant communities that support lifelong learners.

The Baker 5J schools enhance community vitality by providing opportunities for rewarding, individual educational experiences.