Community Health and Safety

Restricted Travel Destinations

Update as of 11/17/20

A travel advisory is in place for out-of-state travel except for the following states: California, Delaware, Hawaii, Maine, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Virginia and West Virginia (and the District of Columbia). Also, all Marylanders are encouraged to avoid non-essential travel to a state that has a positivity rate of 10% or places with an average case rate of 20 per 100,000. 

As of Monday, November 9

The St. Mary's County Health Department has updated the travel advisory to states with greater than a 10% positivity rate.  It now includes these states:  Alabama, Florida, Idaho, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, South Carolina and Texas. (No changes for the week of November 9, 2020.)

The daily COVID-19 health assessment will be updated to reflect this information. 

Any student or staff member who travels to a state with a COVID-19 positivity test rate above 10% should get tested and self-quarantine at home until test results are received. 

  • This excludes the District of Columbia and Virginia
  • Those who travel to a state with a COVID-19 positivity test rate above 10% must do the following before returning to campus:
    • Self-quarantine and get tested
      • Anyone developing signs or symptoms of COVID-19 should get tested within 48 hours
      • Those returning from out-of-state travel who remain asymptomatic should get tested at least 4-6 days after their last travel date
      • If COVID-19 test results return negative, individual may return to campus as long as they are not experiencing any symptoms of illness
      • If those returning from out-of-state travel decide not to get tested, he/she must self-quarantine for 14 days starting after their last travel date

Please visit the St. Mary's County Health Department web site for up to date details and locations:

Questions? Please contact Mr. DJ Hayes at


School Response Chart

To download the pdf, click here. 

Students or staff who become ill during the school day

Two nurse/medical offices will be set up to triage students or staff members who become ill during the school day. Anyone exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms will be transported to the isolated medical office to await transportation home. 



In the event of a confirmed case of COVID-19 at SMR, a community wide message will be released from the school in regard to the confirmed COVID-19 case with the plan of action.  If there were any events or athletic contests with outside schools or communities within the past 14 days since the confirmed case, a message will be sent to the school(s) or communities about the confirmed case of COVID-19. We will ask that they also communicate with their local health department and follow their school's COVID-19 policy along with closely monitoring their students for signs and symptoms of COVID-19.

We want to emphasize that we will NOT announce an undiagnosed illness.  FERPA and HIPPA laws are in force regardless of pandemic.  Health Department officials and SMR Admin and Health staff will work together to assess risks and respond to minimize impact. 

Student, Family Member or Staff Member Illness

If a student, family member, or staff member becomes ill and tests positive for COVID-19, they must notify SMR administration immediately and quarantine as per CDC guidelines.   They may not return to campus or sports participation until the isolation period is complete and they are cleared by a medical professional.  Appropriate documentation must be provided to the school for clearance. 

The SMR isolation period for a positive COVID-19 case with symptoms is at least 3 days (72 hours) since recovery - defined as resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications AND improvement in respiratory symptoms (e.g., cough, shortness of breath); AND at least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared.

The SMR isolation period for a positive COVID-19 case without symptoms is at least 10 days since the date of their first positive COVID-19 test assuming that they have not subsequently developed symptoms since their positive test.

Stay home if sick or exposed

If your child is sick (COVID-19 symptoms or other), please keep him/her at home. If your child or anyone in your home has been diagnosed with COVID-19 or has been notified by the Maryland Department of Health that they were in contact with an individual infected with COVID-19, you must notify the School Nurse as soon as possible at The School Nurse in consultation with the SMR administrative team will provide the family with directions about the student’s return to school.

If you have any questions about illness reporting or exposure, please contact the St. Mary's Ryken school nurse, Mrs. Bette Krahling at



Illness Symptoms
COVID 19 Illness Symptoms
Cleaning Schedules

Cleaning schedules will be created and implemented for all facilities to mitigate any communicable diseases.  

All frequently touched surfaces (door handles, sink handles, drinking fountains, transport vehicles/golf cart) and shared objects (supplies) will be cleaned periodically throughout the day.

  • Door handles, desks, and tables will be cleaned between cohort groups.
  • Ventilation systems will be checked and maintained by maintenance staff.
  • All facilities will be cleaned with EPA-approved disinfectants daily.  
Daily Screening

Students and staff will complete a daily at home health checklist before coming to campus. Everyone in our school community will sign a statement committing to this daily step. The checklist will be completed in the mySMR portal and include the following questions:

  • Temperature
  • In the past 24 hours have you had the following symptoms:
    • Fever
    • Cough
    • Sore throat
    • Shortness of breath
    • Have you been in close contact with anyone who has COVID-19?

If student or staff member answers yes to any of the questions or symptoms or has a temperature of 100.4℉ or higher, he/she must quarantine at home and be cleared by a medical provider.  It is highly recommended that he/she is tested for COVID-19 if they answer yes to any of the questions or symptoms or have a temperature of 100.4℉ or higher and communicate with their local health department if they test positive. 

Please contact St. Mary's Ryken Nurse Mrs. Bette Krahling with any questions at



Wearing a Face Covering

Face coverings must be worn to school every day and worn at all times (except during meals, physical education classes and during athletics).

Face coverings must meet the following criteria:

  • cover the nose and mouth
  • if wearing a plastic face shield, you must also wear a face mask that covers your nose and mouth (per local health department guidelines)

If your child uses a reusable mask, please ensure that it is frequently laundered to minimize germs.

SMR will have masks available for purchase in the Campus Store. 



Enhanced Hygiene and Safety Measures

Hygiene Basics

Based on CDC guidelines, all students and staff will be reminded about proper hygiene practices and these practices will be enforced by all SMR staff. CDC guideline posters for proper hygiene practices will be posted throughout SMR facilities.  These guidelines include:

  • Wash your hands with soap and water or use hand sanitizer, especially after touching frequently used items or surfaces and before eating.
  • Avoid touching your face.
  • Sneeze or cough into a tissue, or the inside of your elbow.
  • Disinfect frequently used items and surfaces as much as possible.
  • Students and staff should clean hands frequently.

Hand Washing

Frequent and thorough hand washing is a primary prevention measure against the spread of communicable diseases. When done correctly, hand washing will help students and staff avoid spreading and receiving disease-causing bacteria and viruses.

Effective Hand Washing tips can be found here and below:

  • Use plenty of soap and water.
  • Scrub vigorously wrists, tops of hands, between fingers, under and around rings,
  • Wash palms and fingernails for 20 seconds.
  • Rinse well.
  • Dry.
  • Turn off the faucet with a paper towel so clean hands stay clean.
  • Hand sanitizer can be used to help reduce the spread of germs when soap and water are not available.
  • It is important to wash hands:
    • After blowing nose, coughing, or sneezing
    • After physical activity (gym, weight training)
    • After touching garbage
    • After using the bathroom or assisting another person in the bathroom
    • Before and after caring for someone who is sick
    • Before and after treating a cut or wound
    • Before eating
    • Before, during and after preparing food
    • When hands are dirty

Frequent opportunities for students and staff to wash their hands will be available throughout the day. 

Hand sanitizer will be available to individuals as they transfer from location to location on campus. SMR will supply adequate amounts of hand sanitizer for use.  Hand sanitizer will be available in all classrooms and building entrances.  Individuals are allowed and recommended to bring personal hand sanitizer when possible. 



Visitors and Volunteers

Visitors and volunteers will be unable to work on campus, or complete other volunteer activities that require in-person interaction. Adults on campus are limited to essential personnel only. 



Transitions, Classrooms, Restrooms and Personal Property


  • Hallways will include one-way traffic markings to reduce contact.

Classroom procedures:

  • Visual markers will be used around doorways and inside classrooms to support physical distancing during transitions.

  • Students will carry personal belongings. 

  • Shared restroom/hall passes will not be used. 

  • All shared spaces (computer lab, media center, Donnie Williams Center) will be cleaned between cohort use.

  • Seating: Each class and hallway will have visual aids to illustrate traffic flow, appropriate spacing, assigned seating areas.

  • When possible, windows will be open in the classroom before students arrive and after students leave. 

Personal Property:

  • Students will not use lockers to store personal property. All personal property brought to school will be carried by the student throughout the school day in their backpack/bag.

  • Personal property must be labeled with a student name and will only be used by the student.


  • Restrooms assigned based on cohort rooms and building location.

  • Visual reminders will be used in all restrooms to encourage hygienic practices including:

    • Hand-washing techniques

    • Covering coughs/sneezes

    • Social distancing

    • Facial coverings

    • Covid-19 symptoms



Physical Distancing

The following physical distancing protocols will be in place. 

  • Classroom space will be appropriately set up in accordance with social distancing guidelines. 

  • Assigned seating to maximize physical distancing and minimize physical interaction. 

  • Hallways will include one-way traffic markings to reduce contact.



Cohort Groups

Cohorts will be utilized for contract-tracing purposes. 

  • Students will be separated and attend on campus learning by alphabetical split.

  • Contact-tracing logs will be utilized for each bus run of a specific route.



Have a Back Up Plan

While the goal is to provide as much instruction as possible on campus, the need to respond to the impact of the pandemic will require cooperation by everyone in the SMR community. Many factors may impact the ability of students to come to campus. On-campus learning may need to transition to complete virtual learning, students with COVID-19 or quarantined students will need to stay home, and the fluid changes in this environment may require a combination of on-campus and virtual learning.

The SMR administration will keep our families and staff up to date with any changes using the mySMR portal, email and text messages.