When it comes to students’ returning to studying in times of coronavirus the matters of safety are still valid. How to organize the space, study, and communication in a safe manner allowing us to stay healthy?
Below you may find an effective guideline on procedures and protocols to be implemented and follow in order to prevent COVID-19 from spreading and protect teachers and students from it.
Part 1: Social Distancing
Social distancing matters helps to decrease the number of infection so becomes an essential measure in every safety protocol. How should it be organized for students? The number one priority is to clearly message the requirements to students to ensure they follow norms.
The following areas should be managed:
- Class sizes. The best practice is to split students into small groups and keep the class size as small as it’s possible. This will allow to contact fewer people and properly distribute workload among available teachers. Another important point is to ensure students stay in their groups outside the lessons while having lunch or resting at recess. This will allow tracing contacts in case some from the groups or teachers will be infected with the virus.
- Each student should have a personal desk placed apart from others at 6 feet at a minimum. Student’s belongings should be kept in individual containers or cabinets apart from others.
- Supplies should be individual, sharing of any material should be strictly limited. For those supplies, which cannot be provided for personal using the proper disinfection should be in place.
- The same requirement to the distance – 6 feet – should be applied for the queues. The best practice is to mark the distance point on the floor, so it will be easier to follow it.
- Students should move around the school in accordance with a specific schedule identifying allowed time for arrival and drop-off, lunch, any other activities, including physical exercises. The best practice is to adjust the morning rush by making additional entries and exits for different groups and consider one-way directions through the hallways.
- No visitors are allowed except for cases of parent’s absolute necessity or children’s safety. No caregivers near the gates. No crowds.
- If the school has many students it is a good idea to implement an alternative schedule, according to which groups of students will be rotated between online studying and in-class on for example a weekly basis. Additionally, it’s a good idea to make morning and evening shifts for different grades.
- Good ventilation prevents the virus from spreading, so if possible the majority of classes or activities should be held outdoors. In such a way fewer surfaces will be touched which can potentially move the disease. The alternative option is to keep windows open and make regular aerations.
Step 2: Lunch
- Limit the time of cafeteria visits to different grades, this will allow limiting the number of visitors at the same time. Additionally, ensure the tables are placed at the proper distance and don’t allow groups to sit together close to each other. Ensure you have a sufficient number of sanitizers to disinfect hands before meals.
- Ensure the floor in the cafeteria has distance marks, so students will know the safe places to stand in queues.
- Meals should be pre-packaged in a way making children able to handle them.
- Ensure thorough disinfection of places commonly used as kitchen, restrooms, hallways, and so on. As the kitchen and cafeteria are used for meals, special attention and measures should be given to them.
Step 3: Masks Wearing Enforcement
Seems nobody likes to wear masks complaining of discomfort. But the CDC’s plans on school reopening make it a strict requirement, which prevents COVID-19 from spreading. It is proven that properly worn cloth face masks are critical to slow virus spreading and very important in times when social distancing is difficult to maintain. Their main purpose to catch respiratory droplets and do not them allow to get into air, surfaces, or in other people’s lungs.
Factors to be considered managing mask-wearing at school:
- The crucial importance of masks is when students are studying indoors and social distancing is hard to achieve at the range of 6 feet.
- It’s forbidden to wear masks to children younger than 2 years having asthma, other respiratory difficulties, or other specific healthcare needs.
- Keeping masks for each student should be performed separately. Each mask should be marked with the respective student’s name. It’s essential to avoid mask mixing.
Inform your students and teachers:
- Students and teachers should be informed about the necessity of wearing masks, their proper use, and the importance of hygiene measures.
- Remind them that it is not recommended to touch face mask with hands.
- Remind about the necessity to regularly use sanitizers.
- Do not use wet masks, it will make breathing difficult.
- Masks should be washed after each usage.
Signature Water and Fire Restoration team believed the mentioned above guide will help you to save students and teachers from the virus. If you need any assistance, please contact our experts at +1-224-515-0100 and we’ll make everything possible to make your environment comfortable and safe.