TEA Public Health Guidance

Posted by Adam Bennett on 8/4/2022

Public school systems are to operate in compliance with existing state laws and regulations, including all executive orders issued by the governor of Texas in response to the COVID-19 pandemic that are currently in effect.

The following are examples of existing state laws and regulations applicable to the operations of Texas public school systems during the COVID-19 pandemic:

  • If an individual who has been in a school is test-confirmed to have COVID-19, the school must notify its local health department, in accordance with applicable federal, state and local laws and regulations, including confidentiality requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

  • Per GA-38, school systems cannot require students or staff to wear a mask. GA-38 addresses government-mandated face coverings in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • As provided in this Department of State Health Services (DSHS) Rule, school systems must exclude students from attending school in person who have or are suspected of having COVID-19, and must immediately notify parents if this is determined while on campus. As noted in the rule, exclusion shall continue until the conditions for re-entry are met:
    • For children with symptoms, at least 5 days have passed since symptom onset, and fever free, and other symptoms have improved.
    • Children who test positive for COVID-19 but do not have any symptoms must stay home until at least 5 days after the day they were tested.
  • Parents must ensure they do not send a child to school on campus if the child has COVID-19 symptoms or is test-confirmed with COVID-19, until the conditions for re-entry are met.

TEA recommends that public school systems consult with their local public health authorities and local legal counsel before making final decisions regarding implementation of the state requirements referenced by this guidance.

This guidance is subject to change as new information becomes available.