2020-21 Fall Opening Plans

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JWP Campus—Fall Opening Plans

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1. Promoting behaviors that reduce spread.

We will require and teach personal protective measures for school personnel and students (e.g., stay home when sick, handwashing, respiratory etiquette, social distancing).

  • When Sickness Occurs

-Children and school personnel who show symptoms that may indicate COVID-19 infection are required to stay home.

-Sick school personnel or students may not return until they have met requirements outlined in section 5.

-Families are required to monitor themselves and their children for COVID-19 symptoms, take their temperatures daily, and to keep their children home if they have a fever or any other symptoms.

-School personnel are required to daily monitor their temperatures and other symptoms, and to remain at home if they exhibit any symptoms.

-Any individual with a fever (100.0 F or above, medication-free), cough, shortness of breath, gastrointestinal upset, new loss of taste/smell, muscle aches, chills/shaking, or any of the other signs of illness will not be permitted to enter the school.  Symptoms of COVID-19 found more specifically in children that will also be screened for include:  sore throat, runny nose, congestion, diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal pain, nausea.

  • Hand Hygiene and Respiratory Etiquette

-We will teach and reinforce proper handwashing techniques with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, and increase monitoring to ensure adherence among children and school personnel.

-Adults and children must wash hands upon entering and leaving school building, classrooms or other spaces in the school building.

+If soap and water are not readily available, hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol will be used (teachers will administer hand sanitizer to youngest children, when necessary).

-We will educate students on the importance of avoiding touching their faces throughout the day, and washing their hands when they do.

-School personnel will practice proper respiratory etiquette (coughing/sneezing into elbows, using tissues, washing hands afterwards).

-We will educate children in proper respiratory etiquette and increase monitoring to ensure proper techniques are practiced.

-Cleaning supplies (e.g., disinfectant wipes) will be available and will be used regularly for cleaning of high-touch surfaces.

  • Face Coverings

-School personnel are required to wear masks or cloth face coverings at all times in the school building, and when social distancing outside (staying at least 6 feet apart) is NOT possible. 

-Children ages three and above are required to wear masks at all times in the school building, and when social distancing outside (staying at least 6 feet apart) is NOT possible.

-Children over the age of two years old are recommended to wear masks or cloth face coverings when social distancing is NOT possible and required when moving from their classrooms to other spaces in the school building (ie–bathrooms, hallways, etc…).

-Parents and/or their designees are recommended to wear masks during car drop off and pick up, and required to wear masks if they are walking children up to the school building or must enter the school building.

-Masks used by school personnel and children must consist of at least two layers of washable fiber layers and designed for use as masks.  Disposable fiber-based surgical masks are also acceptable. N-95 masks are not required.  Bandanas, neck gaiters, and hand-woven or crocheted masks are not acceptable substitutes.  Masks with breathing valves may not be worn in the school building.  Cloth masks should be washed daily.

  • Signs and Messages that promote everyday protective measures will be posted throughout the school buildings.
  • Social Distancing

-All persons in the school building will be required to practice social distancing (staying at least 6 feet apart) whenever possible.

-Hallways, stairwells and other walkways will be marked to designate social distances and proper directions of travel.

-All classrooms at Jackson will be furnished with individual desks that are placed at least six feet apart from surrounding desks; large tables for group work will be removed.  At Walnut Park only one child will be permitted to sit at a table, and each child will have his/her own designated work rug which will be placed at appropriate social distances.

-Lunch will take place in the classrooms.

-Students will be allowed to use the bathrooms one at a time.

-Outdoor playground time will be scheduled to avoid large numbers at any one time.

-Students will not travel to other classrooms within the school building.  Instead, they will be based in their classrooms during the school day, with specials classes being conducted by teachers via distance learning or other appropriate methods that enable the classroom cohorts to remain exclusive.

– All school personnel will be tested for COVID-19 within 7 days prior to the start of the school year.

-All school personnel and families are asked to refrain from traveling outside of the Lower-Risk States according to the Massachusetts COVID-19 Travel Order or participating in large group gatherings beginning 14 days prior to the start of the school year and extending through the year until such time as the pandemic has passed.  Any school personnel, students or family members who travel or participate in large group gatherings must quarantine for 14 days before they will be allowed to return to school.  A negative COVID test prior to the end of the 14 day quarantine is not an acceptable alternative.

-Acceptable COVID tests must be FDA-approved molecular (PCR) tests.  COVID antibody and antigen tests are not acceptable.

2. Daily cleaning of the school environment.

  • Cleaning crew will thoroughly clean and disinfect all school buildings daily using approved cleaning agents and procedures.
  • Frequently touched surfaces (e.g.,, door handles, sink handles, light switches, etc…) will be cleaned and disinfected regularly during the school day.
  • Use of shared objects (e.g., gym or physical education equipment, classroom materials) will be eliminated as much as possible, or cleaned between use, and children will be encouraged to wash hands after using shared objects.
  • Playground areas will be reserved for a single class of children at a time, and high touch surfaces (railings, grab bars, gate latches, etc…) will be cleaned after use.

3. Modified drop off and pick up procedures

Walnut Park Montessori School–drop off

  • Doors to WPMS will open to all at 7:45am
  • School personnel will take their temperatures daily prior to arrival at school and will certify health and compliance with the MyMedBot app.
  • Half day and full day parents will park cars in front of school and escort children to a tent outside front entrance of WPMS.  Parents will take children’s temperatures daily prior to arrival at school and provide a daily temperature and symptom certification using MyMedBot at the front entrance.
  • Toddler parents will enter the back parking lot through 515 Washington Street entrance; toddler parents will escort children to the back door of WPMS (off parking lot) for daily temperature and symptom certification.
  • Parents will leave children with WPMS personnel outside of school building and return to their cars.  Parents will not be permitted to enter the school buildings.
  • For students arriving after 8:30am, parents should call the office upon arrival and escort children to the certification station where a member of school staff will meet them to verify the daily temperature and symptom certification.

Jackson School–drop off

  • Doors to Jackson will open to all at 7:45am
  • School personnel will take their temperatures daily prior to arrival at school and will certify health and compliance with MyMedBot.
  • Parents will utilize three lanes of traffic in the Jackson car line.  Parents will take children’s temperatures daily prior to arrival at school and provide a daily temperature and symptom certification using MyMedBot.  School personnel supervising drop off will come to individual cars to receive daily temperature and symptom certification.
  • Students will exit cars and enter through the front door of the school.  Parents will not be permitted to enter the school building
  • We will not be using the back parking lot entrance for drop-off.
  • For students arriving after 8:10am, parents should call the office upon arrival, and escort children to the front door where a member of school staff will meet them to verify the daily temperature and symptom certification.

Walnut Park Montessori School–dismissal

  • Children being dismissed outside of normal dismissal times should have parents either call the office or come to the front door.  Parents will not be admitted into the building.  Students will be dismissed to parents outside of the building.
  • Morning dismissal procedure will begin at 11:20am; afternoon dismissal will begin at 2:20pm.
  • Toddlerand Room 4 dismissal at 11:20am and 2:20pm will take place at the WPMS back door (off parking lot).
  • Half day and full day parents will park in front of the school and remain in cars.  Name cards will be issued at the beginning of the school year and should be placed in a prominent location on the dashboard so that school personnel can easily read them.
  • School personnel will radio to classrooms to have children brought out to cars.

Jackson School–dismissal

  • Children being dismissed outside of normal dismissal times should have parents either call the office or come to the front door prior to 2:15pm.  Students will be dismissed to parents outside of the building.
  • Afternoon dismissal will begin at 2:40pm.
  • Parents in grades K-2 will utilize three lanes of traffic in front of Jackson School, by grade.  Parents in grades 3-6 will utilize a single lane of traffic through the back parking lot, beginning at 2:30pm.
  • Students with siblings in multiple grades will dismiss from the location associated with the youngest child.
  • Name cards will be issued at the beginning of the school year and should be placed in a prominent location on the dashboard so that school personnel can easily read them.
  • School personnel will radio classroom teachers to have children brought out to cars.

Ideally, the same parent or designated person should drop off and pick up the child every day. If possible, older people such as grandparents or those with serious underlying medical conditions should not pick up children.

4. Screening procedures

  • All school employees and children will be required to take their temperatures daily and complete a temperature and symptom certification using MyMedBot in order to be allowed to enter the school building.
  • If a school employee or child does not pass the MyMedBot screening process they must consult with their doctor or other healthcare provider to determine whether any testing or any other medical care is indicated before returning to school.  They are assumed to be a “presumptive positive” for COVID and must provide medical clearance or a negative COVID test to return to school.
  • Any immediate family members (eg—sibling, parent…) of an employee or child who has not passed the MyMedBot screening process also fail the process because they have “been exposed in the last 14 days to someone who has tested positive or is a presumptive positive for COVID-19.”  The employee or child may not come to school until the presumptive positive individual has been cleared to return to school by a medical professional or has tested negative for COVID-19.
  • Persons who report a fever of 100.0 F or above, medication-free or other signs of illness will not be admitted to the facility
  • If a school employee or child fails to present a daily temperature and symptom certification, they will not be allowed into the school buildings.
  • Children who have had symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhea must remain home for at least 24 hours after the last episode and must be fever-free for at least 24 hours without being given fever-reducing medications.
  • Any staff member with any symptoms must not report to work and should self-isolate, contact their doctor, and follow medical guidance. Staff members must present a medical clearance to return to work.
  • Children and adults will sanitize hands upon first entering the building.

5. If someone is or becomes sick at school

  • If a child becomes symptomatic while at school, he/she will be immediately separated from other children to minimize exposure, and teachers will call the school nurse.

-The nurse will evaluate the child and make a determination as to whether parents should be contacted to take the child home.  If so, the family should consult their healthcare provider to determine if any testing or other medical care is indicated.

  • If a staff member becomes symptomatic while at school, the staff member should cease duties immediately and be isolated from others until she/he is able to leave.

-The staff member should return home to self-isolate and contact his/her healthcare provider to determine if any testing or other medical care is indicated.

  • Acceptable COVID tests must be FDA-approved molecular (PCR) tests.  COVID antibody and antigen tests are not acceptable.
  • Designated isolation rooms will be the Walnut Park Art Room and the Jackson Cafeteria–each of these rooms has an exit adjacent to the space.  These spaces will be set up to accommodate children presenting with potential  COVID-19 symptoms.
  • Masks or other cloth face coverings will be available for use by symptomatic children (age 3 and older) and staff until they are able to leave the premises.
  • If a sick child or staff member has been isolated in the school, areas will be cleaned and disinfected as necessary after the individual has left the building.
  • If COVID-19 is confirmed in a child or staff member they may not return to school until they have quarantined for a minimum of 10 days, be symptom-free, and tested negative for COVID-19 and must produce a doctor’s note to that effect.
  • If a child or staff member has been exposed to COVID-19, regardless of whether the individual has symptoms or not, the child or staff member will not be permitted to come to school. Exposed individuals must stay home for a minimum of 7 days after the last day of contact with the person who is sick. The child or staff member must test negative for COVID-19 and produce a doctor’s note or the test results to that effect before they will be allowed to return to school.
  • If a member of a classroom cohort (teacher or student) has a confirmed case of COVID-19, then the school will assume that anyone in the cohort may have been exposed.  In that case the classroom cohort will transition to a distance learning model for a minimum of 10 days while appropriate testing can occur.
    In accordance with state and local laws and regulations, school administrators may notify local health officials, staff, and families of any case of COVID-19 while maintaining confidentiality.
  • If a critical mass of students and/or classroom cohorts are exposed or test positive for COVID-19, the administration, in consultation with local health agencies, may need to suspend campus operations and transition to a whole school distance learning model.

6. COVID-19 response protocols

  • If a child or staff member has COVID-19 symptoms, they may return to school after they have tested negative for COVID-19 (or have been cleared to return to school by a medical professional), have improvement in symptoms, and have been fever-free for at least 24 hours without the use of fever reducing medications.
  • If an immediate family member of a child or staff member has COVID-19 symptoms, the child or staff member is assumed to have been exposed to a presumptive positive for COVID. The child or staff member may not return to school until the presumptive positive individual has either been cleared by a medical professional or has produced a negative COVID-19 test result.
  • If a child or staff member has been exposed to COVID-19, regardless of whether the individual has symptoms or not, the child or staff member will not be permitted to come to school. Exposed individuals must stay home for a minimum of 14 days after the last day of contact with a person who is sick.
  • If COVID-19 is confirmed in a child or staff member they may not return to school until they have quarantined for a minimum of 14 days, be symptom free, be fever free for three days (without the use of medication) and produce a doctor’s note to that effect.
  • Acceptable COVID tests must be FDA-approved molecular (PCR) tests.  COVID antibody and antigen tests are not acceptable.
  • If a member of a classroom cohort (teacher or student) has a confirmed case of COVID-19, then the school will assume that anyone in the cohort may have been exposed.  In that case the classroom cohort will transition to a distance learning model while appropriate testing can occur.
  • In accordance with state and local laws and regulations, school administrators may notify local health officials, staff, and families of any case of COVID-19 while maintaining confidentiality.

7. Monitoring and planning for staff absenteeism 

Walnut Park Montessori

  • Outside substitute teachers will not be used until further notice.
  • Each room will consist of one or more classroom cohorts supervised by two or three classroom teachers.
  • Each room will also be assigned a Walnut Park staff member who will be able to enter and interact with students and staff in that room exclusively.
  • In the event of a faculty absence, the remaining classroom teachers will cover for the absent teacher, calling upon the WP staff member if necessary.

Jackson School

  • Outside substitute teachers will not be used until further notice.
  • Each room will consist of a single cohort, with supervision by one or two grade-level teachers.
  • Each grade will also be assigned a Jackson specials teacher who will be able to enter classrooms and interact with students and staff in those grade levels exclusively.
  • In the event of a faculty absence, the remaining classroom teacher will cover for the absent teacher, with assistance from the specials teacher.

8. Evaluate whether there are students or staff who are at higher risk of severe illness

  • JWP will make every attempt to accommodate the needs of children and families at risk for serious illness from COVID-19.

-Teachers will develop plans for students to continue to work or receive educational services while at home.

  • School personnel who are at a higher risk of severe illness will be re-assigned to duties outside of the classroom in order to mitigate their chances of exposure.

9. Non-essential visitors/deliveries

  • No adults outside of school personnel will be allowed inside the school building.
  • All deliveries will be exchanged at the front door of the school building.
  • Parent-teacher conferences and parent meetings will be virtual (phone or zoom).  The same guidelines will apply to guest speakers or reading programs.
  • Vendors who must enter the school building (eg–for repair purposes, etc…) will be required to attest to the MyMedBot screening questions and will be required to wear masks while in the school building.

10. Daily Life at Walnut Park

  • Classroom setups/class groupings: Children will remain in their classroom cohorts at all times, observing appropriate social distancing, including at recess.  Cohorts will be limited to a finite amount of students and teachers. Children ages 3 and above are required to wear masks at all times in the school building, and where social distancing is not possible outside.
  • Outdoor classrooms: Each grade or class will have an outdoor space on campus designated for its use.  When possible, teachers will make use of the outdoor space as an extension of the classroom in order to minimize the amount of time spent inside the classroom and to provide mask breaks while conducting class.
  • Moving around the building: When children leave their classroom or cohort (to go to the bathroom, to go to their cubbies, to walk to recess, to walk to dismissal), they will put on masks or cloth face coverings.
  • Visual cues will be used in hallways and common areas to indicate where children should stand/wait, and in which direction the traffic flows. These will include markers on the floors at six-foot intervals, arrows pointing in the direction of traffic flow, and other reminders.
  • Bathroom policy: Children will go to the bathroom one at a time. A staff member will be stationed in each bathroom to ensure proper supervision at all times. Children will wear their masks or cloth face coverings while in the bathroom.
  • Storage of belongings/cubbies: Each child will have an individual cubby in which to store all belongings. All belongings should be properly labeled with the child’s name.
  • Handwashing:  Children will wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds upon entering the classroom, before and after eating, at regular intervals throughout the day, when leaving the playground, after using the bathroom,  and after sneezing/coughing/using a tissue. If soap and water are not readily available, hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol will be used (teachers will administer hand sanitizer to youngest children, when necessary).
  • Snacktime/lunchtime: Children will eat food for snack/lunch that is brought from home. Children will eat snack/lunch outside when possible. When it is not possible to eat outside, children will eat on their individual work rugs, at individual tables, or at tables where it is possible to sit 6 feet apart.
  • Water bottles:  Because they are high touch point areas, water bubblers will not be available to students during the school day.  Each student will be required to bring a filled water bottle to school daily.  Classroom teachers will facilitate re-filling of water bottles periodically during the school day.
  • Nap time: When napping, children’s rest mats will be placed at least 6ft apart. Toddlers will use sheets and blankets  sent from home to cover their rest mats. These will be laundered at school weekly. Parents will provide a back up sheet and blanket to be kept in the child’s cubby.
  • Diapering: The diapering procedure (for Toddlers) will be the following:

(1)Prepare (includes gathering all supplies, washing hands, and putting on gloves).

(2) Clean the child.

(3) Remove trash (soiled diaper, wipes, and gloves)

(4) Wash hands and put on clean gloves.

(5) Replace diaper.

(6) Wash the child’s hands.

(7) Clean up the diapering station.

(8) Remove and dispose of gloves.

(9) Wash hands.

  • Recess/playground use:  Children will remain in their classroom cohorts when using the playground/school grounds. Recess times will be staggered to avoid mixing cohorts.  All shared toys will be removed from the playground.  High touch points will be cleaned after each cohort’s use of playground equipment.
  • Wellness issues: In addition to the physical safety of the children, the emotional/social/psychological well-being of the children is of utmost importance. We have a full-time School Counselor who is available to talk with children and consult with parents around issues of stress, anxiety, or fear that may be related to COVID or any other causes.

11. Daily Life at Jackson

  • Classroom setups/class groupings: Children will be based in their classroom cohorts during the school day.  Classrooms will be arranged so that social distancing between desks exists.  Specials classes will be conducted by teachers via distance learning or other appropriate methods that enable the classroom cohorts to remain exclusive. All students are required to wear masks at all times in the school building.
  • Outdoor classrooms: Each grade or class will have an outdoor space on campus designated for its use.  When possible, teachers will make use of the outdoor space as an extension of the classroom in order to minimize the amount of time spent inside the classroom and to provide mask breaks while conducting class.
  • Moving around building: After arrival at JWP, movement around the building will be kept to a minimum.   Children will be required to wear masks or cloth face coverings when moving around the building.
  • Visual cues will be used in hallways and common areas to indicate where children should stand/wait, and in which direction the traffic flows. These will include markers on the floors at six-foot intervals, arrows pointing in the direction of traffic flow, and other reminders.
  • Bathroom policy: No more than two students will be allowed to use a bathroom at one time, and will be reminded by teachers to wash their hands thoroughly when finished. Children will be required to wear their masks or cloth face coverings while going to the bathroom.
  • Storage of belongings/cubbies: Storage areas and cubbies will be used by one child per unit, and materials in those areas will not be shared between children.  All belongings should be properly labeled with the child’s name.
  • Handwashing:  The school nurse and all teachers will reinforce proper handwashing techniques and remind students to wash their hands regularly.  Children will wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds upon entering the classroom, before and after eating, at regular intervals throughout the day, when leaving the playground, after using the bathroom,  and after sneezing/coughing/using a tissue. If soap and water are not readily available, hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol will be used (teachers will administer hand sanitizer to youngest children, when necessary).
  • Snacktime/lunchtime: Snack and lunchtime will be held either outdoors (weather permitting) or in the classroom, observing social distancing.  The school cafeteria will not be open for use until further notice.  Children should bring their own snacks and lunches to school daily.  School milk service will be suspended until further notice–parents should plan to send drinks to accompany snacks and lunches (no carbonated beverages please!).
  • Water bottles:  Because of the high traffic, water bubblers will not be available to students during the school day.  Each student will be required to bring a filled water bottle to school daily.  Classroom teachers will facilitate re-filling of water bottles periodically during the school day.
  • Recess/playground use: Children will remain in their classroom cohorts when using the playground/school grounds. Recess times will be staggered to avoid mixing cohorts.  High touch points will be cleaned after each cohort’s use of playground equipment.
  • Wellness issues: In addition to the physical safety of the children, the emotional/social/psychological well-being of the children is of utmost importance.   We have a full-time School Counselor who is available to talk with children and consult with parents around issues of stress, anxiety, or fear that may be related to COVID or any other causes.

12. Kid’s Corner

  • Hours:    
    • Session I: 11:30am-2:30pm
    • Session II: 2:30pm – 6:00pm
  • After the school day ends, Kids’ Corner staff will continue to monitor children for symptoms as outlined above in section 5, “If Someone Becomes Sick at School.”
  • Children will follow the same procedures as stated above in sections 9 and 10, “Daily Life.”
  • Children who attend Kids’ Corner will stay in their classrooms when inside the school building.
  • Children will remain outside as much as possible, weather permitting.
  • We will provide dedicated time each day for Jackson students to do homework.
  • Kids’ Corner materials will be distributed each day and washed following the cleaning guidelines.

Dismissal: Parent calls the Kids Corner phone. Children will be brought out to the car and Kids Corner personnel will confirm parent (or parent-approved) driver and note on the dismissal sheet as the child gets in the car.

13. After School Activities

After School Activities during the Fall Trimester are being held virtually and off-campus, in the late afternoon, in order to give families time to pick up students and return home for the Activities.  We will evaluate the advisability of holding in-person Activities during the Winter Trimester as that season approaches, and communicate to our families our plans.

JWP Campus–Fall 2020 Opening Plans