Campus Reopening Plan | Safe Learning Environment | La Scuola SF Skip to main content

La Scuola International School

 

You are here

Covid-19 Health & Safety Plan

Updated on October 29, 2021

SFDPH Updates

COVID-19 at-home tests recommended in limited circumstances

We currently do not know how well home tests, when performed by the child’s caregiver, can detect COVID-19. If schools choose to accept home test results to return to school, SFDPH recommends that home testing be limited to symptomatic children when all the following are true: 

  • The child’s symptoms* do not include loss-of-taste or smell.  
  • The child has not had close contact with someone positive for COVID-19 in the past 14 days. 
  • The caregiver is confident that they were able to thoroughly swab the child’s nose, obtain a good sample and all test instructions were followed correctly.  
  • Requiring a test at a clinic, school, or another test site would result in additional missed school days.   

When the above conditions are not met, getting a test from a clinic or other medical provider is strongly recommended. 

Schools should accept positive home test results in all situations.  At this time, SFDPH does not recommend accepting home tests to end quarantine. 

*Regardless of the test result, if symptoms include fever, a child must stay out of school until they are fever free for at least 24 hours without the use of medications for fever.

Update to modified quarantine testing cadence (TK-12 only)

The initial test for students in modified quarantine should be immediately after notification of exposure, then on or after day 5 of quarantine.  

Runny Nose in Isolation No Longer a Symptom

Effective immediately, isolated runny nose/congestion has been removed from SFDPH’s list of Covid-19 symptoms for children and young adults in schools and childcare settings. 

Our parent/guardian handout, where you may find a full list of current symptoms, and exposure advisory templates have been updated accordingly. This change is limited to cases where the child has not been a close contact of someone with Covid-19. In post-exposure cases, schools and programs should continue to include congestion/runny nose in their symptoms screening. 

One-Stop-Shop: Guide to COVID-19 infections, symptoms, and exposures

Guide to Isolation and Quarantine

Updated to reflect changes to modified quarantine testing cadence and clarification regarding children and youth in shelters

Sample Exposure Investigation Tool

Updated to reflect changes to modified quarantine testing cadence

Home Quarantine Instructions - What to do if your child had close contact with someone with COVID-19

Updated to reflect changes to modified quarantine testing cadence , link to COVID Resource Center, and changes to reporting requirement for close contacts

Modified Quarantine Advisory (TK-12 Schools Only)

Updated to reflect changes to modified quarantine testing cadence

Close Contact Advisory - Adults

Updated to reflect changes to modified quarantine testing cadence

Close Contact Advisory - Children Under 18

Updated to reflect changes to modified quarantine testing cadence and clarification regarding children and youth in shelters

En Español:

Principles in Planning

As we move into the 2021-22 school year, we ask for your partnership in supporting efforts to keep our community safe. It is our collective duty to engage in low-risk, responsible activities and behaviors both on and off-campus. 

Our campus reopening plans are guided by the following principles: 

  • Fostering the physical and emotional well-being of our students and our community. Moments of connection where our students can be together are critical now more than ever.
  • Offering the exceptional education we have always delivered. The educational experience and our curriculum have not changed and will entail Italian language immersion, International Baccalaureate Units of Inquiry, and our Reggio Approach, with the same learning outcomes as before.
  • Relying on our flexibility and empathy as we leverage our expertise in dynamic teaching to adapt as we learn and grow through this experience. 
  • Mutual trust in and from our community to respect our social contract by adhering to the health and safety protocols we have shared.
  • Deferring to science and data from a vast network in conjunction with local and national guidelines

Covid-19 Prevention & Mitigation Plan

Below are the steps we are taking to ensure your children continue to receive high-quality educational and social-emotional experiences in a safe environment on campus. By layering effective prevention strategies, schools can reduce the risk of Covid-19 and provide in-person instruction safely for staff and students. Effective prevention strategies include vaccination, masking indoors, ventilation, hand hygiene, physical distancing, and testing.

These measures and recommendations have evolved to focus on mitigating droplet transmission between adults, a primary method of Covid-19 prevention in addition to keeping surfaces clean through enhanced cleaning and frequent hand washing to break transmission. The SFDPH recommendations below are based on the most up-to-date science available and incorporate the current, lower levels of Covid-19 transmission and high vaccination rates in San Francisco. They are subject to change as new knowledge emerges, local community transmission changes, or as the percentage of individuals who are fully vaccinated for Covid-19 increases.

Required Signage Posting

This notice guides best practices to ensure individuals get vaccinated (if eligible), stay home if sick, wear a face covering for protection, clean hands and that fresh air is maximized on campus. These notices are displayed at the entrances of our campuses.

Risk Acknowledgement Form

We require a signed copy of the SFDPH Risk Acknowledgement Form for all families on campus. This document is shared electronically with families and may be returned via hard copy or digitally. The form will be kept on file by our administrative team in a secure manner.

Cleaning & Disinfection

Shared surfaces will be regularly cleaned and disinfected with EPA-approved anti-COVID-19 disinfectants, and use of shared items will be minimized. Specifically:

  • Classrooms, break rooms, bathrooms, and other common areas including all shared surfaces will be cleaned throughout the day. 
  • Janitorial crews will continue to perform thorough cleanings each evening. EPA-approved Quat20 is used for cleaning at the recommended dilution. We will continue to monitor recommendations and adjust accordingly.
  • All faculty and staff will have easy access to cleaning spray or wipes for any immediate needs. 
  • We will provide dedicated classroom materials and supplies including some items individual to the student.
  • Only washable bedding is permitted as applicable.
  • Belongings will be kept separate from each other to the greatest extent possible.
  • CDC guidelines for Cleaning and Disinfecting can be found here.

Face Coverings

The widespread use of face coverings can significantly reduce the spread of infection. 

  • All faculty, staff, and students are required to wear a face covering that covers both nose and mouth while indoors on campus, even for people who are fully vaccinated. Face coverings are not required outdoors.  
  • Students age 2 and older are required to wear a clean face covering while indoors on campus. This will be supported by teachers and in-class routines.
  • Licensing prohibits children from eating and napping while wearing a face covering. 
  • In all school settings, students with documented medical or behavioral recommendations are exempt and will be seated 6 feet away from other students. These students should not be excluded from class if they cannot consistently wear a face covering; we will work with these students’ families and teachers to develop and implement a personal safety plan. 
  • We have purchased reusable face coverings for all faculty and staff.
  • Extra disposable face coverings will be available for students, faculty and staff as needed. We encourage everyone to bring their own clean, reusable face covering. 
  • In addition to face coverings, plastic face shields will be available for faculty and staff members on an as-needed basis. Face shields may only be worn in addition to their face covering. 
  • We understand the importance of seeing teachers’ faces during instruction, especially in a bilingual environment. We are exploring options that may make it easier for students to see teachers’ mouths, such as by using clear masks, especially for our younger students. 
  • Reference for CDC Guide to Masks can be found here.

Vaccination Requirements

We continue to prioritize the safety and health of our community, including those that are immunocompromised and those ineligible to get vaccinated (including our students under 12 years old) at present. In collaboration with the Board of Directors, Covid-19 Task Force, and Leadership Team, La Scuola school policy now requires the Covid-19 vaccine for all employees with very limited exceptions (as mandated by federal law that will allow for medical exemptions consistent with CDC guidance and manufacturer labeling on contraindications and precautions).

School policy also requires all eligible students to get vaccinated with limited exceptions. Any exceptions will be asked to get tested weekly and provide results to campus administration. Once the vaccine is approved by FDA for non-emergency use we will require all students to be vaccinated.

Vaccination sites and resources may be found by contacting your healthcare provider or by learning more at https://sf.gov/get-vaccinated-against-covid-19

To find out your testing options, contact your healthcare provider or learn more here: https://sf.gov/find-out-about-your-covid-19-testing-options 

We accept the rapid antigen at-home test BinaxNow now sold at Walgreens and CVS. Note, if the test result is positive from this test, SFDPH requires a PCR test to confirm the result.  The Pixel at-home PCR test is also acceptable.

Health Screenings for Students & Staff: Sick? Stay Home

We ask that every member of our community be diligent and disciplined in monitoring for symptoms, daily. For our younger students, this responsibility falls to the parent or caregiver. Any staff, student, or household member exhibiting any illness symptoms must stay home and communicate with the school immediately.

Anyone experiencing any illness symptoms must stay home and follow guidance for testing, isolation and quarantine. The current list of symptoms for students and adults can be found here: 

Any child who becomes ill during the day will be isolated in a designated location until a parent or caregiver can pick them up. We strongly encourage families to revisit their family pick-up strategy to ensure an adult can make themselves available for pick-up should the need arise.

Any individual who presents with illness symptoms will be required to follow SFDPH guidelines for self-quarantine and self-isolation and may only return after they have completed the appropriate quarantine or isolation periods.

Illness Symptoms

Many of you have asked about what to do if a child is showing illness symptoms. Please take a moment to review this Parent Handout for Children Covid-19 Screening. Please communicate immediately with your Campus Manager and Division Head and we will share step-by-step instructions provided by SFDPH for your particular situation. 

Symptoms for Children that are NEW or DIFFERENT than usual:

• Fever (100.4°F/38°C or higher) or chills

• Cough

• Headache

• Sore throat

• Loss of taste or smell that started in the last 10 days

• Feeling out of breath or having a hard time breathing

• Children may say that food “tastes bad” or “tastes funny”

• Diarrhea, nausea or vomiting

• Fatigue

• Muscle aches or body aches

Please note that a runny nose and any pre-existing conditions (i.e., frequent migraines) are not currently considered symptoms by SFDPH.

Response Protocols

We will follow SFDPH guidelines updated on October 25, 2021, for testing, home isolation, and quarantine measures, and returning to school. 

What is a Close Contact?

A “close contact” is defined as anyone who is known to have stayed within 6 feet of someone with Covid-19 for a total of 15 minutes over the course of a day. 

Most outdoor exposures are not considered close contacts regardless of masking status. Students with outdoor exposures at school must quarantine only if the exposure happened while unmasked and sitting/standing in place, or during high-contact sports.

Close contacts who are fully vaccinated for Covid-19 or had Covid-19 in the last 3 months don’t have to quarantine, as long as they don’t have symptoms.

Students in the same class or group as a positive Covid-19 case must quarantine only if they are known to have spent 15 minutes within 6 feet of the case. 

In schools, childcare, and programs for children, it may be difficult to know who has had close contact. People should be considered close contacts when the program is reasonably sure that they spent at least 15 minutes within 6 feet of the infected person during the course of a day. People are not considered close contacts simply because they were in the same group or cohort. If the program cannot determine this or does not know, the person should not be considered a close contact.

If your child was fully vaccinated for Covid-19, they can keep going to school. Consider having them tested for 3-5 days after their close contact. If your child was not fully vaccinated for Covid-19, they must stay home. Follow the quarantine instructions at https://www.sfdph.org/dph/files/ig/quarantine-instructions-under-18.pdf

Updated 9-6-21: While SFDPH does not require vaccinated students to quarantine, school policy will now require all vaccinated students to remain off campus after close contact until they get tested (at the earliest on Day 3 after exposure) as a precaution.

Contagious Period: An infected person can spread Covid-19 starting 2 days before they have any symptoms or test positive.

Close Contact Exposure Mapping

 

Close Contact Exposure

If your child was fully vaccinated for Covid-19 and exposed to someone at school who tested positive, they can continue going to school after they are tested per School Policy.

If your child is in Kindergarten through Grade 8 and not fully vaccinated for Covid-19, and was exposed at school they may follow modified quarantine. 

Modified Quarantine for close contact exposure on campus. 

  1. Continue to wear a face covering in school and
  2. Get tested for Covid-19 twice a week and
  3. Remain free of Covid-19 symptoms during this time.
  4. The child must stay home except for attending school (no outside activities or extracurriculars)

Resource: https://www.sfdph.org/dph/files/ig/quarantine-instructions-under-18.pdf

If your child is in Preschool and not fully vaccinated they should follow a standard 10-day quarantine with option to shorten to 7 days if a negative test obtained after day 5.

If your child at any age is not fully vaccinated for Covid-19 and was exposed somewhere other than school, they must follow the 10-day quarantine instructions here. 

  1. Keep your child at home and away from others and watch for symptoms
  2. Have your child tested 5 days after their last close contact unless they develop symptoms before then.
  3. Have your child tested right away if they develop symptoms.

They must stay home until all of the following are true: 

  • 10 days have passed since their symptoms started and 
  • They haven’t had a fever in the last 24 hours, without taking medicine for fever and 
  • Their symptoms are improving. 
  • If they tested positive but never had any symptoms, they must stay home for 10 days after they were tested.

Outdoor Exposure

Children and youth who have close contact with person with Covid-19 outdoors at a school, childcare, or program for youth and children are only required to quarantine if they are unvaccinated, and the close contact occurs EITHER: 

  • during a high-contact sport/dance OR
  • while stationary and unmasked (e.g., while eating a meal or singing in a chorus)

Most unvaccinated children who had exposure off campus can leave home and be around others after: 

  • 7 days have passed since their last close contact (on day 8), if a negative test was collected on day 5 or later of their quarantine and they’ve had no symptoms during this time. The last day that your child has close contact is day 0 of quarantine. 
  • 10 days have passed since their last close contact (on day 11) if they’ve had no symptoms, but didn’t get tested on or after day 5. 

Keep watching your child closely for Covid-19 symptoms until 14 days after their last close contact. There is still a small chance that your child could be infected and could spread the infection to others.

Only non-vaccinated close contacts need to quarantine. The remainder of a class or cohort may continue in-person activities.

Returning to school or other programs After Covid-19 symptoms, without known close contact 

If your child gets tested for Covid-19, they can return if their test is negative. They must stay at home until you get their test result. They must also follow their school’s or program’s rules on returning after illness. For example, many schools ask students to wait for 24 hours after a fever before returning to school. 

Testing is usually the fastest way for your child to go back to their school or program. 

You must show proof of your child’s negative test, for example, the test result or a message from your clinic or test site that the test was negative. When your child gets tested, let the clinic or test site know that you will need this. If your child is not tested, they must stay out of school until • 10 days have passed since their symptoms first appeared AND • 24 hours with no fever, without taking medicines for fever, like acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil or Motrin) AND • They are starting to feel better. Their symptoms do not have to be completely gone. 

Sibling Policy for Close Contacts

If your child has a sibling on campus, the sibling may continue to attend school even though their brother or sister was in the same class as the infected individual. They would only become close contacts themselves if their brother or sister tests positive. In this case, we are asking for any siblings of a child in modified or standard quarantine to get tested via At-home BinaxNow, Supervised Rapid or PCR Test Test prior to coming to campus.

Testing Options For Your Information

Please reach out directly to your healthcare provider to understand the best path for testing your family. Note that routine testing for asymptomatic young children is not recommended, mostly due to the reliability of the results. Call your healthcare provider to see if they will test in office or provide a referral after a virtual visit to CPMC or UCSF. 

How to get a COVID-19 test for your child

  • Contact your child’s doctor or the clinic listed on their health insurance card.
    • If your child does not have health insurance or a regular doctor, call SFDPH New Patient Appointment Call Center for COVID-19 at 415-682-1740
    • Mission Neighborhood Health Center at 415-552-3870 x2217
    • For other places where your child can get tested, see https://sf.gov/gettested

Identification & Contact Tracing

  • We have assigned a designated staff member, our Pandemic Coordinator and Director of Administration, Dani Sollberger, to work closely with our Division Heads and Campus Managers to ensure full collaboration and compliance with SFDPH contact tracing protocols
  • We will use the following process for identification, contact tracing, and communications

If the school is informed about a confirmed positive case from an individual, the following steps are taken within one business day: 

  1. School acknowledges the case and explains next steps to the individual including providing SFDPH instructions for isolation while the individual waits for test results.
  2. School reports case to SFDPH using Site Information Gathering Tool
    1. Our Pandemic Coordinator will use the SFDPH Childcare Hub for Communication.
    2. Email mail: cases.schools@sfdph.org
    3. Schools and Child Care Hub Phone: 628-217-7499
    4. School follows communications outlined in COVID-19 Schools, Childcare and Programs guidance always maintaining the confidentiality of the original positive case as required by Health Information Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). 
  3. It is our policy to:
    1. Report information about COVID-19 cases at our workplace to the local health department whenever required by law, and provide any related information requested by the local health department.
    2. Report immediately to Cal/OSHA any COVID-19-related serious illnesses or death, as defined under CCR Title 8 section 330(h), of an employee occurring in our place of employment or in connection with any employment.
  4. SFDPH contact tracing team calls confirmed case, cohort and other contacts.
  5. After discussion at the Leadership Team level, the school may use General Exposure Advisory to communicate to all stakeholders in the community about the confirmed COVID-19 case, respecting confidentiality. When we notify all school staff, families, and students that an individual in the school has a confirmed case of COVID-19, we cannot disclose the identity of the person as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act, Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), and the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).
  6. School systematically documents, communicates, then archives the case.

Cohort Closures 

Below you will find a brief description of the steps we take, in collaboration with SFDPH. 

  • All families will follow isolation and quarantine practices that include:
    • 10-day isolation for the individual that tested positive.
    • 10-day quarantine from the day of last exposure to the positive individual, for all others in the cohort and any close contacts (defined by SFDPH as anyone who has spent 15 minutes or more, unmasked, within 6 feet of an individual who has tested positive.) 
    • Report any child that develops any symptoms while in quarantine immediately.
    • Get tested for COVID-19 and receive a negative test result. This will not shorten the quarantine time, but is performed to enable contact tracing and inform other close contacts of any subsequent cases to quarantine.
    • Confirm no close contact with any other individual who has tested positive for COVID-19.
  • La Scuola will carry out a deep cleaning of the cohort’s room, and all common areas and high touch surfaces used by the class in compliance with SFDPH protocol. 

Limited Visitors on Campus

Visitors this school year will be limited to vaccinated individuals including volunteers with limited exceptions approved on a case by case basis.

Healthy Hygiene Practices: Follow pre-Covid protocols

  • Hand washing for students and staff will take place often so staff and children will wash their hands frequently throughout the day on campus. 
  • Hand washing stations and / or hand sanitizer (kept out of the reach of young children and supervised) will be provided throughout campuses and accessible from every classroom. 
  • Hand washing supplies to ensure adequate supplies to support healthy hygiene behaviors, including soap, tissues, no-touch trashcans, face coverings, and hand sanitizers with at least 60 percent ethyl alcohol for staff and children who can safely use hand sanitizer will be present.
  • Staff will: 
    • Teach and reinforce washing hands, avoiding contact with one's eyes, nose, and mouth, and covering coughs and sneezes among students and staff.

Promote hand washing throughout the day, especially before and after eating, after using the toilet, and after handling garbage, or removing gloves.

Ventilation & Windows

We mitigate the risk of poor ventilation and low room air exchange, and maximize the use of windows and ventilation systems to maximize intake of fresh air and minimize recirculated air, based on Harvard’s “Schools for Health” guides at https://schools.forhealth.org/ 

We recognize the importance of increasing air circulation indoors and will be keeping windows open and doors ajar as appropriate throughout the day, ensuring outdoor learning is maximized in the daily routine and taking measures to improve our HVAC and forced air systems as follows:

  • At our Dogpatch campus, we have an HVAC system with Merv 13 filters in place which will be replaced every two months. In addition, each classroom is equipped with an air purifier with HEPA filters changed 1-2 times per month and are efficient for 800 square feet, the maximum size of our classrooms. 
  • At our Fell campus, we rely on a large number of large windows to cool the space / circulate the air and a steam / radiator heating system. There is no forced air in the building.  Each classroom is equipped with an air purifier with HEPA filters changed 1-2 times per month and are efficient for 800 square feet, the maximum size of our classrooms. 
  • At our Mission campus, we rely on a large number of large windows to cool the space / circulate the air and a forced air heating system throughout.  The furnaces will be equipped with Merv 13 filters.  Each classroom is equipped with an air purifier with HEPA filters changed 1-2 times per month and is efficient for 800 square feet, the maximum size of our classrooms.

Community Health Pledge & Our Collective Responsibility 

In reviewing and signing this Community Safety Pledge, we acknowledge the role each of us plays in maintaining a healthy and safe environment and commit to following the recommended guidelines presented. 

In addition to this pledge, we require the following of all our community members including faculty, staff, students and families:

  • Ensure you are social distancing and engaging in socially responsible activities when you are not on campus. If you think you may have engaged in an activity where you may have been exposed, stay home, and monitor symptoms for 14 days.
  • We require all community members to follow health authority guidance on personal interactions and social activities, errands, going out, and travel
  • Follow best practices in keeping our children safe including low-risk activities
  • Reinforce good hygiene practices.
  • Review and sign all recommended documentation including the Community Safety Pledge and Risk Acknowledgement Form prior to coming on campus.

Travel 

There are currently no travel mandates in place from the SF or CA Health Departments. 

Effective August 27, 2021, we will be requiring all students, vaccinated or unvaccinated, to be tested upon their return to the Bay Area and prior to returning to school and to share the results with Campus Administration.  We strongly encourage all individuals to follow  CDC Travel Guidelines for both vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals. 

Also effective August 27, 2021 all La Scuola staff will be required to follow CDC guidelines for domestic and international travel and will be required to take a rapid antigen test prior to returning on campus after any travel on commercial planes, buses, trains, and other forms of public transportation traveling into, within, or out of the United States and while indoors at U.S. transportation hubs such as airports and stations.

Domestic Travel During Covid-19

For vaccinated individuals:

Self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms; isolate and get tested if you develop symptoms.  You do NOT need to get tested or self-quarantine if you are fully vaccinated or have recovered from COVID-19 in the past 3 months. 

For unvaccinated individuals (including children unable to get vaccinated):

If you are not fully vaccinated and must travel, take the following steps to protect yourself and others from COVID-19:

Before travel:

  • Get tested with a viral test 1-3 days before your trip.

After travel:

  • Get tested with a viral test 3-5 days after travel AND stay home and self-quarantine for a full 7 days after travel.
  • Even if you test negative, stay home and self-quarantine for the full 7 days.
  • If your test is positive, isolate yourself to protect others from getting infected.
  • If you don’t get tested, stay home and self-quarantine for 10 days after travel.
  • Avoid being around people who are at increased risk for severe illness for 14 days, whether you get tested or not.
  • Self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms; isolate and get tested if you develop symptoms.

International Travel During Covid-19

For vaccinated individuals: 

Before you arrive in the United States:

All air passengers coming to the United States, including U.S. citizens and fully vaccinated people, are required to have a negative COVID-19 test result no more than 3 days before travel or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 in the past 3 months before they board a flight to the United States.

After travel:

  • Get tested with a viral test 3-5 days after travel.
  • Self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms; isolate and get tested if you develop symptoms.
  • Follow all state and local recommendations or requirements after travel.

For unvaccinated individuals:

Before you travel:

  • Get tested with a viral test 1-3 days before your trip.

Before you arrive in the United States:

All air passengers coming to the United States, including U.S. citizens and fully vaccinated people, are required to have a negative COVID-19 viral test result no more than 3 days before travel or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 in the past 3 months before they board a flight to the United States.

After you travel:

  • Get tested with a viral test 3-5 days after travel AND stay home and self-quarantine for a full 7 days after travel.
  • Even if you test negative, stay home and self-quarantine for the full 7 days.
  • If your test is positive, isolate yourself to protect others from getting infected.
  • If you don’t get tested, stay home and self-quarantine for 10 days after travel.
  • Avoid being around people who are at increased risk for severe illness for 14 days, whether you get tested or not.
  • Self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms; isolate and get tested if you develop symptoms.

Community Resources

Staff Training & Family Education

  • Our entire community has access to resources posted on our website and will receive additional communications via email from our Leadership Team.
  • Copies of new protocols, procedures, and other appropriate signage will be regularly updated, posted on each campus, and shared with the community. 
  • We continue to update the FAQ section of our website.
  • For any additional information or to submit a question, please reach out to our Director of Administration and Covid-19 Staff Liaison Dani Sollberger

Staff Training 

  • Our staff will receive regular Covid-19 mitigation training during Professional Development and Faculty meetings throughout the year.
  • We will continue to educate all staff and families on evolving protocols and requirements.
  • We will provide effective training and instruction that includes:
    • Our Covid-19 policies and procedures to protect employees from Covid-19 hazards.
    • Information regarding Covid-19-related benefits to which the employee may be entitled under applicable federal, state, or local laws. 
    • The fact that:
      • Covid-19 is an infectious disease that can be spread through the air.
      • Covid-19 may be transmitted when a person touches a contaminated object and then touches their eyes, nose, or mouth.
      • An infectious person may have no symptoms.
    • The importance of frequent hand washing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds and using hand sanitizer when employees do not have immediate access to a sink or hand washing facility, and that hand sanitizer does not work if the hands are soiled.
    • Proper use of face coverings and the fact that face coverings are not respiratory protective equipment - face coverings are intended to primarily protect other individuals from the wearer of the face covering.
    • COVID-19 symptoms, and the importance of obtaining a Covid-19 test and not coming to work if the employee has Covid-19 symptoms.

Resources to Watch

For Staff Specifically

  • All staff has been instructed orally and in writing to not come to work if they are showing any signs of illness.
  • All staff has been provided a copy of our planning and preparations documentation digitally and hard copies are also available on campus. 
  • All teachers and staff will have access to handwashing stations and are required to wash hands at the start and end of each shift, after sneezing, coughing, eating, drinking, using the restroom, helping a child use the restroom, changing a child’s diaper or soiled clothes when changing tasks, and frequently during each shift. Hand sanitizer will also be provided.
  • All staff will be provided with appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and will be instructed to wear clean face coverings at all times when at work. Face shields will be available. 
  • We recommend that all staff change clothes and/or shoes before or upon arriving at home after a shift in order to reduce the chance of their clothing or shoes exposing anyone in the household to the virus. La Scuola requests that staff working at the preschool have a change of shoes at school and that they change into them upon entry.

Covid-19 Testing of Students & Staff

For Staff

  • All staff have been provided a virtual orientation, written documentation, and electronic documentation to use their health coverage (currently a Kaiser HMO plan) to meet testing requirements. As we are a school that collects tuition, we provide documentation of our commitment to cover costs of all testing, through use of primary health care providers (Kaiser) which we have confirmed reimburses the Pixel at-home testing kit.
  • Any employees who are experiencing symptoms or have been exposed to someone with Covid-19 are required to arrange for testing and to follow SFDPH protocol immediately.  Our Pandemic Coordinator will guide each employee through the process so they understand what exactly is required.

For Families

  • Families must notify La Scuola immediately if their child(ren) has any symptoms of Covid-19, has been exposed to someone who tested positive for Covid-19, or has tested positive for Covid-190, and will work with Pandemic Coordinator to follow SFDPH protocol for self-isolation and quarantine, including getting tested.  

If Someone Tests Positive

  • Notify La Scuola immediately if a student or staff member tests positive or has been exposed to someone that tests positive for Covid-19. We have assigned a designated staff member, our Pandemic Coordinator and Director of Administration, Dani Sollberger, to work closely with the individual to ensure full collaboration and compliance with SFDPH contact tracing protocols
  • Per SFDPH Guidance, we will notify and work with SFDPH  in taking appropriate actions and precautions.
  • SFDPH will help us determine if the classroom, cohort, or school needs to be closed. Note, schools with smaller and more contained cohorts are less likely to require school-wide closure.
  • Individual must follow self-isolation and self-quarantine guidelines set forth by SFDPH and only return to school as outlined by guidelines.

Data & Evaluation

We have an assigned Pandemic Coordinator who is the liaison with the San Francisco Department of Health and is the main point of  contact for all students, families, faculty and staff with regard to monitoring effectiveness of infection prevention and control measures, identification of illness, absences and contact tracing, response protocols, documentation and follow-up processes, and data collection efforts to measure and monitor transmission. The Coordinator works closely with SFDPH and will record, track, follow up with and report any positive cases.

Plans for Simultaneous Distance Learning

In the event a child needs to stay at home for isolation or quarantine reasons, their teacher will provide a learning packet for the duration of their time off campus and schedule a check-in to explain the homework and expectations. Similar to pre-Covid times, there will be no Distance Learning option. 

Communications Plan

  • In an effort to be transparent with our community and share updates as we have them, we have outlined and implemented a detailed communications plan.
  • La Scuola sends weekly video messages from our Head of School to our community with an update on various aspects of the program, operations, and any timely and relevant news that impacts our school. 
  • Division Heads provide campus-level frequent updates with classroom and grade-level direction and opportunities for feedback from parents. 
  • Surveys are conducted regularly with our community to better understand thoughts about returning to in-person learning and general sentiment gave the circumstances. 
  • Our Leadership Team frequently hosts question and answer sessions, “virtual coffees” and other virtual events to facilitate dialogue and provide the opportunity to ask questions and share thoughts. These events also serve as a forum to share detailed information with our community that impacts their student learning.  Questions are documented and used to inform the FAQ section that is regularly updated.  

Equity

Equity and inclusion is an active and ongoing process that aims to increase access and engagement in learning for all students by identifying and removing barriers.  We believe that reopening our campuses, especially for our younger students, is the greatest equitable approach for our community. With equity as the cornerstone of our Reggio Emilia philosophy, La Scuola continues to support the whole child socially, personally, and academically, whether in person or remote.  Through these critical services, we serve a broad range of our families, many of whom are essential workers. 

  • In March, we established a Covid-19 Relief Fund that enabled our families to keep their children enrolled, especially those impacted by the pandemic, which we believe is the best way to fully support the growth and development of our students. 
  • Learning materials and tools (including school-issued Chromebooks for grade 3 and above) are provided so students can have full access to the program and fully participate.  
  • We’ve supported families and staff members to ensure access to high-speed internet access as well.
  • Social-Emotional Support (SEL) provided by our two SEL specialists allows us to focus on the social-emotional and academic learning of our students, identifying those at high risk or struggling, creating frequent touchpoints, and communicating with families and students, one-on-one to address their personal, social and academic growth in collaboration with their teachers.
  • We focus on the mental health and wellness of all our students through weekly assemblies, grade-level gatherings that provide opportunities for connection and socializing with classmates that complement structured learning times.
  • Covid-19 training, resources, and education opportunities are shared with all students and families. We continue to adjust these resources in relation to the specific needs of a family.

California Department of Health Considerations

La Scuola will comply with all CDPH guidance including but not limited to:

Periodic Workplace Inspections

We will conduct periodic inspections as needed to identify unhealthy conditions, work practices, and work procedures related to COVID-19 and to ensure compliance with our COVID-19 policies and procedures.

Resources We Rely on to Guide our Planning