Dear SEEM Community,
The purpose of this communication is to share with you the latest resources related to the new coronavirus, now known as COVID-19, and to provide you with an update as to the actions we are taking proactively as an organization as we follow the news reports and updates from local, regional, state and federal partners.
It is important to note that Massachusetts residents are still much more likely to become sick with a cold or the flu than to be exposed to COVID-19. Many of the precautions that help prevent colds and the flu can help protect against other respiratory viruses.
Regarding resources, the first one below is a public health fact sheet on the Coronavirus. The other two resources you may want to consider saving as a “favorite” as they are updated frequently by Mass.gov and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).
- Public Health Fact Sheet (in multiple languages):
- MA Department of Public Health Coronavirus website:
- Centers for Disease Control Coronavirus website:
For questions, you can check in with your school’s nurse, or call the DPH Epidemiology Line 24/7 at 617-983-6800.
The precautions to help prevent colds and the flu can help against COVID-19:
We urge everyone to continue the practice of maintaining healthy behaviors necessary during any cold and flu season. These include but are not limited to:
- Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available;
- Cover your nose and mouth with a sleeve or a tissue when coughing or sneezing (not with your hands);
- Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth to prevent the spread of germs;
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects, such as toys and doorknobs, especially if someone is sick;
- Stay away from people who are sick;
- Stay home when you are sick.
Additional steps that we are taking as an organization:
- We have been in ongoing communication with the cleaning company to ensure they continue to clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces (door handles, faucets, railings), bathrooms and health rooms using approved disinfectants.
- We are closely monitoring the latest news and updates.
- I am working closely with our member district who are keeping me apprised of updates from their town health departments, who are in regular communication with the MA Department of Public Health (DPH). The DPH is working closely with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC);
- All nurses in our programs are receiving communication and updates from the Department of Public Health and are available to answer questions.
- In the coming weeks and months, we will be closely monitoring the state and federal guidance around any large group events where students will be participating to understand any possible risks or concerns. As of now, all scheduled events and activities will proceed as planned.
As the events warrant in the near and far-term, we will continue to communicate any further updates to you.
Catherine Lawson Ed.D