Elam Hearts and Hands
at Elam United Methodist Church
1073 Smithbridge Rd
Glen Mills, PA 19342
Kelly Forwood, Director
Elam Hearts and Hands
Call or email for further information
or to receive
Elam Hearts and Hands - Health and Safety Plan
2021-2022 School Year
Our priority is the health and safety of our children, families and staff members. We have put the following mitigation strategies in place after reviewing recommendations and guidance issued by the CDC (Operating Early Care and Education/Child Care Programs), PA Department of Health, CHOP PolicyLab, American Academy of Pediatrics, and OCDEL (Office of Child Development and Early Learning). As the pandemic continues to evolve, we will monitor the guidance and make necessary modifications if requirements change or mandates are put into place.
Drop-off/Pick-up Times: We will unlock all school entrances to the building at 9am. Classroom doors will open at this time as well. For pick-up, the entrance doors will be unlocked at the same time the classroom doors will open: 12pm (school dismissal), 1:30pm (Lunchbunch dismissal) and 3pm (Lunchbunch/Kinderbunch dismissal).
Security: All school entrance doors will be locked 15 minutes after each drop-off/pick-up time. If you should arrive at school later and the doors are locked you will need to enter the building through the main church doors. Show your Hearts and Hands Entrance Card (will be given in your orientation packet) to the church office administrator. Otherwise you will need to sign in at the church office and receive a visitor pass.
Propped Doors: All school entrance doors will be propped open during drop-off and pick-up times. Please make sure you are holding your child’s hand as you enter and exit the building to maintain safety.
School Entrances: There will be three entrances utilized during the drop-off and pick-up times. The Children’s Day Out classes will enter through their separate classroom door by the small parking lot, the 3’s classes and Miss Karen Smith’s 4’s/Pre-K class, will enter through the main preschool doors, and Miss Sarah’s 4’s/Pre-K class will enter through the gym doors by the playground. Each class has a specific direction to walk once inside the building. Follow the colored crayons specific to your child’s classroom, drop off at the door, and then exit the building the way you entered. Those picking up for Lunchbunch/Kinderbunch should enter through the main preschool doors.
Sanitizing Stations: There are stations available at each entrance to the building. They are not mandatory, as the children will be washing their hands as they enter their classrooms.
Washing Hands: Hand washing will be done inside the classroom upon arrival. Please do not take the time to wash your child’s hands in the school bathrooms. Children will wash their hands before and after eating, and after toileting, sneezing, or coughing.
Multiple Children: If you have more than one child attending school, you may choose which entrance door works best for your drop-off/pick-up procedure. Follow the hallway guides for the direction of the drop-off/pick-up procedure for your second child.
Strollers: If a stroller is needed, you may choose which entrance door works best to utilize a ramp. Follow the hallway guides for the direction of the drop-off/pick-up procedure.
Exiting the Building: We are asking that no one remains in the building once children have been dropped off at the classroom doors.
Face Coverings: The latest CDC guidance recommends universal indoor masking for all teachers, staff, students, and visitors regardless of vaccination status. Therefore, we will be requiring face coverings for all children 2 years and older, along with teachers and parents, regardless of vaccination status, when inside the school building. We will be taking the masks off, though, for outdoor playtime. We have posters throughout the building and in the classrooms with a picture of children in capes and masks with the words: Hearts and Hands Superheros. Wear Your Mask To Fight The Germs. A child can have a mask break (one child sitting at a specific desk with a barrier, away from the other children) whenever needed, which we call “Mask Recharging Stations”. There will also be whole class mask breaks during snack time and outdoor playtime.
Within our Children’s Day Out Program, with the age range of 18 months to 3 years, this may prove to be more challenging. Mask wearing will be new to some of these children, so we will
need to evaluate each Children’s Day Out class, and the ages within each class, to determine mask wearing requirements and how best to support each child through this process.
Daily Home Screening: Parents will be asked to sign a commitment, agreeing to take their child’s temperature and evaluate their child’s health and exposure to COVID-19, before bringing him/her to school each day. Please keep your child home if he/she is experiencing symptoms. Refer to the Parent Handbook under Health Policy for typical health related policies. See the attached paper at the end of this document to reference the Daily Health Screening. The top part of this screening paper must be filled out, signed, and returned to be put in your child’s
school file. (If you have already handed in this screening paper from a prior program with us, you do not need to complete another one.)
Elam Church Waiver: A COVID-19 Liability Waiver, which will be provided at orientation, must be completed by each family, signed, and returned to be put in your child’s school file. (If you have already handed in the liability waiver from a prior program with us, you do not need to complete another one.)
Daily Health Checks/Temperature Checks: The teachers will do a visual health assessment of each child upon entering the classroom. If there are health concerns, parents will be notified immediately. We will utilize a non-contact thermometer if there is a question regarding a child’s temperature at any point throughout the school day. If a child has a temperature of 100.4F or higher the child will be taken to a designated isolation room and will stay with a staff member until a parent comes to pick up the child.
Teacher Health Check: The teachers will do a daily home screening before arriving at school. Any staff member with a temperature of 100.4F or higher and/or experiencing COVID-19 related symptoms will be asked to leave the building.
Cohort Classes: With physical distancing a challenge within the early learning setting, mitigation practices include the use of cohorts. Each class will remain with its same classmates and teachers throughout the day. Only one class at a time will go to the playground/gym area and participate in snacktime. A floater (an additional teacher) will be available for extra support during the school day.
Snacktime: An eating area will be set up and coned off in a small section of the gym. Tables will be set up so that the children can be distanced during snack time. Only one class at a time will be eating together. Hands will be washed before and after eating. Snacks, provided by the school, will be distributed by the teachers. If a snack is brought from home to share with the class, it must be an individually wrapped store-bought snack, or an unopened bag of snacks to be distributed by the classroom teachers. No homemade snacks at this time. The Children’s Day Out group will have snacktime in their separate classroom.
Lunchbunch: We will be running our Lunchbunch and Kinderbunch extended day program this year. The children participating in this program will be mixed with other children from different classrooms. Currently we are only offering one classroom of this extended day option, so it creates its own Lunchbunch/Kinderbunch cohort. Lunch will be in the eating area within the gym, as described in the “Snacktime” section.
Guests: At this time we are limiting visitors to the classroom to only support staff coming in for a student.
Cleaning and Disinfecting: There will be routine cleaning and disinfecting (with an EPA-approved disinfectant) of the tables, chairs, floors, bathrooms, sinks, railings, toys, and specific touch points within the classrooms and throughout the building in areas where the children participate.
Wash Me Bins: Any toy put in a child’s mouth, sneezed or coughed upon, will be put in a bin to be cleaned and disinfected at the end of the day.
COVID-19 Cases: Any suspected or confirmed COVID-19 cases within our building will be handled as per the PA Department of Health guidelines, in reference to reporting, remediation, quarantine, and cleaning/disinfecting requirements.
Parent’s Signature Date
If your child has any of the following symptoms, that indicates a possible illness that may decrease the student’s ability to learn and also put them at risk for spreading illness to others. Please check your child for these symptoms:
___Temperature 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or higher when taken by mouth
___New uncontrolled cough that causes difficulty breathing (for students with chronic
allergic/asthmatic cough, a change in their cough from baseline)
___Diarrhea, vomiting, or abdominal pain
___New onset of severe headache, especially with a fever
SECTION 2: Close Contact/Potential Exposure
___Had close contact (within 6 feet of an infected person for at least 15 minutes) with a person with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 case.
___Traveled to or lived in an area where the local, Tribal, territorial, or state health department is reporting large numbers of COVID-19 cases.
___Live in areas of high community transmission while the school remains open.
If you answer YES to any question in Section 1 and NO to any question in Section 2, your child will be excused from school in accordance with our Health Policy (see Parent Handbook) . Your child must be symptom-free and fever-free (without fever-reducing medication) for 24 hours, in order to return to school.
If you answer YES to any question in Section 1 and YES to any question in Section 2, your child will be excused from school and must be referred for evaluation by his/her health care provider to determine if COVID-19 testing is necessary. Please notify us if your child is in this consultation process with the healthcare provider.
If the healthcare provider determines that a COVID-19 test is necessary, your child must await the results of the test before returning to school. Whether your child has a negative test result or a positive test result, once your child has followed the directed health protocols, we must receive written documentation from your child’s healthcare provider, stating that your child can safely return to school.