RSU #34 COVID Hotline:  To report a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19 in the RSU #34 community, call 207-827-7171 and choose menu option Zero. 

Please be sure to do the home screening each and every day!  https://www.maine.gov/doe/covid-19/toolkit/prescreen

RSU #34 is not a community testing site for COVID-19. DO NOT get on the bus or come to school if you have symptoms. DO contact the school by phone or email for guidance.

RSU #34 and its schools are actively responding to our global challenge, in partnership with and in coordination with other state and local entities.  For the latest information about actions to keep safe and SLOW THE SPREAD, please visit the CDC:  https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html

Helplines:

*Maine Statewide Crisis Hotline 1-888-568-1112 and the Crisis Text Line (everywhere) is - text HELP or HELLO to 741741
*NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) Maine helpline 1-800-464-5767 or 
www.namimaine.org
*Partners for Peace (for people experiencing domestic violence) 800-863-9909 and 
www.thehotline.org*National Suicide Prevention Hotline 800-273-8255 or text HELLO to 741741
*SAMHSA National Helpline for substance use: 1-800-662-4357
*
www.aa.org you can get contact info for AA near you
*
www.na.org Narcotics Anonymous
*Bangor Area Recovery Network (BARN) 
https://www.bangorrecovery.org/*New Horizons Detox Center 207-941-1612
*Trans Lifeline 866-488-7386 or 
https://www.thetrevorproject.org/get-help-now/ or text START to 678678

COVID19

RSU #34 Educators are working hard to meet students' physical, academic, social, and emotional needs.  We're taking a layered approach of precautions to help us avoid exposures/infections, and to minimize quarantines. Please help us keep our students in school, learning five days a week!

Thank you very much for your support and patience as our community navigates the pandemic together.  Please do not hesitate to reach out to school or district staff at any time. 

1/14/2022:
RSU #34 has released new protocols, which will take effect on January 18th, 2022. Please read them in full here: https://5il.co/14byt

Summary of Key Points 20220114

Information, Approach

Most of the State of Maine guidance can be found here: https://www.maine.gov/doe/covid-19/toolkit
Maine's Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) is a key document at that site, which outlines requirements for schools.

Addendum:

RSU #34 uses the dates from COVID-19 tests as the starting date when determining isolation. We prefer lab-based tests (PCR or antigen), but will accept home-based tests when we are provided a clear, named, and dated picture. Home-based tests do not count in some ways as official with some of the state processes, so please understand without lab-based tests there may be some bumps in the road.
You can receive a lab-based test at one of the sites listed here: https://www.maine.gov/covid19/testing

Vaccination makes contracting COVID much less likely, with typically more mild symptoms, and makes the chance of severe illness or hospitalization extremely rare. It is still possible for vaccinated individuals to contract COVID and transmit COVID to others. RSU #34 strongly recommends that all eligible members of our community become fully vaccinated, and receive the booster dose when elibigle. With questions about vaccination, we encourage talking with your school nurse or primary care provider.

Beyond the requirements of Maine's SOP:
*RSU #34 strongly recommends that even fully vaccinated students who have unusually long exposure to a positive person quarantine until 10 days after the positive person's positive test. An example of this would be a fully vaccinated student who has a household member that tests positive for COVID-19. Staff members, please contact your school nurse for guidance.

Requirements for vaccinated individuals who develop symptoms or test positive for COVID are described in the SOP; please stay home from school and contact the school for guidance.

Other details can be found on the RSU #34 Fall 2021 Plan for Safe Return to In-Person Instruction and Continuity of Services: https://5il.co/zh9t

Pooled Testing

RSU #34 conducts optional pooled testing, which will help detect cases of COVID-19 early, and will help many students avoid quarantines. If you'd like to sign your child up to participate in pooled testing, please contact your school office for more information.

We piloted pooled testing with five classrooms the week of Sept. 13th; it could not have gone more smoothly! We are now up to full capacity in all schools.

How Positive/Likely Cases Are Handled

20210915 contact tracing illustration

Positive Case Notices

Dear RSU #34 Families and Staff,

This notice is to inform you that RSU #34 has identified positive and/or likely positive cases of COVID-19 in its schools. All close contacts have been notified and advised of next steps such as quarantine, symptom checking, and testing.

As always, please remember to conduct daily screening, and use our COVID hotline when you learn of a positive or likely case of COVID-19 in our school community. Call a health care provider if symptoms start. Stay home if you are sick or are experiencing any listed symptoms. We thank you for your efforts to keep our schools safe and open!

COVID-19 is a respiratory illness that ranges from mild to severe. It can be more severe in adults 60 years and older and in those with underlying conditions. The virus mainly spreads when an infected person coughs or sneezes and an uninfected person breathes in the virus. Signs and symptoms include:

*fever or chills

*cough

*shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

*fatigue

*muscle or body aches

*headache

*new loss of taste or smell

*sore throat

*congestion or runny nose

*nausea or vomiting

*diarrhea

*confusion

*pressure or pain in the chest

*blue/gray-tinged skin/lips/nail beds

*inability to wake or stay awake

Please keep in mind that many things can cause respiratory illness, so students and staff should be up-to-date on influenza and routine vaccinations. A school representative will contact you directly if you are identified as a close contact of someone who tested positive. Close contacts who are unvaccinated and not a pooled testing participant will be asked to quarantine from school for 10-full-days from last exposure to the positive individual. All unvaccinated close contacts will be asked to quarantine from non-school activities as well. A negative test result does not get an individual out of quarantine.

Maine CDC recommends prevention measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19. These measures include proper handwashing with soap and warm water, which is especially important after using the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. When soap and water is not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands and avoid close contact with people who are sick. Stay home while you are sick and avoid close contact with others. Wear a cloth face covering in public indoor spaces, especially if you are not vaccinated. Cloth face coverings are recommended in schools and childcare settings for people over 5 years of age. Get a COVID-19 vaccine when it is available to you. When in public, avoid social distances of less than 6 feet and direct physical contact.

Questions for the school can be directed to:

Alton Elementary School: Nurse Hannah Cloutier (Hannah.Cloutier@rsu34.org or 394-2331)

Viola Rand School: Nurse Hannah Cloutier (Hannah.Cloutier@rsu34.org or 827-2508)

Old Town Elementary School: Nurse CeCe Costello (CeCe.Costello@rsu34.org or 827-1544)

Leonard Middle School: Nurse Vanessa Koch (Vanessa.Koch@rsu34.org or 827-3900)

Old Town High School: Nurse Jana Caron (Jana.Caron@rsu34.org or 827-3910)

RSU #34 COVID Hotline: 827-7171 Option Zero

For general COVID-19 questions, dial 211 (or 1-866-811-5695). You can also text your ZIP code to 898-211 or email info@211maine.org. Call a health care provider for questions about your symptoms. More information can be found at www.maine.gov/dhhs/coronavirus or www.cdc.gov/coronavirus.

Case Counts

Case counts at schools across Maine can be found here: https://www.maine.gov/doe/covid-19/30daycases

Livestreaming or Recording Classes

RSU #34 Educators will be working hard throughout the year to meet the needs of all students, who are participating remotely while in quarantine or in-person. In order to meet those needs, teachers MAY be “livestreaming” or recording parts of the school day to effectively and efficiently engage students who are present, participating remotely, and absent for the day.

There are many factors involved with choices to livestream or record live instruction, including the topic/content at hand, the appropriate instructional method for that content, and the needs/permissions of the students.

Even if a camera is focused on the teacher, live-streaming offers no protection against a blurted name. Any school district has a number of students with active custody disputes, protection from abuse orders, etc. Many students have some level of anxiety about being on screen; live-streaming a class may open up participation for some and close it for others.

If you have concerns about your child being in a room that is livestreamed or recorded, please contact your school administration in writing before the school year begins.