Hockinson School District’s custodial staff will be disinfecting door knobs, handrails, and classroom and bathroom surfaces with increased frequency in response to the global spread of COVID-19, also known as the coronavirus.
This preventative step was announced by Superintendent Steve Marshall in a letter to HSD families on Friday, February 28. The letter reads as follows:
Dear HSD Families,
The coronavirus has increasingly made headlines this week and I wanted to reach out to you with an update on how the Hockinson School District is responding to this health concern. While this virus is new and unpredictable, it is important to note that the immediate risk of the coronavirus in our area is low.
There are currently no cases of coronavirus in our schools nor in any schools in Clark County. However, we are committed to protecting the health and safety of each of our students and staff members. We are therefore approaching this as an issue of modest urgency but very high importance.
According to the Washington Department of Health (DOH), schools do not need to take any special precautions beyond what is normally recommended to inhibit the spread of viruses. However, with prevention in mind, our custodians will be disinfecting our schools’ door knobs, handrails, and classroom and bathroom surfaces with increased frequency.
We are also in communication with officials from Clark County Public Health and following communications from the Centers for Disease Control to stay current with any developments or new recommendations. We will share these updates as we receive them.
Some have characterized this disease as a geographic or racial phenomenon. But, like the flu, the coronavirus is a worldwide disease. While its origins have been traced to China, it cannot be reliably connected to race, ethnicity or nationality. The coronavirus also shares similar symptoms with the flu: Fever, cough, and shortness of breath. At this time, the best way to prevent the spread of the coronavirus is to follow the same prevention guidelines as the flu:
- Stay home when you feel sick and have a fever.
- Wash hands with soap and water frequently (for at least 20 seconds), especially after going to the bathroom, before eating and after blowing your nose.
- If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Cover coughs or sneezes with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash and clean hands with soap and water or hand sanitizer (if soap and water are not readily available).
Please reinforce these best practices with your children at home. For more detailed information, check out the coronavirus information page on the DOH website or consult your family’s health care provider.
Student safety is a team effort. Thank you for all you do to keep our kids healthy.
Steve Marshall, Hockinson School District Superintendent