COVID-19 Protocols & Procedures

(updated 11/18/2021)

In order to reduce the risk of transmission, all staff is fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

Protocols for a Confirmed or Suspected Case of Covid-19

  • Directors will notify the NYC and NYS DOH immediately upon being advised that a student and/or staff member has tested positive for COVID-19 and will follow their guidance.
  • Students who are being sent home because of a positive screening (e.g. onset of COVID-19 symptoms) will be immediately separated from other children in a designated quarantine space and supervised until the parent or emergency contact can retrieve them from school. We expect the child to be picked up as soon as possible, and within 1 hour.
  • If a child/staff member in a class tests positive for COVID-19, we will notify the class as soon as possible. The classroom will be shut down and all unvaccinated students will be mandated to quarantine for 10 days.
  • If a child/parent/household member is displaying symptoms of COVID -19 and being tested, the student must remain home while waiting for the test results. If the results are negative, the child can return to school.
  • If a parent/household member tests positive and the child has been in school in the past 48 hours, the class will be notified, shut down and mandated to quarantine. The child will be required to take a test and if negative the rest of the children may return to the class room. The student would still be required to quarantine for 10 days. If the child had not been in school in the previous 48 hours, the class will be notified as a precautionary measure.
  • If a parent/caregiver- who is a member of the same household as the child- is exhibiting signs of COVID-19 or has been tested and is positive for the virus, an alternate parent/caregiver or emergency contact authorized by the parent will come pick up the child. As a “close contact” the child must not return to school for the duration of the quarantine.
  • If an unvaccinated child is deemed a close contact, the child will be required to take a PCR and Rapid test and notify the school of the results. Regardless of results the student would still be required to quarantine for 10 days. If the test comes back positive the class will be notified, shut down, and mandated to quarantine.
  • Families in each entity (The Eastside Day School, York Avenue Preschool and Gymtime) will be notified of any positive case within the facility.
  • The entire facility would be shut down only if we were mandated by the DOH or governing bodies of NYC or NYS.

Exposure Quarantine

Quarantine for Unvaccinated Individuals: Unvaccinated individuals who had close contact with someone who has (suspected or confirmed) COVID-19 should stay home for 10 days after their last exposure to that person. Close contact is defined as within 6 feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period. Please take a PCR test 3-5 days following your close contact and inform us of the result.

Quarantine for Vaccinated Individuals: Fully vaccinated individuals – adult and child – who are not experiencing any symptoms associated with COVID-19 are not required to quarantine following close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. We ask that you:

  • Take a rapid test as soon as possible, although you are still permitted to come to class.
    • If your rapid test comes back negative, you may continue to attend.
    • If your rapid test comes back positive, quarantine for 10 days.
  • Also, take a PCR test 3-5 days following your close contact.
    • If your PCR results come back negative, continue to attend.
    • If your PCR results come back positive, quarantine for 10 days.

 If you develop symptoms at any point, please:

  • Stay home.
  • Get a rapid Covid test as soon as possible. If your test comes back negative, please take a PCR test within 24 hours. If the PCR is positive, quarantine for 10 days from onset of symptoms, or results of Covid test, whichever comes first.
  • If both rapid and PCR tests come back negative, stay home for the duration of your non-Covid illness.

Facility-Wide Travel Quarantine Policy

Domestic Travel for Unvaccinated Individuals: For unvaccinated domestic travelers who were in another state (non-contiguous NJ, CT, MA. VT, PA):

  • Quarantine for 3 days and get a PCR test on day 4. If the test is negative the traveler may exit quarantine.
  • If you do not get tested, stay home and self-quarantine for 10 days after travel.

International Travel for Unvaccinated Individuals: For unvaccinated international travelers:

  • Stay home and self-quarantine for a full 7 days after travel. Get tested with a PCR test 3-5 days after travel.
    • Even if you test negative, stay home and self-quarantine for the full 7 days.
    • If your test is positive, isolate yourself to protect others from getting infected.
  • If you do not get tested, stay home and self-quarantine for 10 days after travel.

Travel for Vaccinated Individuals: Fully vaccinated individuals – adult and child – are not required to quarantine following domestic or international travel. In keeping with CDC recommendations, you must get tested 3-5 days after travel and inform us of the result. As long as the vaccinated individual remains symptom-free, they may attend class.

Illness Testing

We will require that any student who is absent due to symptoms of COVID-19 must stay home and either (a) provide a negative Covid test result, or (b) remain home for a minimum of 10 calendar days from symptom onset, prior to returning to school. These symptoms include:

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

In order to minimize missed time, in the case of testing due to symptomatic illness, we will accept either a negative PCR or rapid test.

We know that children are getting sick with regular, common childhood illnesses again. Most of the time when a child is out sick, it is not COVID-19.  Going forward, we want to ensure that all sick children are cleared before returning to school. Many parents have already been in the habit of obtaining Covid tests for their children given these symptoms, which we appreciate. 

Masks, Health Screenings, & Social Distancing Policy

  • We are following recommendations by the CDC, NYS, and NYC DOH in requiring that all adults wear face coverings in the building.
  • All children over 2 are required to wear a mask in school and should arrive with a mask on.
  • Whenever feasible, social distancing will be encouraged. Signs will be present reminding adults to keep 6 feet apart.
  • A health screening will be sent electronically each day prior to school. It must be completed before your child arrives. If an adult is accompanying the child into the facility, a screening must be completed for them. Questions asked on the health form will include if the child, accompanying adult or anyone in the household has had any COVID-19 symptoms in the last 10 days (fever, cough, shortness of breath), has had a positive COVID-19 test in the past 10 days, has had close or proximate contact with a confirmed or suspected COVID-19 case in the past 10 days, or has traveled outside of the contiguous states.
  • Temperature checks will be done as the children arrive to school each morning. A temperature over 100 degrees will prevent the child from entering the facility and they will be sent home.
  • Any adults entering the facility must show proof of vaccination.

Cleaning and Disinfecting

  • The existing HVAC units have a separate intake fan/HEPA filter system. This system provides pre-filtered air before it enters our HVAC units. Further, we have additional HEPA-filter portable units throughout our facility. The combination of the pre-existing and portable units enhances the air quality significantly.
  • The facility, including classrooms, are cleaned and disinfected daily using cleaning products recommended by the C.D.C. Throughout the day, high-touch areas will be cleaned frequently. Inside the classrooms, teachers will clean their tables and toys as needed during class time. After school, a deep cleaning will be done on all surfaces and toys will be cleaned and disinfected.
  • Hand washing will be done in the classrooms upon arrival, after activities, before and after eating and specialty classes and after bathroom use. Teachers will consistently model and enforce good hygiene such as frequent hand washing, sneezing and coughing into your elbow, using a tissue to blow/wipe your nose and hand washing after.

These protocols are subject to change and we will update as needed.

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