Saraland City Schools suspending field trips to state declared ‘State of Emergency’

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SARALAND, Ala. (WKRG) — The City of Saraland Board of Education is suspending field trips to states that have declared a State of Emergency due to coronavirus.

Saraland City Schools Superintendent Dr. Aaron Milner sent a letter to parents this week about the suspension. The copy of the letter is below:

The faculty, staff and administration of Saraland City Schools place the safety of students at the forefront of every decision. In recent weeks, Diana Collins, MSN, RN, Health Services Supervisor in Saraland City Schools, working in collaboration with officials from the Alabama State Department of Education and the Alabama Department of Public Health, has provided Saraland administration regular updates on the progress of the coronavirus (COVID-19) and has shared recommendations of appropriate actions.

As a result of events occurring this week and to allow for adjustments to be made to school schedules:

All school-sponsored trips to states having declared a “State of Emergency” due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) will be suspended for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. All in-state field trips will be evaluated as a clearer, more defined picture evolves regarding the spread of the COVID-19 virus within Alabama. Principals will be in contact with parents regarding the possible cancellation of in-state field trips. Note: Potential rescheduling/refunding will be coordinated by the school official who scheduled the original trip.

While working to maintain normalcy and provide a safe environment for Saraland students, I am asking for your assistance. Never has it been more important to conduct daily hygiene activities to help reduce the spread of this virus. Please adhere to the following recommendations:

All Staff, Faculty and Students:

• Avoid close contact with people who are sick
• Cough or sneeze in the bend of your inner arm or use a tissue to cover nose/mouth, then throw the tissue in the trash
• Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth
• Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces
• Handshaking is not recommended, rather consider greeting with a nod of the head, verbal hello, or a simple smile
• Stay home when you are sick, except to seek medical care (if displaying any signs of the COVID-19 virus, call the medical facility ahead of time to seek guidance before entering the facility)

Parents/Guardians

• Do not send your child to school if ill (i.e. fever of 100 degrees or higher, frequent cough, diarrhea or vomiting
• Teach and practice proper cough/sneeze etiquette (cover cough/sneeze by coughing or sneezing in the bend of the inner arm in a tissue, if available, and then properly dispose of the tissue)
• Practice hand washing for at least 20 seconds with your child (Recommendation: Sing the ABC song to time washing)
Encourage eating a well-balanced diet and getting plenty of rest
• Wash backpacks, coats, and other articles that potentially carry germs
• Disinfect digital devices with disinfectant wipes
• Prepare to pick your child up from school, if notified by school personnel that your child is ill
• Contact your child’s physician, calling ahead before arrival to seek guidance, if the symptoms your child is displaying are possibly related to the flu or COVID-19

If your child gets sick at school with flu-like symptoms such as cough, headache, runny nose or fever, a school nurse will attend to your child by providing the best care possible and will follow precautions immediately putting a mask on the student.

At this time Saraland City Schools plans to maintain a regular schedule, providing quality educational opportunities for every child. Cleaning crews are disinfecting, day and evening, to promote sanitary conditions in each school. Buses are disinfected at the conclusion of each trip in an effort to not only ensure a safe ride on the roads, but also safety within the confines of the bus. Principals are working with teachers to ensure extra time for handwashing before lunch and after restroom breaks. While closely following information provided by the Alabama Department of Public Health, we are asking for the patience of stakeholders as guidance is everchanging. In upcoming days, I am confident additional direction will be provided for Alabama public schools. While this situation is unprecedented, the health of Saraland students, faculty, staff, and administration will remain at the forefront of each decision. A collaborative effort is critical to ensure the safety of those who occupy Saraland schools as well as the entire community that makes up this great place called Saraland. Please be vigilant as we work together to encourage each other’s health throughout the remained o the 2019-2020 school year.

Dr. Aaron Miller, Superintendent, Saraland City Schools.

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