COVID-19 Protocols and Resources

Published June 25, 2020. Updated May 17, 2022.

As vaccination and infection rates continue to fluctuate in Jefferson County, Oldham County, and surrounding areas, SFS is closely monitoring guidance issued by the CDC, our Governor, the Kentucky Department of Education, and the Louisville Metro Public Health and Wellness Department. Our priority in making decisions about protocols related to protection against transmission of COVID-19 is the safety of our students, and the SFS community as a whole.

Protocols outlined on this page are subject to change based on most current guidelines and mandates issued by the Governor and public health officials.

We ask all members of the St. Francis Community to consider vaccination. For more information about getting vaccinated, please click here.

COVID-19 Testing

Thanks to a new partnership with Bluewater, we are offering take-home oral rinse PCR tests. While these are not nasal swabs, they are still PCR tests and are just as efficacious as the nasal swab PCR tests. We are so excited to be able to offer an option that will save families the time and hassle that we know testing has caused over the last several weeks. Each student will receive one test kit on Tuesday, January 25, and more are available in the front office on each campus as needed. We are not requiring everyone to take a test; rather, we want families to have this test on hand in case someone develops symptoms or is exposed. Immediate family members may also take advantage of this testing; students or parents may pick up additional test kits on an as-needed basis. Instructions are on this flier. Any time a test is needed – either due to symptoms or to exposure – parents should simply:

  • Register the student or family member at this link (registration must be done every time a test is needed).

  • Collect the oral sample as per the directions in this video. (Note: no eating or drinking 30 minutes ahead of collection, including water.)

  • Bring the sample to either campus Monday – Friday (regardless of where the student/family is enrolled). The collection drop-off on the Goshen Campus is in the Front Lobby and on the Downtown Campus is at the Front Desk.

  • Print the name and date of birth of the person being tested on the clipboard by the drop-off area (the same information that you have already written on the oral sample tube). 

  • Samples deposited by 9:00 a.m. will be picked up by courier and taken to the Bluewater labs that day; samples deposited after 9:00 a.m. will be collected the following school day.

  • Results will be delivered via text message and email from Bluewater. 

Masking Protocols

Our masking protocols, effective Monday, March 14, 2022, are as follows:
  • Masks are optional for all students, faculty, and staff, regardless of vaccination status. 
  • Anyone wishing to remain masked may do so, based on each family’s comfort level. As in all things we do here at SFS, this policy will be embraced with our Core Values of Kindness and Belonging. Everyone should feel empowered to do what is best for their own family, and that decision will be supported by everyone in our community.  
  • We ask that each student continue to come to school with a mask each day, as we will be asking them to be worn in certain situations, such as large assemblies and performances in which we are closely packed together; in addition, there may be situations in certain classrooms or spaces that require masks. 
  • Please keep your children home and get them tested if they have symptoms. In addition, we ask that students consider masking temporarily at school if and when they are experiencing symptoms. As we move into hopeful new territory in regards to the pandemic, we will continue to monitor the data and expert recommendations and make adjustments accordingly. Thank you for your continued partnership in helping keep the School community safe and healthy.

Per Kentucky public health guidelines for students who are wearing masks, the definition of exposure is closer than three (3) feet for more than 15 minutes to someone who has tested positive, within 48 hours of the onset of that person’s symptoms or positive test. In non-school situations, exposure is defined by the CDC as being within six (6) feet for more than 15 minutes, without regard to masking. 

COVID-19 cases that have been reported to St. Francis School during the 2021–22 school year are listed below.

Students

# of Positive Cases # of Active Cases # of Recovered
153 3 150

Faculty/Staff

# of Positive Cases # of Active Cases # of Recovered
29 1 28

The guidance recently issued by the CDC on schools opening this fall recommends “layering” of multiple safety protocols as best practice to keep a community safe. As mentioned in our previous communication, and updated now, our layers include:

  • Continued use of the bi-polar ionization system installed last summer
  • Daily after-school cleaning/disinfecting
  • High rates of vaccination in the SFS community for those eligible
  • Anyone with case-determinant COVID-19 symptoms (listed in the blue box on our COVID-19 Decision Tree) must stay home and consult the decision tree and follow protocols based on your and/or your child(ren)’s vaccination status, particularly with regard to respiratory symptoms
  • Continued contact tracing when indicated
  • Continued monitoring of community spread and continued use of current CDC/KDE/Governor’s guidance in decision-making

One other note is that we will not be offering a concurrent remote learning option this year. Should the entire school be forced into a remote learning situation by an executive order, or should an entire grade level or class be required to quarantine due to exposure, we would make arrangements for that larger group of students to engage in remote learning. However, sick students or students with symptoms who need to miss school should simply take a sick day or be absent, as has always been the case in the past.

Please visit this page frequently for updates on changes and additions to our protocols to keep students, as well as faculty and staff, safe. Additionally, we will continue to share resources from experts that help inform and shape the guidance and recommendations for protection against exposure to the COVID-19 virus.

Lunch Protocols

As with all COVID-19 guidelines, these represent plans we have in place at this moment. We will continue to monitor current guidance issued by the CDC/Governor/Kentucky Department of Education, as well as the local status of COVID-19, and adjust protocols accordingly.

  • Students will maintain 3’ distance while waiting in the lunch line
  • Outdoor spaces near the lunchroom will be utilized for dining as much as possible
  • Students may unmask during the full lunch period if dining outdoors; if indoors, they will remain masked unless actively eating or drinking
  • Indoors, lunch tables will be spaced 3’ apart and students will maintain 3’ distance while seated at the lunch tables, sitting in every other seat at the tables
  • Students will not be allowed to serve themselves — fully vaccinated adults will be volunteering to serve lunch, and will be masked at all times (please note that all adult volunteers in the School, in any role, must be fully vaccinated)
  • Students will only sit with students in their same grade to reduce exposure
  • All indoor spaces in the School have bipolar ionizers attached to the HVAC system and have HEPA filters, which are changed frequently
  • The High School student body is over 90% fully vaccinated and faculty/staff are 100% vaccinated, which makes our community extremely safe.
  • Students will keep 3’ distance from one another when eating indoors. We will discuss this with them on the first day of school and frequently thereafter, and teachers will circulate during the lunch period to give distancing reminders as needed.
  • Students will be permitted to sign out or to eat at school.
  • If eating at school, students can eat in the Courtyard, the Space for Thought, the Commons Room, the Atrium Commons, or hallways. If indoors, students will wear masks until seated and will re-mask before getting up, so that they remain masked unless actively eating or drinking.
  • Regarding signing out, the School will not mandate whether students eat out or bring lunch back to eat — families should make that decision with their students. If parents do not feel they can trust students’ judgment, parents may restrict their students’ sign-out privileges and can email Laura Devlin and Trent Apple regarding this.
  • All indoor spaces in the School have bipolar ionizers attached to the HVAC system and have HEPA filters, which are changed frequently.
Decision Tree If Unvaccinated
Decision Tree If Vaccinated
RETURN-TO-SCHOOL FORM
BLUEWATER COVID-19 TESTING
BLUEWATER Interactive Flier

SFS Vaccination Statistics