4 incumbents, 1 former member win seats on Schuylkill Valley School Board

With coronavirus not going away anytime soon, school districts across Pennsylvania are working to find ways to provide students with a safe, quality education.

In order to reopen schools that have been shuttered since March, districts are required to craft COVID-19 health and safety plans. Plans must be approved by school boards and the state Department of Education before classes can resume for the 2020-21 school year.

The Schuylkill Valley School District approved its plan July 27. It includes procedures for how the district will operate in each of the state's three reopening phases: green, yellow and red. All of Pennsylvania is in the green phase.

Here's what Schuylkill Valley's plan looks like for the green phase:

First day of classes

• Aug. 26

Type of reopening

• Total reopening for students and staff.

• In-person instruction will occur five days a week for all students, with safety measures in place.

• A completely virtual option will be available for families who chose not to return to in-person instruction.

• Students in grades kindergarten through second will stay in the same classroom for their coursework whenever possible.

• Students in grades third through 12th may have the ability to move from classroom to classroom, with the only exception being for students taking specialized coursework and related arts or electives.

• No large-group instruction is allowed.

Cleaning, disinfecting and ventilation plan

• Staff will continue to clean spaces as directed by the director of buildings a grounds, and will practice social distancing during the cleaning process.

• Standard cleaning practices will be followed at all times.

• All buildings’ HVAC systems will operate as normal to ensure proper ventilation of educational spaces.

• Bathrooms and frequently touched surfaces such as door knobs will be frequently cleaned.

•Bathrooms will be cleaned daily and checked frequently. High-touch surfaces will be cleaned at least twice during the school day.

• Drinking fountains will be closed.

• The bus contractor will sanitize buses before morning and afternoon runs and at night.

• Electrostatic equipment will be used as needed to sanitize high-risk areas.

• Desks will be cleaned between use by students by the teacher.

Social distancing and other protocols plan

• Students and staff will maintain social distancing and wear masks.

• Layouts will be developed for each room to allow for proper separation among students and staff.

• Materials required for students to engage in instructional activities will be distributed to the individual student or cleaned between multiple uses where possible.

• In addition to social distancing in the cafeteria, clear plastic distancing barriers will provide separation among students across tables.

• All buildings will have grab-and-go breakfasts and lunches available for all students.

• The number of visitors and volunteers will be significantly reduced and monitored.

• Drop-off boxes and tables will be used within each building office.

• Meetings with parents and outside partners will be conducted digitally whenever possible.

• Recess will take place in designated areas and follow U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines.

• Physical education will, when possible, use individual equipment, outdoor spaces and multiple class spaces. Equipment that can be disinfected between classes will be used.

• Hallways and common spaces will be used in a limited manner when possible.

Transportation plan

• Face coverings will be worn while boarding, departing, and riding the bus.

• Bus seats will be numbered and assigned for each route.

• Bus drivers will wear face coverings while students are boarding, departing and riding.

Monitoring health

• Staff and students will self-monitor temperatures and symptoms before coming to school each day.

• A symptoms checklist will be added to the daily announcements.

• Signs asking people with symptoms not to enter will be posted at building entrances.

• Student and staff absenteeism rates will be monitored and reported to the Department of Health, if needed.

• Enforcement of staff and students staying home if they have tested positive for COVID-19, have symptoms or have had recent, close contact with someone who has tested positive.

• Students or staff who become sick during the school day will be immediately separated from others and returned home.

• Students and staff who have tested positive or have been presumed positive cannot return to school without a note from a physician clearing them to do so.

• An isolation room will be created in each building for those experiencing symptoms.

• Any rooms occupied by a student or staff member who is identified as having COVID-19 symptoms should be cleared and closed and cleansed and disinfected before being used again.

• Individualized plans will be established for each student or employee who represents a higher risk condition.

Other

• Signs will be posted in high traffic areas and online displaying the location-specific expectations regarding everyday protective measures and how to stop the spread of germs. These messages will be promoted digitally on the district website and through social media.

comments powered by Disqus