With everything going on it seems that news and resources are coming at you from every angle. That is why we decided to put this page together to help funnel the information to one location. If you find something you believe should be on here please send to firstname.lastname@example.org! Thank you and please stay safe!
Mental health and coping during the COVID-19 crisis
The current coronavirus outbreak is causing anxiety for many people. Below are links to resources with helpful tips and strategies to help those who are struggling with anxiety around the coronavirus.
How to talk to kids about the novel coronavirus, Seattle Times
Public Health – Seattle & King County has set up a call center to address questions from the public about the coronavirus, call 206.477.3977
Washington State Department of Health has set up a call center to address questions from the public about the coronavirus, call 1.800.525.0127 and press #.
Children and Schools during COVID-19 crisis
All Schools Closed Through April 24, 2020
Governor Inslee made an emergency proclamation closing all public school districts and private schools in the state of Washington. As a result, Seattle Public Schools will be closed through at least Friday, April 24.
The central office, John Stanford Center, is closed from Monday, March 16 through Friday, March 20. Please call or email departments for support.
March 16 Letter to Families
Seattle Public Schools continues to follow the guidance of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Public Health—Seattle and King County in our efforts to disrupt the spread of COVID-19 and in alignment with new state requirements. Seattle Public Schools remains closed until at least Monday, April 27 in response to the Governor Inslee’s Emergency proclamation on March 12.
We will continue to keep you informed as we learn new information and provide resources as they become available. Until further notice, you will receive communication from the Office of Public Affairs on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday of each week.
Student Meal Distribution
Monday, March 16, student meal distribution began at 26 school sites across the city. Student meal sites will operate from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m., Monday through Friday. You can learn more, including, where the student meal site locations are on the COVID-19 resource page.
We want to thank our incredible 609 Labor partners and employees including nutrition services staff, drivers, custodians, security specialists, and everyone who helped distribute hundreds of meals today. Our staff continue to show up and care for students while navigating a dynamic and unpredictable situation. We couldn’t be prouder of the dedicated SPS family.
Supplemental Learning Opportunities
A huge thank you to SPS educators who have already reached out to families and students and provided home-based learning opportunities. To supplement what educators have provided on Monday March 23, the district will be broadcasting guided educational activities through SPS TV, social media channels, and our website. A schedule will be provided by Friday of this week, content is currently in development.
Additional extended learning resources can be found on the COVID-19 Resource page. Resources include grade level suggestions compiled by central office staff, resources from the University of Washington’s College of Education, and district hosted online resources that are available year-round.
While these activities are not a replacement for classroom instruction, we are committed to providing educational opportunities for students throughout this closure.
How to Help
Many of you have expressed interest in helping our students and greater community. The district’s nutrition services team has enough food supply to support our students at this time, but we know local food banks may be falling short. If you’re looking for ways to give back to your community, local food banks in Seattle need monetary support to help keep their shelves full for families. Please visit this page for a map of food banks in Seattle and resources on how you can help.
Updated Guidance from Public Health – Seattle and King County
We know there are many questions about risk of exposure to COVID-19. Below is updated guidance from Public Health as of Friday, March 13.
If you have not been in close contact with a sick person with COVID-19, you are at low risk for infection. You can continue to go to work but should monitor your health and stay away from others if you get sick.
You generally need to be in close contact with a sick person to get infected. Close contact includes:
- Living in the same household as a sick person with COVID-19,
- Caring for a sick person with COVID-19,
- Being within 6 feet of a sick person with COVID-19 for about 10 minutes, OR
- Being in direct contact with secretions from a sick person with COVID-19 (e.g., being coughed on, kissing, sharing utensils, etc.)
What should I do if I was in close contact with someone with COVID-19 while they were ill, but I am not sick?
Please contact your medical provider for specific guidance. In general, you should monitor your health for fever, cough, and respiratory problems during the 14 days after the last day you were in close contact with the sick person with COVID-19. You should not go to work and should avoid public places for 14 days.
What should I do if I am a close contact to someone with COVID-19 and get sick?
If you get sick with fever, cough, or respiratory problems (even if your symptoms are very mild), you likely have COVID-19. You should isolate yourself at home and away from other people and contact your health care provider.
More information about what to do including when to discontinuation home isolation can be found on the public health website.
Supporting Students’ Emotional Wellbeing
As more information is shared about the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus), you may notice your child experiencing a wider range of emotions such as worry and fear. In addition, with the closure of schools and not being able to interact with friends, school staff, and other caring adults on a regular basis, some children might also experience sadness and frustration. There are many steps you can take to support your child during these uncertain times.
Here are some ideas for families:
- Reassure your child that all feelings are normal
- Make time to talk with your child about their feelings and questions
- Limit screen time and access to social media
- Pay attention to what your child is watching and reading and for how long
- Model positive self-care strategies, your child is learning how to manage their emotions from the caring adults in their life
- Provide honest information that is age appropriate and avoid sharing assumptions about who is sick with COVID-19
- Work with your child to develop a consistent “new” daily routine, samples will be provided later this week.
A few helpful resources:
- Talking with children about Coronavirus Disease 2019: Messages for parents, school staff, and others working with children
- Tips for Caregivers, Parents, and Teachers During Infectious Disease Outbreaks
- Just For Kids: A Comic Exploring The New Coronavirus
- Talking to Kids About COVID-19
We recognize this is a very challenging time. The magnitude of change and uncertainty can take a toll on your personal wellbeing while you are also supporting the wellbeing of your family. Please take care of yourself. We will continue to provide updates later this week as more information becomes available.
- Most recent letter to the Seattle Public Schools community
- Learning at home suggestions
- Seattle school sites for student meals
- Resources to combat racism, bias, and discrimination
- King County, Washington State, and National Public Health Resources
- Seattle Public Schools COVID-19 FAQ
- Seattle Public Schools letter and video archive
King County, Washington State, and National Health Resources
The Washington State Department of Health has established a call center to address questions from the public. If you have questions about what is happening in Washington, or how the virus is spread, please call 1-800-525-0127.
Phone lines are currently staffed from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m, seven days a week. Please note that this call center can not access COVID-19 testing results. For testing inquiries or results, please contact your health care provider.
- 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019 nCov), Public Health Seattle and King County (this site includes FAQ in English, Spanish and Chinese) Public Health provides frequent updates.
- Please see the Washington State Department of Health’s translated fact sheets.
- Novel Coronavirus Outbreak 2020, Washington State Department of Health
- 2019 Novel Coronavirus, Wuhan, China, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
- Guidance for Travelers, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Living our Values: Resources to combat racism, bias, and discrimination
Our community values are tested in times like these. We must continue to be united and support each other as coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) becomes more widespread. In schools, we will continue to demonstrate compassion and care as our greater community navigates this global health situation.
We are aware of reports that some of our Asian students have been targeted and discriminated against in connection to COVID-19. This is unacceptable and contrary to our values of racial equity and social justice. In SPS, we are committed to welcoming, safe, and inclusive schools, and we do not tolerate hate speech or acts of discrimination.
Help us prevent discrimination or stigmatization by sharing accurate information. COVID-19 infection is not connected to any race, ethnicity, or nationality. Misinformation about coronavirus disease 2019 can create fear and hostility that harms people and makes it harder to keep everyone healthy. Public Health Seattle and King County has provided resources to address and prevent.
Emergency Relief Funds:
United Way COVID-19 Community Economic Relief Fund. They will help with bills, rent and food. You can call 1-866-211-9966 and provide zip code and will be given a list of local agencies to provide assistance.
FUN Things to do while Stuck at Home
KIDS: Fun and Free Ways to learn from home