Daily Health Screening
A daily health screening will be required for all students attending in-person instruction. APS is using the Qualtrics platform to pre-screen staff and student health prior to arrivals at bus stops and at schools. Beginning in March, all parents/guardians will receive a daily online symptom screener guiding them through questions they must answer before their student arrives at the bus or attends school or school-based activities.
The daily screening and exposure questions will be sent daily to every parent/guardian, regardless of whether your student is in distance learning or in person. Parents/guardians will need to complete one daily health screening per student. The health screening tool is available in English, Amharic, Arabic, Mongolian and Spanish. Students who are unable to complete the symptom screener prior to arrival at a bus stop or school will be required to complete it before being allowed to start the day.
- Daily symptom screeners will be sent to the parent/legal guardian every morning at 5:30 AM, via email and text message. Symptom screening is available in five languages. Parents should ensure that their contact information is up to date in ParentVUE.
- Students will still receive a temperature check before boarding a bus or entering an APS building, after verifying they have completed their screener.
The screening involves FIVE STEPS:
- Open the screener invitation via email or text message.
- Complete eight brief yes or no health-related questions about fever, cough and other symptoms, as well as any reported close contacts, COVID testing or positive results.
- Sign off on the agreement, confirming commitment to follow APS health and safety procedures.
- Receive results screen with CLEARED (Green Check) or NOT CLEARED (Red X).
- If cleared, show clearance to the bus driver or school upon arrival.
- If excluded, you will receive detailed instructions via email for steps to take. Students who do not pass a health screening will be excluded from in-person participation and will need to be cleared by a physician and/or the Arlington County Public Health Division, as noted in their exclusion instructions, before returning.
Daily Symptom Screener Tutorial
Although it is expected that families will conduct pre-screening temperature checks at home, temperature checks will also be conducted by bus and school attendants. Students who pass the screening at the bus stop will not need to be screened again. If a student does not pass, the student will not be permitted to attend school. We ask that a family member or adult accompany students to the bus stop or school in case the students does not pass the temperature check. Each school will communicate specific procedures to families for arrivals and dismissal.
APS is requiring that all staff and students wear a face covering/mask that is properly fitted during the school day and while participating in school activities. APS will provide every student with two face coverings/masks that meet guidelines. Updated March 2: See the APS Mask Policy.
- Please note that while a student may receive a medical exemption from wearing a mask, we will be working with the student’s parents as part of a team to help these students try to wear a mask, incrementally.
- For students with IEPs and a medical exemption from wearing a mask, IEP teams will work with these students to wear a mask when possible as they return to in-person instruction or other alternate mitigation strategies.
Students who wish to wear their own mask and not the supplied APS mask will be required to meet the following guidelines:
- Fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
- Cover your entire nose and mouth, making sure there are no gaps
- Be secured with ties or ear loops
- Include at least 2 layers of fabric
- Allow for breathing without restriction
- Be able to be laundered and machine-dried without damage or change to shape.
The following are NOT approved for use within APS facilities, buses, or activities:
- Face coverings/masks that do not fit properly (large gaps, too loose or too tight)
- Masks that are wet or dirty
- Face coverings/masks made from materials that are hard to breathe through (such as plastic or leather)
- Face coverings/masks made from loosely woven fabric or that are knitted, i.e., fabrics that let light pass through
- Face coverings/masks with one layer
- Face coverings/masks with exhalation valves or vents
- Wearing a scarf or using ski masks as a mask
Practicing Mask Wearing and Hand Hygiene with Your Student
- Handwashing → Practice handwashing for 20 seconds. They can sing “happy birthday” or count “1 Mississippi, 2 Mississippi.”
- Masks → Have your child start wearing a mask for longer periods of time, gradually increasing the amount of time from now until the return to school.
- Have them practice putting on and removing mask all by themselves
- Teach children to take proper care of their mask (for example: not to put on the floor, then wear again)
- Schools have additional masks for students should they forget or one gets dirty, etc.
- We suggest you send an extra mask to keep in their backpack just in case.
Transportation Services will look very different in the hybrid model because of the pandemic. Due to CDC COVID-19 guidelines, APS general education buses will be able to carry a maximum of 11 students at a time when schools reopen or up to 5 for special education buses. Transportation Services has re-engineered routes and stops to serve students, with significantly reduced capacity per bus. Planning is based on data received as of February 5. Due to these changes and a limited number of drivers, we cannot accommodate any requests for bus stop, route, or schedule changes at this time. As a result of these changes, pick up times may be earlier than on the normal schedule. Buses may be late in dropping off or picking up students during the first couple weeks. We ask for your patience in advance as our drivers learn these new routes and adjust to the new schedule. For that reason, please arrive at least 10 minutes early to your stop and stay until at least 10 minutes after your scheduled pick up.