Forward Together: 2021-2022 School Year
The SDMF will continue to consistently monitor the situation and take direction from the Waukesha County Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Anytime we have 10% of an educational unit (classroom, grade level, middle school house, or school) with an infectious disease we are required to consult with the county and respond as needed. That could result in a temporary shift to virtual learning and other changes. At 5% we are watching closely and taking internal steps as well.
Strong plans are able to adjust to changes while providing a framework that is defined, yet flexible. We will continue to monitor COVID data throughout the year and will adjust as needed should transmission rates increase in our schools, and/or public health orders change. We will continue to provide families and staff with updates on COVID-19, and share additional information or guidelines provided by public health officials.
October 1, 2021 | Mitigation Changes for NMS and MFHS
- If your middle or high school child is currently in quarantine because of a close contact at school, and they are symptom free, they may return to school.
- If your middle or high school child is currently isolated due to having tested positive for COVID-19, they will need to continue to isolate to the end of their isolation period.
- We will continue to require students who have a close contact at home to quarantine as we have in the past.
- Moving forward, if your child is identified as a close contact at school, you will be notified via email only.
We continue to closely monitor the student impact of COVID-19 and our mitigation measures at school to find the right balance between our commitment to safeguarding student and employee health and our obligations to student attendance and learning.
While our quarantines have been an important factor in mitigating spread at the elementary schools, we are not seeing that same impact at the middle and high school level where many students have access to the vaccine. Many of our positive cases at the elementary level have occurred while students have been in quarantine. Only one of these has come from a school-related quarantine.
Given that quarantines result in significant student absences, we have decided to make some immediate changes to our quarantine procedures at North Middle School and Menomonee Falls High School.
- We will continue to contact trace all positive cases
- We will continue to require students who have a close contact in the home to quarantine as we have in the past. These contacts, especially in the home, more often result in positive cases
- We will communicate close contacts with students and their families through email only
- Quarantines will be voluntary but not required for school-based close contacts
- Students who are required or choose to quarantine will continue to be supported with our virtual model
At the elementary schools, principals will work to refine procedures wherever possible to minimize quarantines. Those changes will be communicated directly to families from principals as they are made. I would like to express my appreciation to the staff who have made adjustments to make those changes possible.
Due to the clear evidence of spread in the elementary classroom, we will continue to quarantine students when there are close contacts in the classroom when students are not wearing a mask. The elementary level where students do not have access to the vaccine and spread has been most evident continues to be our greatest challenge. These changes will allow us to focus our resources in that area.
Mask wearing at all levels continues to be strongly recommended and is a valuable mitigation tool, as recommended by the CDC.
Please continue to support our schools by keeping students home when they are ill.
September 27, 2021 | Multi-Tiered Mask Policy Approved
The School District of Menomonee Falls School Board voted 4-3 at the September 27, 2021, Board of Education meeting to allow the administration to enforce a multi-tiered mask policy for a fixed period of time in classrooms and schools when data indicates evidence of increased spread.
This motion will authorize the administration to require masks of everyone in the classroom for a fixed period of time not to exceed 10 days;
- In an elementary school classroom anytime the class exceeds 10 percent active positive cases.
- In an elementary school anytime one third of classrooms exceeds 10 percent active cases, and
- In a secondary school when the total case count meets or exceeds 10 percent in that school.
Masking is currently recommended for students and staff while in school buildings, as part of SDMF’s multi-layered mitigation plan to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in our schools. This policy does not change the current quarantine practice.
Visit the SDMF COVID-19 metrics dashboard for the most up-to-date information regarding COVID-19 cases in our community.