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COVID-19 Policies, Procedures, and Protocols

The following policies, procedures, and protocols have been developed to minimize the risk of a student, staff member, or campus visitor contracting COVID-19 or spreading COVID-19 to others while on CTM’s campus.  Although these practices and procedures were designed to minimize risk, they in no way guarantee that COVID-19 or other communicable disease infection will not occur through participation in CTM programs. 

 

These policies and procedures are based on task force discussions of best practices, guidance from the CDC and SCDHEC’s June 25, 2020 “Interim COVID-19 Guidance for Child Care Providers: Management of Suspect and Confirmed COVID-19 Cases.” As the information about best practices related to COVID-19 is continually changing, the school reserves the right to modify, at any time, any of the policies described or privileges granted.

 

Daily Screening:

In an effort to evaluate COVID Risk Factors and decrease CTM community exposure, all students and staff will undergo daily temperature checks before entering  the campus.

  • Parents and students will remain in their car during drop off until their temperature can be confirmed by the staff member on duty.
     

  • A staff person on duty will give parents a daily questionnaire to screen risks, These questions may include, but are not limited to exposure risk to someone who is positive, individuals showing signs of COVID, travel to areas that have a high COVID contact spread.
     

  • A staff person will use a no-touch thermometer to screen each student's temperature while they remain in the car. If a student’s temperature reads higher than 100.4 they will be asked to pull over and wait a few minutes, and we will check again.
     

  • In accordance with SCDHEC’s exclusion criteria-Children or staff* with symptoms of COVID-19 will be excluded from campus if they have:
     

    •  Any one (1) of the following

      • Fever (100.4 F)

      • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

      • Loss of taste or smell
         

    • Or  Any two (2) of the following:

      • Sore throat

      • Muscle aches 

      • Chills

      • New or worsening cough

 

Note: Parents of a child with any one of these symptoms should consider not allowing their child to attend school regardless of meeting exclusion criteria. If these symptoms are explainable by an underlying condition (such as shortness of breath or cough for an individual with asthma), please communicate this underlying condition with the school in advance.

 

*Staff will also be screened upon arrival each day. 


 

Visitor Policy:

Visitors will not be admitted to the campus without screening. Visitors will be limited to the administrative office only, and will not be allowed to enter classrooms. All visitors will be required to wear a mask.

 

Parents coming to the school to pick up their student at any time other than dismissal will be asked to call the office or after school phones to have the student brought out to their car. 


 

Drop-Off:

In order to expedite the drop off process, drop off times will be staggered and  we will use separate entrances and walkways.
 

  • Elementary students should arrive between 8am and 8:15am and enter through the right side of the double gate
     

  • Adolescent students will enter their own building from the side gate between 8:00-8:15 a.m.
     

  • Primary and Toddler students should arrive between 8:15 and 8:30am. Primary C and Toddler students will enter through the toddler playground gate.
     

  • Primary A and B students will enter through the left side of the front entry gate and proceed to their classes


 

Masks:

All staff, teachers, visitors, and students (primary, elementary, and adolescent programs) will be asked to wear cloth masks when on campus, as recommended by the CDC. While Toddler teachers and assistants will be required to wear masks, there will be no mask requirement for students under the age of three. We acknowledge that face coverings may be challenging for students (especially younger students) to wear all-day, but we will teach mask wearing at school and ask you to reinforce this at home.  

 

At the beginning of the school year we ask that you send in 3 masks in a ziploc bag with your child’s name on the outside and written on each mask. These masks will remain at school in case of emergency. 
 

  • Each day your child should be wearing a mask on entrance to the school building and have one additional attached to or packed in their lunch box.
     

  • Parents are encouraged to have students try wearing their masks at home prior to the beginning of school to find a size and style that is appropriate for your child.
     

  • Neck gaiters will not be accepted in place of masks with ear loops. If neck gaiters have ear loops they can be worn. 


 

Classroom Spaces and Activities:

Students will remain with their classmates and teachers exclusively, in a “pod”.  The practice of creating cohorts of students on campus is recommended by SCDHEC as a way to potentially limit the number of children and staff that will be required to quarantine if a COVID positive person has been on campus.  In addition, creating pods will reduce the number of people each student comes into contact with each day.  In general each pod will spend the majority of their day in their own classroom and will use all other facilities (nap spaces, playground, after school spaces) at different times.

 

  • Each student will have a designated work and lunch space. Care will be taken to help students keep their work in this space only. 
     

  • Primary, Elementary and Adolescent students will be required to keep a pair of “indoor shoes’ at school and change into these shoes when entering the buildings. 
     

  • Extra measures in the classrooms will be taken to assure minimal cross contamination: 

    • Students will have individual cubbies where they keep their personal items

    • Only water bottles will be used for drinking

    • Rigorous hand washing after bathroom use or touching of face will be reinforced

    • Students will bring personal school supplies instead of sharing - this will be based on individual teacher’s requests

    • Materials will be sanitized after use, before becoming available to another student

 

Snack:

Parents will provide snacks for their own child each day, and in after-care if the child stays for this program. The school will not be distributing snacks to students. 

 

Birthdays will be celebrated without food items this year. Each teacher will establish a birthday tradition for their own classroom.

 

Early Care and After Care:

When a parent drops their child off for early care, a staff member will perform a temperature check and administer a questionnaire as described above before allowing the student to enter campus.

 

Early care students will be admitted to the school by a staff person from the main gate. Par I ents will not walk children onto the campus. Early care students will go directly to their individual classrooms.

 

CTM will not be opening the campus to outside vendors for after school activities, nor will we mix the pods to allow students to participate in after school activities. 

 

After care students will remain in their pods in separate rooms. Elementary will be in their own classroom, primary will have designated rooms in the back building. Toddler students will be in the toddler environment as usual for after care.

 

Children presenting symptoms at school:

Students who develop a fever at school of 100.4 or higher or any of the symptoms outlined by SCDHEC’s exclusion criteria will be isolated, and parents  will be called to pick up from the school. 

 


Children or staff members who present symptoms at school may return to campus according to the following criteria adapted from SCDHEC:

Children or staff excluded from school for exhibiting symptoms as described above [Fever (100.4 F), Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, Loss of taste or smell or any two of the following: Sore throat, Muscle aches, Chills, new or worsening cough should not return until they have either:
 

  1. Tested negative for COVID-19 and can provide the results of a negative PCR (mouth or throat swab) test to CTM
     

  2. Had a medical evaluation that determines that their symptoms were more likely due to another cause (e.g. sore throat due to strep throat), those symptoms have abated, and they can provide CTM with a doctor’s note.
     

  3. Completed the current isolation criteria for COVID-19 as follows:. 

  • Ten (10) days have passed since symptoms started - and – 

  • Three (3) days (72 hours) have passed since last fever without taking medicine to reduce fever - and - 

  • There is an overall improvement in symptoms. 

 

Children or staff members who test positive for COVID-19 will be able to return to campus when:

  • Ten (10) days have passed since symptoms started - and – 

  • Three (3) days (72 hours) have passed since last fever without taking medicine to reduce fever - and - 

  • There is an overall improvement in symptoms. 

 

Those who test positive by a PCR (mouth or throat swab) test, but do not have symptoms will be required to stay off campus until ten (10) days after the specimen was collected.

 

Negative tests results are not required if the isolation criteria has been met.

Children or staff members who share a household with someone who tests positive for COVID-19:

Anyone who lives in the same household with a person with COVID-19, per SCDHEC criteria will also need to be excluded from campus for an additional seven (7) days after the date their household member has been cleared from their isolation period.  


 

Determining whether or not a child, staff member, or visitor with a positive COVID test was contagious while on campus:

 

Per SCDEHC’s guidance, when a person tests positive, they could have been contagious with the virus up to 48 hours before their symptoms began. If they tested positive but had no symptoms, their contagious period begins 2 days prior to the date the specimen for their test was collected.   If a child, staff member, or visitor tests positive for COVID, but it is determined they were not in the facility during their contagious period, they should follow the self-isolation protocol described above.


 

If a person was contagious while on campus:

CTM will take the following actions if it is determined that a contagious individual was on campus:

  • The close contacts of the contagious individual will be determined as follows:

    • All students and staff in the same pod will be considered close contacts

    • Anyone who spent fifteen (15) minutes or more within six (6) feet of the case during their contagious period will also be considered a close contact 

  • All close contacts must quarantine until fourteen (14) days after the last time the case was in the facility. 

  • Classroom(s) where the affected person has been will be closed off for 7 days and cleaned per CDC protocol after this period.

  • Distance learning processes will be implemented for all students asked to quarantine.

  • CTM will inform parents of other children in the facility who were not in the same pod or otherwise in close contact with the person with COVID-19 that they should monitor their children for symptoms. 

 

If a child has been told that they were in close contact to a case of COVID-19 outside of CTM:

If SCDHEC contacts you to let you know that your child has been in close contact with a case of COVID-19 outside of school OR you are otherwise informed that your child has been in close contact with a case of COVID-19 while outside of school, we ask that your child stay home for 14 days after their last contact with the case. We realize that many CTM parents work in health care or are essential workers who may come in contact with COVID positive individuals as part of their job. These contacts will not be considered as close contacts to the student as long as the parent does not test positive for COVID-19.

 

Affirmative Obligation to disclose contact, positive test result, symptoms. 

 

Parents and guardians of the students at CTM should understand the obligation to disclose any contact with Covid-19 to the school. In the best interest of health and safety, any exposure must be reported, and self quarantine imposed. CTM will maintain confidentiality of this information

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Charles Towne Montessori does not and shall not discriminate against applicants and students on the basis of race, color, or national or ethnic origin.

Contact Us

Tel:  (843) 571-1140

Email: info@ctmlife.com

Address

56 Leinbach Dr

Charleston, SC 29407

© 2021 Charles Towne Montessori