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New COVID-19 Contact Tracing, Case Investigation Guidance for K-12 Schools

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The Ohio Department of Health (ODH) today released new contact tracing and case investigation guidance for K-12 schools. ODH is recommending local health departments (LHDs) shift from universal contact tracing, case investigation and exposure notification to a cluster or outbreak-based model. This shift has the following implications for schools:

  • Schools may discontinue universal contact tracing but are expected to assist LHDs with contact tracing, case investigation and exposure notification related to outbreaks or clusters in schools as determined by the LHD.
  • K-12 schools should continue to follow ODH’s protocol, “Mask to Stay, Test to Play,” and allow asymptomatic students to attend school while wearing a mask if they have been exposed to someone with COVID-19. The best place for kids is in school, in-person, full-time.
  • ODH also will change the school case reporting cadence to weekly. Schools should report positive student and staff cases to their LHDs by the close of business on Fridays. LHDs will continue to report on the same weekly cadence. This schedule will begin on Friday, Feb. 4. ODH will continue to evaluate related school reporting requirements.

To view the complete guidance, please visit:

https://odh.ohio.gov/static/docs/memo-contact-tracing-final-012622.pdf