Safe Return to School: Parent Information
The conditions surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic are continually evolving, and Allen ISD’s Safe Return-to-School plans will be constantly evaluated to adapt to the continuing trends of the COVID-19 virus, especially in the City of Allen and Collin County.
Please know that Allen ISD will follow recommendations for school opening and operation from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), as well as state and local health officials. Circumstances related to COVID-19 may change throughout the coming school year, and this document will be updated as conditions change.
Table of Contents
Health and Safety Measures
Ensuring all students, staff and community members remain healthy and safe by following best practices in the areas of:
- Guidance, directives and recommendations from health authorities
- Health & safety information, social distancing and infection control practices (handwashing, face coverings)
- Health office practices, personal protective equipment (PPE), management and isolation of students showing signs of illness
Infection Control Measures
- Staff highly recommended to wear face coverings when in hallways and common areas and during arrival and dismissal (face coverings are required while the Governor’s mandate is in effect).
- Students highly recommended to wear face coverings when in hallways and common areas and during arrival and dismissal (face coverings are required for students in grades 4th and up while the Governor’s mandate is in effect).
- Social distancing of at least 6 feet encouraged at all times- 12 feet between cohort groups
- Monitored and limited access to water fountains for filling of water containers only
- Restroom capacity examined and measures in place for social distancing
- Elevator capacity limited for social distancing
- Students and staff are encouraged to provide their own personal protective equipment (PPE). PPE will be provided as needed to staff and students
- Staff required to complete daily health screening
- Parent or guardian will be required to complete weekly student health screening
- Visitors required to complete health screening upon entry into the building
- Daily wiping of high hand-touch areas
- Hand sanitizer in each classroom, entrances, and throughout common spaces
- Campuses will open multiple entrance/exit points during arrival/dismissal to promote social distancing.
- Arrangement of desks to maximize space between students
- Keep school playgrounds closed to the general public
- Use of visual aids to illustrate appropriate spacing and traffic flow throughout the building
- Restrict nonessential visitors and activities involving external groups or organizations
- Limit students sharing of personal items and supplies
- Limit mixing between cohort groups as much as possible
- Arrange desks and table to maximize space between students
- Limit the number of students participating in small group instruction at one time
Student Nutrition / Lunch
- Recommended health and safety measures, such as staff wearing face coverings and gloves
- Sanitizing and hand washing practices in all areas of the kitchen and serving area
- Eliminate self-serve counters and create traditional serving lines for elementary schools
- Condiments and pre-wrapped silverware to be included with all meals
- “Grab and go” meals for breakfast at all levels
- Meals in disposable packaging to eat in cafeteria
- Use Plexiglas shields at cashier counters and full length serving counter sneeze guards for service
- Procedural changes for receiving payment
- Ridership will remain at typical district capacity
- All buses will have hand sanitizer dispensers placed in the stairwells for use when loading/unloading
- All buses will be sanitized and wiped down daily
- Bus windows will be partially open (at minimum) during routes to provide for additional ventilation
- To support contact tracing, students will be assigned seats, and a seating chart will be maintained by the bus driver.
- All students, grades Pre-K through 12th, will be required to wear a face covering while riding the bus.
Campus Procedures Related to COVID-19
- If a campus is notified that a student or staff member has a lab confirmed case of COVID-19 the student or staff member will be required to stay home until the return to school criteria is met
- If a student or staff member is assessed and exhibits symptoms of COVID-19 during the school day, the cohort will be located to an alternate area while the room is being disinfected
- District communication will be provided to the students who came in contact with a student or staff member displaying COVID-19 symptoms
- At this time, we have not been provided with specific criteria regarding the number of positive cases that would lead to a classroom or campus closure.
- Students exposed to a lab-confirmed case of COVID-19 outside of school should stay home and contact the school for instructions on meeting the return to school criteria
Clinic Procedures Related to COVID-19
- Students or staff who present with symptoms will be evaluated and assessed by the school nurse
- If COVID-19 symptoms are present: staff member will be sent home, and student will be isolated from other students and asked to put on a face covering until parent arrives
- Student will be escorted to vehicle upon parent arrival
- Nurse will provide parent/staff with return to school criteria
- Contact tracing for lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 will be conducted
- Virtual nurse available for at-home learners and if schools were to be closed due to COVID-19 outbreak
Social Emotional and Mental Health Support Systems
Addressing the mental health and social-emotional development of all students, staff and community by following best practices in the areas of:
- School-based mental health services
- Behavioral support systems
- Family engagement and support practices
- Staff supports
- Other key systems and supports
Social Emotional Learning
- Social Emotional Learning lessons and activities to support students related to COVID-19 experiences, trauma, and school closure
- Counseling support will be accessible to both In-Person and At-Home learners
- Provide families with information on how to access resources for mental health and wellness
Providing families with clear and concise communication through the following outbound channels:
- Campus Newsletters
- Social Media
- Text Messages
Communication Tools and Channels
- Parents will receive emails from Allen ISD, sent through the School Messenger system. Email addresses will be collected from Skyward Family Access.
- Information about Back to School 2020 will be posted on the Allen ISD website. The website will include:
- Health and safety protocols
- Information on both in-person and at-home learning
- A list of frequently asked questions
- Campuses will share campus-specific information with parents via email, newsletters, and other campus communication tools.
- Regular updates will be posted on Allen ISD’s social media channels (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram).
- Allen ISD has the capability to send direct text-messages to parents. At this time, text messages will only be sent in an emergency situation. Phone numbers will be collected from Skyward Family Access.
- At-Home learning support offered to parents through consistent communication
Circumstances related to COVID-19 may change throughout the coming school year and we will keep all parents informed if conditions change.