(The Center Square) – Illinois officials are updating COVID-19 isolation and quarantine guidelines for schools to mirror new guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The CDC issued new guidance on Tuesday that shortened the isolation and quarantine periods for the general public from 10 days to five days.
Parents across the state were confused why such guidance was not being mirrored by Illinois schools.
Some districts were following test-to-stay policies that allow students to test out of quarantine.
On Thursday, the CDC released an overview of isolation guidance and quarantine for K-12 schools.
A memo from the Illinois Department of Public Health published Friday by the Illinois State Board of Education says the two agencies plan to revise existing regulations and guidance documents to align with the CDC’s update.
The guidance says staff or students who test positive for COVID-19, regardless of vaccination status, should isolate for five days after the onset of symptoms, or five days from the collection of a specimen if no symptoms are present.
Asymptomatic positive cases can be released from isolation after five days.
If symptoms are present and persist, isolation should end after being fever-free for 24 hours and other symptoms have improved.
The memo from IDPH says schools should ensure that students and staff who test positive for COVID-19 should wear a mask, including at home, for five days.