This resource page includes updated information about COVID-19.
Current Face Mask Requirements by Maize USD 266 School/Grade:
- All elementary and intermediate schools (kindergarten through grade 6): Face masks required for employees and students during school when six feet of social distancing is not possible (effective Sept. 8 through the end of the day on Oct. 11)*
- Maize South High School: Face masks required for employees and students during school when six feet of social distancing is not possible (effective Sept. 20 through the end of the day on Oct. 1)*
- Maize Career Academy: Face masks required for employees and students during school when six feet of social distancing is not possible (effective Sept. 20 through the end of the day on Oct. 1)*
- Maize Middle School: Face masks required for employees and students during school when six feet of social distancing is not possible (effective Sept. 27 through the end of the day on Oct. 8)*
- All other schools/buildings: Face masks optional, but encouraged
*Employees and students who provide proof of vaccination will be encouraged to wear a face mask but will not be required to do so.
Maize USD 266 COVID Dashboard
Maize USD 266’s COVID Dashboard reflects cases of Maize USD 266 students and employees as reported to school staff members on the day reflected. Dates of cases and corresponding close contacts may not be reported on the same date. Figures for positive cases are inclusive of all sources of exposure and may not be workplace- or school-related. High-risk close contact figures only include those related to workplace- or school-related contacts. The district’s week one dashboard dated the week of Aug. 16 originally also included high-risk close contact figures from all sources of exposure and may not be workplace- or school-related. Two dashboards from the week of Aug. 16 are now available to view so the data is presented consistently throughout the school year.
Sept. 20, 2021 note:
During the 2021-22 school year thus far, the district has posted its weekly Maize USD 266 COVID Dashboard on Mondays to allow time for staff members to verify data from the previous week. Nurses and staff members work on the dashboard data related to student and employee positive COVID cases and high-risk close contacts seven days a week, and having Friday evening and the weekend to finalize data has ensured that the information is complete and accurate. One intention of this timeline was to prevent publishing pending information that ultimately would need to be edited for accuracy.
From this week forward, Maize USD 266 will aim to post preliminary data each Friday. The dashboard may need to be updated the following week as information is verified for accuracy. If the data indicates that a school’s COVID impact exceeds 6 percent, those schools affected will be notified about the need to mask for the following two weeks following the district’s Masking Criteria.
Please also note the district has published a new Close-Contact Protocol Flow Chart, an expanded resource that helps staff members and families identify when a student or employee will attend school/work, seek COVID testing, quarantine, etc. based on each scenario and details related to symptoms, vaccination status, and face masks.
COVID Dashboard Data Details
How the Dashboard is Built
The following information is shared to provide the OneMa1ze community with information about how Maize USD 266 builds and maintains its COVID Dashboard, posted weekly at www.usd266.com/TogetherAgain.
- As it did last year, Maize USD 266 maintains a single database of COVID cases that is fed by surveys completed by school staff members (nurses and principals). Staff members enter the data as they know it, as quickly as they can. It is not unusual for there to be either a delay in entering data due to their schedules or the need for time to track down necessary information and contacts. Staff members often enter data in the evenings or during the weekend because of the work they are juggling when students are present in the buildings.
- It is common for the information submitted by staff members to change after they submit the data. This takes place because of factors related to confirming vaccination, a close contact turning into a positive case, confirming that a mask was worn or not worn during a close contact, or the communication timeline with parents or the health department about positive cases.There are several other potential reasons.
- Only a few staff members have access to the main database to protect the privacy of students and staff members; therefore, most of the staff members who can submit a report may not access the database. Any change would need to be done by the superintendent of schools, the board clerk, or one of the two COVID response nurses.
- District staff members work to best discern which date should be associated with each case. For example, one of many scenarios includes a student who experienced symptoms on a Thursday, did not attend school on the following Friday and Monday and then reports a positive test on Tuesday. The date associated with both the positive case and each close contact could be interpreted differently, even when referring to policy, and requires careful consideration.
- There is a possibility that the weekly total that is published on Friday and updated on Monday for any school will be different the following week when the next dashboard is published. Changes in the number of positive cases and high-risk close contacts (HRCC) published from one week to the next could occur at most schools nearly every week due to the nature of virus detection. The most common occurrence will be due to a student(s) who either is a high-risk close contact or absent due to illness. This student(s) then later is tested, and perhaps even later determined to be positive for COVID. That change in status then changes the data. Then, staff members must seek out that student(s)’s close contacts and log them into the database, resulting in a larger number of cases and high-risk close contacts in the previous week. This may only affect a few students in a school or could change the data significantly, depending on vaccination rates, masking, student proximity, or timeline of student attendance.
- Beginning in mid-September, building attendance data based on current enrollment will be included in the dashboard and used to determine masking criteria.
- All of these issues contribute to constant changes to the published data and, as diligent as staff members are, this process will never be completely free from some margin of error (or constant scrutiny). It is anticipated that changes will occur less frequently in the future as the district builds more consistency among all of the individuals who contribute to this process.
- The district asks that parents and staff members report test results to the district at the earliest opportunity for the safety of all students and staff members. This timeliness also supports the most accurate data.
The Two-Week Timeframe of Data for Masking Criteria
The intent of the district’s Masking Criteria is to make decisions about how best to mitigate any negative impact COVID is having on the students in individual schools. Because that impact typically affects students for periods of time greater than a week, it was the intention of Dr. Chad Higgins, Superintendent of Schools, to use school-level data on a two-week rolling basis. Using weekly data independent from adjacent weeks does not seem to align with the nature of the problem being addressed.
2021-22 COVID Dashboard archive
- Week One: Week of Aug. 16 (originally published with high-risk close contact figures including all sources of exposure)
- Week One, Updated: Week of Aug. 16 (with high-risk close contact figures only including those related to workplace- or school-related contacts)
- Week Two: Week of Aug. 23
- Week Three: Week of Aug. 30
- Week Four: Week of Sept. 6 (no school on Monday, Sept. 6)
- Week Five: Week of Sept. 13
- Week Six: Week of Sept. 20 (no school on Thursday, Sept. 23 and Friday, Sept. 24)
Safe Return to In-Person Instruction and Continuity of Services
Sedgwick County Health Department Q&A (May 2021)
COVID-19 health and safety guidelines
Kansas State High School Activities Association
COVID-19 testing and daily rapid testing clinic resources
Maize Board of Education meetings
Based on the advice of counsel, Maize USD 266 will no longer be maintaining the video recordings of the Maize Board of Education meetings. For the time being, meetings will be streamed live and available to view on the district’s YouTube channel at bit.ly/Maize266YouTube. However, the district will no longer preserve the recordings of the meetings. Thank you.
Maize USD 266 Mission
The mission of Maize USD 266 is to inspire students to discover their potential through connecting, learning, and leading.
Maize USD 266 Core Values
Integrity. Innovation. Community. Responsibility. Empathy. Resilience
Maize USD 266 Vision
The Maize School District is a student-centered environment where all members of the school-community are empowered to participate and thrive academically, civically, and socially through relevant educational experiences to achieve and fulfill their life’s purpose.