Amendment to CHC Reopening Plan – August 2020
During periods of remote learning when students are not in-person at school, instructional and therapeutic services are provided digitally via virtual online platforms. In September 2020, CHC will be transitioning from other online platforms previously utilized to Google Suite for Education to provide remote services. Staff and families will receive information and training on how to use the Google platform.
To help ensure equitable access to education, CHC conducted parent surveys to determine availability and need for electronic devices and access to reliable internet services. For families that are in need of tools to assist with remote learning, CHC works together with the school district of student’s residence to provide appropriate electronic devices and facilitate internet access in order to have continuity of learning.
Professional learning opportunities and trainings will be available to staff to support and improve student engagement and virtual learning.
CHC has developed a Continuity of Learning Plan to ensure educational services can be provided to all students when learning must be remote/virtual, or a hybrid option (combination of remote/virtual and in-person) is chosen for a variety of reasons. Both synchronous and asynchronous instruction will be offered.
Teachers and therapists will regularly post educational and therapeutic activities for students that will enhance engagement. In addition, classroom meetings and one-to-one teletherapy sessions will be available virtually.
Learning materials and resources may be provided to families in multiple formats whenever possible and may be picked up at school or delivered to the home. Staff may schedule opportunities to connect with families and assist them with using virtual platforms and connecting to instructional activities.
Our goal is to increase overall participation of remote learners. Teachers will check in on remote learners at least weekly, either through phone, messaging, or other means, to provide support and guidance with educational activities, as well as to obtain an update on student health and well-being.
COVID-19 diagnostic testing is the role of the Department of Health. The New York State Department of Education in its Reopening Guidance states that “it is strongly recommended that schools comply with the Center for Disease Control (CDC) guidance and not conduct COVID-!9 testing, nor require testing or antibody testing of students or staff members”. In addition, both the NYS Department of Health and Erie County Department of Health officials do not recommend testing for asymptomatic students or staff for re-entry into school.
CHC Learning Center follows NYSED, NYSDOH, CDC and Erie County DOH guidance in our reopening plan. Therefore, CHC will not conduct COVID-19 related testing on-site. As a school, our role is to provide educational and therapeutic services.
If an individual at CHC (student, staff) becomes symptomatic, they will be separated from others and assessed by a school nurse in an isolation room to determine if further medical evaluation is needed, or if symptoms result from a previously identified health concern (such as asthma, allergies, sinus issues, ear infection, etc.).
Individuals that are determined to need further medical assessment will be sent home and advised to contact their pediatrician, primary physician or ECDOH if they do not have their own Doctor. Symptomatic students will remain in the isolation room until parent(s)/caregiver(s) arrive to pick up the child at a separate exit door from the gym that is not used by others. Symptomatic staff will also immediately leave the building to go home. The individual’s primary physician will determine whether COVID-19 testing is needed and provide the individual with further specific guidance. Information regarding testing sites is also available on the Erie County Department of Health website: www.erie.gov.
The purpose of contact tracing is to identify a positive COVID-19 case early and through contact, tracers investigate whom that person has been in close contact (defined as closer than 6’ for more than 10 consecutive mintues). Contact tracing is a public health function and as such is the responsibility of the local Erie County Department of Health.
If a positive COVID-19 test result is reported to CHC, we are required to notify both the Erie County Department of Health (ECDOH), as well as the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH). As a school CHC will collaborate and work closely with ECDOH to assist with contact tracing and to determine recommendations for any needed space or building closure should this become necessary.
Following identification of an individual that tests positive for COVID-19, ECDOH issues an order for isolation of that individual. ECDOH contact tracers then investigate cases to determine who has been in close contact with the individual that tested positive The county health department has the responsibility to notify impacted employees/student families and inform them of any specific steps to take. If isolation and or quarantine are required, the ECDOH will make that decision and communicate it to impacted individuals.
The goal of contact tracing is to slow and prevent the spread of illness. It is important to note that the identification of the individual testing positive must remain confidential. Please note that legally, CHC cannot identify or disclose to anyone the name of the individual that tested positive for COVID-19.
CHC employees will maintain a continuous close contact log daily. Essential visitors/vendors will be required to sign in on a form that includes full name, phone number, date, arrival and departure times, destination within the premises and who they met with while on site. CHC will make efforts to reduce the number of interactions people have with others as much as possible, by conducting fewer face-to-face meetings, using technology where possible and reducing the use and handling of paper.
CHC will also educate employees and essential visitors/vendors regarding use of simple procedures (including but not limited to: Use of Facial Coverings/Masks and other Personal Protective Equipment, Social Distancing, Hand and Respiratory Hygiene) to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and transmission of illness.