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The Maricopa County Department of Public Health sent an informational

letter on COVID-19 to parents and guardians. 

With news of COVID-19 spreading around the world, Valley school districts and parents are being urged to “plan for when community spread occurs.”

According to the Tolleson Union High School District website, “Many of you have seen reports on the news about the coronavirus (COVID-19).

“TUHSD is monitoring information from the Maricopa County of Public Health. The County Health Department has issued a letter for parents/guardians.”

TUHSD also tweeted the county letter, which is dated Friday, Feb. 28. It was sent to parents around the Valley.

The letter stressed, “Currently, there is no confirmed community spread of COVID-19 in Maricopa County, meaning the virus is not being spread from person-to-person.

“However, experts predict there will eventually be community spread. MCDPH is preparing for when/if this happens.”

The letter advises “keep children home when they are sick” and “teach your children to always cover their cough and sneezes with a tissue or elbow.

“Remind them to wash their hands with soap and water (or use hand sanitizer) after they touch their face, use the restroom and before they eat.”

On the second page of the two-page letter signed by Marcy Flanagan, Public Health director, and Rebecca Sunenshine, Disease Control Division medical director, the department urges parents and guardians to think ahead.

“Plan for when community spread occurs.

“Ensure you have a plan to designate a caregiver, such as a family member or neighbor, for a sick child(ren) if you can’t stay home.

“Because most people with COVID-19 have mild disease, the likelihood MCDPH will recommend closing schools is very low, but not zero. In the highly unlikely chance MCDPH has to shut down your child’s school due to a COVID-19 outbreak, it is important for parents/guardians to have a plan for who will take care of your child.”

The letter concludes with references for more information: cdc.gov/coronavirus and maricopa.gov/coronavirus.