The Utah Department of Health is sharing the attached weekly COVID-19 report detailing caseload growth and vaccination rates among Utah’s school-aged children and COVID-19 related hospital and ICU capacity.
The Utah Department of Health recommends a layered prevention approach consistent with the Utah COVID-19 Disease Plan and CDC school guidelines to minimize the impact of COVID-19 exposures and outbreaks in school settings and maximize opportunities for children to participate in in-school learning and extracurricular activities.
COVID-19 can severely disrupt learning, school attendance, and involvement in extracurricular activities. Children can and do get COVID-19 and are at risk for severe illness from the virus. Even with mild illness, children can spread the virus to other people. This is why using layered prevention strategies in schools are so important.
Local health departments and local education agencies (LEAs) are reviewing the following recommendations to create layered prevention strategies so children can return safely to full-time, in-person school. Local health departments and LEAs will work together, using local data, to identify which recommended quarantine and protective measures to use to protect the health of K-12 students and school staff in their area. School administrators will watch the data on what is happening in their local areas as they work to keep children in schools as safely as possible.
Parents and school staff who have questions about how COVID-19 will be handled in their school or at extracurricular activities should contact their local health department or school for more information.
The UDOH strongly recommends the following layered prevention strategies in K-12 schools:
- Encouraging everyone 12 years and older to get vaccinated for COVID-19
- Wearing a mask when indoors
- Isolating at home if you test positive for COVID-19
- Quarantine and other protective measures after a school exposure
- Testing for COVID-19
- Test to Stay
- Staying home when you’re sick
- Physical distancing and cohorting
- Improving or increasing indoor ventilation
- Hygiene practices
- Cleaning and disinfection
This report provides a high-level overview of where we are as a state in these key areas. We will continue to update this report and distribute it to you weekly for the foreseeable future. We also encourage you to visit coronavirus.utah.gov/case-counts/ where you can find a searchable database for information on individual schools throughout the state as well as additional information on caseloads, vaccinations, testing, hospitalizations, and more.