Isolation, Quarantine, & Test to Stay


  • Isolation is used to separate people infected with COVID-19 from those who are not infected. 

  • People who are in isolation should stay home until it’s safe for them to be around others. At home, anyone sick or infected should separate from others, stay in a specific “sick room” or area, and use a separate bathroom (if available).

  • There has been no change to the length of time you are required to isolate, during isolation you are infectious and can spread illness to others. This is 10 days starting after symptoms or 10 days after a positive test (if you do not have symptoms), returning on day 11. There are some situations where you could be infectious longer and would need to stay home longer as instructed by the Local Health Department. 


  • Quarantine is for someone that is in close contact with someone who has COVID-19 (within 6 feet of someone for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period). 

  • Quarantine length still remains 14 days, day 0 being the last day of exposure, day 1 starting the next day. There are some options for earlier return from quarantine, each case is looked at individually, taking into account type of exposure, type of contact, length of contact, and other factors. The Local Health Department has the final call in length of quarantine and option to participate in early return.

  • Regardless, symptoms are monitored for the entire 14 days, masks to be worn in doors, and immediately isolate if symptoms develop.

  • Fully Vaccinated: People who are fully vaccinated do NOT need to quarantine after contact with someone who had COVID-19 unless they have symptoms. However, fully vaccinated people should get tested 3-5 days after their exposure, even if they don’t have symptoms. Wear a mask indoors in public for 14 days following exposure or until their test result is negative. If you develop symptoms, immediately isolate.

  • COVID + in the last 90 days: follow the same guidance as fully vaccinated, except for testing recommendation.

  • Proof of vaccination or proof of recent COVID infection is required.

 General Quarantine Options: 

  • Option 1- 14 days, returning on day 15 as long as no symptoms have developed, no positive test, and no repeat exposure has occurred. 

  • Option 2- 10 days, returning on day 11 as long as no symptoms have developed, no positive test, and no repeat exposure has occurred.

  • Also required, a negative PCR or rapid antigen test, test collected on day 9 or 10, results received before return. 

  • Masks to be worn in doors, social distance 3-6ft as much as possible, and monitor for symptoms. 

  • Option 3- 7 days, returning on day 8 as long as no symptoms develop, no positive test, and no repeat exposure has occurred.

  • Also required, a negative PCR test, test collected on day 6 or 7, results received before return. 

  • Masks to be worn indoors, social distance 3-6ft as much as possible, and monitor for symptoms.

* quarantine length taken on case by case consideration, Local Health Department has final say


  • Test to Stay Strategy:   Option 4

Participation in this is optional and it is only used for school exposures. Can only be used when universal masking is in place. 

  • This strategy involves on-site testing, with rapid antigen tests, of any identified close contacts, on day 1, day 3, day 5, and day 7, after an exposure. Or adjusted schedule based on day case identified (testing to start as soon as possible). 

  • When a positive case is identified, close contacts in the school setting are determined as defined by CDC, IDPH, and ISBE guidelines. With direction from the Local Health Department.

  • Parents will be notified that their student has been identified as a close contact, students will not be excluded from school (or sent home) if the parent/guardian is choosing to participate in Test to Stay. 

  • Contacts will remain at school and able to participate in extracurricular activities, as long as they remain without symptoms and test negative.

  • Participants in Test to Stay will report to school as normal, as long as no symptoms are present, and will be tested at the beginning of the set days. 

  • Adherence to masking is required. As well as social distancing and monitoring for symptoms through day 14. If symptoms develop, contacts will be excluded immediately and given further instruction.

  • Final decisions on the eligibility of Test to Stay remain with the Local Health Department.

  • If any one participating in Test to Stay should have symptoms or test positive, they will isolate immediately and receive further instructions. 

 NO on-site testing will be performed without prior consent and notification to the parent/guardian. Parents/guardians can choose not to participate in Test to Stay and will follow one of the other quarantine options.