Tuesday, 31 March 2020

Putting Students First: COVID 19 – keeping students safe

Kelseyville Unified School District Superintendent Dave McQueen. Courtesy photo.

KELSEYVILLE, Calif. – New information about COVID-19, the disease caused by novel coronavirus, comes out every day.

Although there have been no cases of COVID-19 diagnosed in Lake County to date, I think it’s reasonable to expect that the illness will eventually arrive.

As our community braces for COVID-19, here are my thoughts.

Coordinating with Public Health

At Kelseyville Unified School District, we’ve been sending regular notices to parents about what we know about the virus and tips to keep students safe.

At Kelseyville Unified facilities, we are doing extra cleaning and encouraging students to use good hygiene. We are also working closely with the Lake County Office of Education and taking our lead from Lake County Public Health.

Prepare, but don’t panic

It’s important to be careful – to wash our hands, stay home if we’re sick. But there’s no reason to panic. For tips on how to prepare, visit www.ready.gov/pandemic .

Children appear at lower risk

Early data show that children are at lower risk of serious complications from COVID-19 as compared to adults, especially adults who are immunocompromised or elderly. However, we all need to take precautions to avoid spreading the virus.

California declares emergency to prepare for outbreak

Last week, the state of California declared a state of emergency to prepare for a widespread outbreak. It is a proactive move that allows disaster funding to be more readily available to government agencies and paves the way for local, state, and federal agencies to coordinate their efforts. Lake County is likely to benefit from this.

How to reduce the spread of COVID-19

Finally, as a reminder, here’s the Centers for Disease Control’s list of ways to reduce the spread of the coronavirus.

1. Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

2. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.

3. Stay home when you are sick (fever, cough, gastrointestinal symptoms).

4. Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

5. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

6. CDC does not recommend that people who are well wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including COVID-19.

7. Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.

8. If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.

At Kelseyville Unified, we’re keeping parents up to date with emails and posting information on our Facebook page and website.

If you’d like to keep current on Kelseyville Unified activities regarding COVID-19, visit www.kvusd.org and click on the box that says “COVID-19 Coronavirus Updates.”

Dave McQueen is the superintendent of Kelseyville Unified School District.

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