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P’s in the Pod’s Guidelines during Minimal, Moderate, and Substantial Community Spread of Flu-like Illness and COVID-19.

P’s in the Pod will follow the recommendations established by the CDC, public health officials, DECAL, Bright from the Start, and local and state government when determining when to open or close the school during times of health emergencies.

Note: Regardless of community spread, if there is a confirmed person with COVID-19 in the building, P’s in the Pod will assess risk, contact local health officials, and immediately close the building to clean, disinfect, and contact trace in consultation with health officials. 

Parent Drop-Off and Pick-Up 

• During times of moderate to substantial mitigation, P’s in the Pod will adjust operating hours to accommodate best practices with pick-up and drop-off. The hours are 8:00a.m. to 5:00 p.m. 

• P’s in the Pod will set up hand hygiene stations at the entrance of the facility, so that children can clean their hands before they enter. P’s in the Pod will provide hand sanitizer with at least 70% alcohol at the school’s entrance. P’s in the Pod will keep hand sanitizer out of children’s reach and supervise use. 

• P’s in the Pod will stagger arrival and drop-off times while limiting direct contact with parents as much as possible. 

• Drop off will be from 8:00-9:00 a.m. Anyone who arrives after 9:00 a.m., will not be allowed to drop off. We ask that families do not drop-off after 9a.m. 

• During times of moderate/substantial mitigation, children will be dropped off and picked up in carpool. Health screening and temperature check will take place at the car. The child will be taken to the classroom by a designated staff person. 

Before allowing entry into the building, we will screen all children and staff including taking their temperature upon arrival and denying entry to any person who meets any of the following criteria:

• A temperature of 100.4 or above; 

• Signs or symptoms of a respiratory infection, such as a cough, shortness of breath, sore throat & low-grade fever; 

• In the previous 14 days has had contact with someone with a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19, is under investigation for COVID-19, or is ill with a respiratory illness; or 

• In the previous 14 days has traveled internationally to countries with widespread, sustained community transmission. For updated information on affected countries, visit:


Please see the guidance below for pick-up:


●    Two car tags will be given to each family. Please ensure that your child’s car tag is with you at the time of pick-up.

●    Please do not get out of your car until called. Please help to be sure one family arrives at the door at a time.

●    When picking up your child(ren), pull in the parking lot near the front entrance.

●    Staff will greet you and call inside for your child(ren) to be released for pick up. If a staff member is not outside, call the 

     front desk and request that your child(ren) be released. (List phone numbers for each building.)

●    A staff member will walk out to verify the person picking up ison the authorized pick-up list for the student(s).


General Measures


●     All P’s in the Pod staff members and families will be required to submit to a health screening, including checking 

      temperature and answering a questionnaire.

●    The classroom size will be limited to 8-10, including staff, depending on age groups. 

●    Class size will also apply to the playgrounds, and only one class will be allowed on the playground at a time. 

●    Continuous handwashing will be enforced. Each child’s hands will be washed immediately after drop-off, before and after activities, before and after meals, and prior to dismissal. 

●    All safety updates, precautions and measures that are set in place can be found at

During times of minimal mitigation: Infant families will bring children to the entrance without the car seat (childrens’temperatures will have already been taken upon entry to the building). The individuals dropping off must have on masks while standing outside near the entrance. If there are any specific instructions, they should be sent via Brightwheel. In-person conferences may not happen at this time.

• Preschoolers and toddlers will be dropped off outside the front entrance door. Parents will not be able to enter the building(childrens’ temperatures will have already been taken upon entry to the building). The individuals dropping off must have on masks. Students must sanitize hands prior to entering the building.

• Teachers will sign in their students using the Brightwheel App in the classroom. 

Afternoon Pick-up: During times of moderate/substantial mitigation Families may call the school or notify the teacher via theBrightwheel App once they are in route to pick up their child. Families will call the school once they arrive to pick-up their childor hold the car tag. A designated staff member will bring the child to the front entrance for the parent to receive his or her child.

·  Due to the higher risk, we recommend that anyone 65 years and older, or others with underlying medical conditions, should not pick up children.


Screening Children and Teachers upon Arrival 

Anyone who has a fever of 100.4 or above or other signs of illness will not be admitted to the facility. We ask that parents are on the alert for signs of illness in their children. Please do not come to P’s in the Pod if anyone in your home is ill.


Our staff will use the following procedures for screening children prior to entering the building. 

Use personal protective equipment (PPE) when within 3 feet of a child, and use the following procedures: 

·  Upon arrival, hand wash and place on a facemask, eye protection (goggles or disposable face shield that fully covers the front and sides of the face), and a single pair of disposable gloves. A gown could be considered if extensive contact with a child is anticipated. 

·  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, and confirm that the child is not experiencing coughing or shortness of breath. 


Ask parents the following questions: 

o Do you or your child live with anyone or have you or your child had close contact with anyone with signs of illness of communicable illness including, but not limited to: fever, cough, difficulty breathing, or any flu-like symptoms?

o Do you or your child live with anyone or have you or your child had close contact with anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 within the last 14 days?

o Do you or your child have a fever, cough and/or shortness of breath? (Fever is 100.4F/ 38C or above measured using a no-touch thermometer.)

o Has your child taken any fever reducing medications in the prior 24 hours?

o Do you or your child have any other signs of communicable illness such as a cold or flu?

o Have you or your child experienced diarrhea or vomiting within the past 24 hours?

Take the child’s temperature. 

o If performing a temperature check on multiple individuals, ensure that you use a clean pair of gloves for each child and that the thermometer has been thoroughly cleaned in between each check. 

o If you use non-contact thermometers, clean them with an alcohol wipe (or isopropyl alcohol on a cotton swab) between each client. You can reuse the same wipe as long as it remains wet. 

·  After each screening, remove and discard PPE, and wash hands. 

·  Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 70% alcohol or wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. 

·  If hands are visibly soiled, soap and water should be used before using alcohol-based hand sanitizer. 

P’s in the Pod’s administrators will train the staff following the CDC’s recommended guidance for donning and doffing PPE. Please click on this link for the CDC recommended sequences for donning and doffing PPE.

Anyone (teacher, child, or staff member) with signs of illness must be removed from the group and housed separately from others until they are able to be picked up or leave. The individual will be required to stay home for 72 hours instead of 24. The person will need to be symptom-free before returning to school after 72 hours. (We may require documentation from a medical provider during times of minimal to substantial mitigation.) Staff with COVID-19 related symptoms must have a negative COVID-19 test result prior to returning.


If a child develops a fever or other symptoms, families should contact their child’s primary healthcare provider so he/she can determine whether the child needs further testing. According to specific criteria, they will ask questions to identify the level of risk for COVID-19 and provide guidelines for care. 

If families choose not to have their child tested, we will follow the guidelines set forth below: 

Symptom-based strategy 

1. At least 14 days have passed since symptoms first appeared. 

2. There has been no fever for 72 hours (3 full days) without the use of fever reducing medication. 

3. Other cold-like signs and symptoms have disappeared,such as cough, runny nose, sore throat, and shortness of breath. 

The school will work collaboratively with the family’s primary care physician and use best judgement when determining if a child can return to school. Final decisions will be made by P’s in the Pod. 


Staff and children 2 years and older will be required to wear a mask. Parents or anyone dropping off will be required to wear a mask during drop-off and pick-up.

Face covering must: 

• Fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face 

• Be secured with ties or ear loops 

• Include multiple layers of fabric 

• Allow for breathing without restriction 

• Not be worn outside on the playground

• Not be worn while sleeping 

Safely use the face covering by: 

• Routinely laundering (e.g., washing and drying) 

• Not touching your eyes, nose or mouth when removing 

• Washing hands immediately after removing 

• Always practicing good handwashing, even while wearing a mask

• If a child touches his or her mask, a teacher’s mask or another child’s mask, the child’s hands should be washed right away.

Cleaning and Disinfecting 

Caring for Our Children (CFOC) provides national standards for cleaning, sanitizing and disinfecting

an educational facilities for children. Toys that can be put in the mouth should be cleaned and sanitized (see below). Other hard surfaces, including diaper changing stations, door knobs, and floors must be disinfected. 

Intensify cleaning and disinfection efforts: 


• Routinely clean, sanitize, and disinfect surfaces and objects that are frequently touched, especially toys and games. This will also include cleaning objects/surfaces daily such as doorknobs, light switches, classroom sink handles, countertops, nap time cots, toilets, desks, chairs, cubbies, and playground structures. 


P’s in the Pod will use bleach and water solution as mandated by Bright from the Start.


• All cleaning materials will be kept out of the reach of children. 

• Staff will ensure that there is adequate ventilation when using cleaning products to prevent children from inhaling toxic fumes. 

• P’s in the Pod will use the bleach and water solution required by DECAL to disinfect frequently touched surfaces. 


Cleaning and Sanitizing Toys 

• Toys that cannot be cleaned and sanitized will not be used. 

• Toys from home will not be permitted in P’s in the Pod. 

• Toys that children have placed in their mouths or that are otherwise contaminated by bodysecretions or excretions should be set aside in the germ bucket until they are sanitized.

• Machine washable cloth toys will not be used at all during times of mild to widespread outbreak. 

• Carpets and dress-up clothes will be removed from the environment. 

• Toys will not be shared with other age groups.  

• 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 will spray Lysol over books at the end of each day.

Cleaning and Disinfecting Bedding 

P’s in the Pod will use bedding (crib sheets and cot sheets) that can be washed. Blankets from home cannot be used at this time. Bedding that touches a child’s skin will be cleaned weekly or before use by another child. 


Staff and students’ hands are washed prior to diaper changes. The staff member is required to wear gloves while diapering. Follow safe diaper changing procedures. Procedures are posted in all diaper changing areas. Steps include the following: 

• Prepare (includes putting on gloves).

• Clean/change the child.

• Remove trash (soiled diaper and wipes).

• Replace diaper.

• Wash child’s hands.

• Clean up diapering station.

• Wash hands.

After diapering, wash your hands (even if you were wearing gloves) and disinfect the diapering area with a fragrance-free bleach that is EPA-registered as a sanitizing or disinfecting solution. If other products are used for sanitizing or disinfecting, they should also be fragrance-free and EPA-registered. If the surface is dirty, it should be cleaned with detergent or soap and water prior to disinfection. 

Cloth diapers may not be used at this time.

· Teachers and staff will wash their hands, neck, and anywhere touched by a child’s secretions. 

• Teachers and staff will change the child’s clothing if secretions are on the child’s clothes. Teachers will change their own button-down shirts if there are secretions on it and wash their hands again. 

• Contaminated clothes will be placed in a sealed plastic bag. 

• Students and teachers should have extra changes of clothing on hand in the child care center. (Families will be asked to provide several clean changes of clothes for their child.) 

Child care providers should wash their hands before and after handling infant bottles. Bottles, bottle caps, nipples, and other equipment used for bottle-feeding should be rinsed after each use.

Healthy Hand Hygiene Behavior 

All children, staff, and volunteers should engage in hand hygiene at the following times: 

o Arrival to the facility and after breaks
o Before and after preparing food or bottles
o Before and after eating or handling food or feeding children
o Before and after administering ointment.                                                                                                        

o Before and after diapering
o After using the toilet or assisting a child in the restroom
o After coming in contact with bodily fluid
o After outdoor play 
o After handling garbage 

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. 

o Supervise children when they use hand sanitizer to prevent ingestion. 

o Assist children with handwashing, including infants who cannot wash hands alone. 

o After assisting children with handwashing, staff should also wash their hands. 

P’s in the Pod has posters placed describing handwashing steps near all sinks. Developmentally appropriate posters in multiple languages are available from the CDC. 

P’s in the Pod will post signs on how to stop the spread of COVID-19: properly wash hands, promote everyday protective measures, and properly wear a face covering. 

Food Preparation and Meal Service 

Meals will be served in classrooms. Family-style dining will be suspended.

Instead a designated teacher will plate each child’s meal. 

• Food preparation will not be done by the same staff who diaper children. 

• Sinks used for food preparation will not be used for any other purposes. 

• Caregivers will ensure children wash hands prior to and immediately after eating. 

• Caregivers will wash their hands before preparing food and after assisting children with eating.

Outdoor Play 

There will be one class on the playground during scheduled outdoor play. In the event it is safe for children to play on the outdoor equipment, teachers will be responsible for disinfecting the play structures after their group plays on the structures. We will make a decision on using the outdoor equipment as we get closer to reopening in August. Teachers will take disposable water cups and water containers to serve water as needed to children while outside. Children will not be permitted to operate the water dispensers. The water fountains will be turned off, secured with caution tape, and will not be used. 

Social Distancing Strategies 

P’s in the Pod will work with local health officials to determine a set of strategies appropriate for social distancing. Students will sit at individual desks instead of using the tables.

· P’s in the Pod will keep children with the same group each day. The same teacher(s) will remain with the same group each day. (A substitute teacher will be assigned in case of illness or emergency.) 

• During times of minimal to moderate/substantial mitigation,class sizes may be limited to 8-10 individuals (this includes teachers and children) or class sizes as deemed by BFTS.

• P’s in the Pod will not have our annual Grandparents’ Day Luncheon in the fall. 

• Limit the mixing of children, such as staggering playground times (playgrounds will be utilized by one group at a time and cleaned after each use.)

• If possible, at nap time, ensure that children’s naptime mats (or cribs) are spaced out as much as possible, ideally 6 feet apart. Children will be placed head to toe in order to further reduce the potential for viral spread.

• Administrative staff will rotate telework schedules during times of widespread/substantial outbreak. P’s in the Pod will not facilitate tours during times of minimal to substantial spread.

• P’s in the Pod will not host work-study students or volunteers during times of minimal to substantial spread. 

• P’s in the Pod will not provide childcare services for drop-in students. 

• P’s in the Pod will reach out to families when children are absent from school to document if it is illness related.

• P’s in the Pod will continue to educate students about proper handwashing, covering coughs and sneezes, and refraining from touching their faces. 

• The schools will be deep cleaned each day during times of minimal to substantial mitigation. 

• Staff will be asked not to leave the campus or go into the surrounding community during their break times to reduce exposure. 

• Teaching staff will not utilize the common areas during times of minimal to substantial community spread. 

Vulnerable/High Risk Groups 

Based on currently available information and clinical expertise, older adults and people of any age who have serious underlying medical conditions might be at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19. To protect those at higher risk, it is important that everyone practices healthy hygiene behaviors. 

• Staff members or teachers age 65 or older, or with serious underlying health conditions will be encouraged to talk to their healthcare provider to assess their risk and to determine if they should stay home.

• Information about COVID-19 in children is somewhat limited, but the information that is available suggests that many children have mild symptoms. However, a small percentage of children have been reported to have more severe illness.

• Parents of children with underlying health conditions, should talk to their doctors about their risk of being in group care during minimal to moderate or substantial community spread. P’s in the Pod will follow children’s care plans for underlying health conditions such as an asthma action plan.

• We will work with families to continue to support children with disabilities during times ofcommunity spread of the virus.

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