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Safety Protocols & Updates

Safety Update July 24, 2020

As guidance has evolved and remained fluid throughout the school closure period, we have been carefully measuring our approach to reopening. The PAUSD team is working daily to safeguard PAUSD staff, students, and the overall community. Here are just some of the key protocols we have implemented in accordance with Santa Clara County’s Public Health Guidelines for Reopening Schools.

Individual Control Measures

We have developed and assigned the following training to all District Office staff and 12-month employees in accordance with the Santa Clara County Social Distancing Protocol:

  • COVID-19 Information and Awareness
  • Individual Control Measures and Mandatory Daily Screenings
  • Importance of Getting Tested
  • County Guidance for a Safe Return to Work

COVID-19 symptom screening forms are being provided for staff at each designated department entrance and collected by supervisors at the beginning of shifts. A simple virtual screening tool is now being piloted as well. A number of mitigation strategies have been put in place, primarily based on guidance from the Santa Clara County Public Health Department. Some of these include:

  • Social distancing of 6 feet or more
  • Site access protocols
  • Utilization of virtual meetings
  • Staggered employee schedules
  • Teleworking where possible
  • Symptom free protocols before entering buildings
  • Minimal in-person meetings
  • Face mask/face covering requirements except when medically inadvisable
  • Hygiene protocols
  • COVID-19 Testing and notification protocols
  • Stay at home protocols when sick
  • Self-isolation and quarantine protocols
  • Occupancy limitation protocols
  • Site specific infection control through hazard assessments

Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) has been ordered for staff and students including cloth facemasks, disposable facemasks, face shields, disposable gloves, hand sanitizer, portable hand wash stations, and scanning thermometers. Boxes of supplies have already been provided to work areas where staff may be physically present. Site-specific emergency protocols including preparedness for emergency COVID-19 closures have been, or are being developed starting with Greene Middle School's ESY program and will continue throughout the district during July and August.

Physical Facilities

Maintenance and Safety staff have been working to meet all Santa Clara Public Health COVID-19 Site Specific Protection Plan requirements, beginning with 25 Churchill and Greene Middle School. Classrooms, offices, and other campus spaces are being reconfigured and marked to indicate physical distancing requirements. How we learn, work, and interact is being carefully rethought in ways that will allow us to continue our jobs and our studies. Cleaning & disinfecting is being managed in two phases: we are nearing the completion of Phase 1 (Deep cleaning) and beginning Phase 2 (disinfecting) all areas (inside/outside). High traffic areas are being frequently disinfected including high-contact surfaces. School sites, as well as school buses, are being disinfected with the new electrostatic sprayers, which apply an electrostatic charge to disinfectant spray to increase efficiency in sanitizing every corner and crevice. Daily cleaning and disinfecting protocols are in place.

Beginning with elementary school sites, teams have started walking the front office areas of all school sites in order to assess the different furniture types and the different brackets and clamps required to install plexiglass. We have a few remaining plexiglass units from phase (1) -district office/portables install. We expect another shipment of plexiglass this week. Therefore, installation at sites could begin as early as next week.

Social distancing signage and floor markers are being installed. Signage to remind staff and students about hygiene protocols, the symptoms of COVID-19, washing hands frequently, wearing facemasks, and preventing the spread of Coronavirus are also being posted. Disinfectant products are being provided including hand sanitizer for every building and classroom. Additional disinfectant spray bottles are available in each department for staff who opt to sanitize their own space. A focus has been placed on maximizing the usage of outdoor space, addressing optimal ventilation practices, and adjusting heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) units to maximize outside air intake. Every HVAC filter in the District is being replaced with the highest efficiency filter that the system allows to provide healthier indoor air free of dust, pollen, allergens and other contaminants. Our maintenance team is working to ensure the ventilation system will function at its maximum efficiency.

Safety Workgroup

Comprised of site administrators, parents, representation from our certificated and classified employees' unions, and District staff, this small team is being put into place immediately to review and monitor District progress on requirements for the Re-Opening of Santa Clara County K-12 schools. We are keenly focused on the health and safety of our employees and students, especially those who are at increased risk for COVID-19. This team will assist in evaluating our plans and adjusting as needed based on changing circumstances or new information from public health agencies.

Response to Confirmed or Suspected COVID-19 Cases


Immediate Actions


Scenario 1: A student or staff member either exhibits COVID-19 symptoms, answers "yes" to a health screening question, or has a temperature of 100.00 or above.
  • Student/staff sent home
  • Student/staff instructed to get tested
No action is needed
Scenario 2: A family member or someone in close contact with a student or staff member (outside the school community) tests positive for COVID-19
  • Student/staff sent home
  • Student/staff instructed to get tested
  • Student/staff instructed to quarantine, even if they test negative, for a full 14 days after (1) date of last exposure to COVID-19 positive non-household contact or (2) COVID-19 positive household member completes their isolation
  • If student/staff test positive, see Scenario 3 below
  • School administration notified
For the Involved Student Family or Staff Member:
Template Letter: Household Member or Close Contact With COVID-19 Case
Scenario 3: A student or staff member tests positive for COVID-19.
  • Student/staff sent home if not already quarantined
  • Student/staff instructed to isolate for 14 days after symptom onset OR 7 days after resolution of symptoms, whichever is longer. (If never symptomatic, isolate for 14 days after positive test.)
  • School-based close contacts identified and instructed to test & quarantine for 14 days
    • In stable elementary classroom cohorts: entire cohort
    • In other settings: use seating chart, consult with teacher/staff
  • School administration notified
  • Public Health Department notified

For Positive Case Student Family/Staff:
Template Letter: COVID- 19 Case

For Student Families and Staff Members Identified as Close Contacts:
Template Letter: Household Member or Close Contact With COVID-19 Case

For All Other Student Families and Staff Members:
Template Letter: COVID- 19 Case in Our Community