State Health Department Adjusts COVID-19 Guidelines

  • TN Department of Health

    Published December 8, 2020

    With a recent change in quarantine guidelines released by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) on December 3, the Tennessee Department of Health (TDH) and Williamson County Health Department (WCHD) have updated their quarantine guidance which affects Williamson County Schools students and staff as noted in the WCS Illness Guidelines

    Students and staff quarantined may return to school after 10 days from the last time they were in contact with the person with COVID-19, as long as students and staff who are quarantined remain symptom free. The quarantine timeframe was previously 14 days.  

    The WCHD, the agency with the authority to quarantine in Williamson County, will continue to send an email notification to individuals who have been identified as a close contact with the quarantine dates and important health information. That information is also shared with the school nurse and district health services staff. The dates on the WCHD letter determine the dates and options for quarantine. 

    New options for quarantined students and staff are included below:  

    • A quarantined individual may return to regular activities on day 11 without testing if he/she does not have symptoms, ending a 10-day quarantine. Masks should be worn. 
    • A quarantined individual may return to regular activities on day 8 if the contact does not have symptoms and if they test negative by a PCR or antigen test collected after day 5, ending a 7-day quarantine. Masks should be worn. An email showing test results must be provided. 

    Students and staff who want to be considered for the seven-day quarantine period, mentioned above, must remain symptom free and be tested on day six or later. The results must be emailed to the school for confirmation of the result before they can attend on day eight.

    Schools will communicate specific protocols regarding these changes. 

    The WCHD shared the following statement with Williamson County Schools: 

    “The Williamson County Health Department has updated its quarantine guidelines to be consistent with newly-released Tennessee Department of Health and CDC guidance. While a 14-day quarantine continues to be recommended, an acceptable alternative is to discontinue quarantine after day 10 and continue to monitor for symptoms and wear a mask through day 14. Other alternatives may be found on the Tennessee Department of Health’s website. The health department will not be re-issuing guidance to those who are currently in quarantine as of December 3; however, those in quarantine may elect to follow updated guidance and return to school at the appropriate time.”