UPDATED: Will your schools remain open?
We know that our families rely on us to care for and educate their children when they are not available. The CDC has provided Considerations for School Closure which recommends that childcare providers stay open, especially before there is significant community spread. Their research and guidance show that short to medium term closures do not prevent the spread of the virus and can have negative impacts and pose hardships to families who rely on childcare. We are also following several states who are specifically requesting that childcare providers stay open to support working families. Because we are an essential service for working families, many of whom are performing essential services themselves, we plan to support our families by remaining open so long as we can safely do so. We will continue to follow the requirements and recommendations of local and State authorities when making decisions about keeping a school open or closing. Click here to see the current status of each location.
UPDATED: How do you decide to close a school?
We closely monitor guidance of the CDC and local health departments and partner with them in our decisions to close a school. If a case of COVID-19 is found at one of our schools, we will close the school for disinfection and sanitization and reopen in coordination with the local health department.
Where local health departments recommend school closures as part of their overall containment efforts, we are complying. If this happens, we are notifying families immediately. We are taking measures to limit exposure in our schools and evaluate school closures on an individual basis with the latest information available from public health officials.
How will families be notified of a school closure?
We will notify families of a school closure directly through email and our KidReports app.
How do you make decisions regarding COVID-19?
We are closely monitoring the CDC and working with local health departments to respond as quickly as possible to the rapidly changing situation.
Will you continue to enroll families during the outbreak?
Yes. Families will continue to need childcare and we are available to help support them as long as they have not been exposed to COVID-19, are not displaying symptoms of illness and there are no restrictions from the health department. We will continue to evaluate this on a school by school basis.
How are you keeping children and staff healthy in your schools?
We are using enhanced cleaning protocols throughout the day and our janitorial providers are cleaning and disinfecting our schools each evening. We are also limiting access to classrooms, practicing smart “social distancing” and requiring advanced hygiene steps in our schools. Also see our general guidance page – what you can do to prevent the spread.
What do you do if someone in your school shows symptoms associated with COVID-19?
If someone in our schools shows symptoms, we’ll separate the individual from others in the school, then follow our illness policy. The school staff or child will be asked to immediately leave the school and work with their doctor and health officials to determine how to proceed.
What additional steps are you taking to keep your schools clean?
We have implemented intra-day cleaning steps with all staff in our schools using disinfecting materials to clean surfaces. Our evening janitorial services are cleaning and disinfecting our schools on a nightly basis. If there are suspected or confirmed cases within our schools, we have additional enhanced protocols in place to disinfect and sanitize the environment. We are also asking everyone in our schools to follow strict hygiene protocols and practice “social distancing” guidelines.
UPDATED: What is your policy on travel restrictions and entry into your schools?
We closely monitor the CDC and other governmental sources for guidance on travel restrictions and use all information available to assess the rapidly changing situation. If anyone in your household has returned from international travel all members of the household will need to wait 14 days from the date of your return to return to our school. Your household must be symptom free before entering our school.
What if a family doesn’t want their child to come to school?
We understand that everyone’s situation is different. Some people need us to provide care so they can work, and others may wish to keep their children at home. If a family chooses to not send their child to school, we won’t charge them for the time they’re not present nor will we charge a registration or any other fee when they choose to return.
What options to your employees have for work?
Some of our employees want to work to support our families who need this essential service. Others may choose to stay home while our school remains open, and they are not only welcome to do so, but we support whatever choice they determine is best for themselves and their families. Because the situation is full of uncertainty and changing so rapidly, we are constantly evaluating how best to proceed and want to assure you that supporting our valued employees is always a consideration. None of our employees will be penalized in any way for choosing not to work during this difficult time.
Have you changed your feeding practices in your schools?
Our nutritious Food for Thought menus are still in place and our additional sanitization efforts also apply to feeding areas and processes. We’re using the current circumstances to have discussions regarding cleanliness and hand washing that help children see the positive of having clean hands and kind hearts, while avoiding the fear.