According to Washington State Department of Health guidance, found at the K-12 COVID-19 Requirements for Summer 2021 and the 2021-2022 School Year, quarantine is when someone who has been exposed to COVID-19 stays home and away from others for the recommended period of time in case they were infected and are contagious. People who may be exempt from quarantine:
- Close contacts who are fully vaccinated and do not have symptoms do not need to quarantine but should be tested 3-5 days following known exposure to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 and wear a mask in all public indoor spaces for 14 days or until they receive a negative test result. They should isolate and follow appropriate guidance if they test positive. If they develop symptoms consistent with COVID-19, they should isolate themselves from others, be clinically evaluated for COVID-19, and be tested for SARS-CoV-2 if indicated. The symptomatic fully vaccinated person should inform their healthcare provider of their vaccination status at the time of presentation to care.
- Close contacts who had confirmed COVID-19 in the past three months, have recovered and do not have symptoms, do not need to quarantine but should watch for symptoms and get tested if symptoms develop. If a close contact is neither fully vaccinated nor recovered from confirmed COVID-19 in the past three months and does not have symptoms, the close contact must quarantine unless the school has chosen to adopt a “test to stay” protocol with approval from local public health. Close contacts following a test to stay protocol must still quarantine at home away from others except for attending school (e.g., the person may not participate in extra-curricular or after-school activities and should not attend social gatherings, etc.).
- Students who are unvaccinated and choose not to participate in Test to Stay protocol, and staff who are unvaccinated or symptomatic and determined to be a close contact, will quarantine for ten (10) days. If any COVID-19 symptoms develop during the ten (10) days, students and staff should remain in quarantine for the full fourteen (14) days and get tested. Continue monitoring for symptoms until day fourteen (14).