The return to school during the current health crisis can make families very uncertain and anxious. The Orchard School has put into place plans, procedures and protocols to ensure that students and staff are healthy, happy and engaged during the school year in 2020-2021. First and foremost, the students’ emotional well-being will be a top priority as they ease back into a sense of normalcy with their peers and teachers. Here are the details about the safety plan at The Orchard School for this new academic year.
So what exactly can families expect?
- Filtration systems have been updated for improved air quality as well as the installation of touchless faucets, toilets, urinals, soap dispensers, and hand sanitizers throughout the building in order to minimize the need for touching shared surfaces.
- New natural playgrounds will be completed this fall and these updated spaces will include three amphitheaters that will be used as outdoor teaching spaces. The Orchard School is a 43-acre campus with woods, fields, a track, and outdoor spaces that will continue to be a central part of their progressive program which is developmentally appropriate, and aligned with their curriculum.
- All faculty and staff in the school building will be wearing face coverings (e.g. cloth masks, or face shields) and will continue to do so as long as it is in line with public health guidance.
- Temperature screening tools have been installed to take temperatures of all students as they enter the school building every day.
- The school had added additional custodial staff to support increased cleaning and sanitation practices across the school day and in the evenings, focusing especially on high-touch areas and surfaces.
- According to the CDC guidelines, they recommend keeping cohorts of students and teachers together, and limiting the mixing of cohort groups as much as possible. Groups are kept small across the day in the Early Childhood, Elementary School, and Middle School classes, and educators will minimize interactions across cohort groups in order to limit the chances of infections amongst students and staff.
Check out the video below to see all of the safety procedures and protocols The Orchard School has put into place and get a glimpse into the first week back with students and staff!
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