Northampton Superintendent Issues Holiday Travel Recommendations

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By Stefanie Jackson – Accomack and Northampton County Public Schools both will observe a two-week winter break this year, from Dec. 19 to Jan. 3, 2021.

Northampton parents received a letter earlier this month from Superintendent Eddie Lawrence sharing guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Virginia Department of Health on staying safe during the holiday season and limiting the spread of COVID-19.

The CDC states that travel increases the risk of contracting and spreading COVID-19, and all who travel outside the U.S. must quarantine for 14 days upon their return.

Any student who travels outside the U.S. during the winter break must observe the 14-day quarantine period and test negative for COVID-19 before returning to school in person. Students can receive virtual learning support during the quarantine period.

The following actions are recommended to anyone traveling during winter break:

  • Check for travel restrictions along your route and at your destination. There may be quarantine requirements or stay-at-home orders at the destination, or state borders may be closed.
  • Before leaving, notify the school nurse if your family is traveling to a country or state that is non-exempt from quarantine and testing requirements.
  • Get a flu shot before the trip, preferably 14 days before leaving.
  • Get tested for COVID-19 one to three days before leaving and three to five days after returning home.
  • Family members who travel out of state should be tested for COVID-19 within 72 hours of returning to Virginia.
  • Notify the school nurse if anyone in the family tests positive for COVID-19.
  • Monitor children for signs of illness and keep them home if they are sick.

During travel, be sure to:

  • Wear a face mask.
  • Stay at least six feet away from others.
  • Wash hands and use sanitizer often.

Students or staff who travel out of state during the holiday may not return to school before submitting COVID-19 test results to the school nurse.

For more information, visit https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/travel-during-covid19.html