Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has deeply impacted Head Start and Early Head Start programs, enrolled children and families, and communities. This section is regularly updated with program updates and resources to help support children, and families during this challenging time.
COVID-19 UPDATE: March 16, 2021
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has new guidelines for individuals who have been fully vaccinated. RUCD incorporated these guidelines into the program’s COVID plan effective March 16, 2021.
As stated on the CDC website:
People are considered fully vaccinated:
2 weeks after their second dose in a 2-dose series, such as the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or
2 weeks after a single-dose vaccine, such as Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine
If it has been less than 2 weeks since your 1-dose shot, or if you still need to get your second dose of a 2-dose vaccine, you are NOT fully protected. Keep taking all prevention steps until you are fully vaccinated.
If you’ve been fully vaccinated:
You can gather indoors with fully vaccinated people without wearing a mask.
You can gather indoors with unvaccinated people from one other household (for example, visiting with relatives who all live together) without masks, unless any of those people or anyone they live with has an increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19.
If you’ve been around someone who has COVID-19, you do not need to stay away from others or get tested unless you have symptoms.
However, if you live in a group setting (like a correctional or detention facility or group home) and are around someone who has COVID-19, you should still stay away from others for 14 days and get tested, even if you don’t have symptoms.
What Hasn’t Changed
For now, if you’ve been fully vaccinated:
You should still take steps to protect yourself and others in many situations, like wearing a mask, staying at least 6 feet apart from others, and avoiding crowds and poorly ventilated spaces. Take these precautions whenever you are:
Gathering with unvaccinated people from more than one other household
Visiting with an unvaccinated person who is at increased risk of severe illness or death from COVID-19 or who lives with a person at increased risk
You should still avoid medium or large-sized gatherings.
You should still delay domestic and international travel. If you do travel, you’ll still need to follow CDC requirements and recommendations.
You should still watch out for symptoms of COVID-19, especially if you’ve been around someone who is sick. If you have symptoms of COVID-19, you should get tested and stay home and away from others.
You will still need to follow guidance at your workplace.
What We Know and What We’re Still Learning
We know that COVID-19 vaccines are effective at preventing COVID-19 disease, especially severe illness and death.
We’re still learning how effective the vaccines are against variants of the virus that causes COVID-19. Early data show the vaccines may work against some variants but could be less effective against others.
We know that other prevention steps help stop the spread of COVID-19, and that these steps are still important, even as vaccines are being distributed.
We’re still learning how well COVID-19 vaccines keep people from spreading the disease.
Early data show that the vaccines may help keep people from spreading COVID-19, but we are learning more as more people get vaccinated.
We’re still learning how long COVID-19 vaccines can protect people.
Until we know more about those questions, everyone — even people who’ve had their vaccines — should continue taking basic prevention steps when recommended.
COVID-19 UPDATE: October 29 , 2020
COVID-19 UPDATE: October 22 , 2020
Utah Gov. Gary Herbert provided a COVID-19 update Thursday, October 22, 2020. According to the new index, the following counties in our service area are now considered high transmission: Carbon, Emery, Grand, Sevier, and San Juan. Uintah county’s transmission index is moderate. Actions for counties at high transmission levels include physical distancing, hygiene practices, staying home when sick, wearing a mask in public indoor settings, and outdoors when physical distancing is not feasible. For more information about Utah Health Guidance Levels, see the link.
COVID-19 UPDATE: October 14, 2020
Governor Herbert has issued a new public health directive. All services areas are currently in a moderate transmission state as defined by this new directive, except for Emery County.
As of 10/15/20, the Utah State Governor has issued changes to the state’s COVID-19 guidelines. These changes were based on the Utah Health Guidance Levels and will follow the COVID-19 Transmission Index. This index places counties in one of three transmission levels: High, Moderate, or Low. These levels correspond directly to case rates, positivity rates, and ICU utilization. The data helps us understand the real risk of transmission in our communities. Important health behaviors, based on epidemiology and medical science, are outlined at each level to protect yourself, your family, and your community from COVID-19. The COVID-19 Transmission Index is a balanced approach intended to protect communities. It represents state and local public health officials’ collaborative work, the Governor’s Office, legislative leaders, the hospital industry, and business leaders. COVID data will be analyzed weekly, and counties will be placed into a transmission level depending solely on what their data show. Changes from a lower level to a higher level may occur weekly. Changes from a higher level to a lower level may occur every 14 days at minimum when thresholds are met. Please refer to the link provided.
Other items addressed in this new addition to Utah’s coronavirus updates include gatherings, mask mandates, physical distancing, hygiene practices, staying home when sick, and following the public health quarantine/isolation guides. This information can all be found on the coronavirus.utah.gov website.
COVID-19 UPDATE: October 6, 2020
Effective October 12, 2020, in addition to the in-class and virtual service option, RUCD will offer a home-based option to RUCD families with children ages 3-5.
COVID-19 UPDATE: September 22, 2020
Based on current enrollment trends and parent feedback, the following Head Start classes will go back to five days a week effective October 5th: Vernal 1, Vernal 2, Carbon County Center, Price 1, Price 2, Blanding 1, Huntington, and Moab. Monday will be an early release day in Carbon County, and Friday will be an early release day for the rest of the sites, with five hours of class time as in the past. The other four days will remain at six hours to allow time for sanitizing and disinfecting.
COVID-19 UPDATE: July 2, 2020
The Carbon County Early Head Start center-based program will reopen July 6th. Health precautions have been implemented to provide a safe and healthy environment for children to learn and play.
Early Head Start home-based programs are providing weekly visits in the home with added health precautions for the safety and well-being of staff and families.
RUCD will reopen preschool classrooms this fall with a slight adjustment to our regular schedule. Please click here to view the RUCD COVID PLAN – Parent Newsletter for information on what this school year will look like for enrolled children and families. This plan may change as we receive new updates and follow recommended best practices.