Nichols reminds families on COVID-19 procedures

MADISON – Madison City Schools has lessened the strict measures for COVID-19 that were necessary on campus during the last two school years.

However, the district has announced this year’s rules and guidelines for positive COVID-19 cases and exposure/quarantine cases.

“Masks will be optional this school start. If you want your child to be masked, you will need to provide a mask for them,” MCS Superintendent Dr. Ed Nichols said in this weekly update to school families.

Any student or staff member who tests positive for COVID-19 will stay home and be excluded from school and school activities for a minimum of five full days. The first day of symptoms is ‘Day Zero.’ Student families should contact the school nurse at their respective school to report a positive COVID case.

“Please remember to keep your sick child at home and communicate with your school nurse, (if) your child has COVID-19 or any other illness,” Nelson said.

For positive COVID-19 cases, the individual will stay home and will not participate at school or in extracurricular activities for five days minimum from the start of symptoms or from the date of a positive test, if asymptomatic. Again, the first day of symptoms is Day Zero.

An individual who is positive can return on Day Six, if the person has been free of fever, vomiting and diarrhea for a full 24 hours without medication to reduce symptoms, along with improvement of other symptoms.

The individual must wear a mask around other people on Day Six through Day Ten. Anyone with a disruptive cough should not attend school.

A person with a positive COVID-19 test result will be excused as a “doctor’s note” only with these two requirements:

* Documentation of the positive test from a healthcare provider or test center.

* A picture of the home test with the student’s name and date clearly written on the test.

All other absences related to COVID-19 related will be considered a “Parent Note.”

MCS will not require quarantine/exclusion after exposure to a positive COVID-19 case. However, Alabama Department of Public Health or ADPH may call the individual.

Exposed individuals who become symptomatic must isolate immediately and contact a health care provider for further instructions.

A parent or guardian can decide for their child to stay home because of exposure. To cover these absences, a parent’s note will be required.

If a person is symptomatic, the staff member or student must report to the school nurse with fever at 100 degrees or higher, vomiting or diarrhea. This individual will be excluded from school and any activities until 24 hours symptom-free without medication.

The school nurse may send a symptomatic individual home and require clearance from a healthcare provider to return to campus if COVID-19 is suspected. An individual who has new instance of loss of taste or smell will require either evaluation from a health care provider or remain home for a minimum of five days.

MCS will not require masks on school campuses, buses, in buildings or at any school-sponsored event. Masks will remain optional; the school nurse will have a limited number of masks.

For the Health Services website, visit

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