REMOTE COURSEWORK WITH LIMITED IN-PERSON INSTRUCTION
Calendar & Schedule
Each grade will be given the opportunity to return to the building for two academic days at a time. We will cycle through all the grades, starting with sixth grade on October 8. After our first full cycle, we will go fully remote for three days to attend to the end of the marking period and revise our best practices. Then we will cycle through the grades again in November. We plan to be fully remote from November 23 through Winter Break.
Our daily schedule will remain the same for students who are in-person and students who are remote. Classes will meet every other day, starting at 8:30am and ending at 3:15pm. There is a gap between morning and afternoon classes to allow for community meetings and an extended lunch.
We have worked hard to design both curriculum and instruction for a flexible learning landscape. Part of that flexible landscape includes teaching students in the same course both in-person and remotely—this will be the case should a course have students from more than one grade level enrolled or if a course has students who choose to remain remote. Our faculty have been considering this possibility and engaged in professional development and thoughtful discussion about how to approach these facets of the flexible learning landscape. As always, we approach course design with intentionality and a commitment to these core values: belonging, agency, engagement, empathy, and joy.
Clubs, Activities, and Affinity Groups
Clubs, activities, and affinity groups that occur during the school day will remain remote at this time. There is a chance that students will not be able to attend meetings during the days when they are in-person. Faculty sponsors will work to connect with students should they need to miss a meeting to do in-person attendance.
Supervised Work Space
We will continue to offer Supervised Academic Study Hall (SASH) for middle school students who require it. SASH can only accommodate those families that absolutely need the assistance: parents and caregivers who have no other family member available to supervise a child during the day; and parents and caregivers who are at risk of losing their jobs if they stay home to supervise a child. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you require your student to attend their remote weeks from school in a campus study hall.
NEW HEALTH AND SAFETY MEASURES
Mitigating Risk On Campus
We continue to follow the on-going guidance from the CDC, WHO, and local medical experts on the best ways to reduce exposure to COVID-19. Part of this work requires that our entire school population help us to create a community of care.
There are also several practices we are putting in place school-wide along with some physical shifts to the building that will all serve to mitigate risk. Specific mitigation strategies when individuals are on campus may include, but are not limited to:
Practices and Procedures
- Everyone is required to wear a mask throughout their time on Greenhills campus—both indoors and outdoors. The only exceptions are if an individual is actively eating/drinking in a designated space or if an individual is by themself behind a closed door.
- Everyone should work to maintain six feet of distance between all individuals. For class meetings, students will have assigned seats that are at least 6 feet apart from one another.
- Everyone will be asked to complete a health screening if they plan to come to campus and should not come to Greenhills if they fail the health screening, which will ask individuals to identify if they are experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19 or if they feel unwell in any way.
- Everyone will follow a regular schedule of hand washing or using hand sanitizer throughout the day. Hand sanitizer will be available throughout campus to ensure easy access.
- Faculty will clean hard work surfaces and teaching spaces before and after use, with assistance from staff. Disinfectant spray will be available for frequent use.
- Daily cleaning practices are compliant with local requirements and CDC recommendations, including the types of cleaning products used and the frequency of cleaning. Special attention is paid to the cleaning of high-touch surfaces throughout the day.
Changes to our Physical Space
- Over the summer, we:
- performed an audit of our spaces to verify that we had proper ventilation.
- replaced all of the filters with high-grade MERV 13 filters.
- added 15 commercial-grade HEPA filter machines (Austin Air HealthMate medical-grade air purifier) throughout the building to implement a higher level of air filtration
- serviced all HVAC systems in the building to make sure they are working efficiently and at current recommended levels.
- worked with our facilities crew to develop systems for cleaning our spaces thoroughly and efficiently.
- This fall, as we imagined our return to in-person learning, we:
- identified the teaching spaces that allow for maximum distance between individuals and airflow.
- considered traffic patterns throughout the school that would lessen contact.
- decided not to use cubbies and lockers at this time.
- audited spaces and placed signage that clearly notes maximum occupancy.
- installed six-foot markers throughout the school.
Plum Food Service and Lunch
Plum will provide grab-and-go lunch options; self-serve options will not be available. Students will be oriented to the lunch procedure at school. Everyone should wash or sanitize their hands prior to and following lunch.
- Individuals will queue for lunch service at a safe distance.
- Tented outdoor spaces with tables, the dining room, and designated spaces in the building will serve as eating areas.
- There will be no sharing of food or eating/drinking utensils.
- Eating surfaces will be cleaned with a disinfectant at the end of each lunch service.
- Masks can only be removed while eating and drinking.
Responding to Concerns about Potential Exposures and Symptoms of COVID 19
We have created a new email group to receive reports of positive test cases, new symptoms, potential exposures, concerns, and questions regarding COVID 19, with particular attention toward students and employees in the building and on campus.
If you wish to report a positive test result or exposure or ask a question about an exposure, please write to email@example.com. If you have an emergent issue, please call the School’s main number, 734.769.4010.
The people who receive and respond to emails to firstname.lastname@example.org include Quincy McLaughlin (Associate Head of School/Head of Upper School), Caroline Huntoon (Head of Middle School), Lisa Hogan (Covid Coordinator), Stephanie Bentley (Administrative Coordinator), and Ken Geremia (Operations/Emergency Planning). When and if a report requires a community notification of any kind regarding COVID-19, we won't identify the reporter or the individual identified as experiencing new symptoms, an exposure, or a positive test result.
Greenhills Families are still asked to send news of absences for all students (in-person and remote) for any reason to email@example.com.
Responding to Cases of COVID-19 in the Greenhills School Community
The School’s Covid Coordinators meet weekly with Washtenaw County Health Department specialists in a dedicated meeting for schools, and will continue to follow the guidance from public health officials regarding our response to cases in our school and local community. In these weekly meetings we review current local case data, any updates regarding Interim Guidance for schools, discuss school case reporting and coordination, ask questions, and seek guidance.
If a student or staff member believes they have COVID-19 symptoms (including fever, cough, nasal congestion or runny nose, sore throat, body aches, headache, nausea, vomiting or diarrhea, new loss of taste or smell, or shortness of breath), they should stay home from school to monitor symptoms, follow up with their healthcare provider, and notify the school by writing to firstname.lastname@example.org. That healthcare provider may recommend a COVID-19 test or period of isolation.
If a student or employee reports a confirmed case of COVID-19 (by writing to email@example.com), Greenhills will collect the contact information for any close contacts of the affected individual, as required by public health authorities. Should a positive case of COVID-19 be identified, we will notify the local public health department and follow all directions for further notices and contact tracing. The Washtenaw County Health Department is charged to conduct contact tracing and we will make classroom rosters and other data obtained available to them when needed, and their efforts will be supported by our school. The Washtenaw County Health Department is also charged to direct the Greenhill’s responses to individual or multiple positive cases. Though the guidelines for determining when a COVID-19-infected person is able to return to school or work continue to evolve, at present students or employees who test positive, or who are deemed a close contact with someone who tests positive, should expect to be required to quarantine for 14 days. All community members will be notified of confirmed positive cases, though privacy rules preclude the naming of sick people.
A "Close contact" is s person who has spent at least 15 minutes with someone that has COVID-19 and were at least six feet apart during that time with or without a mask or a person sharing a household with or directly caring for a person having a confirmed positive case of COVID-19. WCHD will take the lead with all contact tracing, though schools may be asked to assist with gathering a list of potential contacts. WCHD will contact people directly if they test positive for COVID-19. They will also be in touch if they’ve found through case investigations that someone has been in close contact with someone who’s tested positive for COVID-19. (“Close contact” is considered within six feet for 15-plus minutes.) You can find more about contact tracing here. At this time, WCHD recommends that all close contacts quarantine and monitor symptoms for 14 days from last exposure to a person having a confirmed positive case of COVID-19. In some circumstances, quarantine recommendations may extend beyond 14 days.
Parents and students are expected to assist the School in fulfilling responsibilities to help local health departments in contract tracing.
At this time, WCHD recommends that all close contacts quarantine and monitor symptoms for 14 days from last exposure to a person having a confirmed positive case of COVID-19. In some circumstances, quarantine recommendations may extend beyond 14 days.
If Students or Staff Become Sick While on Campus
If anyone on campus becomes sick or develops symptoms listed above, they must depart campus as soon as possible. Until that time, the symptomatic individual will continue to wear a mask and remain in a supervised isolation room near the front of the school, with a designated separate entrance and exit. Parents/guardians/emergency contacts should be prepared to pick up the student as quickly as possible in the case of illness during school day. Students and staff that have COVID-19 symptoms and are sent home should remain at home until they receive a negative COVID-19 test, until the isolation period has passed as indicated by the CDC, or until their health care provider determines they can return to in-person activities. Students and their families will be responsible for communicating with the student’s health care provider as well as all necessary Greenhills staff members.
WHAT COMES NEXT?
Flexibility and Revision
Greenhills is committed to reevaluating our model as the school year continues, including any time Michigan shifts to a new phase in the Michigan Safe Start Plan. We will continue to follow guidance from medical advisors, public health experts, NAIS, and Michigan’s Safe Schools Roadmap as we make these important decisions.
Details and Information
We are refining our protocols and practices. As we finalize those components, we will be sending emails to our families. In particular, look for communications that:
- Ask you to specify whether you student plans to attend in-person days or stay fully remote
- Clearly describe protocols for arrival, dismissal, and lunch, including how to use our health screening tool, SchoolPass
- Offer opportunities for you to ask questions
This plan outlines how we will return to in-person instruction. However, should circumstances require it, there is always a possibility we will need to move back to fully remote instruction.