Priorities for Reopening 1. Education requires a customized approach responsive to the students’ developmental needs. For us, that means meeting in person as much as possible...inside or out.
2. If we are permitted to be on campus, we will be on campus. Our decision-making will be informed by state and local authorities, and the CDC. We will evaluate the available information in the context of a school our size.
3. Daily chores will continue, and we will disinfect the schoolhouse each afternoon with a diluted bleach solution. We will increase the frequency of hand washing. We will also have a supply of masks for those who forget to bring theirs from home.
4. If we must shift to periods of distance learning, we will prioritize main lesson, certain skills classes, and one-on-one tutorials with students. We will look for relevant hands-on projects that students can do at home and strive to minimize screen time.
Face Masks, Physical Distancing, & Being Outdoors
We view the use of cloth face coverings and standing at least 6 feet away from people as important ways that we, as a community, can slow the spread of the virus and protect ourselves and others. Being outdoors is also considered low risk.
Masks and physical distancing will be standard expectations inside the schoolhouse while with other people. Outside the schoolhouse, masks will be optional unless physical distancing cannot be maintained. We will be using outdoor teaching areas as much as possible and minimizing prolonged time indoors.
This is our 2 out of 3 metric. We will use 2 of the 3 practices in almost all situations. There will be brief moments in some situations when we will only be able to use 1 of 3. These situations are in accord with legal requirements. For example, there may be times during the learning process where masks must be removed to help the student perform an activity, or understand the lesson, or the speech of the other. In these cases, physical distancing will continue to be used and the mask will be worn again as soon as possible.
Similarly, there will be times when physical distancing is not feasible, and the teacher must come closer to help the student understand the lesson, see an error in their work, or learn a technique. In these cases, masks will be worn by both parties and physical distancing will resume as soon as possible.
All students and teachers will have their temperatures checked by a teacher upon arrival at school. If your child is sick, including exhibiting symptoms such as fever, cough, aches, etc. they must be kept home. Any student who has a temperature of 99.6⁰ or higher will not be permitted to attend school.
Students who experience regular recurring allergy symptoms like runny nose and cough will be permitted to attend school with parent confirmation that this is typical for their child at predictable times of year. Please give us a heads up as soon as possible if such conditions are typical and to be expected for your child.
Recess & Playing 1. While students play outdoors, masks will be optional as long as physical distancing is maintained.
2. Games that require closeness (e.g. tag) will require masks. No tagging will be allowed near the head or face.
3. If balls, etc. are used, they will be periodically disinfected. All games and activities are at the teacher’s discretion.
Distance Learning...it's not ideal, but it's what we've got. This pandemic has altered our reality. We are prepared to meet all requirements for the safety of our students, parents, and teachers for on-site learning. Fortunately, we have space and are small enough as a school community to work together and support each other in whatever ways are called for.
For the 2020-2021 school year, we are preparing to offer a primarily outdoor school program and minimize prolonged time indoors. We are preparing for rolling episodes of on-campus school and at-home distance learning school. While we believe maintaining a consistent, predictable rhythm to the day is healthy and can provide comfort to the students in times of stress, we also want to be flexible and attentive to the students’ emotional needs as they arise. We are not inclined to try to cram normal academic schedules and expectations into a distance learning platform. Spending many hours in front of a screen is not healthy or always conducive to learning. During distance learning times, the daily school schedule will be adjusted in various ways for various reasons that we deem are in the best interest of the students under these unique circumstances. We will communicate all plans and expectations to the parents and the students as events happen.
We Would Love to Have You Visit Soon!
School on the Rise values and supports diversity in its many dimensions, including but not limited to each person’s unique combination of race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, age, physical ability, learning style, religious beliefs, political views, perspectives, and life experiences.
By embracing diversity, we expand our understanding of others, stimulate our own learning and growth, and connect with one another and the world. We believe this is healthy and key to moving beyond simple tolerance, building a safe, positive, and nurturing environment that affirms each individual’s sense of belonging, dignity, and significance. [Thanks and Acknowledgment to High Meadow School for borrowing heavily from their Diversity Statement]