Skip to content

They donate more blood to ARUP than any other group or organization in the State of Utah. We’re talking about Jordan School District high school students.

On this episode of the Supercast, we visit a blood drive at Copper Hills High organized by HOSA students. We talk to the student donors and find out why CHHS manages to donate a record amount of blood each year and why ARUP couldn’t do their life-saving work without students.


Audio Transcription

(00:17):
Hello, and welcome to the Supercast. I'm your host, Superintendent Anthony Godfrey. They donate more blood to ARUP than any other group or organization in the entire State of Utah. We're talking about Jordan School District high school students. Today, we visit a blood drive at Copper Hills High organized by HOSA students. HOSA is Health Occupation Students of America, and it is a club that promotes career opportunities in the healthcare industry. Every year, Copper Hills High students managed to donate a record amount of blood. ARUP is the sole provider of blood to the Huntsman Cancer Institute, Shriners Hospital for children. And you have hospitals and clinics. They say their life-saving work simply wouldn't happen without help from students. Tell me your name.

Student:
My name is Ethan Woods.

Superintendent Godfrey:
And what is it that makes you want to give blood today?

Student:
Well, it's an easy and quick way to do service, especially with COVID-19. It's really hard to serve in the community and me personally, having O negative blood, I know that's really needed right now. And so, it's a really good way to give back to my community.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Giving O negative is a big positive. You're a rare breed. That's awesome. Do you do it for the free Gatorade?

Student:
Partially. The treats are a really nice bonus.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Have you given blood before?

Student:
I have given blood, I think three times before here, all part of the Copper Hills blood drive.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Okay. So the needle is in your relaxed arm, how are you feeling?

Student:
It's like a feeling of calmness, I guess, because there's all the anxiety getting the needle in. But once it's actually in, I generally feel just really calm and relaxed.

Superintendent Godfrey:
There really are a lot of things like that in life.The anticipation is the worst. When you're sitting there giving blood, do you think about the fact that you're saving a life, that you're providing help to someone who can't get it any other way?

Student:
Probably something that I think about, I get calls from ARUP when they confirm that my blood has been used. I've done research about it and I know that O negative is one of the blood types that they use when they don't know an infant's blood type and the infant needs to be saved. So that's something I generally think about when donating blood.

Superintendent Godfrey:
That's awesome. Do you get to use this as an excuse for turning something in late or taking a test perhaps?

Student:
Well, I get to use it for service hours for the National Honor Society Club and I also get to miss class time, so that's great.

Superintendent Godfrey:
I know the reason you're doing it is to help people. It's nice to get a little icing on that cake though.

Student:
Yeah.

Superintendent Godfrey:
What year in school are you?

Student:
I'm a senior.

Superintendent Godfrey:
What do you want to do?

Student:
I want to go into film production, actually.

Superintendent Godfrey:
That's exciting. What are your favorite movies?

Student:
I really love mystery movies, so like Clue the Classic.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Ah, yeah. Good. Nice, well, good luck with your career aspirations and thanks for being an inspiration donating blood today.

Student:
Thank you.

Student:
Well, I'm one of the hosts of council members. I'm just making sure everybody's 6 feet apart and what's your name?

Student:
It's Dixie Mulsatey.

Superintendent Godfrey:
And you do get to give out the snacks.

Student:
Well, yeah, kind of. Well, everybody just gets pick.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Everyone gets to pick.

Student:
Yeah.

Superintendent Godfrey:
So you're not here to give them out. You're here more to protect them from people who want to overindulge.

Student:
Maybe.

Superintendent Godfrey:
What's the most popular?

Student:
The Fruit Roll-up.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Oh, the fruit by the foot. Yes. Excellent choice. Definitely.

Student:
And I think the cheeses.

Superintendent Godfrey:
How long have you been involved in HOSA?

Student:
This is gonna be my second year, but this year I'm part of the council members.

Superintendent Godfrey:
What does the blood drive mean to you as a member of HOSA?

Student:
I feel like it's a sign of hope. It i really brings our school together because one of our schools was one of the most hubs. They depend on us a lot and our schools is one of the biggest donors. So it's really nice to bring everyone together and give more, you know, we're helping everybody out.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Tell me your name.

Student:
My name is Ila Mikich.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Ila, tell me about HOSA for those who aren't familiar with the organization. What do you do? It is what it stands for.

Student:
Well, HOSA stands for Health Occupation Students of America. And it's basically just a club for anyone that is interested in the medical field. And it's a really great club. It's very welcoming. The advisors and the students members, they're all very, very kind and respectful. We do lots of service projects. Like last year we did a rice bags for children at the hospital for the cancer patients this year. We're planning on doing like fleece blankets for them too. We also do a lot of medical related stuff. We might even have a surgery we're going to watch, like a surgery and a virtual surgery happened this year.

What is HOSA's involvement in the blood drive?

Student:
HOSA's involvement? Well we have our host, some members and our advisors. We try to get as many people as we can to sign up for the blood drive. So we promote it for about two weeks before the blood drive happens. Today, we are just helping out by standing here, making sure everyone gets checked in. And then you have someone assigned, making sure everyone is social distancing.

Superintendent Godfrey:
What percentage of those who sign up show up last year?

Student:
I know we had about 150 people sign and usually have like about 120 people show up.

Superintendent Godfrey:
That's a really good showing. That's really good. Thanks for the work you're doing. I think it's fantastic.

Student:
Yeah. Thanks.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Thanks for talking with us. Stay with us to hear more about students who are helping to save lives by donating blood.

Stacee Worthen:
Hello, I'm Stacee Worthen, Secondary Counseling Specialist for Jordan School District. Do you know all the ways during school that District counselors can help you and your students? School counselors play such an important role in our schools. They provide parents with resources to help guide their children in academics. They provide support with the mental and social well-being of students in our school. And, if you were in the process of preparing a student for college or just beginning the conversation of higher education, now is the perfect time to reach out to your child's counselor. We can assist with college applications and college readiness. I encourage parents and guardians to schedule an appointment and get to know your student's counselor. Together, counselors and parents can help develop plans and strategies for students to succeed, long after they leave Jordan School District. Reach out. We're always here to help. You can find us and learn more at counseling.jordandistrict.org.

Superintendent Godfrey:
We're here with Rob from ARUP at the Copper Hills High School blood drive. This is not the first blood drive Copper Hills High School has gone.

Rob:
Copper Hills is actually the largest blood drive we hold all year. We hold the four individual drives with Copper Hills throughout the school year, collect more units here than we do from any of our other sponsors.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Any sponsor. Now, does that mean any other high school sponsor?

Rob:
Any sponsor, other church, any other University and any other businesses. Copper Hills and their drives collects more blood for us than any of the other sponsors.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Why do you think that is? What is it about Copper Hills?

Rob:
I haven't been able to put a finger on it. The teachers are always enthusiastic and I think that enthusiasm spills over into the students. And every time I come here, there's just been a great outpouring of support. Students are willing to put the effort into it and willing to make sure that the blood drives are successful.

Superintendent Godfrey:
I think it's a great tradition and that sounds like it's built momentum over the years. That makes us number one. I like to hear that.

Rob:
Yes, it's a great tradition. It's actually, you can have a great tradition in Jordan District. Some of the biggest high schools in the state here that are holding blood drives with, we collect nearly a thousand units of blood from all of the schools combined and Copper Hills kind of leads the way. But all the other schools are running right close behind.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Are there some groups that have decided not to sponsor a blood drive this year because of the pandemic?

Rob:
Since around March 12th when most of the drives started canceling, the majority of the drives that canceled were business drives. They were sending their employees home, working from home. And drives are still continuing to cancel on a regular basis. Our business drives we're seeing through the summer, since the pandemic came into full effect, we've seen a lot of church sponsored blood drives, and that's been kind of our main support through the summer.

But now that the schools are back in, we're seeing the schools wanting to put in keep the drives going and put in the effort to help us be here. The students are so willing to support the blood drives. We've just been really looking forward and hoping that the school stay open. If we can be here to hold these drives, is it just so well supported and we're so grateful for the efforts of the students and their advisor.

Superintendent Godfrey:
So without students you'd be in trouble.

Rob:
We would, we'd still be struggling along. We were averaging around 20 blood drives a month since April. We should be upwards of 45 to 50. We were averaging about 17 units of blood every single blood drive, which is less than half of what we would normally average. So now that we're back into the schools, we're hoping to see that average go up. We definitely have more drives on the calendar. We're just hoping and praying that the units are coming in.

Superintendent Godfrey:
What are some of the precautions being taken to make sure that blood drives are safe in the midst of a pandemic?

Rob:
As many as the CDC has put out and as we can actually instigate or implement in one of our blood drives. We're doing it. Our staff, when they show up to our facility to get ready to go to a blood drive, puts on a mask, then they wear that mask through the entire day, in transit to the drive, mask while they're at the blood drive, unless they're having their lunch or taking a drink they stay masked. And then they stay masked in transit back to our facility, as they check out and do with the end of the day work. And then they don't take their mask off again until they leave. We are doing regular checks for their temperatures to make sure that they're staying healthy, asking them to self quarantine if they have any sort of illness symptom. We are testing the staff on a weekly basis to make sure that everybody's safe. When we come to a facility for a blood drive, we're measuring out spacing between waiting areas and actual working stations to make sure that we've gotten the physical distancing.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Where does the blood go?

Rob:
Where does the blood go? Wow, we're the sole provider of blood to Huntsman Cancer Hospital, the University Hospital in their clinics and the Shriner's Hospital for children and a couple other facilities around the Salt Lake Valley.

Superintendent Godfrey:
And what's the need level right now?

Rob:
Boy, I put it this way. The need is always increasing. We need blood every single day. Hard to say exactly how much we're going to need every day. Each day is a little bit different. Earlier in September, we had 25 patients come into the hospital. One of those patients used 179 products on their own. That is two Copper Hills is blood drives to one patient. But then  yesterday, we had 36 patients come in and 46 products were used. So it just kind of depends on the day. The best way to put it is there's a constant need on a daily basis. And that need doesn't diminish. It's just always there.

Superintendent Godfrey:
How long does blood stay good for?  How long can it be used after it's been donated?

Rob:
From a whole blood unit, we'll take generally two products, red blood cells and plasma red blood cells last for about 35 days. Plasma can be frozen because it's mostly water and it will last for about a year. Usually within that 35 days shelf life, those red blood cells are used.

Superintendent Godfrey:
So, based on the need you described, it would be pretty rare for anything to expire or get even close.

Rob:
Very rare, this time of year and what the conditions we are in now. Very rare.

Superintendent Godfrey:
What are the qualifications to donate blood who's eligible and who isn't?

Rob:
Basically, we're looking for donors that are healthy and well no symptoms of any illness, not just COVID-19, but just any illness. That's the first check for any of our blood donors. Are you feeling healthy and well today? High school is a little bit different because we have to make sure that the donors have the body mass, so they have enough blood in their system to be able to donate. But in general, donors need to be 110 pounds 16, 17, 18 years old. Sixteen is the youngest we'll take. Most people are eligible to donate blood. We'll put it that way. Most just need realize that they can do it.

Superintendent Godfrey:
What would someone need to do if they wanted to participate in giving blood?

Rob:
Best way for them is to go to our website, utahblood.org. They can reach out to us through that way. They can a blood drive there, or they can at least get in touch with us and we can help them find the closest drive to them. We've got drives all over the State every single month. Well, all over Northern Utah, Utah County up into Cache County. They just need to get in touch with us and we can help them find the drive that's closest to them.

Superintendent Godfrey:
So what would you say to students who have been participating in been supporting the blood drives? Not just this year, but over the years.

Rob:
First of all, thank you so much. You've been a great contributor to the lives of so many. It would be awesome to be able to take you to the hospital and introduce you to these people, and to their families who you've helped support and save lives, but we don't get to do that. All I can tell you is thank you. And there are so many out there, my brother included, that that wouldn't be alive today without your efforts.

Superintendent Godfrey:
How did the HOSA students, the Health Occupation Students of America get involved in helping set these up? What's their role?

Rob:
Their role is from beginning to end. I contacted the advisor. The advisor helps me get blood drives on the schedule. And then I meet with the advisor and the students three to four weeks outside of a blood drive to talk to them about how the day needs to be set up, what needs to be in place for each one of the donors, make sure that they understand the process that needs to be gone through so that all the donors that are coming to the drive as prepared as possible. They're here at the drives helping check in students, making sure that they're coming with everything that they need to be prepared to donate. They're here in the canteen, watching the donors after they've donated to make sure that they're feeling well, but the most important job that they play is making sure that the donors are getting signed up. They're recruiting for us. They're our mouthpiece when we can't be. They're the ones that are talking the blood drives up, encouraging the people to donate the sign up, to donate and encouraging people to be here. So without them, we wouldn't be able to hold it.

Superintendent Godfrey:
It's the best kind of peer pressure.

Rob:
Absolutely.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Thank you, Rob. Appreciate it.

Thanks for joining us for another episode of the Supercast. Remember, education is the most important thing you will do today. We'll see you out there.

Show Audio Transcription
Share the Supercast!

It is a quiet place inside Monte Vista Elementary School where students are learning to identify, express and manage their emotions for a happier, healthier experience at school. On this episode of the Supercast, Stockton, a sixth-grade student at Monte Vista Elementary, shares his stress relief routine inside the Wellness Center. It is a room that is impacting the lives of students, teachers and staff in a calm, relaxing and welcoming environment.


Superintendent Godfrey:
Welcome to the Supercast. I'm your host, Superintendent Anthony Godfrey. On this episode of the Supercast, Stockton, a sixth-grade student, shares his stress relief routine inside the new Wellness Center at Monte Vista Elementary School. The Wellness Center is a room where students are learning to identify, express and manage their emotions for a happier, healthier experience at school. It is a 10 minute break from daily routines that is impacting the lives of students, teachers, and staff. Let's start with Stockton and his stress relief routine. We're here in the Wellness Center at Monte Vista Elementary with Stockton. Now, let me guess. Were you named after a basketball player?

Stockton:
Yes, I was.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Is that basketball player called Malone?

Stockton:
No, it was not.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Okay. Well, I was close. Thanks for talking with me today. How many times have you visited the Wellness Center?

Stockton:
I visited once and I've come here other times and shown my friends around and my mom.

Superintendent Godfrey:
And what do you like about the Wellness Center?

Stockton:
I love how the Wellness Center has everything that you might need to relieve your stress and it helps you be better get after you come here. You're ready to learn and it's got everything that you would think that's fun.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Yeah, it does look like a fun place and it does look like a kind of relaxing place, everywhere you look. What are some of your favorite parts of the Wellness Center?

Stockton:
I love over here on the wall.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Let's take a walk over there. What do we have here?

Stockton:
So, we have kind of stress relievers and you apply pressure and pushes up hard and you try to get the other color up.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Oh, this is about a two foot by two foot square.

Stockton:
Yes.

Superintendent Godfrey:
And it looks like a picture at first, but as soon as you applied pressure to it, Stockton, I saw it is filled with colorful goo of some kind.

Stockton:
Yes, some kind of oil. And some of it goes to the bottom and some stays to the top and if you apply pressure, try to get the other color to the top.

Superintendent Godfrey:
So she feel like applying a pressure to something that's a really good place to move the pressure from you on the wall.

Stockton:
Yes.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Yeah, that looks great. Let me give it a shot. Going to try this one. You've got the yellow and green I'm trying to. Oh, see that's, wow! It has a good feel to it too.

Stockton:
Yeah.

Superintendent Godfrey:
And when you push on it, you don't expect it, the colors to move around. That's really something.

Stockton:
Use your feet to apply pressure as well.

Superintendent Godfrey:
And wow, I feel like I'm playing Dance, Dance Revolution at a certain point here. Wow. That's cool. I have kind of an apocalyptic sunset here that I'm creating. What else do you have around here that you liked?

Stockton:
I really like these blocks right here.

Superintendent Godfrey:
I saw you were messing with those when you first walked in. What does that involve?

 

Stockton:
Yeah. These are just like rocks, but they have all kinds of edges.

Superintendent Godfrey:
And they're smaller. They're smaller than your fist.

Stockton:
Yeah. They're pretty small.

Superintendent Godfrey:
And in various colors, but it looks like they can stack in a lot of different ways ,if you will.

Stockton:
Yeah. They can stack a lot of different ways. And this is a good time to relax and try to try to make whatever you want. One other thing that I liked is this art.

Superintendent Godfrey:
We knocked over, you know what? It's good that you've done that before because our microphone person, Doug, just knocked that over, but you're going to be able to rebuild it.

Stockton:
We can rebuild it, we have upgraded technology for this.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Okay. So show me what this right here?

Stockton:
Apparently it a Zen Artist Board and you have a brush, you put water on it and then you can paint whatever you want.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Oh. Now are you painting with water? Is that how that's working?

Stockton:
You're kind of painting water. This is not good art, but the Chevrolet logo.

Superintendent Godfrey:
A Chevrolet. You meant to drive a Ford, but it came up Chevy on accident?

Stockton:
Yeah. I can try a Chevy down here.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Oh yeah. There it goes. Yeah. Very nice. Now, it doesn't fade very quickly but it is starting to pick up.

Stockton:
And now, with the water, it's starting to fade away and you can come in and you can write, what's stressing you out, then you can watch it "fade away", like he can put it.

Superintendent Godfrey:
So give me an example.

Stockton:
You could do math, multiplication and then

Superintendent Godfrey:
Math makes you frustrated or upset right now. You write it on the board and it fades away.

Stockton:
Yes.

Superintendent Godfrey:
That is very soothing. In fact, the whole time I was kind of envious that you had it in your hand and I didn't. Can I give it a try?

Stockton:
Go ahead.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Alright, let me give it a shot. Email. Okay. I got pretty heavy on the "E" so it dripped all the way to the bottom. All right. We'll see how quickly that email fades. Now does that mean as soon as it fades, my entire inbox will be swept clean?

Stockton:
Yes it will!

Superintendent Godfrey:
Thanks.

Stockton:
You know what, when you go back, your inbox was zero.

Superintendent Godfrey:
This is the favorite interview I've ever done right now. It's great talking with you. Anything else? Any parting thoughts about the Wellness Center?

Stockton:
I love the Wellness Center because I get migraines and I usually get migraines from lack of sleep or when something's stressing me out. So, when I'm getting stressed, I know that a migraine might come on. So, I come here to the Wellness Center and I calm down and it helps.

Superintendent Godfrey:
I can't think of a better way to experience the Wellness Center than with you as my tour guide.

Stockton:
Thank you.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Thanks a lot for your time. Good luck in science today.

Stockton:
Thanks. Good luck in your email.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Thanks a lot. I'll need it. Stay with us. When we come back more on the Wellness Center, where I will experience a zero gravity chair and play something called a tone tongue drum for the first time. Find out how I did next.

Stacee:
Hello, I'm Stacee Worthen, Secondary Counseling Specialist for Jordan School District. Do you know all the ways during school district counselors can help you? Your student school counselors play such an important role in our schools. They provide parents with resources to help guide their children in academics. They provide support with the mental and social well-being of students in our schools. And if you are in the process of preparing a student for college, or just beginning the conversation of higher education, now is the perfect time to reach out to your child's counselor. We can assist with college applications and college readiness. I encourage parents and guardians to schedule an appointment and get to know your students counselor. Together, counselors and parents can help develop plans and strategies for students to succeed long after they leave during the school district. Reach out. We're always here to help. You can find us and learn more at counseling.jordandistrict.org.

Superintendent Godfrey:
We're back in the Health and Wellness Center now with Nanette Ririe, the principal and Jodee Packer, the Social Emotional Learning Specialist for the Wellness Center here. Thanks for spending time with us today and talking to us about the Wellness Center. We have a few of these in the District, and I know I talked with you a couple of years ago about your desire to put this in place. And here it is, and it looks fabulous! So, tell us a little bit about how we got here.

Nanette:
Well, thank you for coming.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Last year we realized that we were seeing, with Jodee's help and the help of a few teachers, that we were having a lot of students who were anxious and feeling it was getting in the way of their learning. So, we were trying to figure out how we could help that situation. And we found out that Oquirrh had their Wellness Center. So Jodee and our School Psychologist, Lisa Stillman, went over to visit last year. And then I went over to spend time with the Principal Shauna Worthington, and just felt like this is what we needed to help our students just before they get to the point of escalation with their anxiety or their stress, to catch that before that happens and get them back into class, ready and better prepared to learn. So that was our goal.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Now, I know you have a lot of staff here that helps provide support when students are feeling that way. Jodee is one of those staff members. Jodee, tell us a little bit about how your role has evolved here at Monte Vista.

Jodee:
When I came last year, I was assigned to just one or two specific students. By the end of the year, that was 15 - 20 students and we were seeing the stress and anxiety still rising. So I started out kind of one-on-one and now I see about a hundred kids a week.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Well, what we realized is that there's a lot more stress and a lot more social and emotional learning needs than ever before, especially in a year like 2020. So it is great timing. And when I first walked in,  it was a very calm place.

Jodee:
Last year we talked to our School Community Council about the idea as well, and to get their thoughts and opinions about it. And so they, they were onboard. They were so excited, as well, for the opportunity to have their students have a chance to unwind, place, to go and to get back to learning better prepared. So, I really appreciated their support. Just knowing that and recognizing, from a parent perspective, that this would be a good thing here. Also, we wanted to make sure that we address the needs of our teachers. So, our Wellness Center isn't just for students, it's for teachers as well. We've had several teachers on their break or before and after school, come in and just sit with the lights dimmed and a chance just to refresh.

Superintendent Godfrey:
As the principal, have you seen a reduction in referrals for behavior or difficulties in the classroom after the Wellness Room was put in place?

Nanette:
Yes, we've seen a significant drop. We've only had a couple, maybe two, since school started and they were very minor issues. We expected a lot more, to be honest, just because of the nature of where we're at. And we haven't seen as many office referrals, which has been great because that gives us more time to do other things.

Superintendent Godfrey:
That's really remarkable to see. Just giving students a pause, because sometimes our focus is not on giving them space and giving them pause and allowing them to renew. It's just reminding them of what they're supposed to be doing. This is an innovative and really responsive way of doing that.

Nanette:
Yeah, we're excited. We're excited to not only just have this available for students, but also to give them some strategies too that they can take on throughout their life on how to deal with stress and what they can do to get back to a good place.

Superintendent Godfrey:
It has a nice dim-lit look. There are pictures around the room and peaceful music, which we have turned down for the benefit of being able to record our conversation. But there's a big screen with very peaceful images, video of nature, and just some soothing footage that really creates a mood from the moment you walk in.

Jodee:
We have kids and teachers that will come in and roll out one of these beanbags and just lay there and listen and watch those videos until they feel prepared and ready to go back.

Superintendent Godfrey:
It's like the best screen-saver ever. It looks really, really awesome.

Jodee:
It made me want to travel.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Yeah. High definition and just video from around the world. So walk us through a little bit. Tell us about some of the features of the Wellness Center.

Jodee:
Well, when a student comes in, they show us on this wall, how they're feeling, and we call this our emotional temperature and it's zones of regulation. And so if they can't see a word here that maybe tells how they're feeling, then they'll point to a color. So for example, our blue color is feeling sad or confused, shy, embarrassed, tired and they may be coming in feeling this way or nervous, angry, anxious under the yellow color. Our goal is to get them back to green, where they're excited, proud, happy, ready to go back to class.

Superintendent Godfrey:

And curious.  I like that.

Jodee:
So they come in and they show us how they're feeling.

Superintendent Godfrey:
And red is scared, furious or mad.

Jodee:
It is. And we ask them to try and come when they hit this yellow. We accept them, however they come, but we get them here at yellow and we remember that we are trying to stop before we get to these stronger feelings that take longer to calm down from.

Superintendent Godfrey:
So do you find most in the yellow zone or in the blue?

Jodee:
So the first two and a half weeks of school, it was blue because a lot of us missed moms. We missed our families. And now that we're getting deeper into the curriculum, we're getting more yellows, more nervous, more anxious about things.

Superintendent Godfrey:
The blue doesn't surprise me when you described the reason, because families were used to being close and being together and now students were pulled away. We knew that would be an adjustment, but how nice for them to be able to express that.

Jodee
Yes, even the tired because they're going from sleeping and doing what they want all day to being at school and going all day.

Superintendent Godfrey:
So tell me about the toolbox you have here.

Jodee:
So two of our favorites are the fidgets.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Oh, the fidgets, this, okay. This is the snake from the eighties.

Jodee:
Yes.
Superintendent Godfrey:
I liked that.

Jodee:
This is a favorite fidget and it's just.....

Superintendet Godfrey:
Okay. I picked that up. It's a bright orange ball that doesn't look squishy until you pull it up.

Jodee:
This is one of my favorites. It's our gratitude station. It's a place where students who are feeling anxious, nervous, stressed can come in and write a thank you note to someone who's helped them throughout their day or throughout their week. And we've found that by helping them taking a moment to be grateful and appreciate the good, and then share that with that person, they leave feeling much better. We also have students writing notes to residents at a local nursing home, and then I take those over and drop them off.

Superintendent Godfrey:
How frequently do you end up with notes for the nursing home?

Jodee:
I've gone over twice with about six little sets of notes for them.

(16:05):
I left a wide variety of options that you have to meet various needs.

Jodee:
There are so many different personalities that we try and cover when anyone went off. And this one, I think you'll want to see. Alright, let's take a look. I know you're a musician and this is a tone drum.

Superintendent Godfrey:
It's like maybe a little pillow, but it has these tabs number tabs. And I now have the mallets in my hand. Oh, they're soft. All right. Let's see what happens here.  (music)  I feel like I need to release a New Age album now. That's really fun. If I just show up, actually, if you can't find me, I'm probably here playing on the tone tongue. That's really something. Are there other things here or can I just keep playing with this?

Jodee:
You can keep playing, but there are other things.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Now for the big finale (music). This feels good, it feels right. No wonder kids love to come here. There is such a great variety of things to do. Talk us through the remainder of the room.

Jodee:
We have teepees. Some kids come in upset or in tears, but don't want kids in class to know that they're upset or kids walking by or coming in. And so they can go have a quiet moment in the teepee, either with the tools that we have here or just to sit and calm. And they just clip their little teepee closed and they can have a few minutes to regroup without an audience.

Superintendent Godfrey:
It strikes me that everything here is based on long experience with trying to help students with their individual needs.

Jodee:
Everything about this room is about the individual student. Nothing is done in groups in this room. Everything is about meeting the need of that child in that moment. I do have one more thing I'd love for you to try.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Let's see it.

Jodee:
This is special for our teachers only. And it's right here. I'm going to pull it out for you.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Okay.  This looks like it's going to be fun.

Jodee:
Okay. I will warn you. It's a low seat so when you sit down, don't be surprised that it's low.

Superintendent Godfrey:
This is, maybe, like a lounge chair that you would sit on.

Jodee:
It's a Zero Gravity Chair, and if you tip backwards, don't worry, you will not tip over.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Not mistake, that feels good. I haven't felt this good for quite a while. It's the buildup of being in the Wellness Room for as long as I was. And now I'm in a Zero Gravity Chair.

Jodee:
We even have a cupboard here that is for teachers only. There is a neck massager that can go on the chair there, bath and body works lotion, because we get dried out with the air circulating so fast and being here all day. And then, there is chocolate.

Superintendent Godfrey:
This is great. It is true that at a school or at an office, a lot of times there isn't a place to just kind of duck and have some quiet, even the faculty room. There tends to be a lot of coming and going and you can't really escape the bustle.

Jodee:
Yeah. It's been really nice for teachers to stop in before and after school. And even during rotations, when they have a minute to step away. And it's been good for the students to see that adults need a moment. So it benefits both to have teachers come in.

Superintendent Godfrey:
I think that's a really important point for kids to know that adults need this too. We've all known that just a few minutes of a break can make a big difference. Sometimes we just need to close the office door, the bedroom door, and just take a breather for a minute before we take on the rest of our day and giving kids the space. And ability to do that just makes a lot of sense. I'm really impressed and excited about what you have here, because this is a tool that's really going to help you meet the needs of students. And, like you said earlier, help remove some barriers to learning.

Jodee:
Yes, the ultimate goal would be to get students back into their classrooms, you know, just ready and more focused on what the teachers are teaching them.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Thank you for giving us a tour and spending time with me.

Jodee:
Thank you so much for coming. It's been a pleasure having you here, and we just thank you for your support.

Nanette:
It takes a team and has just been all of us working together to get to where we are today and just really want to thank Jodee. She's kind of like the heart and soul of the Wellness Center.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Both of you, over the last couple of years I've known how focused you've been on trying to find a way to meet those needs and "Bravo", because obviously, you've done a great job.

Nanette:
Thank you. Thank you so much for coming.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Thanks for joining us on another episode of the Supercast. I'm going to play you out on the tone tongue, but remember, education is the most important thing we'll see out there.

Show Audio Transcription
Share the Supercast!

They are sewing success one pattern at a time. We’re talking about students in the Fashion Pathways Program at Herriman High School. On this episode of the Supercast, we take you inside the class and find out how some very talented students are using their sewing and fashion design skills making face masks to benefit Special Olympics athletes in Utah.


Audio Transcription

Superintendent Godfrey:
Hello, and welcome to the Supercast. I'm your host, Superintendent Anthony Godfrey. Today we take in the sights and sounds of a unique class at Herriman High School, where students are sewing their way to success, one pattern at a time. We will talk with some very talented young ladies in the Fashion Pathways Program who are using their fashion and design skills to make face masks for Special Olympic athletes in Utah. It is a service project that is also a labor of love for the students.

Student:
I'm Lauren Stockton. I'm a senior at home in high school. I'm in Sewing III with Jennifer Glassy is my teacher, and I'm also part of FCCLA, Family Careers and Community Leaders of America, and right now I'm sewing masks. Where you start with is two sheets of fabric, usually a base, which is white. And then at top, which is a colored and we cut them full seven and a half inches. The idea of like an assembly line, so one person does one step and then other person does another step. So right now, I'm just doing the first step of sewing down the sides with a half inch seam allowance. And then I would usually hand it off to Liv to iron pleat, and then Stella would usually do the top and the sides to finish it off.
So. it is different from other projects. I'm usually like sewing pants or a shirt. So, it's a different thing every single time. That could be stressful, but for masks, it's actually very therapeutic, just going straight lines. I'll take the pins out of this side so I don't poke myself by accident. And the idea of the assembly line is that we're doing is just to make us like really good at one step, so we're not constantly doing different things like you usually would.

Student:
I am Olivia Roseblocker. I am a part of the Advanced Sewing III class. I'm a senior.  I'm basically at the beginning of the assembly line. I have just cut each piece seven and a half by seven and a half inches right now. I'm actually cutting them so that they line up because it annoys me when they're not perfectly straight together.
First I go and then I backstitch a few and then I go all the way down. I have to. The ironing is the worst because I have to iron in the pleats. I finished 38. Now we're working to finish 50 and possibly more than that, maybe like 75-ish.

Student:
My name is Stella Snyder. I'm a senior Herriman High School. I am in the Sewing III Program. What I'm doing is finishing them off. Basically, all I'm doing is sewing around the edges and making sure they're straight and just sewing over the pleats.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Let's talk about the masks. Let's talk about your project. Let's start with Mrs. Glassy. Tell us a little bit about the mask project for this year.

Mrs. Glassy:
Actually, the Special Olympics has worked with our Business Department in the past. And so, when they put out an email saying we need masks made, the Business Department forwarded it to me, which I really grateful for. We were able to reach out to them and say, "Hey, we can make masks for you". So, they basically just gave us the materials and we started with 50 and that will be because girls volunteer to do that and to take on their time. And honestly, we just started last week, only sewing on the one day and we're pretty much done with the 50. So, we'll probably continue on and do more of them. These 3 girls they're awesome! We did it in class the one day they came in during their free period and lunch. They were here after school on Friday to make sure that we could get these done really quickly so that we can pass them onto the Special Olympics. It's the only way that their athletes can compete this year.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Tell me how does it feel to sew for a purpose like this, as opposed to a class project or something else,

Student:
It's felt awesome. In the past, I've have actually done quite a few service projects, similar to this, but more with refugees. And so, it's awesome that I'm able to get involved with the Special Needs because I have friends with little siblings that have Downs Syndrome. And I also have a second cousin who has Downs Syndrome and we're always trying to get involved in helping out the community. So, it's awesome that I'm able to do this at school and get my friends to help out too.

Student:
I just think it makes this class more significant now we can actually help someone because right now, masks are a necessity and they can be expensive for nicer ones. So, I'm happy we can help people who actually need it.

Superintendent Godfrey:
I think it's great that members of the community, you guys, are the ones making the masks instead of just purchasing masks. These are handmade masks. I think because of the love in the masks, they are going to work better. That's my theory. That's pretty awesome. Can I take a look here? These are some great patterns. So how long does it take you to make a mask start to finish?

Student:
So we do it as an assembly line. So, each of us takes apart in the construction of the mask. And so, it maybe takes us 15 minutes to make one. We haven't made them all at the same time. There's at least 10 that are ready for pleats. And then they're onto the next person and they pile up. But we do with them really quickly.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Earlier, your teacher mentioned Project Runway and it sounds like that got stopped short by the pandemic. What was that?

Student:
So basically, we were invited by an OUT member of the community. He wanted to do a Project Runway type thing. So, it was basically us competing with four other schools in Utah in the Salt Lake City area. We were able to create our own team. The team had photographers, models, make-up, and hair, and designers. The designers were all three of us. And we were able to design and we were starting the construction before we got cut short. We were asked to make two or three outfits and have models go down a runway and compete against the four other schools. We got was the construction of the outfits. Our designs were pretty stellar, if I might say,

Superintendent Godfrey:
Okay, and you didn't get to have anyone walk down the runway with them?

Student:
Unfortunately not.

Superintend Godfrey:
And is there a hope that you can reboot that and maybe still make that happen?

Student:
Our principal is very, very encouraging of this program and he loved the thought of the Project Runway. So, I've been talking to him and he actually came up to me during the summer and said, "Hey, when school starts, talk to me about Project Runway. I want to see if we can encourage it between just Herriman students". And so, I think in the future around, February or March, maybe. We'll probably do something like that with more Herriman students involved.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Wonderful. We'll make sure you invite me if that happens. I'd love to see it. Do some of your friends ask you for fashion advice?

Student:
Well actually, I had a few teammates that would ask me for fashion ideas.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Stay with us. When we come back, we'll learn more about the Fashion Pathways Program from teacher, Jen Glassy.

Sandra Riesgraf:
Are you looking for a job right now? Looking to work in a fun and supportive environment with great pay and a rewarding career. Jordan School District is hiring. We're currently filling full and part time positions. You can work and make a difference in young lives and education as a classroom assistant or a teacher. Apply to work in one of our school cafeterias where our lunch staff serves up big smiles with great food every day. We're also looking to hire custodians and bus drivers in Jordan school district. We like to say, "People come for the job and enjoy the adventure". Apply today at workatjordan.org.

Superintendent Godfrey:
We're back now with Fashion Pathways Program teacher, Jen Glassy. What do you teach first of all here at Herriman?

Mrs. Glassy:
So, I teach Fashion Merchandising, Fashion Design, and then Sewing I, II and III.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Now you may be shocked, looking at me right now, but I really enjoyed my sewing class. I took one in seventh grade and I made a golf shirt. It was orange, because it was the early eighties. And I was always very proud of that. I made a pillow too. That didn't turn out so well. Surprisingly, you would think the pillow would go better than the shirt. Long story short, I really admire what you do and that you teach such an important skill. And I love that there's a pathway. Can you explain to those listening what that means?

(10:06):
Yes. In CTE, we have pathways that help our students explore the different careers. It's like career pathways, basically. They take classes that might interest them and as they go through, the classes build upon each other until they get to the top, which with ours is Sewing III. They also have the opportunity to do an internship or take entrepreneur classes. So, it's just basically a way for them to see skills they're learning in the classroom and how that will apply beyond the classroom, how they can make a career out of it and just explore past the classroom wall.

Superintendent Godfrey:
What are some of the internships that students get involved in when they're doing this type of study?

Mrs. Glassy:
So, we've had students say they've gone on and done a lot of smaller business here that was sewing. We have some students who have gone on and done the costuming for plays. We had a student who went with Hale Theater and did their costuming with them. We've also had just the smaller level with the dance classes. We would like to do more. This is one that we would really like to get students out more into our community and doing internships.

Superintendent Godfrey:
That's exciting to get kids thinking about careers that they might not have thought about, that are connected with interests and abilities that they already have. What are some of the skills, just off the top of your head, that someone who went through this whole program would develop, you three students here, and tell us some of the skills that you have learned in this program.

Student:
Okay. I've developed pretty strong skills in sewing and just learning how to put pieces together with patterns. We learn a lot about patterns and how to cut them out properly and piece them together.

Student:
Yeah. Personally, I've gotten a lot more creative and a lot more out there with my designs. I've also learned a little more about pattern making and how it all fits together. Also, what is am able to. So, out of designing what I'm designing, I feel like I have learned how to design, obviously. But also, to create new things by changing the patterns in different ways. I think we're doing a recycle or redesign type thing, and that's kind fun. I've also learned how to alter things to make them fit me correctly. I've also learned just really great skills for my later life.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Well, I'm going to show you right now. I didn't plan on confessing this, but I am missing a button on my sport coat and I would have to consult an expert. There is no one in my home that can help me with this. And so, I'm glad that some folks have that skill. I've noticed it this morning and I just went with it because I had no other choice. Now, you mentioned a friend that's with you right now. That is your, My Style Barbie. Is that what I understand? So, you each have your My Style Barbie. I'd really like to be introduced. They each have a distinct style, that's for sure. So, can you tell me a little bit about that?

Student:
So with mine, I had trouble thinking of what I wanted to do because my style was kind of all-around weird, different, obviously, from all of the other ones. the fabric kind of looks like "grandma fabric". I don't know. It's kind of like if you were to go to the DI, which a lot of us love at this time of our lives. Almost everyone in the school probably has a thrift outfit. And then I just recycled or redesigned.

Superintendent Godfrey:
And are those two turtles kissing on the shirt?

Student:
They aren't kissing, but they are too close to it. They're coming out of there. It's my personality.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Just the shirt is very reminiscent of my childhood in the seventies. I think there were turtle shirts in my past. Is that kind of a safe way to explore style is on the Barbie.

Student:
Yeah, totally. I mean, it just gives you an idea of what you could make if you were to do it on yourself. It also makes you think of what it would look like on someone and how they would wear it.

Superintendent Godfrey:
So we just talked with Olivia about her My Style Barbie, let's talk with Lauren about yours. I'm noticing that you two are matched up a little bit.

Student:
Yeah.

Superintendent Godfrey:
There is a general safety pin theme going on. The cross-safety pins on your mask are with the safety pins on her skirt. Tell me about her style.

Student:
So for me, since we are just representing how we feel about style on our Barbies, I really enjoy pattern mixing. I'm wearing pattern pants. She has like a checkered skirt that looks like it belongs on a chess board and a little stripe up on her shirt to look like a race track. I really enjoy safety pins because I feel like they get a more industrial look and I love silver jewelry, as it is. And right now, safety pins represent a safe place for people to come to you if you are part of the LGBTQ community. So, I want to be welcoming to everyone with my style, let people know that you can come to me.

Superintendent Godfrey:
So it's style with a message.

Student:
Yeah, exactly.

Superintendent Godfrey:
So the safety pin is safety. It's connection, if you will. And I like that the racing stripe is almost like the checkerboard in the checkered flag as well. Nice. Okay. Now let's talk with Stella about her, My Style Barbie. What have we here?

Student:
So with my Barbie, I like my style. I'm kind of more Bohemian, maybe Hippie, a little bit. She's got a little top knot on her head and her shirt is more of, I don't know how would you describe that. She's got this little sash around her waist that's holding up her skirt and the green kind of ties in with the head band. And I don’t know with my style, I just like the kind of loose, but pretty solid.

Superintendent Godfrey:
It seems like a coherent style. And when you said sash, then I was thinking, "Oh yeah, that's called a sash". And when you said these two colors tie in, I thought, "Oh yeah, those two colors do tie in". So, I'm a little bit behind, but it makes sense. Once you say it, that's really exciting. It's very interesting because it sounds like you really get to not just learn skills, but to express yourself and to learn, to be creative and think about the world in a different way. Would you say that's true?

Student:
Yeah.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Okay. What do you think your future is? Does it involve sewing? Does it involve the things that you've learned in these classes along this pathway?

Student:
So I've actually been looking into the Utah State Outdoor Product and Design Program and I've been wanting to get involved with them by sewing either clothing for outdoors wear or the equipment. And I think it'd be super cool to have a future in graphic design, whether that be with like a big company, like Patagonia, I think that'd be way cool. But I'm super interested in Utah State's program.

Superintendent:
It would be something to walk around and see people wearing things that you had designed. How about you Lauren?

Student:
The dream has always been to just be fashion designer. I really didn't have a plan, but Mrs. Glassy was very helpful in giving us projects of creating slideshows of our dream jobs and what it will entail and the education you need. So, I know a little bit more about fashion design, luckily, and the dream would be fashion design. I wish to go to the University of Utah and study business to help, hopefully, get me into the fashion industry some way.

Superintendent Godfrey:
How about you, Olivia?

(18:12):
I think that'd be great to become a fashion designer or work at an alterations place because I feel like you'd get to work with so many great people that can't buy the high-end stuff and here you are, helping them make their higher end outfits. I also think that creating my own store would be super fun. So hopefully that'll work out in the future.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Well, that's exciting. After talking with you, I have no doubt you have big futures and fashion ahead of you. Have any of you heard of Garanimals? You should really look that up. It's from the seventies and that was my fashion consultant for animals. Check it out.

It's been great talking with you guys and we'll continue to watch the exciting projects that come out of this these classes.

Students:
Thank you so much.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Thanks for joining us on another episode of the Supercast. Remember, education is the most important thing you will do today. We'll see ya.

 

 

Show Audio Transcription
Share the Supercast!

Under the direction of the Jordan Board of Education, Jordan School District is launching a COVID-19 Data Dashboard. The Jordan COVID-19 Data Dashboard will update parents and employees on current COVID-19 case counts in every school and office building so they can make the very best decisions for students, families and themselves. On this episode of the Supercast, we explain how the Jordan Data Dashboard works.

The Jordan COVID-19 Data Dashboard can be found at movingforward.jordandistrict.org


Audio Transcription

Superintendent Godfrey:
Welcome to the Supercast. I'm your host, Superintendent Anthony Godfrey. Under the direction of the Jordan Board of Education, Jordan School District is launching a COVID-19 Data Dashboard. The Jordan COVID-19 Data Dashboard will update parents and employees on current COVID-19 case counts in every school and office building so they can make the very best decisions for students, families, and themselves. The dashboard also shows the current number of students and staff in quarantine. Here to talk about the Jordan Data Dashboard and how it works is our Associate Superintendent, Mike Anderson and Planning and Enrollment Consultant, Caleb Olson. Thanks for joining me today. Most contracts in the District include the phrase, “other duties as assigned”, and this Data Dashboard falls under that category for you because you're someone who's skilled at just doing a lot of different things and pulling numbers together in a meaningful way. Caleb works with our enrollment numbers and our permits and works behind the scenes just to make all of that make sense for our schools, providing data districtwide. And so, I really appreciate your work on the Data Dashboard. I have it here in front of me and we've sent, along with the link to this podcast, a link to every parent and employee so they can access this. Can you just kind of walk me through the information that's included here on the dashboard?

Caleb Olson:
Yes. So, on the Dashboard at the top, where it's most visible and easiest to see, we have a total of the current positive COVID-19 cases in the District. And then we show a number that is the number of individuals districtwide in quarantine at the moment. Underneath that, you can see those same figures for each of our schools and the different work locations. When you go into the table at the bottom, it has a number that is the number of individuals in the building. And that number is the number of people that would be in that building or that location every day. It includes all of the students and all of the employees. Then we subtract out the number of full time, online students who don't come into school.

Superintendent Godfrey:
And the reason for reporting that number is that on Tuesday night, the Board decided that at certain percentage levels, certain things would happen at schools in response to an increase in the number of cases. So that number allows us to quickly see when we're approaching those percentage points.

Caleb Olson:
Exactly. We have that available so that any employee or any parent or any student can come and find their school and see what the situation is, what the case count is like at their building. There's also the ability to look at your feeder system, your area of the District, or to look at different levels of the district. You could see the totals for all of the elementary schools or the middle schools to kind of get that higher-level picture, if that's something you're interested in. Hopefully it's set up in a way that makes sense to our parents and our students and our employees so they can get the information they need to be informed when they make their decisions.

Superintendent Godfrey:
I know that with the County Data Dashboard, there are a lot of people hitting refresh throughout the day. There's a high level of interest in knowing what the latest numbers are. The banner at the top indicates that the data is updated every school day by one o'clock and then when it was last updated. It will be updated once per day. So, once you see that day's update, those are the newest numbers and that's where the numbers will be. Many times we'll get it before 1:00 PM. It's just that 1:00 PM is the latest an update will come.

Caleb Olson:
Yes. We want to make sure that by 1:00 PM, if you were to visit the site, you have the current numbers. What we don't want is to have cases trickle in or to have the number change throughout the day. We’ll update it and do our best to have it as quickly as possible. But by one o'clock every day, school is in session.

Superintendent Godfrey:
One of the things I like about the option to choose level or feeder system, first of all, is that you can compare how your high school or middle or elementary school looks in terms of the case in quarantine numbers compared with other schools in the district. There’s a lot of usefulness for the feeder systems as well. “Feeder” is a term we use a lot. It basically means the elementary schools that feed into a particular middle school and the middle schools that feed into a particular high school. Some places call it a pod. But basically, looking at the feeder statistics allows you to see whether there's a trend with any particular community. And we can look and see that not only is a particular high school seeing higher numbers, but we're seeing a spike at the middle school and at the elementary level as well. That actually hasn't happened yet. The highest numbers have remained at the high school level, which in meetings I've attended with other superintendents and with the County Health Department, seems to be the trend throughout the State.

Caleb Olson:
Exactly. I think if you look at some of the information from the County, they can report by zip code to give you a look at your area for the school district. Our equivalent of that would be the feeder system, the high school and the schools that feed into it. So, if you want to know what your neighborhood is like, you could look at your local school or you can go kind of step back and see the high school and the schools that feed into it. So that's available there for patrons and for our community to look at.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Mike Anderson, Associate Superintendent, let's talk a little bit about the middle column of active cases. We, with the County Health Department, determine these numbers. Can you tell me how an active case is defined?

Mike Anderson:
Yes. I work with the County Health Department on a daily basis. It's one of my “other duties as assigned”, right? Currently active case as defined by the Health Department is 14 days from the day that it is first reported to public health. And it stays on their records for those 14 days. After that, it will drop off.

Superintendent Godfrey:
In the active cases, we have several categories. You'll see a zero if there are no cases at a particular school. And then, if the number is from one to six, we just put that range. So, it's either zero, meaning there are no cases, or one to six, meaning there are one to six active cases. Then, if there are more than six cases, we'll give the individual number of cases at that school. Can you explain to everyone why it is that there is not an individual number all the way down to one?

Mike Anderson:
Well, in cases of one to six, one of the concerns is that those cases would become personally identifiable. It wouldn't be hard to know that if we listed a school as having one case or two cases who those students are in that building.  So out of a concern for privacy and out of a concern for what we refer to as FERPA, which is the Family Education Rights to Privacy Act. If our case count is above the range from one to six, we start listing the actual number of cases. You’ll see that in the middle column. They are coded by color. Anything between seven and fourteen is coded by color as yellow and above 15, we would color code in orange.

Superintendent Godfrey:
So you can quickly see at-a-glance where we have a higher number of cases at a particular school. And, like I said, you can break it down by level or feeder and do some comparisons as well. Now, there are totals at the top of the page as well, and the programmers and our web designer have made it possible for us to have those numbers continually updated on the main webpage. So, even if you're just on the main webpage, those numbers will be there. And that's the current active cases in the district and the individuals in quarantine. But those main totals will also recalculate when you use the dropdown menu on the Data Dashboard page to select either a feeder system or a level. Anything else you would add, Caleb? Any other features or any other aspects of this that you'd like to make people aware of?

Caleb Olson:
No, I hope it's user friendly and good for people to use. It's easy when we start putting numbers in columns like this, to try and have the numbers be accessible. But we also have to remember that each of those numbers is a person who probably doesn't feel too good right now and has had their life turned upside down. We want to get information to people in a way that's easy for them to get to, but also make sure that we're respectful of the people behind those numbers and keep them in mind. I think that's a really important point. The numbers help us make decisions, but those decisions are really based around providing a safe and healthy learning environment and a great educational experience for everyone. We know how important school is and we know how important keeping everyone safe and healthy is. And so, we're balancing those interests and these numbers help us do that. Mike and I were talking about that again last night. Just the fact that each one of these numbers represent someone's life, someone's education and someone's individual circumstance that we're trying to make the best we can.

When there’s a quarantine or positive case, their world has been turned upside down. If I may add personal note here, my son is on quarantine. He was notified and his world has been rocked a little bit, and that's rocked the world of his mother and me. Our entire family's structure has been changed pretty considerably because of that. And so, we want to be sensitive to that. We also want to provide, as you said, good information so that students, parents, families, teachers, and administrators can all make informed decisions. And this is what we hope this Dashboard accomplishes.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Yes. We're all affected in different ways, personally, by this. And the more information we can give to families, employees, parents, students, and members of the community, the better decisions we can all make as we try to get through this together. Thanks very much for all of your hard work to make this possible and for stopping to talk with us on the Supercast today. Thank you. Thanks again to Associate Superintendent, Mike Anderson and Planning and Enrollment Consultant, Caleb Olson for joining us on this episode of the Supercast. You can access the Data Dashboard by visiting https://movingforward.jordandistrict.org/ or click the link on the main page at jordandistrict.org.

Thanks for joining us on another episode of the Supercast. And remember, education is the most important thing you'll do today. We'll see out there.

Show Audio Transcription
Share the Supercast!

What is contact tracing and how does it work when someone tests positive for COVID-19 in our schools? On this episode of the Supercast, we talk with Salt Lake County Health Department Epidemiologist Annie George who explains the process of contact tracing and how parents can track COVID-19 cases daily by using a COVID-19 Data Dashboard established by Salt Lake County Health.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Hello and welcome to the Supercast. I'm your host, Superintendent Anthony Godfrey. What is contact tracing and how does it work when someone tests positive for COVID-19 in our schools? On this episode of the Supercast, we talk with Salt Lake County Health Department Epidemiologist Annie George, who explains the process of contact tracing and how parents can keep track of COVID-19 cases, data by using a COVID-19 Data Dashboard established by Salt Lake County Health. Annie, thanks very much for taking the time. Let's just start out by talking about contact tracing. Why is it important to do contact tracing to keep everyone safe in our schools?

Annie George:
That's an excellent question. The goal of contact tracing is to stop the spread of a disease. We actually use it for other diseases besides COVID. But the goal there is to let people know who have been exposed to the disease so they can take the appropriate precautions to hopefully contain the spread.

Superintendent Godfrey:
How does contact tracing work?

Annie George:
Specifically for COVID, we look at those who have been in close contact with an individual who's tested positive. We define close contact as within six feet of someone and then if the duration is for longer than 15 minutes. We also are putting in the caveat that this is with or without a mask. We get a lot of questions about that.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Why are we wearing masks if we still have to quarantine?

Annie George:
So, as a lot of studies that have come out recently have shown, not all masks are created equal. Some of them are more effective than others, depending on what they're made out of. And also, it requires the people to be wearing their masks correctly. I've seen as I've gone about out in the community lately, there are a lot of people that will just wear the masks over their mouths with their noses are sticking out. To kind of mitigate the risk there, we keep to that definition of within six feet for longer than 15 minutes.

Superintendent Godfrey:
I have a couple of follow-up questions on that. First of all, I've heard some confusion over time about whether those 15 minutes have to be consecutive or not.

Annie George:
Yes, that's generally the guidelines we use, if it's been consecutive.

Superintendent Godfrey:
So for the most part, it's 15 consecutive minutes, that's the threshold you're looking at to determine whether someone has really, truly been exposed to the Coronavirus or not.

Annie George:
Yes. There’re risk levels that we assign.  Anybody that's over the 15 minutes in a consecutive time block would be considered risk. If it's anything less than 15 minutes, it's considered a lower risk exposure.

Superintendent Godfrey:
My other question is about the masks themselves. You mentioned, of course, that all masks are not created equal, and also the way that masks are worn will vary from person to person. So, wearing the mask is still very important because it helps prevent the spread. But because you don't know exactly how the mask was worn, that doesn't eliminate the risk when you're doing contact tracing.

Annie George:
That's correct. We still very strongly encourage people to wear masks and to wear them correctly because it does help with the spread. So yes, we still do encourage that.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Besides wearing the mask over the mouth and nose, are there other things that people need to be thinking about as they are wearing their mask?

Annie George:
I think most importantly, make sure you can breathe in it. That's important. And then make sure it's got a good fit on your face. If you're breathing too easily and it's not covering adequately and then it's probably not doing its job. Make sure it's got a good fit. You don't want to be putting an adult size mask on a kid because odds are, it's not going to be a good fit.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Okay. Thank you. Going back to contact tracing, does contact tracing help everyone, students, teachers, other employees?

Annie George:
It does. It absolutely does. So, if those that have been exposed to the disease or have the disease are removed from an environment, the risk of spread goes down greatly. So, it absolutely does help.

Superintendent Godfrey:
What are some of the questions that people are asked when you're doing contact tracing? As you mentioned, is it just how long they were around a person who we know is infected? Whether they were both wearing a mask doesn't change things? What are some of the other questions that we've, that we've asked?

Annie George:
At the Health Department, we primarily focus on contacts that these people have had. How many people live in their household? For adults we ask if they have a job or with high school students, a lot of them could have jobs as well. We ask about employment. We do notify workplaces so they can take appropriate precautions as well. If they've been there within 48 hours prior to their symptom onset, we've asked about where they've been. We need to know if they've been in a healthcare setting previously or just their whereabouts so we can track where they've been and notify those that need to be notified.

Superintendent Godfrey:
If someone has been exposed, they would be quarantined, and those who are infected may be isolated. Is that correct?

Annie George:
Yes, you got it.

Superintendent Godfrey:
We do hear confusion about those two terms a fair amount. Would you define for us what those two means?

Annie George:
Sure. Like you said, we call it isolation if you are either diagnosed with the disease. You have to be sick to be on isolation, when you're either diagnosed with the disease or you're symptomatic, or maybe you're waiting for a test result to come back. That would be considered isolation. For quarantine, it's that you have a known exposure with an individual that has the virus, but you are not, or maybe are not yet exhibiting symptoms.

Superintendent Godfrey:
That's the difference between isolation and quarantine. There's a difference in length also, though isolation tends to be 10 days, quarantine is 14 days. Why the difference?

Annie George:
Isolation will necessarily be limited to 10 days. It can be longer than that. We're waiting for this person's symptoms to resolve and for every person, that's different. One of the things that we thought was very strange about COVID to begin with was people would start to show kind of milder symptoms towards the beginning and then between days like 5 to 10.  Sometimes people would just tank and get a whole lot worse and maybe end up in the hospital. So that's what we're watching out for. The technical definition is, you can't have a fever for 24 hours before you can return to school or work. And that needs to be without the use of Tylenol or other fever, reducing medication. It might not necessarily be 10 days. It could be longer than that. But that's kind of the baseline of the majority, looking at the collected data, looking at the majority of cases, most people's symptoms resolved by date day 10.

Superintendent Godfrey:
That's isolation, specifically, that you're talking about?

Annie George:
Yes. For isolation. So that is based off of a disease's incubation period. Again, from looking at research, it has been decided that the incubation period is 14 days. They have had a case where someone was exposed and went home and quarantined like they should, and they developed the coronavirus on day 13, after they hadn't had exposure to anybody else. So, it is possible for it to take that long.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Is that super common?

Annie George:
No, generally not. If people are going to develop symptoms, it's typically quicker than that.  But that's why we use the length of the disease infection or infection period to determine that.

Superintendent Godfrey:
So, 14 days is the time it can take to develop those symptoms. But many times it will happen at least a few days earlier than that. Okay, now the Salt Lake County Health Department launched a Data Dashboard for the county. Can you tell us how to access that and tell us a little bit about the information that's presented there?  There's a lot of information, not just about schools, but about the county, more broadly.

Annie George:
Yes. So the Dashboard itself was launched several months ago. The school's specific portion was what was launched last week. It can be found on our website at slc.org/health/. There's a Coronavirus information page you can click on. I'm actually part of the team that helped develop it. So it's been kind of an interesting process we've gone on through the months. We've determined different needs that we have. We've made a lot of changes to the Dashboard, but if you haven't had a chance to check it out, I would greatly encourage it. There's a lot of very helpful information on there. Our goal in developing the Dashboard Board was to be transparent about the number of cases that we have.

We've had a lot of people criticize that scene. That's not really the number of total cases. That's actually just the number of positive tests and people can test positive for a long time. We've already taken that into consideration, and those are actual case count numbers of people that have had Coronavirus within Salt Lake County. We also have provided the ability on there for people to drill down to smaller than just the County level data. The State Health Department also has a Dashboard and it's all County-level data, but we wanted to give Salt Lake County residents the ability to drill down to smaller level data. You can actually look at city level data. You can look at zip code, and specific data for the larger cities that encompass multiple zip codes.

So there is a lot of data that shows our case counts every day. It shows outbreak information as well. And then, like you said, last week, we rolled out a new school site. We've had this question a lot. Parents will call in and say their kid's school isn't on there.

Superintendent Godfrey:
So how is this accurate?

Annie George:
It's actually a good thing if your kid's school isn't on there. That means that there are no cases at the school, which is what we want to see. So other than that, we don't show exact case counts at the school level due to privacy concerns. We use the 15, either less than 15 or greater than, or equal to 15 threshold that was developed by State leadership to kind of mask the exact number of cases. The exact case count of every school district is available on there. It's a good resource. I think that I would encourage parents to look at it.

Superintendent Godfrey:
How frequently is the Data Dashboard updated, and at what time of day?

Annie George:
It's updated every day, Monday through Saturday, and the update refreshes every day at 2:00 PM. If you get on site a little after two, it should be up to date. It encompasses data up through midnight the night before. So you won't have any data from today on there. It will all be yesterday's data.  When the number of cases or any of the information is posted on there, it's really from the previous day up through midnight.

We'll take a quick break and when we come back, more with Annie George, Infectious Disease Epidemiologist with Salt Lake County Health.

Sandra Reisgraf:
Are you looking for a job right now, looking to work in a fun and supportive environment with great pay and a rewarding career?  Jordan School District is hiring. We're currently filling full and part time positions. You can work and make a difference in young lives and education as a classroom assistant or a substitute teacher, apply to work in one of our school cafeterias where our lunch staff serves up big smiles with great food every day. We're also looking to hire custodians and bus drivers in Jordan School District. We like to say people come for the job and enjoy the adventure. Apply today at workatjordan.org.

Superintendent Godfrey:
I'm sure you're getting a lot of calls. You've had a lot of conversations with people and a lot of different circumstances. Tell me, what are some of the misconceptions that you're hearing out there?

Annie George:
One of the big ones is that this doesn't affect children, but it's not something that we have a clear answer on. If you think back to the beginning of this, when Coronavirus first arrived on US soil, one of the first things that we shut down was our schools to help eliminate the risk of spread there in school. That's still kind of an unknown that I think people need to consider. We know there hasn't been nearly as many fatalities in children and that's something that is excellent, but we also still have to keep in mind that asymptomatic transmission does occur. It's also kind of scary going when kids maybe get home from school and their parents aren't there yet, and they go visit grandma and grandpa for a while. They're interacting with the high-risk population. So, I think those are all things that need to be kept on people's radar.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Any other misconceptions or common questions that you're getting?

Annie George:
Sure, we had a lot when the CDC released data about the 6% of deaths. That was the only number they had where Coronaviruses was specifically listed on people's death certificates. We had a lot of questions around that, whether really the number of the 244 deaths listed on Salt Lake County Health Department's Dashboard was really only 6% accurate, and that is not true. I think what people need to know about it is that the number is likely very under-reported. Sometimes the main cause of will be that a person has a cardiovascular issue or acute respiratory failure or something like that. And those can all be conditions as a result of having COVID-19.

So, I think that's one of the big misconceptions that we've dealt with as of late. Another one that's been in the media is that they hope to have a vaccine rolled out at the beginning of November and people are kind of holding onto that date. But people need to be aware that, even if that does come to fruition, we've seen in some of the vaccine trials that there's been a delay because of adverse reactions. So even if one does make it on the market by November 1st, it's not like there's going to be enough to go around. We're kind of in a holding pattern until enough of the vaccine is available. So, if you want an example of that, we also track influenza cases very heavily here at the Health Department, and every year the CDC meets in February. The flu season isn't even technically over yet, but in order to make enough vaccines for the next flu season, they meet in February and decide what strains are going to be included in that virus because it takes that amount of time from February until they roll them out, in generally August, to create that many vaccines. So, I don't want people to have false hopes that come mid-November, we're all going to be trolling back to our lives as normal. I don't think that's going to happen.

Superintendent Godfrey:
We're all learning a lot through this pandemic. If we look back to Friday the 13th of March, when we closed schools, there's a lot we've learned since then. What are some of the lessons that you would share with parents and employees who might be listening to the podcast?

Annie George:
I think one of the biggest things is that our message really hasn't changed over that course of time. There's been some small things, but we are encouraging very same things that we were encouraging at the beginning. Wearing masks, that criteria came a little bit later, but really, making sure that you're washing your hands and using appropriate respiratory etiquette. Covering your mouth when you sneeze or cough and making sure that you wash your hands frequently. That message has not changed.

And, as this has kind of gone on, we've learned about social distancing. I think that has surprised me almost more than anything, the importance of social distancing. Because I am involved in pulling the Dashboard Data and updating that every day, I see the spikes that happen after every holiday or we'll see evidence after a family reunion at Bear Lake. We've seen where people, a lot of people are gathered close together, how very quickly it can spread,

Superintendent Godfrey:
What are some of the really positive things that you've seen in terms of the way people have reacted and kind of risen to the challenge of trying to manage the pandemic?

Annie George:
I think that's one of the things that has inspired me most. Watching the unified effort that has taken place to fight Coronavirus. I saw that here at the Health Department level where we pulled in everybody. They stopped doing their normal day jobs and came to help us out. We had environmental health scientists that are normally watching air quality or doing restaurant inspections. They came to help us contact trace because the Infectious Disease, Epidemiology Bureau simply couldn't keep up with the demand anymore to do contact tracing. That's given us an opportunity to interact with people from other areas of the Health Department. We were all unified in an effort and that was empowering because, to be quite honest, it's been very difficult. We have worked really long hours and it's been for months now. So, it does put kind of a drain on you after a while, but it's also been empowering that we're all after the same mission. We've also had that experience to interact with other people in the community through this. I've worked with a lot of first responders, getting them data to help keep them safe. Being able to develop new community partnerships as well, has been awesome.

Superintendent Godfrey:
I've observed the same thing. Employees, parents, students, members of the community, just pitching in to make the best of things and it's really inspiring to see. Annie, thank you very much for joining us. We really appreciate your time. Annie George, Infectious Disease Epidemiologist with Salt Lake County Health Department, thanks again for being on the Supercast.

Annie George:
You're welcome.

Superintendent Godfrey:
Thanks for joining us on another episode of the Supercast and remember, education is the most important thing you'll do today. We'll see out there.

Show Audio Transcription
Share the Supercast!