The following plan for opening the Centerburg Local Schools is designed to follow the current guidelines from the Governor’s Office, the Ohio Department of Health, the Ohio Department of Education, and the Knox County Department of Public Health. It was developed in consultation with Knox Public Health professionals, Knox County Superintendents, and the Centerburg Local School District Board of Education. Centerburg Schools will continue to work closely with Knox Public Health, Ohio Department of Health, and the Governor’s Office by instituting their recommended safety protocol. The Centerburg Local School District is making all reasonable efforts to maintain as much of “normal” school operations as possible to allow students to socialize with their friends and participate in usual school activities. All are advised that these rules are being instituted due to health requirements.
A community survey was shared on June 9, 2020, through the school’s Facebook page, athletic Twitter account, and the Final Forms email process. We have factored the survey responses into the development of this plan to the extent reasonably possible without jeopardizing the health of students, staff, and school community.
Based on all the above requirements, guidance, and community input the following plan will be put in place for 2020-21 school year.
The approved 2020-21 school calendar will be followed as originally adopted.
Parents may elect to keep their student(s) home fulltime and enroll their student(s) in remote learning provided by Centerburg Local Schools or have their child attend school. Parents whose children are at high risk due to chronic underlying medical conditions are encouraged to use remote learning. The District will provide a learning platform device (i.e. Chromebook) to students eligible for Free/Reduced meals if needed for online students to learn remotely. All other students will be provided a device if requested and if available. The district will provide a WIFI hotspot to those families on the Free/Reduced lunch list if needed. This hotspot will be linked to a school Chromebook and can only be used by the linked device. Other private devices will not be able to access the hotspot.
A family will be permitted to change their child’s attendance status one time per semester in order to keep the educational process manageable. If a family has already changed
their status and needs to change again due to medical reasons, then documentation must be provided by a medical professional to change again.
Parents of students attending Centerburg Schools are expected to supply their child with face masks/face coverings each school day as part of required supplies. The school will supply a breakaway lanyard for students to use when the mask is not being worn. Students who have a documented (from their doctor) medical breathing issue that prevents a cloth facial covering from being worn must wear a clear face shield. Students who do not use a facial covering may be reassigned pursuant to O.R.C. 3319.01 to participate in remote learning or face other disciplinary actions. While worn, the mask must fully cover the chin, mouth, and nose. Families of students eligible for free and reduced lunch will be provided a daily disposable mask if requested. The decision for reusable versus disposable masks/face coverings is each parent’s decision. All are encouraged to rinse and dry reusable masks daily. The District will have one-time, disposable masks available for those students who need them due to loss or damage during the school day. It is encouraged, but not required, that families send an extra mask for students to use in case of damage, loss or other issues with the current mask. It is recommended the student’s mask be labeled with the student name. Face masks and face covering are not a substitute for social distancing or other protective actions.
Buses (Including Athletics)
Students in Grades K-12 are required to wear a mask/face covering at all times while riding a bus. Students will use hand sanitizer, provided by the school, upon entering a school bus. If there is a medical breathing issue that prevents a student from using hand sanitizer or mask, the school must be given medical documentation for excusal.
Parents who drop off their child at school must ensure the student is wearing a mask/face covering upon exiting the vehicle. Students will use hand sanitizer upon entry into the buildings. If a student does not have a mask with them, a one-time, disposable mask will be provided.
Bus drivers are required to wear masks but have the authority to not do so if bus safety is compromised. This could include, but not limited to, things such as fogging of eyeglasses, restriction of communication to riders or obstruction of vision.
Busses will be sanitized after morning, evening routes and after athletic trips using disinfectants approved for use against COVID-19.
Students in Grades K-12 are required to wear a mask/face covering when entering and/or exiting a school building and any time they are moving through the hallways. Staff or students who have a medical exemption will need to wear a face shield in lieu of a mask.
Students are permitted to remove their masks/face coverings in classrooms or cafeteria when the required 3’-6’ separation can be maintained and controlled. Classrooms are being configured in a way that most will have the required distancing. If a student needs to move about the classroom or cafeteria, they will be required to wear a mask until returning to their seat. While seated, it is the personal choice of the student to wear or not wear a mask. During these times, there should be no expectation that others will wear a mask. Students requesting others to wear a mask may or may not have their request honored by other students. Please be advised that the mask/face covering policy may be adjusted at any time as directed by Knox Public Health or the Ohio Department of Health.
All school staff are required, by state directive, to wear a face mask or face shield when in the presence of students. Staff who have medical exemptions will be required to provide medical documentation from their doctor. Staff are encouraged to use cloth face covering but may choose to use a face shield when the observation of mouth features and movement are needed provided that social distancing is maintained. When staff are not in the presence of students or other adults, they are not required to wear a mask or face shield.
Parents/students and staff are expected to conduct health/safety checks every day before coming to school. Students and/or staff members should stay at home if they have a temperature at or above 100.4 degrees or exhibit signs of two or more of the following: chills, cough, shortness of breath, nausea, diarrhea, loss of taste or smell, sore throat, body aches. Any student or staff who exhibit signs or feel ill will be referred to the school nurse and isolated until determination can be made of their status. The school nurse will receive training from Knox Public health on signs and procedure for suspected COVID cases. Centerburg Schools does not have the ability to diagnose COVID. All suspected cases will be referred immediately to Knox Public Health. Due to state and federal privacy laws, the District will not share any diagnosis or other health information with anyone except the person tested and if the person is a student, his or her parents. . If a student or staff is diagnosed with COVID, Knox Public Health has no authority to notify the school of specific cases. They can only notify the District that there has been a case identified in the district. There should be no expectation, outside of Knox Public Health’s tracing procedures, that anyone will be notified if they or their child has come in contact with an active case. The District will follow all guidance from public health officials if there is a confirmed case of COVID in the school.
Classes may NOT be dismissed due to a confirmed case. Any decision to close a classroom or building will be made in conjunction with Knox Public Health or the Ohio Department of Health.
Students and staff may be subject to a temperature check upon entering a bus and/or school building or at any time it is considered to be needed. Students who have a temperature at or above 100.4 or exhibit signs of illness will be isolated and should be picked up immediately or no later than one hour after the school contacts the parent. Please do not have your child go to school and “try” if he/she is feeling ill. Students must be fever free, unmedicated for 3 days to return to school. Students returning from an illness may have their temperature taken to confirm they are well. Knox Public Health will direct families as far as quarantine and return to school if a case is confirmed. Ibuprofen has been determined in some studies to be detrimental to COVID patients. If anyone is suspected of COVID the school WILL NOT, under any circumstances, administer ibuprofen.
Hand sanitizer will be available in classrooms, busses, cafeteria, offices, building entrances, and some other common areas. Everyone will wash hands and/or use hand sanitizer when entering a building and periodically throughout the day. Hand washing has been determined to be more effective than sanitizer. In classrooms that have a sink, soap will be available and students may be directed to wash their hands periodically.
Restrooms, door hardware, and other areas will be sanitized as often as reasonably possible throughout the day. Any time a class change is scheduled, the class (with the help of the students if age appropriate) will clean all desk and chair surfaces. Students will use hand sanitizer as they leave the room. Sharing of personal objects is highly discouraged. Sharing of computers or other school supplies may not be avoidable. These devices will be sanitized as much as reasonably possible between uses. In all cases, students will either wash their hands or use sanitizer after using shared devices or supplies.
Recess equipment will be sanitized as much as reasonably possible but cannot be guaranteed to be cleaned and/or sanitized after each use. Students will be instructed to maintain social distancing at recess and will be monitored. All reasonable efforts will be made to keep students separated during recess but we cannot guarantee it. Parents should not have the expectation that, during recess, students will always keep social distancing nor be playing on sanitized equipment. If a parent does not want their child exposed to this condition, a written note must be filed with the office and the student will be kept inside during recess. Provided that social distancing can be reasonably maintained, face masks and face coverings will not be required outside during recess due to the safety hazard presented from high intensity activity. All students will use hand sanitizer and put on a mask when returning to their classroom.
There will be no in-person Open Houses for the beginning of the school year. Parents are encouraged to contact the school if they would like to talk to their child’s teacher(s) before school starts. Plans are being made to allow Kindergarten and 6t h grade students to meet their teachers and orient to the school building. Information will be shared with affected families when determined.
NO VISITORS will be permitted to enter a school building during the school day without authorization. All non-essential (not-critical) visits are not permitted. Any dismissal outside normal procedure will require the person picking up the student to call the office and meet their child at the door. Anyone entering the school for a scheduled meeting will be required to wear a mask and use sanitizer upon entry. If dropping off items for a student, the person should call the office and they will be met at the door so the items can be accepted and delivered.
Grades K-8 classes will, for the most part, move as a group throughout the day. This is called cohort grouping and is used to help reduce the spread of the virus and help health professionals with contact tracing. Due to the nature of high school, cohort grouping is not possible. Students will be dismissed for class changes in a manner that minimizes crowded hallways.
Meals will be served in the cafeteria if social distancing can be maintained according to the American Academy of Pediatrics’ recommendations of 3 ft distancing. This includes lines and tables. It may be required at times for meals to be eaten in the classrooms. Students will wear a mask while in line to get their meals. Once they are seated they can remove their masks and keep them off until dismissal or if they need to move throughout the cafeteria.
There will be no field trips, assemblies, pep rallies, or other gatherings that put a large number of students together outside a classroom setting until further notice. Athletic or curricular activities will not travel to, nor accept visiting students from any county that has been deemed to be in “Red” status by the Ohio Public Health Advisory System. The Board will review the status at each board meeting for further considerations.
Conditions may change at any time. Parents are advised to be aware of the Ohio color coded system for counties. Special attention to be paid to Knox and surrounding counties. Conditions will only change after coordination or direction of Knox Public Health or Ohio Health Dept.