2021-2022 COVID Updates


Oct. 25 – Oct. 29: Mask Mandate for Students/Staff and School Visitors.
Upon return from fall break, BCHS will implement a one-week mask requirement for all students, staff and visitors, regardless of vaccination status, while in the Bishop Chatard school building. This is a precautionary measure to ward off potential spikes after Fall Break. Thank you.

COVID SYMPTOMS

  • Temperature 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or higher
  • Sore throat
  • New uncontrolled cough that causes difficulty breathing (for students with chronic allergic/ asthmatic cough, a change in their cough from baseline)
  • Diarrhea, nausea or vomiting, abdominal pain
  • Onset of severe headache, especially with a fever
  • Loss of taste or smell
  • Consult the CDC website for the latest symptom info.
Students and employees who are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 without being otherwise explained are prohibited from coming to school. Students and employees will be expected and asked to stay home if they exhibit any COVID-19 symptoms.

Email BCHS at medical@bishopchatard.org for any COVID-related communications. If a student or a member of the student’s household is confirmed positive for COVID-19, we ask you immediately email the school at this address. Thank you.

Please read below for details on what to include in your email, based on your situation:
Please include the following in your email to medical@bishopchatard.org:

  1. Name of student
  2. Parent/guardian name and contact phone number
  3. Describe the symptoms they are experiencing

Symptom List

  • Temperature 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or higher
  • Sore throat
  • New uncontrolled cough that causes difficulty breathing (for students with chronic allergic/ asthmatic cough, a change in their cough from baseline)
  • Diarrhea, nausea or vomiting, abdominal pain
  • Onset of severe headache, especially with a fever
  • Loss of taste or smell

*Please keep your child at home and guide them to stay current with classes via online learning.

Close contact is defined as being within 6 feet of someone who has COVID-19 for a total of 15 minutes or more. This could be a single encounter of more than 15 minutes or multiple encounters within a single day that add up to more than 15 minutes.

To report that your student has had close contact /exposure to COVID-19, include the following in your email to medical@bishopchatard.org.

  1. Student’s name and grade level
  2. Parent/guardian name and contact phone number
  3. When was your child exposed to the positive person?
  4. Is your child currently exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19? If so, please describe the symptoms and the date of onset.
  5. List any current school-related activities your child is involved in (sport, club, play, choir, etc.)

Symptom List

  • Temperature 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or higher
  • Sore throat
  • New uncontrolled cough that causes difficulty breathing (for students with chronic allergic/ asthmatic cough, a change in their cough from baseline)
  • Diarrhea, nausea or vomiting, abdominal pain
  • Onset of severe headache, especially with a fever
  • Loss of taste or smell

*Please keep your child at home and guide them to stay current with classes via online learning.

If your child or any member of your household has a pending COVID-19 test, please email medical@bishopchatard.org with the following information.

  1. Student’s name and grade level
  2. Parent/guardian name and contact phone number
  3. Who was the person(s) of close contact? What is the relationship of this person to your child? (ie. immediate family, friend from another school, another BC student)
  4. Date, time and location of exposure
  5. Was the person of close contact symptomatic and/or do they have a known positive COVID-19 test?
  6. Is your child currently exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19? If so, please describe the symptoms.
  7. Does your child have a pending COVID-19 test?
  8. List any current school-related activities your child is involved in (sport, club, play, choir, etc.)

Please keep your child at home until contacted by our nursing staff. You will be contacted within 24 hours to discuss protocol.

If reporting your child or family member as having tested positive for COVID-19, include the following information in your email to medical@bishopchatard.org:

  1. Student’s name and grade level
  2. Any BCHS siblings of the student testing positive
  3. Parent/guardian name and contact phone number
  4. Establish the date of onset of symptoms and include a description of symptoms your child is currently experiencing
  5. Share details of your child’s whereabouts 48 hours prior to the onset of symptoms (sporting event, practice, school, etc.)
  6. List any BC students or adults that your child could have potentially exposed. Who were they within 6 feet of for more than 15 minutes?
  7. List any current school-related activities your child is involved in (sport, club, play, choir, etc.)
  8. Is anyone else in the household experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or have a pending COVID-19 test?
  9. A copy of the COVID-19 test results to medical@bishopchatard.org

If your child or any member of your household has tested positive for COVID-19, please keep your child and any BC siblings at home until contacted by our nursing staff. You will be contacted within 24 hours to discuss protocol.

PLEASE NOTE: The medical@bishopchatard.org email address should ONLY be used for the situations above. Standard school procedures should be used to report absences for other reasons or to ask health-related questions. If an absence qualifies to be reported through the medical@bishopchatard.org email, it doesn’t need to be reported through our standard school procedure. (View standard school procedure.)

‘Close Contact’: Close contact is defined as being within 6 feet of someone who has COVID-19 for a total of 15 minutes or more. This could be a single encounter of more than 15 minutes or multiple encounters within a single day that add up to more than 15 minutes.

Quarantine is to KEEP someone who was in close contact with someone who has COVID-19 AWAY FROM OTHERS.

Isolation is to KEEP someone who IS SICK OR HAS TESTED POSITIVE FOR COVID-19 (even without symptoms) AWAY FROM OTHERS. (EVEN IN THEIR OWN HOMES).


COVID-19 plans and information will be updated as the Marion County Public Health Department guidance and recommendations change.

School Plan

Bishop Chatard will open the school year with full, in-person instruction beginning on August 5.

There is no opt-out for full-time, virtual instruction as we believe it is important for our entire school to return to the normalcy of full, in-person instruction.

Students may begin arriving at the school at 7:00 a.m. In order to remain socially distanced, students may not linger or cluster in the hallway. Dismissal will no longer be staggered.

Absences
If a student stays home for any reason, it is the responsibility of the students during their absence to request from their teachers any missed assignments and/or notes from each class and to check Canvas. A synchronous Google Meet option is no longer available to students who are absent from school including those who are symptomatic, close contact quarantined, or have tested positive.

It is recommended that assignments and homework be obtained first through Canvas and/or from a classmate and then communication with their teachers. If the absence is for a period of three days or more, students and/or parents should contact teachers and continue to check assignments on Canvas. The general rule is that a student has one day for each day missed to submit completed assignments. However, to ensure fairness to all students, teachers may require the submission of assignments on the published due date. Students absent on the due date may be instructed to make arrangements to have the assigned work delivered to the teacher.

For 2021-2022, absent students will have the opportunity to connect with teachers via Google Meet during our daily Seminar period to talk about assignments and assessments.

For the 2021-22 school year, masks for students and staff will be optional.

Masks are strongly recommended for:

  1. Unvaccinated students and staff
  2. Vulnerable individuals who may be at increased risk of illness
  3. Anyone who feels more comfortable wearing a mask.

ALL VISITORS: Masks are recommended for all visitors–parents/guardians, community partners, volunteers–regardless of vaccination status while indoors. Visitors and volunteers are not permitted to eat with students during breakfast and lunch. (updated Aug. 20).

When using any school-sponsored vehicle for transportation, masks are required for students, bus drivers, and staff. Masking on public transportation is a federal mandate. It is recommended that bus drivers open windows to improve ventilation when winter allows.

This policy could be modified based on updated guidance from the Marion County Public Health Department (MCPHD).
(Updated August 10)

Students will be seated three feet apart in the classroom and facing forward. In order to contact trace any possible positive cases of COVID-19, seating charts and assigned seats will be mandatory in all classrooms, cafeterias and on buses traveling to extracurricular events.

Mass will be held with 3 classes of students attending each week. Within a few weeks, we hope to be able to have the non-attending class gather in the auxiliary gym and watch mass on a live feed and receive communion there. Until then, the non-attending class will remain in their seminar classroom.

The daily self-screen will be required of students and staff. Students and staff who are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 without being otherwise explained, are prohibited from coming to school.

  • Field trips and outside speakers are permitted, but must be approved by the school principal.
  • Retreats: Campus ministry provides a structured retreat program designed to enable students at every grade level to reflect on God’s presence in their everyday lives. Our retreat program will resume in its regular capacity with freshmen attending a day of reflection during the school day, sophomores attending a one-day retreat experience off campus, juniors attending an overnight retreat, and seniors attending the Christian Awakening Retreat.
  • Mass will be held with 3 classes of students attending each week. The non-attending class will remain in their seminar classroom.
All visitors and volunteers should enter through Door 1. Masks are recommended for all
visitors–parents/guardians, community partners, volunteers–regardless of vaccination status
while indoors. Visitors and volunteers are not permitted to eat with students during breakfast
and lunch.
–Updated Aug. 20

This policy could be modified based on updated guidance from the Marion County Public Health Department (MCPHD).

COVID Concerns

The Holy See and U.S. Bishops have determined that vaccination is morally acceptable and responsible. The CDC and the Office of Catholic Schools (OCS) recommends that all eligible parties be encouraged to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.

Bishop Chatard will not require vaccinations of students and staff. We believe that getting vaccinated is a personal family decision.
NOTE: Vaccinated students and staff members will not have to quarantine due to close contact exposure.

If a student or a member of the student’s household is confirmed positive for COVID-19, we ask that the family inform the school by immediately emailing medical@bishopchatard.org

-Updated Aug. 20
Current COVID-19 guidelines define a close contact exposure to an individual that has tested
positive as:

  • In a classroom setting in which ANY individuals are unmasked, any person who is within 6 feet of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 for a total of 15 minutes or more within a 24-hour period will be considered a close contact.
  • In a classroom setting in which all individuals are masked, any individual who is within 3 feet or less from the person who tested positive for COVID-19 for a total of 15 minutes or more within a 24-hour period will be considered a close contact.

Students and staff who are identified as a close contact of a confirmed case of COVID-19 should quarantine for a possible 10 days after last exposure to the case. Any close contact who meets quarantine exemption criteria shall not have to be excluded from work / school unless symptoms occur.

Without a universal masking mandate at the school, an unvaccinated, masked student runs the risk of being contact traced and quarantined for 10 days.

Parents of students that meet close contact criteria will be notified that their child has been potentially exposed to COVID-19. Options for what a close contact student can do will be explained to parents to include quarantining, returning to school, or monitoring for symptoms.

  • If a student tests positive, he/she will need to be isolated.
  • Students and staff who are identified as a close contact of a confirmed case of COVID-19 should quarantine for a possible 10 days after last exposure to the case, unless they have an exemption.
  • Quarantine exemptions include:
    • Vaccinated students and staff members will not have to quarantine due to close contact exposure.
    • Individuals who have had a positive COVID-19 test within the previous 90 days (3 months) do not need to quarantine.
    • Any close contact who meets either quarantine exemption criteria shall not have to be excluded from work / school unless symptoms occur
If parents desire for their child to not be subject to quarantines due to close contact, please consider getting your child vaccinated.
Parents of students that meet close contact criteria will be notified that their child has been potentially exposed to COVID-19. Options for what a close contact student can do will be explained to parents to include quarantining, returning to school, or monitoring for symptoms.
If it is determined that an unvaccinated student meets close contact criteria, they will be able to return to school after 10 days, or after 7 days once a negative PCR COVID-19 test (after the 5th day) has been obtained and symptoms have improved or resolved.

At School
Similar to last year, a daily self-screen will still be required of students and staff. Students and staff who are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 without being otherwise explained are prohibited from coming to school. See above for a list of symptoms.

Bishop Chatard has created a dedicated quarantine room for students/staff who might have COVID-19 or other communicable diseases and are waiting for pickup. If a student exhibits symptoms of COVID-19, they will be put in our quarantine room and parents will be contacted to pick up the student. This room will be disinfected frequently and restricted to authorized staff/students.

Bishop Chatard will have two nurses available on a rotating basis throughout each school day. Students and staff may be asked to wear a face-covering upon entry to the health clinic. If this is the case, a mask will be provided.

At Home
A daily self-screen is required of students and staff. Students and staff who are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 without being otherwise explained are prohibited from coming to school.

If your child or any member of your household has a pending COVID-19 test, email medical@bishopchatard.org and keep your child at home until contacted by a member of the BCHS COVID-19 committee.

Building Safety

High traffic areas in the school buildings will be sprayed with a disinfectant every day at 6 a.m. Additionally, outdoor benches, rest rooms and railings will be sprayed with disinfectant every morning at 6 a.m. Classrooms and other common areas will be cleaned by faculty, staff and students during passing periods.
In January, BCHS secured a Mobile Ultraviolet Sanitizing Machine to enhance cleaning and sanitizing throughout the school.

This unit uses Ultraviolet Germicidal Light to inactivate pathogens like SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) and influenza. It is able to clean a 700-square-foot area in approximately five minutes and will be used during unoccupied hours to thoroughly disinfect classrooms, restrooms, locker rooms and other spaces in the school. Similar units are being used in healthcare and government settings and are becoming the gold standard in disinfection. This disinfecting process will be utilized in addition to the many protocols already in place.

In addition, over the summer 2021, every classroom has an additional air purification system in place ready for the beginning of the school year. Other improvements are ongoing and will be communicated as they progress and are completed.

Students will have assigned lockers in 2021-22.

Per the CDC recommendation, shared drinking fountains will not be utilized; however, touchless hydration stations have been installed throughout the school and may be used by students. Students are strongly encouraged to bring their own water each day. Students may carry an individual water bottle. No other drinks (sports drinks, energy drinks) are permitted.

Lunch will be provided in both the cafeteria and auxiliary gym to increase social distancing. Additional safety measures include:

  • Students will be seated six feet apart and divided between the cafeteria and gymnasium. Contact tracing will still take place in exposure situations that take place during lunch.
  • All food items will be packaged or wrapped to prevent contamination.
  • New digital screens and labeling will increase the speed of serving line and point of sale.
  • A touchless transactions point of sale system has been implemented. Cash or check will not be accepted at the point of sale registers. Students pay for their lunch items as needed with a BC issued ID card distributed on their first in-person school day.
  • A lockbox will be available outside of the Cafeteria Manager’s office for students to deposit money into their MealTime account.
Feel free to contact Principal Hansen at 317-251-1451, ext. 1900 or via email at jhansen@bishopchatard.org with additional questions.
Specific COVID-19 questions can be directed to medical@bishopchatard.org.
Updated Oct. 12
Guidance on when a student can return when they are symptomatic continues to evolve. Our current policy is:

  • Any student who is symptomatic, NOT tested for COVID-19 and NOT a close contact of a COVID-19 positive person may return if they get an alternate diagnosis from a healthcare provider saying “student may return to school on (date) and his/her illness was not related to COVID-19” or “Cleared to return to school.” No diagnosis needs to be listed.
  • Any student who is symptomatic, has tested NEGATIVE for COVID-19 and NOT a close contact of a COVID-19 positive person may return if they are 24 hours fever-free without the use of fever reducing medication. This individual no longer needs an alternate diagnosis.

If your child exhibits any of the symptoms of COVID-19 that are listed in our re-entry plan, even if you believe the symptoms to be an indicator of something else, we ask that you report this to medical@bishopchatard.org. Our nurses and COVID Team will work with you to determine what the next course action should be. Thanks for your cooperation!

If your child is sick, and it is not related to COVID-19 symptoms,  you should report them as sick and they will not be expected to be in class either in-person or virtually.  A student who is at home sick may still participate virtually; however, a student reported as sick may not participate in any after school activities to include practices, games, concerts, or other events.

*Any illness not related to COVID-19 should be reported to SchoolMessenger.

Scroll to the top of this page for details on how to report COVID-related information to the school.

Bishop Chatard has created a dedicated quarantine room for students/staff who might have COVID-19 or other communicable diseases and are waiting for pickup. This room will be disinfected frequently and restricted to authorized staff/students.

Bishop Chatard will have a nurse on duty each school day. We will have additional procedures and protocol in place to keep students safe. Students who come to the clinic exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 will be sent to our quarantine room in the office area. Parents will be called to pick up their child with a recommendation that they contact their health provider. Students may not return to school until they are fever and symptom-free for 72 hours without medication.

If the parent reports a positive case of COVID-19, the Marion County Health Department will be contacted. Contact tracing information will be provided to the Marion County Health Department. The nurses’ office and quarantine room will be sanitized each day.

Students and employees will be excluded from school if they test positive for COVID-19, have been in close contact with a person who has tested positive for COVID-19 (close contact is defined as within 6 feet of someone who has COVID-19 for a total of 15 minutes or more. This could be a single encounter of more than 15 minutes or multiple encounters within a single day that add up to more than 15 minutes. – Updated Aug. 30) , or potentially after returning from travel in certain places. Please note that a student or employee should quarantine if someone in their home tests positive for COVID.
Once a student or employee is excluded from the school environment due to COVID positive testing or close contact, they may return if they satisfy the recommendations of the CDC. Currently those guidelines are:
Untested: Persons who have not received a test proving or disproving the presence of COVID-19 but experience symptoms may return if the following conditions are met:

  • They have not had a fever for at least 24 hours (that is no fever without the use of medicine that reduces fevers); AND
  • Other symptoms have improved (for example, when your cough or shortness of breath have improved); AND
  • At least 10 calendar days have passed since your symptoms first appeared.

Tested Positive & Symptomatic: Persons who experienced symptoms and have been tested for COVID-19 may return to school if the following conditions are met:

  • The individual no longer has a fever (without the use medicine that reduces fevers); AND
  • Other symptoms have improved (for example, when your cough or shortness of breath have improved); AND
  • At least 10 calendar days have passed since symptoms first appeared or the individual has received two negative tests at least 24 hours apart.

Tested Positive but Asymptomatic: Persons who have not had symptoms but test positive for COVID-19 may return when they have gone 10 calendar days past their test without symptoms and have been preferably released by a healthcare provider.

It is essential for the Bishop Chatard community to work together to prevent the introduction and spread of COVID-19 in the school environment and in the community while still providing a quality education program. Bishop Chatard has the authority to exclude students who have a contagious disease such as COVID-19 or are liable to transmit it after exposure (IC 20-34-3-9). In addition, the local health department has the authority to exclude students from Bishop Chatard and may order students and others to isolate or quarantine (IC 16-41-9-1.6). Bishop Chatard will make every effort to be proactive in recognizing the symptoms of COVID-19 and responding appropriately.
Federal law typically limits the type of medical inquiries that can be made but, given the nature of the pandemic, more leeway has been given to schools in this circumstance to make additional medical inquiries of staff and students than would otherwise be allowed.

  • If a parent tells Bishop Chatard that a student is ill, the school may ask the parent whether the student is exhibiting any symptoms of COVID-19.
  • If an employee calls in sick or appears ill, Bishop Chatard can inquire as to whether the employee is experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms.
  • If a person is obviously ill, Bishop Chatard may make additional inquiries and may exclude the person from school property.

Even without symptoms, if a student or employee has recently had contact with a person with a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19, has someone in their home being tested for COVID-19, or has recently traveled from somewhere considered to be a “hot spot” by the CDC, Bishop Chatard may exclude the student or employee from the school building and recommend that they self-quarantine for 14 calendar days.

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