School Amidst a Pandemic

Now that a vaccine is available, The Open School is finally able to offer our in-person program on a regular basis to families who want it. The in-person program is still operating with modified rules for health and safety. In addition, we are continuing to offer our virtual and hybrid programs as options.

Programs

Because different families have varying concerns and risks associated with COVID-19, families are allowed to choose the exact number of in-person days their children will attend per week. Any days they are not in-person are considered virtual days, and the student will connect to school from their device at home. This can range from 5 days per week (the traditional in-person program we have had for years), to 0 days per week (the virtual program we used for much of last year), to 1-4 days per week (our new hybrid program). Please note that the hybrid program is not a part-time program; students are expected to connect to school 5 days per week regardless of program, and the hybrid program may be phased out as the COVID-19 situation evolves.

Sidewalk chalk

Go to top  ▴

Health & Safety Requirements

Following is a brief summary of the modified rules that all students and staff must follow.

Personal Hygiene

  • Hand washing stations will be placed in each area of the campus.
  • All students and staff must complete a hygiene training session.

School Property

  • Shared school items will be disinfected between uses.

Personal Property

  • Personal belongings must be kept in their owner’s cubby unless in active use.
  • Sharing personal items is discouraged.

Social Distancing

  • Large meetings will take place outside.
  • Only one person is allowed in a bathroom at a time.
  • No prolonged contact, such as wrestling. Brief contact is okay, such as pushing someone on the swing, playing tag, etc.

Ventilation

  • All windows and doors will remain open at all times.

Face Coverings

  • All students are required to wear face coverings at the following times. 
    • Inside when any other person is in the room
    • Within 6 feet of another person while outside

Facility Cleaning

  • Frequently used surfaces will be cleaned at the beginning, middle and end of each day.
  • Disinfectants will be approved for use against COVID-19 by the EPA.
  • Disinfecting will take place when children under 13 are not present.

Symptom Screening

  • Students and staff must complete a symptom screening before attending school each day.

Go to top  ▴

Illness Policy

  1. If a student or staff has COVID-19 symptoms: The student or staff will be sent home, but the school will remain open. If they test negative, they may return to school 3 days after symptoms resolve.
  2. If a student or staff has close contact with a confirmed COVID-19 case: The student or staff will be sent home and cannot return until 14 days since last exposure to the confirmed case. The school will remain open and the community will be notified.
  3. If a student or staff is confirmed to have COVID-19: The student or staff, along with all school members they had contact with, will be sent home and cannot return until 14 days since last exposure. Other school members who did not have contact can continue school as normal.
Go to top  ▴

Financial Assistance

We’ve created a Tuition Hardship Grant for families who have been economically impacted and cannot pay their tuition. Please consider giving to this fund to help our community stay together as we weather this storm. Current families who need to apply for the grant can do so here. Grants are given out each month, so please re-apply each month. We love you!

Go to top  ▴

Communication and Training

Staff will continually monitor the changing conditions in our area, and will communicate these conditions to the school community on a weekly basis via email and GroupMe. We will also notify our community if any student or staff has come into contact with someone confirmed to have COVID-19, although we will keep the identity of exposed individuals confidential.

All staff will attend a training session before school starts in August on the application and enforcement of this plan, followed by additional staff meetings each quarter. Also, enrolled families must attend an orientation before school starts which will cover this plan.

Go to top  ▴