March 9 – Spring Break Travel Letter
Dear DMPS Families:
As Coronavirus, or COVID-19, continues to be a concern we all share, and Spring Break is only a few days away, there have been questions raised about travel and what impact it may have on the spread of the virus. I know many of us are looking forward to a chance to relax and, in some cases, have planned trips out of state or even out of the country.
At the time of this letter, there are five countries around the world which the U.S. Centers for Disease Control has identified as being a high risk for the spread of Coronavirus: China, Iran, Italy, Japan and South Korea. The Iowa Department of Public Health recommends that anyone who visits those countries voluntarily self-isolates for 14 days upon their return.
Families traveling to these areas should notify their school by telephone immediately upon returning so that direction or guidance from the CDC and the Iowa Department of Health can be provided prior to the student’s reentry to school. Reentry may include precautionary measures, such as self-isolation for up to 14 days, if recommended by public health agencies.
At this time there are no other travel advisories or restrictions pertaining to Coronavirus, either internationally or within the United States. However, before traveling, be sure to stay informed. We have links to the CDC and other public health agencies with the latest information at dmschools.org/coronavirus.
DMPS is in regular contact with state and local public health agencies, and will share new information as its available.
In the meantime, whether you are traveling or not, there are some very basic things we should all be doing to help prevent the spread of viruses:
- If you are sick, stay home.
- Cover your mouth with your upper arm or a tissue when coughing or sneezing
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
While there are many legitimate concerns about Coronavirus, being well-informed and taking some preventive steps can keep us healthy and safe, and enjoy our time during Spring Break.
Dr. Tom Ahart
Health Services Supervisor