Smart Start Communication Update – Public Information Reporting Process

August 26th, 2020

The Natrona County School District and the Casper-Natrona County Health Department are committed to the timely, consistent, and transparent dissemination public information by following applicable laws on disclosure and under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) and Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA). We are committed to efficiently reporting relevant COVID-19 data in schools/district facilities to support the need for public information and transparency while ensuring we are protecting student and staff privacy.

The Casper-Natrona County Health Department is responsible for contacting individuals directly impacted by a known COVID-19 positive in Natrona County, as identified through their investigative contact tracing process.

The Natrona County School District will continue to work in direct and daily collaboration with the Casper-Natrona County Health Department in response to COVID-19. In recognition of the commitment to ensure safe and healthy environments and efficient and effective operations, we will disclose public information when a legitimate public health concern is served by having the information disclosed.

The Natrona County School District will provide public information updates, as applicable, of CNCHD confirmed cases of COVID-19 within schools/facilities. We will share the number of confirmed cases, the school/location, and the date the confirmed positive was reported to NCSD by CNCHD. We will share if the individual is a student or staff member, as long as identification falls within the aggregated reporting requirements of FERPA. If at any time, the disclosure of any information could allow for the identification of a specific individual, the information will not be released.

NCSD will not publicly disclose the age, name of student/staff member, student-specific identifying information, or staff-specific identifying information of a known COVID-19 positive or known exposure to the public. Through their investigative contact tracing process, the Casper-Natrona County Health Department will directly reach out to impacted individuals of a known COVID-19 positive or direct exposure. 

Once a positive test is confirmed by the Casper-Natrona County Health Department:

  • An initial notification (letter/email/phone call) is sent by the Casper-Natrona County Health Department to directly impacted individuals identified as a close contact to (parents/guardians/staff) known positive. It is imperative parents/guardians/staff members have updated contact information (phone, email, address) in Infinite Campus/HR. 

  • Contact tracing is conducted by the CNCHD, and all affected students’ parents and/or staff members are contacted to complete the process. 

  • The public information dashboard will be updated by NCSD once all directly impacted individuals are in receipt of initial notification/contact by the Casper-Natrona County Health Department

We appreciate your partnership as work together to open schools, keep them open, and provide a high-quality learning environment for all students to progress in their learning while maintaining our commitment to the safety and health of all students, staff, and the community.

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