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With the nation in full swing of reopening due to closures from COVID-19, schools are looking to do the same this fall as they welcome the return of their students. Homeschooling and virtual learning are not ideal for every child, thus why it is essential for most students to go back to school. It is also another way students develop their social and emotional skills, and get in some exercise with P.E. and recess. Here are some things to help you plan for your child’s safe return to school.

How Schools Can Help

Before returning your kids to school, here are some things to check on how your school is planning to stay safe and stop the spread of COVID-19:

Social Distancing – Remind your children while they are at school to keep 6-feet apart from their peers. Desks will be separated, but it is still important for your child to know that they can’t run up to their friends, giving hugs or high fives as before. Teachers and staff will be in the know of this rule, too.

Facial Coverings & Clean Hands – Kids are at a lower risk for having severe complications if catching COVID-19. However, they could still spread the virus to others, including family at home, if they do become ill. To help stop the spread, be sure your child has a facial covering of some kind. It is important that they don’t touch their mouth, nose or ears while the mask is on as they could contaminate it. Make sure they are washing their hands frequently with soap and water, but if those are not available to use hand sanitizer, rubbing hands together until dry.

Classroom Structure – Changes in classroom structure could also be adjusted to reduce COVID-19’s spread such as limiting the amount of people in the hallways by having teachers change classrooms instead of students, students could eat in their classrooms or outside instead of going to a lunchroom, and leaving classroom doors open to decrease high touched surfaces such as door handles.

Temperature Checks – Even though schools are equipped with a nurse or health office, access for temperature checks might not be available. Check your child’s temperature before they go to school and especially if they look ill. For students, teachers and staff experiencing a temperature over 100 degrees or any other illness symptoms, they should stay home.

Transportation, Hallways and Playgrounds – Since buses, hallways and playgrounds can be crowded areas, schools can assign seats to students who ride the bus, make hallways with one-way arrows and monitor small groups playing on the playgrounds.

Keeping Areas Clean – Schools will be following the CDC guidelines for how to properly disinfect and clean classrooms and other high touched surface areas.

It is always a fun time for kids to go back to school and we want to make sure you have peace of mind as your children return. To take the survey to see how you feel about your school reopening or about virtual learning, visit www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/schools-childcare/decision-tool.html. For more information regarding updates on the coronavirus and other school safety resources, visit the CDC at www.cdc.gov or contact us.