The health and well-being of our children, families, and staff are our highest priorities. In the interest of limiting the opportunity for transmission to our vulnerable community, we are taking several precautionary measures and will follow all state and local guidance and/or orders. If those orders impose more restrictions than what is included in this policy, we will enforce those orders to be in compliance.
Your household members must remain away from TMA if any member of your household has, or has been in close contact with anyone who has:
- A confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19, e.g., close contact at school, work, religious service, or social gathering; or
- internationally; or
- domestically, from any area which is the subject of travel restrictions under applicable state and local guidance.
After 14 days since the last potential exposure, your household member(s) may return provided all of these conditions are met:
- At least 10 days have passed since any household member first experienced symptoms; and
- Symptoms have improved for any household member that experienced symptoms (for example, cough or shortness of breath has improved); and
- The household has been fever-free for at least 72 hours without the use of fever-reducing medicines.
If a child or staff member is confirmed to have a case of COVID-19:
- We will notify families and implement any short-term closure recommended by state and local authorities.
- The classroom impacted with a COVID-positive case will need to quarantine for 14 days to reduce any further transmission.
Please note, depending on the circumstances, we may require you to obtain medical clearance before return to TMA will be allowed.
HOUSEHOLD MEMBERS include individuals who may not live in the household but may be staying there or are otherwise present in the household on a regular basis (e.g. nannies, caregivers, home health workers, contractors, etc.) and includes anyone with pick up or drop off privileges.
CLOSE CONTACT is defined by the CDC as (1) someone who was within 6 feet of an infected person for at least 15 minutes starting from 48 hours before illness onset until the time the patient is isolated, and can occur while caring for, living with, visiting, or sharing a health care waiting area or room with a COVID-19 case, or (2) having direct contact with infectious secretions of a COVID-19 case (e.g., being coughed on).
FOR MEDICAL PROFESSIONALS
If contact occurs while wearing recommended personal protective equipment or PPE (e.g., gowns, gloves, NIOSH-certified disposable N95 respirator, eye protection), that contact will NOT be considered close contact for purposes of this policy.
Health Check and Illness Policy for COVID-19
Applies to staff, children and their household members, which states in part:
ALL STAFF, FAMILIES, CHILDREN AND THEIR HOUSEHOLD MEMBERS MUST CONDUCT A DAILY HEALTH CHECK BEFORE COMING TO TMA.
- Should you or any household member have any of the following symptoms, we ask you to remain out that day and notify TMA:
- Fever of 100.0° F or higher, now or in the preceding 72 hours (or would have, but have used fever reducing medicine)
- Chills-repeated shaking with chills
- Muscle pain
- Sore throat
- Loss of taste or smell
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Known close contact with a person who is lab-confirmed to have COVID-19
- Consistent with our COVID-19 Policy, the household will be required to remain out of TMA for 14 days unless medical clearance is provided by a physician indicating that the presenting symptoms are associated with a known non-COVID-19 illness. The physician’s note must not be from a family member.
- Exclusion from TMA is sometimes necessary to reduce the transmission of illness. For your child’s comfort, and to reduce the risk of contagion, we ask that children be picked up within 60 minutes of notification. Until then, your child will be kept comfortable and will continue to be observed for symptoms.
- We encourage all TMA staff who are age 65 and older or those with underlying medical conditions to talk to their health care provider to assess their risk and to determine if they should stay home.
Summary of Enhanced Protocols
We are continually updating our processes and protocols in accordance with the most recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance and the guidance of a health consultant. Here is a summary of our health and safety protocols.
Enhanced Operating Protocols
- Nonessential visitors are not permitted in the school
- All essential adult visitors must wear a face covering
- Posted health notice restricting entry
- Drop off/pick up will occur outdoors
- Reduced class sizes which are determined by licensing regulations
- Consistent class groupings in separate classrooms
- Outdoor time increased
Enhanced Health and Hygiene Protocols
- Daily temperature and health check conducted upon arrival.
- Ensure frequent hand washing with soap and water for students and staff.
- Physical distancing is practiced as much as possible.
- Frequent cleaning and disinfecting of high-touch surfaces, materials, and laundered items.
- When possible, keep courtyard doors open to improve air flow by allowing outside air to circulate in the building.
- Enhanced COVID-19 exclusion policy restricting TMA access in the event of a suspected or known exposure.
- In the Elementary program, additional precautions may be placed in areas where prolonged close exposure cannot be mitigated, e.g., clear barriers on desktops or in front of staff (enrichment teachers/administrators) who will be exposed to various groups of students/people.
- Toddler and Early Childhood students will not be required to wear face coverings. For any families who choose to send their child(ren) with a face covering, we will not be responsible for ensuring that face coverings remain on throughout the day. Following guidance, children 2 and under are not to wear a face covering.
- When community spread is at a moderate or substantial level, as determined by state or local authorities, students in the elementary program must wear a face covering when indoors and physical distancing is not possible. Medical exemptions will be honored with proper documentation from a medical provider.
- Student face coverings should follow our clothing guidelines to ensure they are appropriate and non-distracting.
- During drop off and pick up, TMA staff receiving/dismissing students will wear face coverings.
- When community spread is at a moderate or substantial level, as determined by state or local authorities, face coverings for teachers and staff are required when physical distancing is not an option. Medical exemptions will be honored with proper documentation from a medical provider.
- All staff will wear face coverings when interacting with other adults and when physical distancing is not an option. Medical exemptions will be honored with proper documentation from a medical provider.
- All essential adult visitors must wear a face covering. TMA will provide face coverings if necessary.
How to Protect Yourself/Your Household
Please see the CDC guidelines for current guidance on best practices for protecting yourself and your household during this pandemic.
Cloth Face Covering: We recommend that all families be familiar with the CDC’s recommendations around cloth face coverings. To reduce the spread of COVID-19, the CDC recommends individuals wear cloth face coverings to protect people around the wearer of the cloth face covering, in the event the wearer is infected but not symptomatic.
Note: This guidance does not apply to children 2 or under, or to those who are advised not to wear a face covering for other health reasons. Cloth face coverings are NOT a substitute for physical distancing, hand washing, or other everyday preventative actions.
Health and Hygiene Practices
Our regular health and hygiene practices provide some of the best defenses against the spread of most contagious illnesses. In addition to regular and thorough cleaning of classrooms, surfaces and materials, we teach children good hand-washing practices and ensure that children and staff take important precautions against the spread of germs.
You can work with your children to practice some of these same steps at home:
- Wash hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds
- Sneeze or cough into your elbow; or cover mouth and nose with a tissue before sneezing or coughing, then immediately discard the tissue.
- Avoid touching eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands
- Avoid kissing, hugging, and sharing cups or eating utensils with people who are ill
- Disinfect frequently touched surfaces, especially if someone is sick