OKLAHOMA CITY (Sept. 1, 2020) – The Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH), in partnership with the Oklahoma State Department of Education (OSDE), has updated its ‘Return to Learn’ guidance supporting a safe return to in-person learning for Oklahoma schools. The updated document clarifies key terms and responsibilities related to COVID-19 response in schools.
With the health and safety of teachers, staff and students as the top priority, the recommended guidelines are designed to provide district and local health leaders a framework for decision making. “The Oklahoma Department of Health has been a tremendous partner with the Oklahoma State Department of Education and schools across the state as we move into a challenging new school year,” Oklahoma Superintendent of Public Instruction Joy Hofmeister said. “This guidance is a critical tool for schools.”
“I have been encouraged in my work with Superintendent Hofmeister and her team, as well as our State Regents and university partners. We all share one common goal: keeping our students, teachers and support teams safe,” said Health Commissioner Lance Frye, MD. “In-person instruction is critical to the growth and development of Oklahoma’s youth. Their safety and that of the teachers and staff supporting them, is our top priority.”
Key terms clarified in the update include isolation and quarantine, and the guidance delineates various stakeholder responsibilities related to COVID-19 response including required reporting of positive cases to local health departments, and case investigation in schools.
The full ‘Return to Learn’ school guidance is available at coronavirus.health.ok.gov in the “Resources and Recommendations” section.