August 11, 2020
Dear Middle Bucks Community:
The four school districts that send students to Middle Bucks have decided to begin the school year virtually. Based on this information, Middle Bucks will follow this model and will begin our school year virtually as well. This seems to be the safest and most practical way at this time for Middle Bucks to reopen in the fall. We understand that a virtual model is certainly not ideal for Career and Technical Education and understand the concerns this presents. Please be assured that our instructors are preparing to deliver all theory possible through the virtual environment. Upon return to hybrid or in-person instruction, the focus will then be on the obtainment of the necessary hands-on skills.
Virtual Model Reopening, then transition to Hybrid Model
· Middle Bucks will operate virtually with teachers and students interacting via Google Meet in a synchronous (live) instructional format. The students will follow their regular schedule and log in to their Google Classroom for real-time/live interaction with their teacher.
· Live streaming with their teacher will create greater engagement for the students and allow for students to interact with their teacher and receive immediate feedback.
· Depending on the region’s COVID status and the school’s ability to maintain safe distancing and other protocols surrounding COVID, the next step would be to move to a 50% hybrid model.
· Current projections for a 50-50 hybrid model of instruction would be sometime after the first marking period, but only if conditions permit.
· Once instituted, the A/B hybrid schedule would provide students in-person learning with their teachers 2 days per week.
· Attendance will be taken daily, regardless of the instruction being in-person or virtually.
· Establishing a routine schedule, a quiet space to work and an organized desk area will help your student to be successful this school year.
Thank you for your continued patience and understanding.
Perform a symptom screening prior to arriving at school daily using the COVID-19 Health Screening Tool and record temperature.
Maintain a distance of at least 6 feet from other adults to the maximum extent feasible.
Maintain at least 6 feet from students, whenever possible and when not disruptive to the educational process.
Hold group meetings such as IEP, parent-teacher conferences, and staff meetings virtually.
Discourage non-essential visitors (including parents} from entering the school building.
Refrain from congregating in shared spaces, such as staff lounge areas.
Perform a symptom screening prior to arriving at school using the Symptom Screening Tool with parents/guardians/caregivers oversight. Here is a link to the CDC’s website with more information and a “symptom checker” tool that may be helpful to you: Symptoms of COVID-19 https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/symptoms-testing/symptoms.html
Report directly to their assigned classroom upon entering the building. Do not congregate in a lobby, hallway, or cafeteria before school starts.
Seat students at least 6 feet apart and facing the same direction, to the maximum extent feasible.
Turn desks to face in the same direction. If desks or workstations cannot be moved, have students spaced apart and sitting on only one side of tables.
Separate students within common areas.
If possible, hold classes in large spaces or outdoors, where physical distancing can be maintained.
Follow one-way traffic pattern in hallways.
Stagger class times to limit numbers of students in hallways at any time.
Locker rooms will not utilized by students.
Limit gatherings, events, and extracurricular activities to those that can maintain physical distancing.
All field trips are canceled at the start of the school year and rescheduling when there is good viral control.
Virtual group events, gatherings, or meetings, and promote distancing of at least 6 feet between people if events are held.
Wash hands or use hand sanitizer before and after eating.
Seat in staggered arrangements to avoid "across-the-table" seating.
Serve individually plated meals/box lunches.
Do not serve meals family style.
Do not allow snacks to be shared for classroom activities or events.
Avoid sharing of food and utensils.
Face Coverings and Masks
Face coverings, such as masks or face shields, must be worn by all staff, students, and visitors (including parents and guardians),
Face coverings may be removed to eat or drink during breaks and lunch periods; however, at those times, social distancing must be practiced.
Staff are not required to wear a face covering in situations where wearing a face covering creates an unsafe condition to operate equipment or execute a task.
MBIT will maintain an adequate supply of face coverings and other personal protective equipment (PPE) and carefully monitor inventory.
Face coverings may be removed individuals are:
- Eating or drinking when spaced at least 6 feet apart
- Seated at desks or assigned workspaces at least 6 feet apart
- Engaged in any activity at least 6 feet apart (e.g., face covering breaks, recess, etc.); or
- When wearing a face covering creates an unsafe condition in which to operate equipment or execute a task.
Hand Hygiene, Cleaning, and Disinfection
Practice frequent handwashing, along with cleaning, sanitizing, disinfecting, and ventilating learning spaces and any other areas used by students (i.e., restrooms, hallways, and transportation), decreases transmission.
Practice frequent handwashing
Hand sanitizer will be available in common areas, hallways or in classrooms
Maintain adequate inventory supplies of soap, hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol, paper towels, and tissues.
Cleaning and Disinfection
Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects within the school at least twice daily, including door handles, light switches, railings, sink handles.
Clean and disinfect bathrooms frequently throughout the day.
Vans disinfected after each run.
Disinfect shared equipment such as computers, keyboards, supplies, tools, and equipment frequently
Wash hands before and after sharing tools and equipment.
Limit the use of shared equipment; obtain extra supplies and materials to limit the need for sharing.
Water bottle filling stations replace communal drinking fountains.
Upgrade ventilation systems to increase circulation of outdoor air by opening windows and doors when possible.
Individuals with Disabilities or Other Chronic Conditions
Collaborate with student's parent/guardian, medical provider, certified school nurse and school administrators to develop an appropriate educational plan of care for students (i.e., 504 Plan or IEP).
Determine how to meet student needs safely and consider the following:
- People who are at increased risk for severe illness
- People who need to take extra precautions
- Other at-risk populations
Staff with Chronic Conditions
Staff at higher risk should avoid gathering in groups of any size and avoid common areas.
Alternate work options or duties that minimize exposure risk, including telework options will be considered, if feasible.
Students, families, and staff should be encouraged to get the influenza vaccination. The flu vaccine is vital to reducing the impact of respiratory illness in communities.
The MBIT Health and Safety Plan has been created and includes a system for ensuring ongoing communication with staff, students, and families on the elements of the plan,
Post signs in highly visible locations (e.g., school entrances, restrooms) that promote everyday protective measures and describe how to stop the spread of germs (such as by properly washing hands and properly wearing a face covering).
Post signs on how to stop the spread of COVID-19, such as screening symptoms and staying at home when sick, properly washing hands, everyday protective measures, and how to properly wear a face covering.
Daily school announcements will include reminders on reducing the spread of COVID-19.
Behaviors that prevent the spread of COVID-19 communicated to staff, students, and families through MBIT website, emails, and social media.
Ensure communications are in common languages spoken at school and home and easily understandable for students and adults.
Post the MBIT Health and Safety Plan on the website prior to allowing students to return to school.
Provide regular update information on school websites and through PowerSchool School Alert system.
Encourage parents/guardians/caregivers to practice and reinforce good prevention habits at home and within their families.
Remind parents/guardians/caregivers to keep children at home if sick with any illness.
Prepare parents/guardians/caregivers and families for remote learning if school is temporarily dismissed.
Provide training to prepare parents/guardians/caregivers for digital and remote learning.
Discourage students and families from gathering in public places while school is dismissed to help slow the spread of COVID-19 in the community.
Communicate to everyone in the education community that staff and children should not come to school and to notify school officials if they become sick with COVID-19 symptoms, test positive for COVID-19, or are exposed.
Adopt flexible attendance and sick leave policies for students and staff.
Instruct parents to keep children at home if they are ill.
Any student or staff with a fever of 100.4 degrees or higher or the symptoms of possible COVID-19 infection should not be in school.
Establish an Isolation Room to separate anyone who develops the symptoms of COVID-19 while on school premises.
Provide ongoing education and communication to staff, parents/guardians and students about signs and symptoms of COVID-19, and the importance of staying home if sick.
Require students and parents/guardians/caregivers to perform a symptom screening prior to arriving at school using the Symptom Screening Tool.
Responding to Confirmed or Probable Cases
After a Positive Case of COVID-19
Communicate that individuals who are self-quarantining or have been diagnosed with a confirmed or probable case of COVID-19 may not drop off or pick up children from school.
HEALTH AGENCY RESOURCES