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COVID-19 Resources for Schools

Updated 9/13/2022

The Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH) continues to encourage schools to refer to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) Operational Guidance for K-12 Schools and Early Care and Education Programs to Support Safe In-Person Learning to prepare for the upcoming school year.

The CDC guidance highlights the importance of public health prevention strategies and layering prevention strategies to support safe, in-person learning. Schools should continue to utilize prevention strategies such as staying home when sick, physical distancing, testing, ventilation, and handwashing to prevent the spread of infectious diseases.

When determining prevention strategies to implement in a school, school leaders can use the CDC's COVID-19 Community Levels by County data to understand the impact of COVID-19 in their community and consider prevention strategies based on the COVID-19 community level.

Any individual who tests positive for COVID-19, regardless of symptoms, should isolate at home in accordance with CDC guidance. After the isolation period, individuals should wear a high-quality mask when around others following the timeline outlined in the CDC guidance. CDC no longer recommends quarantine for individuals who are exposed to a positive case of COVID-19.

As a reminder, school officials have the authority to restrict people who are at risk of spreading COVID-19 from entering the school building. Schools do not need, and should not require, a public health order to take this action to protect the health and safety of students and staff.

Schools within a county or municipal health department (CMHD) jurisdiction should work with their local health department when responding to cases of COVID-19 in a school setting.

Schools are encouraged to report positive cases to DOH on a weekly basis to assist DOH in understanding the spread of COVID-19 in schools. Schools may continue to submit aggregate case numbers to DOH on a weekly basis using a short survey on PDE's Future Ready Comprehensive Planning Portal (FRCPP). The survey should be submitted by 5:00 PM on Fridays. If a school does not have any new cases within the reporting period, a survey does not need to be submitted.

DOH continues to provide testing and vaccination support to schools, as well as public health consultation on outbreaks or a rapid rise in cases, policies and procedures related to infection control, and general COVID-19 related issues or concerns. For more information on the K-12 School Testing program please access the information here or contact DOH at RA-DHK12COVIDTEST@pa.gov. Schools in need of urgent technical assistance or public health consultation, should continue to contact DOH at RA-DHK12Epi@pa.gov.

Guidance & Information

General Guidance & Information

Responding to Cases in K-12 Schools

K-12 School Testing

Vaccination