Sublette School District No.9 shall strive to protect the safety and health of children and youth in our care, as well as their families, our employees, and the general public. We will work in cooperation with public health authorities to promote these goals.
The evidence is overwhelming that the risk of transmitting human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is extremely low in school settings when current guidelines are followed. The presence of a person living with HIV infection or diagnosed with acquired immunodeficiency virus (AIDS) poses no significant risk to others in school, day care, or school athletic settings.
School Attendance: A student with HIV infection has the same right to attend school and receive services as any other student, and will be subject to the same rules and policies. HIV infection shall not factor into decisions concerning class assignments, privileges, or participation in any school sponsored activity.
School authorities will determine the educational placement of a student known to be infected with HIV on a case-by-case basis by following established policies and procedures for students with chronic health problems or students with disabilities. Decision makers must consult with the student's physician and parent or guardian; respect the student's and family's privacy right, and reassess the placement if there is a change in the student's need for accommodations or services.
School staff members will always strive to maintain a respectful school climate and not allow physical or verbal harassment of any individual or group by another individual group. This includes taunts directed against a person living with HIV infection, a person perceived as having HIV infection, or a person associated with someone with HIV infection.
Employment: Sublette School District No. 9 does not discriminate on the basis of HIV infection or association with another person with HIV infection, in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. An employee with HIV infection is welcome to continue working as long as he or she is able to perform the essential functions of the position, with reasonable accommodation if necessary.
Privacy: Pupils or staff members are not required to disclose HIV infection status to anyone in the education system. HIV antibody testing is not required for any purpose.
Every employee has a duty to treat as highly confidential any knowledge or speculation concerning the HIV status of a student or other staff member. Violation of medical privacy is cause for disciplinary action up to and including dismissal and/or criminal prosecution.
No information regarding a person's HIV status will be divulged to persons other than school district employees with a need to know. Disclosure to any other individuals or organizations shall require a court order or the informed written, signed and dated consent of the person with HIV infection (or parent or guardian of a legal minor). The written consent must specify the name of the recipient of the information and the purpose of the disclosure.
All health records, notes, and other documents that reference a person's HIV status will be kept under lock and key. Access to these confidential records is limited to those named in written permission from the person (or parent or guardian). Information regarding HIV status will not be added to a student's permanent educational or health record without written consent.
Infection Control: All employees are required to consistently follow infection control guidelines in all settings and at all times including playgrounds and school buses. Schools will operate according to the standard set forth by the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration for the prevention of blood borne infections. Equipment and supplies needed to apply the infection control guidelines will be maintained and kept reasonably accessible. The School Nurse shall implement the precautions and investigate, correct, and report on instances of lapse.
A school staff member is expected to alert the School Nurse if a student's health condition or behavior presents a reasonable risk of transmitting any infection.
If a situation occurs at school in which a person might have been exposed to an infectious agent, such as an instance of blood-to-blood contact, school authorities shall counsel that person (or, if a minor, alert a parent or guardian) to seek appropriate medical evaluation. Sublette School District No. 9 will not assume any medical bills from follow-up with a physician, the student/parent are responsible for any costs incurred.
HIV and Athletics: The privilege of participating in physical education classes, programs, competitive sports, and recess is not conditional on a person's HIV status. School authorities will make reasonable accommodations to allow students living with HIV infection to participate in school-sponsored physical activities.
All employees must consistently adhere to infection control guidelines in locker rooms and all play and athletic settings. First aid kits must be on hand at every athletic event.
All physical education teachers and athletic program staff will complete an approved first aid and injury prevention course that includes implementation of infection control guidelines. Student orientation about safety on the playing field will include guidelines for avoiding HIV infection.
HIV Prevention Education: The goals of HIV prevention education are to promote healthful living and discourage the behaviors that put people at risk of acquiring HIV. The educational program will remain abstinence-based and:
*be taught K-5, 7 and 9,
*use methods demonstrated by sound research to be effective,
*be consistent with community standards and set forth by our Health Committee,
*follow content guidelines prepared by the CDC, *be appropriate to students developmental levels, behaviors, and cultural backgrounds,
*build knowledge and skills from year to year,
*stress the benefits of abstinence from sexual activity, alcohol, and other drug use,
*include accurate information on reducing risk of HIV infection,
*address students' own concerns,
*include means for evaluation,
*be an integral part of a coordinated school health program,
*be taught by well-prepared instructors with adequate support,
*involve parents, families, and communities as partners in education.
Parents and guardians will have convenient opportunities to preview all HIV prevention curriculum and materials. School staff members shall assist parents or guardians who ask for help in discussing HIV infection with children. If a parent or guardian submits a written request to a principal that a child not receive instruction in specific HIV prevention topics at school, the child shall be excused without penalty.
Related Services: Students will have access to voluntary, confidential age and developmentally appropriate counseling about matters related to HIV infection.
School administrators will maintain confidential linkage and referral mechanisms to facilitate voluntary student access to appropriate HIV counseling and testing programs and to other HIV -related services as needed. Public information about resources available in the community should be kept available for voluntary student use.
Staff Development: All school staff members will participate in Universal Precautions training annually which includes HIV education, infection control, and district policies on HIV. Certain employees will also receive additional specialized training as appropriate to their position and responsibilities.
General Provisions: School administrators will notify students, their family members, and school personnel about current policies concerning HIV infection, and provide convenient opportunities to discuss them.
This policy is effective immediately upon adoption. In accordance with the established policy review process, or at least every three years, the School Nurse shall report on the accuracy, relevance, and effectiveness of this policy, and when appropriate, provide recommendations for improving and/or updating this policy.
Adoption Date: August 19, 1999