COVID-19 Information

COVID-19 Information

Check here for Richmond Waldorf School’s Response plan to COVID-19

Richmond Waldorf School takes the well-being and safety of our students, parents, staff, and visitors seriously and we are actively preparing for the return of students to school this fall. Our Health and Safety procedures and protocols are based on recommendations from the CDC – Centers for Disease Control and VDH – Virginia Department of Health .

Our policies and procedures are constantly adapting! This list was last updated on August 14, 2020. 

On-Campus Learning

RWS is reopening on-campus learning for  the 2020-2021 school year. A Health and Safety Team is providing guidelines and protocols for students, parents, staff and visitors. We are following guidelines from CDC and VA Dept of Health. We feel confident that we can offer a safe and meaningful on-campus experience, and there will be several modifications to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 to the greatest extent possible. We are working alongside many other schools regionally and nationally, as well as Dept of Education, Dept of Social Services, and VA Council on Private Education, to ensure we are following all best practices and being proactive to do our part to provide a quality education in a safe environment. 

In the event of a mandate to close schools, RWS will facilitate Distance Learning for all students, Early Childhood through 8th grade. More details for Distance Learning policies and procedures are on our Beyond the Classroom page.

Our Administration and Faculty have identified the protocols and procedures for “At-Home Learning”. We have established a policy and process for COVID-19 related “At-Home Learning”.
Click here to learn more about At-Home Learning.

Health & Safety Procedures: Updated 8/14/20

RWS Building Interior 

  1. HVAC Air Filtration System –  To improve efficiency and removal of higher percentages of airborne contaminant and improve indoor air quality, all filters have been upgraded.
  2. UV Lighting units – To disinfect rooms not served by the HVAC Air System, single units of UV lighting will be placed in the rooms. These rooms include 3rd grade and After Care, administration offices and the main lobby.
  3. Water Fountains – Although our water has been tested and is safe to drink, the fountains will be turned off to prevent use and touch of the handles.
  4. Hand sanitizers stations have been placed at all entrances.
  5. Hallway & Lobby furniture has been removed. 
  6. Lobby Filtered Water and the Coffee machine/condiments have been removed. 
  7. Front Office has a see-through desk partition.  
  8. Isolation spaces – Front Office has been rearranged to accommodate up to 3 ill students.
  9. Gym –  Late Arrivals (after 8:15 a.m.) will be supervised in spaced seating.  Late arriving students will be escorted from the gym to their classrooms at 8:45 a.m.  All Late Arrivals will be required to wear a mask while waiting and as they are escorted in the hallways to their classroom.  Late arrivals in Early Childhood and grades 1st – 3rd must be accompanied and signed in by a parent.
  10. Bathroom faucets will be replaced, mid-September, to provide motion-sensing turn on/off.
  11. Large Bathrooms – 2 students at a time; sink barriers installed
  12. Single Bathrooms – 1 student/staff at a time
  13. Gym Bathrooms – 1 student at a time
  14. Copier/Mailroom – 1 person at a time
  15. MS Library Computer – Employees who use the stand alone computer will wear gloves and will be required to log in the date and time of use as a means of “Contact Tracing”. Disinfectant will be supplied.
  16. Cleaning – UV Disinfecting Wands for surface cleaning will be supplied to the Cleaning vendor to use each evening. Cleaning products will meet recommendations of the CDC.
  17. No-Contact thermometer, hand sanitizer, tissues, cleaning products, and gloves will be placed in every room.
  18. Use of Building: Space in the building will no longer be allowed for use, including rental, by anyone outside our RWS community.

RWS Building Exterior

  1. Playground structures:  Plastic and metal surfaces will be cleaned daily.
  2. Entrances will be marked with 6’ spacing on surfaces.
  3. Outdoor Learning spaces have been identified to provide more time outside for all students.
  4. Entrances upon arrival (masks required) and temperature checked before entering: 
    1. 7th & 8th Grades – MS Playground hallway door
    2. 5th Grade – MS Breezeway door
    3. 1st – 4th Grades 
    4. Early Childhood 
  5. Fire Drills, monthly, will require face masks in hallways (except for students under 3 years of age).
  6. To provide the best possible use of time and prevent disruptions of classrooms, please arrive on time to allow your student to have their temperature checked and be in their classroom before the start of school (8:15 a.m.) 
  7. Adults, out of cars and escorting a student, must wear a face mask while on campus.

Required by students/parents/staff

    1. Start of school COVID Health protocols include:
      1. Reporting COVID symptoms/exposure to a COVID positive person/diagnosed positive COVID test within the immediate home family/or travel into areas deemed by the CDC as ‘hot spots’ within 14 days of start of school, to the Director Administration. 
        1. Link: CDC – Symptoms of Coronavirus
        2. Link: VDH – Symptoms Comparison Chart
  • Everyone coming to campus is encouraged to take, at home, temperatures before arriving at school.
  1.  
  2. Daily temperature checks will be required of all staff and students.  Students with temperature recordings of 100.4 degrees (CDC defined “fever”) or over should stay at home. If a student develops a fever at school, the student will be sent to the Front Office for a confirmation and the parent will be called for pick up.
  3. Grades students, EC students 3 yrs and above, parents, and staff – mask required upon arrival, and during class, except when eating and at recess, when 6 feet spacing cannot be maintained.
  4. More frequent handwashing within classrooms/bathrooms will be added to the daily routine.
  5. All staff will be distributed a Face Shield and a See-Through mask.  All staff are required to wear a face mask in any situation when another person is present with them.
  6. Grades students are encouraged to bring extra mask/s and hand sanitizer.  
  7. Disposable masks will be placed in classrooms and in the Front Office should a student or staff member need a replacement.

Required by visitors/vendors/tutors/substitutes

  1. On-site or on-line Health Check sheet completion
  2. Mask required  
  3. Sign-In/Out, to enable ‘Contact Tracing’
  4. Hand sanitizer must be used before a person is allowed to proceed in school
  5. Escort to location of designated space

Daily Cleaning

In addition to daily evening cleaning by our cleaning company, classroom teachers/assistants and Administrative staff will be assigned twice a day cleaning checklist to include:  Front Office, classrooms, mail/copier room, MS Library and bathrooms.

 This will include wipe down of common high-touch surfaces, door knobs/handles and playground structures.  Handwashing posters will be displayed in bathrooms and at classroom sinks.

Classrooms in Grades & MS

  1. Desks spaced 6’ apart, including Language room and Music room spacing
  2. Personal items (clothing, shoes, lunch box, etc) must not touch another students’.
  3. Items and food should be shared
  4. “Gatherings” limited to gym and 90 persons, with masks and 6th feet social distancing 
  5. Specialty teachers will come to the classrooms when required
  6. Each classroom is supplied with hand sanitizer, disinfectant, rags, tissues, No-Contact thermometer, replacement disposable masks (Adult and Child)

Early Childhood Classrooms

  1. Spacing 6’  assigned
  2. Staggered “At the Table” time, with social distancing will be employed
  3. Out-of-doors time will be extended for some activities
  4. Bags for clothing, not to touch others, will be provided
  5. More frequent handwashing will be added to daily schedule
  6. Each classroom is supplied with hand sanitizer, disinfectant, rags, tissues, No-Contact thermometer, replacement disposable masks (Adult and Child)
  7. Toys and other ‘touch’ items will follow the CDC sharing & cleaning guidelines for schools and child care
  8. Classes will avoid intermingling of students from different classes as much as possible

Aftercare has been relocated to room across from Front Office

  1. Social distance spacing and small groups separation (EC, Grades, MS) will be maintained
  2. Toys and other ‘touch’ items will follow the CDC sharing & cleaning guidelines for schools and child care
  3. Aftercare room is supplied with hand sanitizer, disinfectant, rags, tissues, No-Contact thermometer, replacement disposable masks (Adult and Child)
  4. EC Students will stay in their classroom, for nap and rest.  During this time the students will be placed at least 6 feet apart and will not be required to mask.
  5. Handwashing as the students enter the Aftercare space/s and frequently as needed
  6. Masks are required except for students under 3 years of age
  7. Out-of-doors time extended for appropriate activities

Sports and Movement

  1. RWS Basketball and Soccer players will practice skills and techniques only.  No equipment will be shared.  Students should expect to provide their own equipment.  Incidental touching is expected, but NOT intentional touching.  When deemed ‘intentional’ the student may be required to leave the group.
  2. Movement classes will require 10’ spacing when there is active participation in the lesson.

Students Not Feeling Well

Students will be sent to the Front Office where an isolation area has been established with space dividers for privacy.  A small cot, trashcan, tissues, and bottled water will be in each isolated space.  The procedure once in the Front Office will be:

  1. The temperature will be taken and ‘presenting-symptoms’ recorded
  2. Parent/s will be called to inform of symptoms when temperature is present and/or the student presents aches, stomach upset or anxiety.  Pick up by the parent will be coordinated, when needed.
  3. Parents will be required to send email or call when the student cannot attend the following day, by 8:00 a.m.
  4. A physician’s note may be required prior to returning to school depending on the illness. 
  5. Symptoms for COVID, Flu, Cold and Allergies may be the same.  When RWS is informed of a positive COVID test result, the student or employee must be quarantined for 14 days and will not be allowed to return without a physician’s confirmation of well-to-return.  
    1. Link: CDC – Symptoms of Coronavirus
    2. Link: VDH – Symptoms Comparison Chart
  6. With the Virginia Department of Health, RWS will determine whether an entire class and any close contacts with others in the school, must quarantine.  

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/managing-stress-anxiety.html

COVID POSITIVE RESULT

  1. Continuing RWS protocols, a staff member, student or community immediate family member who has confirmed COVID diagnosis, must report the diagnosis to the Interim Director of Administration immediately.  The person must quarantine for 14 days and be completely symptom free and have a negative COVID test result, before return to campus.  If during the quarantine time the symptoms reappear, the quarantine time of 14 days begins again.
  2. On-site vendors, tutors, substitutes or others will be required to contact RWS should a confirmed COVID diagnosis be determined and the person has been on campus 14 days prior to the positive diagnosis.  The same quarantine time must be followed.
  3. Persons having been exposed to a person who is COVID positive, must isolate for 14 days and have no symptoms, have a negative COVID test before being allowed back on campus.  These cases, too, should be reported to the Director of Administration.
  4. CDC and VA Department of Health guidelines will be followed, including temporary closure of school for cleaning, and communicating to the community.
  5. Confidentiality regulations prevent RWS from communicating an individual’s name when determined to be ill.  
  6. Closings, not required by the Governor, will be counted toward required Make Up Days for compliance for Instructional Days.

What can families, students, and school personnel do to keep from getting sick and spreading COVID-19?

The CDC recommends the following preventive actions to help prevent the spread of COVID-19:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after you have been in a public place, have gone to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. Always wash hands with soap and water when your hands are visibly dirty.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.  
  • Practice “social distancing” and keep at least 6 feet between yourself and others who are not in your immediate family. Avoid play dates and public gatherings. 
  • Avoid close contact (six feet or less) with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick (and do not return to school until you are fever-free for 72 hours without medication). We ask you to strictly adhere to this policy.
  • Cough or sneeze into your elbow or a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash and wash hands.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe. (List of EPA registered products.)

Who can you contact with questions, concerns, or for more information?

Parents and community members are invited to contact Nancy Cross, Interim Director of Administration, with any questions.