March 4, 2020
SPS Students, Parents and Guardians,
As the media continues to report increasing numbers of Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases, I understand that staff and parents/guardians are experiencing an increasing level of concern for their own and their students’ well-being. As always, Stamford Public Schools (SPS) takes its guidance from our health officials when it comes to issues of public health and safety. Currently, there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Stamford and the risk to our school community remains low.
However, transmission of the virus in other countries has raised our level of concern and, you should know, we have been working with Stamford’s Director of Public Safety, Health and Welfare, its Director of Health, as well as with others in our community to plan for the protection and response to the possibility of COVID-19 transmission in Stamford.
For more details, please read the recently issued press release from the Stamford Office of Public Safety, Health & Welfare, City Agencies Prepare for the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) This release also provides important links to other resources from the Connecticut Department of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention.
Since there is no vaccine to protect against COVID-19, the most important things that members of our community can do is to follow, and remind others to follow, the CDC recommendations for the prevention of the spreading of respiratory diseases, including:
- Stay home and keep your child home when sick. Do not return until you are fever- and symptom-free for at least 24 hours.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
- 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.
- If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
Please take this opportunity to remind your child of proper hand washing, coughing and sneezing practices and that they should let you or another adult know if they are not feeling well.
The best course of action is to keep your child home when they are not feeling well and bring them to your family doctor for an evaluation. Please know that there is a nurse available in each of our schools to assess any child who becomes ill during the course of the school day. Additionally, our custodial staff remains diligent in their effort to keep our classrooms and common areas clean and sanitized, as well as to ensure that our soap and other supplies are replenished on a regular basis.
The district is working on a plan to provide students with access to educational activities or assignments, in the unlikely event that we are required to close schools for any length of time. Additionally, we ask that families begin to consider options for childcare alternatives, if necessary.
In collaboration with the Stamford Department of Health, we will be closely monitoring any scheduled school-sponsored local, out-of-state and out-of-country field trips. Additionally, the CDC recommends that anyone who has traveled to a Level 3 Travel Health Notice country (currently: China, Iran, South Korea or Italy) stay home for 14 days from the time you left that country.
For More Information
This is an evolving situation. We encourage you to keep up-to-date on the facts about COVID-19 coronavirus, its treatment and prevention by visiting the following official websites:
- City of Stamford Department of health: https://www.stamfordct.gov/health-department
- Connecticut State Department of Health website: https://portal.ct.gov/DPH/Public-Health-Preparedness/Main-Page/2019-Novel-Coronavirus
- Center for Disease Control website: https://www.cdc.gov/nCoV
- Travelers from Countries with Widespread Sustained (Ongoing) Transmission Arriving in the United States: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/after-travel-precautions.html
- World Health Organization: https://www.who.int/health-topics/coronavirus
We will continue to share information and updates as we receive them.
Dr. Tamu Lucero