COVID-19 Health and Safety Protocols
Volusia County Schools is committed to providing a safe and clean environment and asks families and employees to do their part to keep everyone healthy as the pandemic continues.
In consultation with the Department of Health and based on a recent permanent rule adopted by the DOH, the COVID-19 protocols for STUDENTS:
As for employees we are going to continue to follow CDC guidelines.
Thank you for your patience and understanding as this is an ever changing health crisis.
VCS is closely monitoring the course of the virus and will be updating this page regularly. Please use this page as a resource – and submit any additional questions you might have through Let’s Talk by clicking or tapping the yellow Let's Talk icon at the bottom of the page.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are masks required?
Face coverings (masks and face shields) are optional and voluntary for all students and adults in VCS schools and facilities.
What are our cleaning procedures in schools?
VCS schools follow the Association of Physical Plant Administrators (APPA) cleaning guidance for Level 2.
Classrooms, cafeterias, school buses, and school facilities are being cleaned daily, to include sanitizing of all desks, counters, and sinks, garbage pickup, and cleaning of floors. Every school has a lead custodian, and VCS has a system that allows teachers and principals to request extra cleaning if they spot an issue that needs immediate attention. Hand sanitizer, cleaning supply kits, and masks are available in every classroom, and buses are equipped with extra masks and hand sanitizer. Schools may request refills of supplies, and deliveries are made every day. Spray bottles of sanitizer are available to all teachers for additional sanitizing throughout the school day. All schools have a dispensing station for cleaning/sanitizing disinfectant in case it’s needed by teachers during the school day.
What protocols are used for cleaning classrooms once a positive COVID-19 case is confirmed?
If there is a case of COVID-19 the Principal notifies a coordinator who schedules a deep-cleaning after a 24-hour cool down period. When feasible, the classroom is vacated, and the deep cleaning is performed. This includes sanitizing all flat surfaces and touch points. Immediately following the sanitizing, the Principal is notified and the room is deemed safe to return.
If the 24-hour period is not possible due to space utilization, we recommend increasing the frequency of hand sanitizer, hand soap usage and use of disinfectant wipes of common flat surfaces, which can help mitigate the risk of airborne spread.
How are buses cleaned once a positive COVID-19 case is confirmed?
VCS is disinfecting after AM and PM runs whenever possible using the same disinfectant used in the classrooms. If a positive case is confirmed, the bus is removed from service for 24 hours and then completely disinfected before returning into service.
Is e-misting more effective than deep cleaning?
E-misting and deep cleaning use the same disinfectant, but e-misting is sprayed in a fine mist, and deep cleaning is manually from spray bottles. E-misting is generally used for larger spaces.
How often are schools inspected?
VCS schools are inspected for cleanliness at least once a quarter and additionally as requested by School or District Administration.
What CDC recommended mitigation strategies are employed in schools?
In addition to masks, vaccinations (for eligible persons), physical distancing, and handwashing, the CDC recommends a robust HVAC system for continued fresh air. VCS classrooms and office spaces experience 8-9 fresh air exchanges per hour under normal operating conditions (students present in class).
What types of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) are available to our schools and how do they receive them?
All school and district sites have access to a warehouse reservation system to place orders for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). Warehouse Services fill these orders within 24 hours of receipt. The warehouse stocks hand sanitizer, disinfectant spray, ant-bacterial wipes, gloves of various sizes, paper towels, desk shields, isolation gowns, face shields, and both washable and disposable masks (child-size and adult size).
All classrooms and buses have hand sanitizer dispensers for which refills are also available to schools through the warehouse reservation system.
How can families help keep their children and classmates safe?
The most important thing is to keep your student home if they are sick or experiencing any symptoms of illness. (See our protocols below for more information.) Day-to-day, please encourage your child to wash their hands frequently during the school day and to social distance from fellow students and teachers as much as possible. It is recommended that student use water bottles whenever practical. Water fountains and bottle filling stations, where available, are in use this year.
What are the protocols for students who have COVID-19 or who have been exposed to COVID-19?
Please see our Student COVID Flowchart.
What are the protocols for VCS employees who have COVID-19 or who have been exposed to COVID?
If an employee tests positive for COVID-19, they should contact their supervisor immediately to conduct an intake interview. The health department will determine a return date for the employee based on information gathered during the intake interview and the health department’s most current guidelines.
Are students and employees required to be vaccinated?
Vaccinations are not required by VCS, and each individual/family will make its own decision. For those who would like to get vaccinated, COVID-19 vaccine opportunities are posted on our Vaccine Opportunities page.
At what point will a student who is displaying symptoms be sent to the clinic?
Upon the teacher or staff being aware of the student’s symptoms. School nurses are trained on proper protocols.
Are field trips allowed this school year?
Field trips are allowed this year, with safety precautions in place. Please note, students and staff are required to follow COVID-19 policies in place at the field trip locations, either in state or out of state. Parents or guardians can opt their child out of a field trip due to COVID-19 concerns. Parents should discuss this with the teacher and/or principal at the school.
Are volunteers allowed in schools this year?
Approved volunteers are now able to assist at schools. Information and the application are available online.
How do students access their school assignments if they are quarantined?
Students can access their school work or make-up work through Canvas and/or Microsoft Teams*. The Parent and Student Technical Guide includes Quarantine Digital Learning Guides and other information about digital resources. The VCS Support Hotline is available 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday at 386-626-0095.
*Under extenuating circumstances, students may receive an alternate means to complete work while quarantined.
How can parents access the Parent Portal?
The Parent Portal can be accessed at: Parent Portal.
Where are the Parent Guide and School Calendar located?
The 2021-2022 Parent Guide and School Calendar is available online.