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PCPS releases letter following changes to letters and guidance for schools


Letter to PCPS Families


Dear PCPS family,


COVID-19 cases continue to rise across Oklahoma. There is nothing more important to our school district than the safety and health of our students, our staff and their families. PCPS is working directly with county health officials to address this issue.


PCPS has received updated guidance from the Oklahoma State Department of Education and the Kay County Health Department that language changes have been made to their letters and guidance for schools around isolation and quarantines. Schools are EXPECTED to follow these policies. These guidelines have been signed by Commissioner of Health Lance Fry, who is appointed by Gov. Kevin Stitt.


Specifically, in their FAQs and guidance it states: “Keeping students at home when they are infected with COVID-19 (isolation) or have been exposed as a close contact (quarantine) is critical to controlling the transmission of COVID-19, especially since infected individuals are known to transmit the virus to others before they experience symptoms or when they are only experiencing mild symptoms. Schools and parents have a duty under state law (63 O.S. § 1-505) to keep students home when they are in isolation or quarantine. These students should remain away from school facilities and activities until their period of isolation or quarantine has ended.”


Quarantining is essential to preventing the spread of this virus within our schools and will help us continue to keep school open. Health officials have stated quarantines are necessary, not just recommended.


Exceptions to this requirement include:
• Individuals who are fully vaccinated from COVID-19, having completed their series of shots at least 14 days before their first exposure.
• Individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19 in the last 90 days and recovered.
• If masks are worn by the positive case and the contact, the contact can attend class (continue wearing a mask) but should quarantine from any other activities such as athletics.


Below, you will find quarantine timelines approved by the Oklahoma State Department of Health. Please use the quarantine timeline that is best and most fitting for your family.
• Quarantine for 10 days and then return to school on day 11, but only if you continue to monitor your child for symptoms.
• Quarantine for seven days and take a COVID test on or after day 5. If the test is negative, your child may return to school on day 8 but only if you continue to monitor your child for symptoms. Students will need to wear a mask. Bring “negative test” documentation to school.


As a reminder, masks/face coverings are strongly encouraged in our buildings where social distancing of at least three feet is not feasible. We encourage you to monitor the health conditions of your child daily.


Shelley Arrott,

Ponca City Superintendent