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Policy Manual

5310.01 - Direct Contact Communicable Diseases

1. The School Board seeks to provide a safe educational environment for students and staff.  This can best be accomplished by assuring that all persons with the school community understand the method of transmission and prevention of diseases that are not contracted through air-borne pathogens, but rather, through direct contact with body fluids and excretions, especially blood, vomit, feces, or urine.  The Board is also committed to assuring the confidential status of individuals who may have been diagnosed with a blood-borne communicable disease.

2. For purposes of this policy, these diseases shall include:
    a. HIV (human immunodeficiency virus);
    b. AIDS (acquired immune deficiency syndrome);
    c. AIDS related complex (condition);
    d. HAV, HBV, HCV (Hepatitis A, B, C);
    e. Other diseases that may be specified by the State Department of health as contact communicable diseases.

3. The Board recognizes the fact that individuals who have contracted these diseases may not exhibit symptoms for many years after exposure and may, in fact, not be aware that they have contracted the disease. They are, however, able to transmit the disease to other individuals.

4. The Board authorizes the Superintendent to include instruction regarding blood-borne communicable diseases in the health curriculum. Instruction may include, but is not limited to, information about the known modes of transmission, signs and symptoms, risk factors associated with acquired immune deficiency syndrome, and means used to control the spread of acquired immune deficiency syndrome.  The programs provided for students shall be age and grade appropriate and shall reflect current theory, knowledge, and practice regarding blood-borne communicable diseases and their prevention.

5. Students or staff who reveal the fact they have contracted one (1) of these diseases will have their status safeguarded in accordance with Federal and State statutes, as well as Board policies, dealing with privacy and confidentiality. Furthermore, their civil rights will be respected.

6. It is the policy of the Board that the harassment of, or discrimination against, any student or employee because the individual has, or is thought to have, a blood—borne communicable disease is prohibited.

7. Staff members with one (1) of the blood-borne communicable diseases listed above will be expected to perform their regular duties.  Staff members with one of these diseases will have access to district leave policies in accordance with Board policy and negotiated agreement, and will have opportunities for reasonable accommodation in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

8. Students with one of the blood-borne communicable diseases listed above have the right to a free and appropriate public education, without restriction. Accordingly, a student with one of these disease will be expected to maintain regular attendance, as required by State law. If an alternate placement is necessary or deemed appropriate or if the student needs related services, the District shall comply with the requirements of Section 504, IDEA and/or the ADA, and shall follow the guidelines for such alternate placement established by the USDOE’s Office for Civil Rights.  Lastly, should be student be unable to attend school as a result of the illness, an alternative education program shall be provided.

F.S. 1001.41, 1003.42, 1006.07

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