The Omicron variant of COVID-19 is pervasive throughout Polk County and has been spreading rapidly in our community. Exposure in any large group setting is very likely. Given the speed of transmission for the Omicron variant, contact tracing for individual cases will not be possible at this time. Families will continue to receive an automated schoolwide telephone call and email when there is a positive case in your child’s school. However, based on state guidance and collaboration with the Florida Department of Health in Polk County, PCPS will be moving from contact tracing for individual cases to identifying clusters of cases in the same class or school. If a cluster is identified in your child’s school, you will receive an additional automated notification to make you aware of this situation. Please monitor your child daily for any cold or flu-like symptoms. Symptoms to watch for include: • Runny nose • Congestion • Fatigue • Sore throat • Fever or chills • Muscle or body aches • Diarrhea • Nausea or vomiting • Cough • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing Cold and flu viruses are also present at this time of year. It is very difficult to distinguish between cold and flu or COVID-19 without testing. Please contact your child’s medical provider for guidance and recommendations. If your child has symptoms, they must stay home, and you are encouraged to seek testing. Information on testing and related topics is available at this page. We encourage all families to continue to practice good COVID-19 mitigation measures, including wearing face coverings, social distancing and frequent handwashing. Face coverings remain optional for all students. Remember that all individuals age 5 and older may be eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine.
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