MSDH provides COVID-19 guidance for K-12 2021-22 school year

Published: Jul. 16, 2021 at 3:54 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 16, 2021 at 4:51 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - The Mississippi Department of Health provided COVID-19 guidance for the K-12 2021-22 school year.

According to Dr. Thomas Dobbs, the Delta variant is twice as contagious as COVID-19.

With Mississippi having the lowest vaccination rate in the country, health officials worry that outbreaks are inevitable — especially in the classroom.

Because of the rapid cases in the state, MSDH urges Mississippians to get vaccinated.

Here is MSDH guidance for the school year:

  • All eligible students, teachers, and staff 12 years of age and older should receive COVID-19 vaccination.
  • Masks should be worn indoors in school settings by all individuals (age 2 and older) who are not fully vaccinated.
  • Schools should maintain at least three feet of physical distance between students within classrooms, combined with indoor mask wearing by people who are not fully vaccinated, to reduce transmission risk.
  • Routine screening testing of asymptomatic unvaccinated students, teachers and staff is recommended as an additional measure to prevent further transmission.
  • Schools should continue to isolate COVID-19 infected students, teachers, and staff and continue contact tracing to identify exposed individuals for quarantine and exclusion from the school setting.
  • All students, teachers and staff who have symptoms of any infectious illness, regardless of vaccination status, should stay home from school and be evaluated by their healthcare provider.
  • As a reminder, fully vaccinated students, teachers and staff:
  • Do not have to wear a mask when indoors;
  • Do not have to quarantine or be excluded from the school setting if they have COVID-19 exposure; and
  • Do not have to be tested unless symptomatic.

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