DHS launches new and updated safety resources

The toolkit is intended to support school districts and school administrators.
The toolkit is intended to support school districts and school administrators.(WBTV File)
Published: Aug. 6, 2021 at 5:52 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WEAU) - The Department of Health Services is launching a K-12 School Testing Program communications toolkit to help keep students and teachers safe during the upcoming school year.

The toolkit is intended to support school districts and school administrators in their efforts to connect with school staff, families, and communities about COVID-19 testing opportunities available to them.

The DHS also released an updated version of the Guidelines for the Prevention, Investigation, and Control of COVID-19 Outbreaks in K-12 Schools in Wisconsin, a resource for school administrators, local health departments, and tribal health departments to use as they work to make decisions about how to prevent and control COVID-19 outbreaks.

The DHS Secretary-designee says the best tool against COVID-19 is vaccination.

“It is important to remember that the most effective tool in our toolbox is vaccination. Masking up inside and getting tested if you have COVID-19 symptoms are additional, important steps we can take to help protect ourselves, our families, our kids, and our teachers and school staff,” DHS Secretary-designee Karen Timberlake said.

According to the DHS, the testing program has the potential to cover almost 60 percent of Wisconsin students. A one-time consent form signed by a parent or guardian allows students to participate.

The updated guidance emphasizes the importance of safe, in-person instruction by layering prevention strategies such as promoting COVID-19 vaccination, universal mask-wearing regardless of vaccination status, screening testing, and others.

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