Health and Safety Equity
The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted equitable access to health and education worldwide. Taking into consideration the CDC's Action Steps to Address Health and Educational Disparities, MSD provides a variety of accessible resources to students, staff, and families to ensure health and safety equity among the diverse and widespread MSD community. Resources come in the form of information sharing, ongoing updates related to COVID-19 guidance and protocols, on campus support, and dissemination of physical resources. To ensure fair access to health, MSD continually revises school policies and procedures to align with best practices for COVID-19. Information sent to families is accessible in written English, written Spanish, and American Sign Language.
Students and families on both campuses have access to Registered Nurses and a mental health team on-site to assist in promotion and maintenance of student’s well-being. Registered Nurses are available to assess students, advise parents on appropriate next steps to monitor their child’s health, and administer over-the-counter medications when deemed necessary. Assessment and identification of COVID-like symptoms are communicated with families immediately. On an emergency basis for sick students without access to a daily bus, MSD will work with a parent/guardian on arranging transportation home.
Appropriate masking practices are an important mitigating strategy to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Students and staff at MSD have KN95 masks available to them based on ability to procure applicable amounts and sizes from vendors and local health departments. Guidance and tips are shared on how to properly store these masks for reuse. Additional disposable masks are available for students, staff, and visitors.
Both campuses engage in data collection on an ongoing basis to safeguard against the spread of COVID-19. Documented information allows school personnel to quickly identify any areas of concern among student and staff populations. This information also assists in predicting staff shortages and need for coverage to ensure minimal impact to student learning.
MSD students and families reside in counties across the state of Maryland. Families are provided with information about local and state resources for vaccinations and testing. MSD personnel maintain ongoing communication with the Maryland Department of Health, local health departments, and Maryland State Department of Education. These partnerships ensure regular access to updated information and guidance.