Family Health and Safety Guidelines:
Responding to the COVID-19 pandemic
The health and safety of our staff, apprentices, students, and their households is of the utmost importance. In responding to the Covid 19 pandemic, we have worked diligently to adapt our school year class offerings with new procedures and protocols based on the latest directives and recommendations provided by the CDC, Contra Costa County Health Services, the American Academy of Pediatrics and Cal/OSHA. We thank you in advance for doing your part to keep our staff, apprentices, students and their families safe!
The following guide outlines Sienna Ranch’s approach to operating our in-person classes during COVID-19. Please note that due to the shifting nature of the pandemic and the changes in recommendations, this policy/guide is subject to change. Parents are encouraged to check the Sienna Ranch website for updates throughout the session.
Current County Guidelines
Contra Costa County Health Services has issued revised health orders as of 12/4/2020. Please make sure to visit https://www.coronavirus.cchealth.org/health-orders for the most up to date health ordinances.
Sienna Ranch families are required to adhere to county and state guidelines including any travel restrictions.
Sienna Ranch COVID Policy Overview
On Site Policies
While some Sienna Ranch procedures may look different, our staff of dedicated instructors and land/animal stewards are hard at work creating a safe experience within the new parameters so that all students can still safely enjoy the Ranch, our nature and specialty programs, and the surrounding natural places. Some of the new protocols include:
- Daily Health Screening: All students and staff will be screened prior to the start of each day to ensure they are healthy. Anyone exhibiting a temperature of 100.4 or higher or other symptoms of illness will not be permitted to attend programs.
- Fever or chills (100.4 degrees F or higher)
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Muscle or body aches
- New loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
- Congestion or runny nose
- Nausea or vomiting
- Limit visitors. We will endeavor to reduce/minimize the number of people on site. As a result parents and other visitors will require special, advanced approval from Sienna Ranch Admin before visiting any area of the ranch with the exception of the parking lot.
- Increased Handwashing: More frequent handwashing breaks and enhanced disinfecting procedures are being implemented. Students are encouraged to bring their own hand sanitizer in their backpacks as well.
- Increased cleaning/disinfecting between classes: Instructors will clean and disinfect activity spaces after each use. Common/shared areas (bathrooms and handwashing stations) will have increased cleaning schedules.
- New Drop Off/Pick Up Procedures: Arrival and departure times will be staggered to limit the number of students in the drop off/pick up zones.
- Parents of PreK-K will park and escort their student to the main entrance where they will be dropped off to their instructor.
- Older Grades (1 and up) will go through a drive through drop off. Parents and guardians will remain in their cars during drop-off and pick-up with a member of our staff accompanying each child to their class locations.
- All parents/guardians will be required to wear a face covering at all times when on the Ranch property (including in the drive through and in the parking lot). See FAQ below for details.
- Social Distancing and Stable Groups: Physical distancing provides protection by reducing risk of exposure and limiting the number of close contacts when someone is infected with COVID-19. Establish camp policies and implement strategies to promote physical distancing, indoors and outdoors, of
- At least 3 feet between all campers within a cohort
- At least 6 feet between all campers outside of their cohort
- At least 6 feet while eating and drinking, including among people within the same cohort
- At least 6 feet between other campers and staff
- At least 6 feet between staff
- Face Coverings: All students must have a face covering and be able to put it on independently at the request of their instructor or Sienna Ranch staff member. Students will be expected to wear face coverings at all times with the exception of water and snack breaks.
Note: Children under the age of 2 years should not wear cloth face coverings and will not be required to wear them at the Ranch. Per the CDC Guidelines.
According to the new Contra Costa County Policy for Additional Activities (which includes childcare):
- Social Bubble gatherings: Persons over age 2 are required to wear face coverings except when eating or drinking. Under the Social Distancing Order, all gatherings of Social Bubbles must take place outdoors.
As a result of this new ordinance, Sienna Ranch will be requiring students to wear masks when social distancing is unable to take place. This includes any activity where children are unable to remain 6 feet apart.
Face coverings may be cloth coverings, bandanas, or surgical masks. Most important is that they are easy to put on and take off, and are comfortable. See CDC Recommendations for Face Coverings. Per the Contra Costa Health Guidelines: Any mask that incorporates a one-way valve (typically a raised plastic cylinder about the size of a quarter on the front or side of the mask) that is designed to facilitate easy exhaling is not a Face Covering and may not be used to comply with this Order.
- Instructors must require students to wear face coverings when they are within 6 foot (arm-span) of another person. Examples of times when your student will wear their face covering at all times including:
- All pick up and drop off times
- First aid or one-on-one conversations with staff
- Helping open lunches, close backpacks, etc
- In the woodshop
- In the bathroom
- Walking by another class
- In seated circle areas
- Free play where campers are in close proximity to one another (under 6 feet)
- In the bathroom
We understand that wearing a mask consistently can be a challenging process for many children, especially for our young students. We encourage families to practice mask wearing at home in advance of the start of the session. At the beginning of the session, instructors will front load the class by explaining the mask wearing rules to students. We understand that students will need reminders and positive reinforcement for wearing face masks, however if a student is consistently and repeatedly unable to follow mask rules, the student will be required to be removed from the group until they are able to follow the safety rules and parents will be notified (via parent guardian report and/or a phone call from Sienna Ranch Education Director) so that additional at-home practice and reinforcement can take place. If a student is continually unable to follow the mask policy, they may be asked to leave the class until they are able to follow the mask safety rules.
Required Reporting of Confirmed COVID-19 Contact
In the period beginning 14 days before class starts until 14 days after class ends if your child or someone in your household is confirmed to have COVID-19 you must contact Sienna Ranch administration immediately by calling the office (925) 283-6311 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sienna Ranch will follow all reporting guidelines required by the Contra Costa Health Services. Medical information will be kept strictly confidential and will be accessed by our class directors only, except where required by Contra Costa Health Department and State or Federal laws. For more information please visit Contra Costa County Health Services or call the Contra Costa Health Department (844) 729-8410.
Parent Requirements / Tasks
Safety begins before classes even start. We have some additional requirements for our families to complete before the first day of class, and before arriving at class each day. Parents will be required to complete the following tasks:
Adherence to Local Heath Orders
Before the First Day of Session/Class
- Sign the Sienna Ranch Family Safety Pledge
- Inform Sienna Ranch Administrators of any health or student information updates by emailing them to email@example.com.
- Prepare your student for the changes in programs. Sienna Ranch will be a bit different this year because we are trying to keep each other safe from getting sick. For example, students should expect the adults at the Ranch to all be wearing masks most of the day, and groups will not be interacting with one another. Videos like this one can be good tools
- Get a comfortable cloth face covering or mask for your student. Practice until your student can put it on and take it off independently.
- Practice washing your hands with your student with this fun Sienna Ranch video. Explain that we will be doing a lot of fun hand washing at Sienna Ranch throughout the session!
- Remind your student that we always keep our hands to ourselves at Sienna Ranch.
- Contact Sienna Ranch on 925 283 6311 or firstname.lastname@example.org ASAP if your student or someone in your household is confirmed to have COVID-19. For the protection of our staff and families, do NOT come to class until you hear from us. For more details: see FAQs below.
Before Each Day of class
- Fever or chills (100 degrees F or higher)
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Muscle or body aches
- New loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
- Congestion or runny nose
- Nausea or vomiting
- Take your student’s temperature before arriving at Sienna Ranch. Sienna Ranch will also verify in-person during drop off; however at home temperature readings are still required.
- Contact Sienna Ranch on 925-283-6311 or email@example.com ASAP if the screening tool indicates respiratory illness, or if your student or someone in your household is confirmed to have COVID-19. For the protection of our staff and families, do NOT come to class until you hear from us.
After Class Ends
- Contact Sienna Ranch on 925-283-6311 or firstname.lastname@example.org ASAP if your student or someone in your household is confirmed to have COVID-19 in the 14 day period after class ends.
Other COVID Procedures
Getting in Touch with your Class Instructor or Sienna Ranch Staff
Maintaining direct contact with families is important, but it's going to be a little different this school year. If you would like to speak with a member of the admin team or with your student’s instructor please reach out to email@example.com or call us on 925-283-6311. We will arrange a phone call, zoom call, or social distanced in-person meeting as needed.
What to expect if your student shows signs or symptoms of infectious disease?
We plan to be extra cautious to protect our staff, families, and community from COVID-19 and other infectious diseases. If our staff observe any of the common signs and symptoms of infectious respiratory disease, or if a student reports feeling sick, we will call home and request that your student be picked up within one hour.
Students who show signs or symptoms of ANY infectious disease must stay away from class until 3 days after all signs/symptoms have disappeared or until their family provides a signed note from a medical professional stating that their student does not pose a risk of infection to others.
What happens if my student or someone in our family has been in close contact/exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19?
Student must leave program and stay away from Sienna Ranch for minimum of 10 days, or until negative COVID-19 test is presented. Parents/guardians must contact Sienna Ranch immediately. Follow the guidelines for Mass Quarantine as outlined by Contra Costa Health Services (effective July 5, 2020).
I am fully vaccinated. What if I come into contact with someone who tests positive for COVID?
Fully vaccinated people with COVID-19 symptoms
Although the risk that fully vaccinated people could become infected with COVID-19 is low, any fully vaccinated person who experiences symptoms consistent with COVID-19 should isolate themselves from others, be clinically evaluated for COVID-19, and tested for SARS-CoV-2 if indicated. The symptomatic fully vaccinated person should inform their healthcare provider of their vaccination status at the time of presentation to care.
Fully vaccinated people with no COVID-like symptoms following an exposure to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19
Most fully vaccinated people with no COVID-like symptoms do not need to quarantine, be restricted from work, or be tested following an exposure to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19, as their risk of infection is low.
However, they should still monitor for symptoms of COVID-19 for 14 days following an exposure.
Fully vaccinated people with no COVID-19-like symptoms and no known exposure to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19
It is recommended that fully vaccinated people with no COVID-19-like symptoms and no known exposure should be exempted from routine screening testing programs, if feasible.
What happens if a student tests positive for COVID-19?
If Sienna Ranch identifies a child who tested positive for COVID-19 or we learn they are positive, we will take the following steps:
- Sienna Ranch will immediately notify local health officials (Contra Costa County Health Services).
- Sienna Ranch will follow procedures for notifying the parents of those in the affected stable group based on the recommendations from local health officials.
- Contra Costa County Health Services will perform contact tracing using class rosters and information obtained from Sienna Ranch Administrators.
- Based on local health services recommendations, Sienna Ranch will inform those in the class cohort who have had close contact with a person diagnosed with COVID-19 to stay home and self-monitor for symptoms and to follow CDC guidance if symptoms develop. Even if a student does not have symptoms, CDC guidance for home isolation should be followed.
- Students in the stable group and staff who were in close contact with the affected child will be asked to stay home from Sienna Ranch for a minimum of 2-5 days. A person is considered to have had close contact if they were within six feet of someone who tested positive for COVID-19 for at least 15 minutes.
- This initial short-term dismissal allows time for the local health officials to gain a better understanding of the COVID-19 situation impacting Sienna Ranch and for facilities staff to clean and disinfect the affected facilities.
- Sienna Ranch will work with the local health officials to determine appropriate next steps, including whether an extended dismissal duration is needed to stop or slow the further spread of COVID-19.
In the case of a confirmed case, the CDC recommends the child not return until:
- Authorization by a medical professional OR at least 3 days (72 hours) have passed since recovery defined as resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and improvement in respiratory symptoms (e.g., cough, shortness of breath);
- AND at least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared OR receipt of a negative COVID-19 test.
A note on confidentiality:
If there is the possibility that a stable group has been exposed to COVID-19, Sienna Ranch will notify the families directly. Through contact tracing, the local Health Officials will assess and inform all persons who may be at risk and require quarantine and/or testing. In line with public health practices and medical and student privacy laws, only those who would need to know about confirmed COVID-19 cases for personal health and safety reasons will be informed. To protect students privacy names will be omitted from the correspondence.
What if a parent who is a healthcare provider cared for a COVID-19 patient and is now symptomatic, can the child attend?
No. Children should not attend child care if anyone in the household has symptoms suggestive of COVID-19, whether a health care worker or not.
If a parent is diagnosed with COVID-19 will their student need to self-quarantine prior to returning to Sienna Ranch?
Yes. If a student or staff has a household member that tests positive for COVID-19, you must contact Sienna Ranch immediately. The student will be ordered to quarantine at home until 14 days have elapsed since all household members are no longer considered infectious. Contra Costa County Health Services may issue an order with explicit instructions on quarantine and details on its expiration. If requested by Sienna Ranch, parents may be asked to provide clearance letters at the end of isolation/quarantine.
What if my family goes on a trip before or during my Sienna ranch class or camp?
Although the SIP has been lifted from Contra Costa County, if you are travelling outside of 120 miles of Contra Costa County, we ask that your family quarantine for the recommended amount of time before returning to Sienna Ranch.
I am a parent/guardian who will be attending the Let’s Play and the Ranch Class. Do I need to wear a mask?
Yes, all adult visitors and parents/guardians must wear a mask at all times when on ranch property.
What is the Refund, Credit and Make-Up Policy?
For the safety of our staff and families: students who are experiencing signs and symptoms of infectious disease or who may be carrying infection from members of their household may not attend Sienna Ranch classes. In this case, we are not able to issue refunds, transfers, or credits.
For details on our refund policy see: https://www.siennaranch.net/school-year-refunds-transfers-and-credits/
What type of training are you providing Sienna Ranch Staff?
All staff will be trained on social distancing, stable groups, cleaning and disinfecting (according to CDC guidelines), virus spread reduction practices as well as required hand washing during our fall training week. Each instructor will be responsible for making sure that all program participants as well as staff, adhere to the requirements.
Will children be instructed on good hygiene practices?
We highly recommend that parents discuss proper hygiene practices with their children well in advance of starting your first day.
At the beginning of each session students will participate in an orientation to include a discussion on the need to be attentive to personal space and avoiding close contact, stable group management, handwashing techniques, mask management, keeping hands away from the face, sneezing and coughing etiquette and respecting others' belongings.
What are your handwashing protocols?
Students and Instructors will wash their hands upon arrival and multiple times during the day. Staff will instruct children how to wash hands effectively, and we ask that you review the importance of handwashing at home (don’t forget to check out our Sienna Ranch Handwashing Video!).
Will hand sanitizer be available?
Hand sanitizer will be provided and used as needed when children and staff are not near a sink. Parents are invited to donate hand sanitizer!
My child has health issues. Is coming to Sienna Ranch a good idea?
We cannot offer an opinion on whether or not participating in Sienna Ranch programs is a good fit for your child. This is a personal family decision that should be evaluated based on recommendations from your primary care physician. We can assure you that, following the guidelines we have been provided, we are doing everything we can to provide the safest environment possible for students and staff.
How many students per group?
In accordance with local and state guidelines, group sizes will be limited to a max of 12 students; however, Sienna Ranch has further limited most of our group sizes to 8 or 10 to fit the needs of our programming..
What are the pick-up and drop-off logistics? What will health screening look like?
- This year we will be using a 10-20-minute window for pick up and drop offs for both the half day and full day classes. Timing will be staggered by last name.
- Adults are required to wear face coverings once they pull into the parking lot and MUST remain on at all times when onsite.
- Children MUST wear face coverings during drop-off / pick-up. They will be able to remove their face coverings once they are instructed to do so by their instructor.
- Before joining their groups, staff will take student temperatures using a touchless forehead thermometer.
Daily Health Screening Questions (asked at drop-off each day)
- Does your student have any of the following?
Fever or chills
Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
Muscle or body aches
New loss of taste or smell
Congestion or runny nose
Nausea or vomiting
- Does anyone in your household have signs and symptoms of an infectious respiratory disease?
- If yes then, in the past two weeks has anyone in your household had contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19?
- Park in the main lot, then walk with your student to check in and check out at the family waiting area. For returning students, this is the same check in and check out location as in previous years.
- Please form a socially-distanced line to check in and check out. All adults and students must wear face coverings during check in/check out.
- If you have older siblings, please drop them off/pick them up first using the directions below.
1st Grade and Up:
- Adults and students must wear a face covering in the car at all times whilst onsite
- Follow directions for drive-through drop-off/pick-up by driving up the shady driveway, which is straight ahead of you after you pull into the Ranch, to the right side of the old white Ranch house
- Drive slowly, and please turn your engine off while waiting in line.
- AT DROP OFF: Once you arrive at the top of the driveway, one of our friendly staff will greet you at the drivers-side window to check you in and ask the health screening questions below.
- Please have your student ready to jump out of the car to ensure our check in process runs quickly
- One of our friendly staff will help your student(s) to find their class meeting place each day
- AT PICK UP: Once you arrive at the top of the driveway, one of our friendly staff will greet you at the drivers-side window and direct you to your student’s pick up location.
- After pick up, please get your student settled into the car and strapped in as soon as possible to ensure our check out process runs quickly.
Pick up and drop off details will be sent to parents/guardians the week before the start of the Session. It is important that you review the procedure carefully as some details and class locations may change.