This is a fluid document which is changing as new information and requirements become available.
Frequent Handwashing – Children, Staff and Substitutes will be required to wash hands at these times:
- when they arrive at Small World
- before they leave for the day
- before and after eating preparing food or drinks or feeding children
- before and after snack time
- after using the toilet or helping a child use the bathroom.
- after playing outdoors
We will spend time teaching at the beginning of the year and reminding students daily about proper ways to wash hands.
- Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
- If hands are not visibly dirty, alcohol-based hand sanitizers with at least 60% alcohol can be used if soap and water are not readily available.
- Teachers will have hand sanitizer available so that if children are not near a sink, hand sanitizer will be used in place of washing hands.
- Teachers will supervise children when they use hand sanitizer to prevent ingestion.
We will place posters describing hand-washing steps near sinks.
Routine cleaning and disinfecting is key to maintaining a safe environment for children and staff.
We will clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects daily.
When a student or staff member develops any symptoms of illness consistent with COVID-19 in a school or child care setting:
We will isolate the person in a separate room while they wait to be picked up or until they are able to leave the facility on their own. We will ensure that they have hygiene supplies available, including a cloth face covering (if age appropriate), facial tissues, and alcohol-based hand sanitizer. We will remind staff who are monitoring the student or staff member with symptoms to wear a cloth face mask and practice social distancing.
We will clean and disinfect all areas used by the person who is sick, such as high-touch surfaces, and items they have touched. We will wear gloves when cleaning, and wash hands after removing gloves.
Plans for Shared Supplies in the Classroom:
- Each child will have their own bin of arts and craft supplies including markers, pencils, and scissors.
- Children’s books, like other paper-based materials such as mail or envelopes, are not considered a high risk for transmission and do not need additional cleaning or disinfection procedures.
- We are continuing to monitor and decide how to best handle shared supplies in the classroom. The list of shared supplies are many: dress up clothes, dress up phones and jewelry, dolls and clothes, doll strollers, food and dishes, paint brushes at easel, instruments, large blocks, red car, small blocks, puzzles, toys on shelf.
Parent Drop-Off and Pick-Up:
- We will use contactless check in on ProCare. Instructions for contactless check in will be provided at the Parent Meeting in September.
- All adults at drop off and pick up must wear masks. Teachers will also be wearing masks.
- Teachers will greet children outside as they arrive.
- At the end of the day, teachers will walk all children outside to meet parents.
Screen Children Upon Arrival:
- Parents should be on the alert for signs of illness in their children and keep them home when they are sick.
- Children who have a fever of 100F or above, or other signs of illness, should not be brought to school.
- We will make a visual inspection of the child for signs of illness which could include flushed cheeks, rapid breathing or difficulty breathing (without recent physical activity), fatigue, or extreme fussiness.
We will conduct daily health checks. This includes screening for children and staff to ensure those who exhibit any symptoms of illness are not present. If a child’s cough or other symptom is related to something that is known or reoccurring (e.g., seasonal allergies) then we will treat this as a normal cough or symptom, according to program protocols.
We will follow current CDC and MN Department of Health exclusion guidance and ensure children, staff, and volunteers stay home when sick.
If a child, staff member, or substitute is diagnosed with COVID-19 or if you have questions about a child, staff member, or volunteer who is exhibiting symptoms, we will reach out to MDH and follow their direction. If a child, staff member, or substitute has been exposed, is exhibiting symptoms or has tested positive, we will email parents and staff via email, ProCare or phone.
Social Distancing: In many ways, our set-up at Small World is ideal. We have one class of 20 children who are using our facilities and only 2 teachers who are with the children during their entire time at school. We have a consistent group of children and staff who stay together during the day. Once the children and teachers are in the school facilities, we will not be implementing social distancing. We believe that exposure is a given between teachers and children if we are within the same walls for multiple hours during the day. This is why “staying home when sick” becomes vitally important.
Teachers at Small World will wear face masks during check in and check out for the day, when interacting with parents at the door.
Classroom Ventilation: We will have windows open in our classroom whenever the weather outside allows for it. We will encourage outside time instead of gym time whenever the weather allows.
Children need to move their bodies and stay physically active. Getting outside for fresh air and movement is important to support physical and mental health on a daily basis. This guidance was developed to help schools and child care programs implement infection prevention measures to protect children and staff health during recess, physical activity, and playground use during community transmission of COVID-19.
- The playground will be closed to public use during the school day.
- We will wash hands before and after touching play structures.
- We will talk with children about how to stay healthy.
- Guidance from the CDC indicates that outdoor areas like playgrounds in schools generally require normal routine cleaning, but do not require disinfection. We will focus cleaning efforts on plastic or metal high-touch surfaces where hands frequently make direct contact like grab bars and railings. It is not practical to disinfect entire large playground structures, and is not proven to reduce risk of COVID- 19. Cleaning and disinfection of wooden surfaces (play structures, benches, tables) or ground covers (mulch, sand) is not recommended.
The plan is available to the Commissioner and offered to families. The plan will be posted in a prominent place at Small World and will be readily accessible to all of our employees, substitutes, and volunteers who need to review it. We will provide training to ensure everyone is following our plan. We will keep these individuals updated on any changes to the plan.