The Issaquah School District (ISD) announced that a staff member at Sunny Hills Elementary School tested positive for COVID-19 on March 17.
In a letter to the community on March 19, Sunny Hills principal Tim Baynes wrote that given the definition of close contact given by the Washington State Department of Health, “we do not believe this person came into close contact with any student.”
The state Department of Health, close contact is defined by “living in the same household as a sick person with COVID-19, caring for a sick person with COVID-19, being within 6 feet of a sick person with COVID-19 for about 10 minutes, or being in direct contact with secretions from a sick person with COVID-19 (e.g., being coughed on, kissing, sharing utensils, etc.).”
According to L. Michelle, the ISD executive director of communications, the staff member reported symptoms on March 12 and went into self quarantine.
In an email, Michelle stated that Sunny Hills Elementary had been “deep cleaned and disinfected per the guidelines provided by the Centers for Disease Control.”
In the letter, Baynes said Public Health Seattle & King County “has let school districts know we can no longer expect notifications about individual case investigations, and their response is focusing on community education and support.”
Baynes wrote that the community needs to take care of one another and to follow Public Health’s recommendations for staying safe.
“I know that this news has been unsettling. As we navigate through these challenging times, I also know that our community is made great by the way we support one another,” Baynes wrote.
As a result of the staff member testing positive, ISD will not be serving free meals to children from Sunny Hills Elementary. Families can pick up two meals per child for free between 9 a.m. and noon, Monday-Friday. Pickup locations include Briarwood Elementary, Newcastle Elementary, Issaquah Middle School, Issaquah Valley Elementary, Grand Ridge Elementary and Endeavour Elementary. For more information on the meals and other services offered to children and families, go online to the Issaquah School District website (https://www.issaquah.wednet.edu/family/supports/food-and-clothing).