Although coronavirus is a very common virus and in its simplest form can cause the common cold, other strains of this virus (MERS-CoV, SARS-CoV, as well as the 2019 novel coronavirus) have been known to cause severe respiratory symptoms in some people.
See Bear Creek's Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information page for more resources and school communication about the outbreak.
Signs and Symptoms
Symptoms may appear in as few as 2 days or as long as 14 days after exposure and typically include:
- Difficulty breathing
- Chills with or without shaking
- Muscle pain
- Sore throat
- New loss of taste or smell
- Congestion or runny nose (not related to allergies)
- Nausea or vomiting
Know How It Spreads
The virus is thought to spread mainly from person to person.
- Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
- Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or talks. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
- Some recent studies have suggested that COVID-19 may be spread by people who are not showing symptoms.
There is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19. It seems to be spreading easily and sustainably in the community (“community spread”) in many affected geographic areas. Community spread means people have been infected with the virus in an area, including some who are not sure how or where they became infected. The best way to prevent infection is to avoid being exposed to this virus.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
- If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick, even inside your home. If possible, maintain 6 feet between the person who is sick and other household members.
- Put distance between yourself and other people outside of your home.
- Remember that some people without symptoms may be able to spread virus.
- Stay at least 6 feet (about 2 arms’ length) from other people.
- Keeping distance from others is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.
- Everyone should wear a cloth face cover when they have to go out in public, for example to the grocery store or to pick up other necessities.
- Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.
- The cloth face cover is meant to protect other people in case you are infected.
- Do not use a face mask meant for a healthcare worker.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.
- Monitor your health and be alert for symptoms. Watch for fever, cough, shortness of breath, or other symptoms of COVID-19.
- Follow CDC guidance if symptoms develop and seek medical care right away. Seattle and King County is now recommending that anyone who has COVID-19 symptoms or close contact with someone who has COVID-19 be tested right away. Testing as soon as possible after symptoms appear is important to prevent COVID-19 from spreading to family, friends, and the community. Learn more about COVID-19 testing in King County.
Returning to School
We are currently developing COVID-19 return to school guidelines in accordance with recommendations from the CDC and the King County Public Health Department. These guidelines will be communicated to The Bear Creek School community as soon as they are available.
Health Information Sharing Guidelines
As with any health situation, our primary responsibility is protecting the health and safety of our students, faculty, and staff while safeguarding the privacy and confidentiality of individual health information. The Bear Creek School does not release personal or identifying information about an individual with a health concern.
If there is a confirmed case COVID-19 in our immediate school community, defined as student, parent, faculty, or staff member, we will notify The Bear Creek School community and follow the guidelines and protocols provided by the King County Public Health Department (KCPH).
If you have any questions, please contact Lea Hysom, school nurse, at email@example.com or 425-898-1720 ext. 399.