Snoqualmie Valley School District says will deep clean, disinfect all schools this weekend to combat coronavirus

As King County and the Washington State Department of Health continue to monitor the latest developments in the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus) locally, the Snoqualmie Valley School District released its plan to help prevent the spread of the virus.

The district said currently there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in SVSD schools and King County Public Health recommends keeping schools open.

In an announcement on March 4, 2020, district officials said, “In case COVID-19 spreads to our staff and students, the Snoqualmie Valley School District is working on our plan and will notify our community if changes are needed. As part of that plan, the district will be following the guidance of Public Health – Seattle & King County and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In the meantime, we continue to follow regional developments to closely monitor the health and attendance of our students and staff, and to prepare for any potential disruptions to daily school operations.”

The district said, though, it will engage in extra clean and disinfecting – even while KC Public Health is not recommending a change to its current cleaning protocol.

SVSD’s is initiating a two-fold enhanced cleaning plan:

Deep cleaning and disinfecting of all schools Sunday and Monday, March 8th and 9th. This coincides with a scheduled Professional Development Day on Monday, March 9, where students won’t be in school. Professional cleaners – with a cleaning plan that is approved by a certified hygienist – will partner with SVSD custodial staff. Transportation staff will so disinfect the SVSD school bus fleet on March 9th

This week SVSD will also provide staff training on “the proper use and storage of a district-approved, EPA-registered disinfectant spray that employees may to use on common touch areas in their classrooms and work spaces. Custodians will have supplies at each school to provide staff who are interested in helping.”

SVSD said, “While our custodial staff will continue to do their jobs cleaning and disinfecting routinely, per Public Health recommendations, this additional step supplements those efforts and allows more frequent disinfecting of common touch surfaces. We encourage an ‘all-hands-on-deck’ response to support healthy school environments in the weeks ahead.”

The City of Snoqualmie Department of Emergency Management said it is also monitoring outbreak developments and city staff are working with the King County Emergency Management and Public Health “to ensure the health, safety and welfare of Snoqualmie residents.”

SVSD said, “We know this is a challenging time for many, and we appreciate your cooperation and understanding as we work together to keep our students, staff, and schools, healthy and safe. This event is rapidly evolving, and we will continue to keep families informed as soon as we learn more.”

NEW: On Friday, March 6th the district also announced it was suspending the use of district facilities by outside groups; all Games, Concerts, Dances, Plays, Information and Evening Events were canceled or postponed; field trips would be determined on a case-by-case basis by district administration, dependent on the event’s nature, significance and location including local day trips and out-of-state travel, as well as guest speakers; SVSD staff travel was canceled; volunteer work was suspended; clubs led by other organizations and vendors (including PTSA) were cancelled.

Only staff-led activities, such as sports practices, will continue. Before-school and after-school child care provided at SVSD schools will also continue. Parent/guardian normal school pick Up and drop off will continue.

Tips to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 include:

  • Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer, with 60% alcohol, if soap and water are not available.
  • Cough into a tissue or your elbow (not your hand), then throw tissue away and wash your hands.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick and keep students home when they are ill.

For the latest updates on Coronavirus/COVID-19, visit the King County Department of Health page HERE.

Photo: KC Health

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