Written By: Ishton W. Morton – August 5th, 2020
Effective Tuesday, September 8th, 2020; on Thursday, August 3rd, 2020 Ohio Governor Mike DeWine issued a new order mandating all state’s schools to establish communication(s) with coronavirus reporting between both parents and school’s district.
Equally, consisting of three parts it lays out what is required of both schools and parents when a child tests positive for COVID-19.
Subsequently, this new order states that parents or guardians are required to notify their child’s school within 24 hours of receiving a positive test or a clinical diagnosis.
Additionally, within 24 hours of receiving such notification of that student’s diagnosis, the school shall notify the rest of the student body and provide parents with as much information as possible without releasing protected health information per the order states.
Also, the order mandates a component for government reporting. Accordingly, starting on Tuesday, September 15th, 2020 local health departments will commence reporting the number of newly reported and cumulative cases to the Ohio Department of Health every Tuesday.
Moreover, the Ohio Department of Health will then publish this data every Thursday, with data listed by school and school district, listing a breakdown of positive cases in students and staff.
Furthermore, under this new order, school districts are required to identify a COVID-19 coordinator to facilitate the reporting of case information and upon request, schools or buildings are required to provide the local health department a copy of their pandemic plan.
DeWine continue to say; “We understand there is a balance between privacy and transparency. He added, “Again, we do not intend for protected health information to be released in our effort to provide information to Ohioans so they can make the right decisions for their family.”
DeWine believes, to most schools and districts, this is nothing new. Many have already been operating under this practice since day one.
Governor DeWine was very adamant. He said, “As I have said before, just because a school may have positive cases among its students or staff, that does not mean the school did anything wrong. Schools can’t control what happens out in the community where someone may have contracted the virus.”