Hillsborough County Public Schools Families,
As COVID-19 continues to impact our community, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has provided clarification on how organizations define who is considered a close contact of a COVID-19 positive person. This clarification does not impact our COVID-19 Response Protocols, developed in collaboration with the Department of Health – Hillsborough (DOH-Hillsborough), but contains important safety updates designed to keep families safe.
Previously, the CDC described a close contact as someone who was within six feet of an infected person for 15 minutes or more.
The CDC now has further defined a close contact as someone who was within six feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period starting from two days before illness onset (or, for asymptomatic people, two days prior to test date) until the time the person is isolated.
Using our COVID-19 Response Protocols, we advise our schools to consider the following factors when investigating a close contact:
- Duration of exposure
Working with the medical experts at the DOH-Hillsborough, school district leaders have always emphasized caution in our decision making and examine each case strategically when determining who had contact with a positive case and in turn, who must quarantine.
Because of our already measured approach with contact tracing, we do not believe this clarification from CDC will result in more individuals from schools required to quarantine. We do understand, however, that medical experts are continually revising guidance and revising direction as they learn more about the transmission of COVID-19. These recommendations are expected to evolve as the virus remains a health concern across the nation.
We also want to remind families that if you suspect you or your child has COVID-19 please visit one of the many testing sites across Hillsborough County. A comprehensive listing of sites can be viewed, here https://www.
We will continue to work with DOH-Hillsborough on our contract tracing protocols. The health and safety of our students and staff remains a top priority and together, we will reduce the spread of this challenging virus.
Addison G. Davis
Superintendent of Schools
Hillsborough County Public Schools DOH-Hillsborough