COVID-19 Policies, Protocols & Procedures for In-Person Learning - St. Joseph School Seattle

COVID-19 Policies, Protocols & Procedures for In-Person Learning

These will be regularly reviewed by the Leadership Team (with consultation by the Task Force). We are flexible; this is a dynamic document and changes will occur as needed to ensure the safety of all students and staff. On that note, we ask for your patience, as we know that many of the policies, protocols and procedures in this plan add time to the day.

To keep the risk of transmission low, we are adhering to the recommended 6 foot distance between students and the teacher. Once families register for in-person learning we will then determine how many classrooms and teachers are needed to meet this guideline. Therefore, once in-person learning begins, it may be difficult to accommodate additional students who had previously opted for remote learning. Families in remote learning who later wish to change to in-person learning will need to contact the Primary/Middle School Director in writing.

Mandatory Daily Pre-Screening Requirement

Click here to complete the daily pre-screening form

Prior to any student coming to school for in-person learning, parents must pre-screen their children at home using the COVID-19 Screening Form in the Veracross Parent Portal. Parents are required to show confirmation of form submission upon arrival at drop-off.

If any of the screening questions are answered YES, indicating the presence of student/ household symptoms or contact with a suspected COVID-19 Case, DO NOT BRING ANY STUDENTS TO SCHOOL.

Instead, follow these procedures:

  • Email the COVID-19 Supervisors or call Robin Jones/Mary Doquilo at 206.329.3260 ext. 266 to report your situation
  • You will be contacted by the Supervisors, asked clarifying questions and given further instructions regarding the next requirements and steps toward returning to school.

Return to School Health Policy & Procedures

Our school policy reflects our ongoing commitment to maintaining the health and safety of our students, staff and community. We must all work together to keep our school open for in-person learning. 

If any member of a SJS staff or student household has a suspected case of COVID-19, tested positive for COVID-19, or has been in close contact with a confirmed COVID-19 case, the school must be notified as soon as possible at health@stjosephsea.org. You will be contacted by a COVID-19 Supervisor, asked clarifying questions and given further instructions regarding the next requirements and steps towards returning to school.

COVID-19 SYMPTOMS determined by King County Department of Health: 

  • Fever of 100.4/38C or higher
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Chills
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle pain or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Other signs of new illness that are unrelated to a preexisting condition such as seasonal allergies.

If a student or household member develops symptoms, everyone in the household should stay home. We highly encourage you to follow up with your healthcare provider and schedule COVID-19 tests for your entire household. At a minimum, we recommend having the symptomatic household members be tested. Testing provides both peace of mind and information for the school. In addition, negative testing can speed up the return to school.

Negative Tests:

  • If testing results are NEGATIVE, the student can return after 24 hours have passed since fever was resolved (without medication) and all other symptoms have improved
  • EXCEPTION:  If someone has had close contact with a confirmed COVID-19 case, even if they have a negative test result, they still must quarantine for 14 days from time of contact

Positive Test or No Tests:

  • If a student or household member has received a positive COVID-19 test or has symptoms and has NOT been tested, the student and other students must stay home

Students can return to school 10 days after symptoms started AND at least 24 hours have passed since fever resolved (without medication) AND all other symptoms are significantly improved

If your child was in close contact with a confirmed COVID-19 case, he/she must quarantine/remain at home for 14 days from last date of exposure. They must still quarantine for 14 days even if they test negative for COVID-19. This is because it may take up to 14 days for the virus to incubate after a high-risk exposure.

A close contact anyone who has been within 6 feet of a person infected with COVID-19 for a COMBINED total of 15 minutes or more within a 24-hour period. The use of cloth masks or face shields by the COVID-19 positive person or contact does NOT change the close contact definition.

In developing our St. Joseph School policies and procedures regarding COVID-19, we consider WA-DOH and CDC safety measures to implement guidelines that best suit our community and its needs.

Travel increases your chance of getting and spreading COVID-19. CDC recommends that you do not travel at this time. Delay travel and stay home to protect yourself and others from COVID-19.” - CDC Travel

Knowing the innate risks involved with travel, we have taken into consideration the CDC and WA-DOH recommendations to develop our St. Joseph Travel Protocol. This protocol addresses different forms of travel, outlines safe travel guidelines, and describes what requires a period of quarantine upon return home.

We expect SJS families to closely adhere to these guidelines and self-monitor their household traveling activities in order to keep our students, staff, and community safe and our school buildings open as permitted by Washington State.

In State and Out of State Car Travel

Families must adhere to Washington State DOH - Phase 3 guidelines at all times. If these guidelines are followed, no quarantine period is required upon return.

Commercial Air, Train or Long Distance Bus Travel

CDC recommends travel by these means be limited as much as possible. Due to the high risk of these types of travel, quarantine is required in some cases. Please follow these guidelines below:

  • Any student who is not fully vaccinated (2 weeks post their final vaccination shot) who travels or is exposed to a household member who has traveled will be required to quarantine.
  • Fully vaccinated adults and students who travel or are exposed to someone who has traveled by these means, will no longer be required to quarantine.
  • In the case of a fully vaccinated visitor or household member returning home to an unvaccinated student, that student would also no longer be required to quarantine.

If a quarantine is required due to travel, please follow one of these quarantine options (please remember quarantine begins the first full day after returning home):

  • Option 1 - 7 Day Quarantine (Testing Required)
    • If all fully unvaccinated members of the household choose to take COVID-19 viral tests 4-5 days after the family’s return to Seattle with a negative result, the student(s) may return to in-person learning after seven full days of quarantine have been completed. (example: Return from travel on 3/10, start 7-day quarantine on 3/11, take COVID test on 3/14, 3/15, or 3/16 with negative result received prior to 3/19, return on 3/19)
  • Option 2 - 10 Day Quarantine (No Testing Required)
    • If no testing is preferred, non-vaccinated students may return to in-person learning after ten full days of quarantine have been completed. (example: Return from travel on 3/10, start 10-day quarantine on 3/11, return on 3/21)
  • Steps if your travel requires a quarantine period out of school
    • As soon as possible, notify your administrator, teachers and health@stjosephsea.org of your travel plans and dates, and if you will opt for quarantine Option 1 or Option 2.
    • Primary School: Remote classes are no longer available for elective travel and quarantine. Notify your teacher to arrange makeup materials to be provided upon return.

  • If your child has seasonal allergies or other pre-existing symptoms that are similar to COVID-19 symptoms (ie: runny nose, congestion), be mindful if the “typical” symptoms that your child is experiencing have worsened or changed. If the symptoms are worse or different, you would then answer “yes” to that particular question on the COVID-19 Veracross screening form, keep all of your children home and contact the COVID-19 Supervisor immediately
  • If your child’s symptoms are consistently the same, then the answer would be “no” on the screening form. You should also consult with your primary health provider to either confirm the suspected diagnosis of seasonal allergies and discuss medication regimens to alleviate these symptoms. Be mindful and honest, we want to keep all students and staff safe; we also do not want to exclude students who are well enough to be at school
  • COVID-19 symptoms that are NOT typically present with seasonal allergies include chills and muscle aches, fever, vomiting and nausea, diarrhea, and sudden loss of smell or taste, according to the federal health agency
  • We strongly encourage teacher, staff, students and families to get a flu shot

Primary School

Prior to arrival, it is mandatory for parents to complete the COVID-19 symptom checklist, and be ready to show confirmation upon arrival.

  • Staggered arrival time based on Driver’s/Walker’s last name
    • 7:50-8:00 Last Name A-C
    • 8:00-8:10 Last Name D-J
    • 8:10-8:20 Last Name K-N
    • 8:20-8:30 Last Name O-S
    • 8:30-8:40 Last Name T-Z
  • Drop Off Location: Main Curb in the school parking lot, drivers should pull up to the 2nd cross walk (no parking in the lot unless directed by school staff)
  • Walk up Location: Students who walk to school will also go to the drop off point for cars based on their last name
  • Upon arrival, each vehicle will be met by Staff who will take the students’ temperature 
  • If your child has a fever of 100.4 you will be sent home. Contact your medical provider and immediately email health@stjosephsea.org to report symptoms. You will be contacted by one of our COVID-19 Supervisors 
  • Lunch orders are placed each week for the following week
  • Order forms can be found on the Parent Portal in Veracross
  • Lunch orders are due each Thursday by 3:00p.m.
  • We are unable to accommodate orders placed after the 3:00p.m.

Thank you very much for submitting your orders each week by 3:00p.m. on Thursday.

Effective Monday, April 19

  • Staggered dismissal times are based on grade level, sibling status and last name. Parents must be on time for pick up.
  • Dismissal (primary school students and their siblings in primary school)
    • 1:25p.m. on Tuesday
      • K-2 & 3rd, 4th Grade Siblings
        • 1:30 - 1:35 Last Name A-L
        • 1:35 - 1:40 Last Name M-Z
      • 3rd, 4th without siblings
        • 1:40 - 1:45 Last Name A-L
        • 1:45 - 1:50 Last Name M-Z
    • Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday
      • K-2 & 3rd, 4th Grade Siblings
        • 2:30 - 2:35 Last Name A-L
        • 2:35 - 2:40 Last Name M-Z
      • 3rd, 4th without siblings
        • 2:40 - 2:45 Last Name A-L
        • 2:45 - 2:50 Last Name M-Z
  • Pick up location: School parking lot.
  • A teacher will escort all homeroom students to the parking lot where students will line up 6 feet apart and wait to be escorted to their car
  • Parents with students who arrive late (after the allotted drop-off time, 8:00 - 8:30) to SJS campus, will bring their child to the main office door, and ring the bell for check-in procedures. Students will need verification of Veracross symptom check completion and their temperature will be taken before entering the building
  • Please honor the Drop-Off and Pick-Up times for your children. This ensures a smoother and safer process for the students and staff 
  • If you need to pick up your child early, please contact the main office at least 30 minutes prior to arrival and we will have your child brought to the front door once you have arrived (please contact the front office again upon arrival)

Middle School

Prior to arrival, it is mandatory for parents to complete the COVID-19 symptom checklist, students and/or parents must show confirmation upon arrival.

Effective Wednesday, April 21

Main Lobby Entrance (Walkers Only)

Walkers may only enter the Middle School building from the Main Lobby Entrance from 8:00a.m. - 8:25a.m.

Parking Lot / Drivers

If a parent is dropping off both a Primary School student AND a Middle School student please use the earlier time based on last name:

  • Arrival
    • 7:50 - 8:00 Last Name A-J
    • 8:00 - 8:10 Last Name K-P
    • 8:10 - 8:20 Last Name R-Z
  • Entrances for Middle School Students include: Main Lobby & Cafeteria Stairwell. If a student is dropped off in the parking lot they must walk to one of these entrances;
  • Middle School Walkers should enter through the Main Lobby;
  • A Staff Member will be positioned at both entrances to screen Middle School students as they enter;
  • If a middle school student does not have his/her form, they will need to go to the main office to confirm that is has been completed by a parent
  • Lunch orders are placed each week for the following week
  • Order forms can be found on the Parent Portal in Veracross
  • Lunch orders are due each Thursday by 3:00pm
  • We are unable to accommodate orders placed after the 3:00 p.m.

Thank you very much for submitting your orders each week by 3:00p.m. on Thursday.

Main Lobby Exit (Walkers Only)

All students who walked to school will use the Main Lobby Exit once dismissed for the day. Students are to remain socially distanced and wearing masks. Students will not be admitted back into the building once dismissed.

Parking Lot / Drivers

All families will receive a laminated sign to put in the dashboard of their car to help quickly identify the driver. If you need additional signs please contact the Main Office.

No parking will be allowed - if a student is not outside ready for pickup, we will ask cars to please drive around the block and re-enter the parking lot.

  • Dismissal times are as follows:
    • All middle school students: 2:00p.m. on Tuesday
    • 5th Grade: 2:25p.m. on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday
    • 6th-8th Grade:
      • 3:00p.m. on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday
      • 2:00p.m. on Friday (there are no Exploratory Classes on Friday)
  • Pick up location: School parking lot
  • Students exit the building through the Lunchroom Stairwell Door where students will line up 6 feet apart and wait to be escorted to their car
  • Parents picking up Primary School siblings: Parents will pick up their K-4th grade students (following primary school dismissal times) in the assigned lane in the parking lot.
  • Parents with students who arrive late (after the allotted drop-off time, 8:00-8:30) to SJS campus, will bring their child to the main office door, and ring the bell for check-in procedures. Students will need verification of Veracross symptom check completion and their temperature will be taken before entering the building
  • Please honor the Drop-Off and Pick-Up times for your children. This ensures a smoother and safer process for the students and staff 
  • If you need to pick up your child early, please contact the main office at least 30 minutes prior to arrival and we will have your child brought to the front door once you have arrived (please contact the front office again upon arrival)

General Information

Primary School Students:

Monday - Friday will be in-person learning on campus.

Middle School Students:

Monday - Thursday will be in-person learning on campus.

Friday will be remote learning for all middle school students.

*Exploratory Programs may have variations and will be communicated by program instructors

  • The recommendation from the Washington State DCYF (Department of Children Youth and Families), is that families should have the same adult drop-off and pick-up for child(ren) each day and to avoid carpooling when possible
  • When necessary, as may be the case with SJS families, we urge parents to limit carpool partnerships and maintain consistency with masking and open windows en route
  • If you will not be driving your child to school on any given day, you must screenshot the all clear results from the Veracross symptom check for that day to the carpool driver and they will show the results to an SJS staff member upon arrival

  • Faculty and staff will also complete the COVID-19 screening form and have their temperature checked before entering the building and will wash hands upon arrival 
  • A staff member who triggers the symptom check, will contact SJS’s COVID-19 Supervisor for next steps. If the staff member is unable to be at school, a substitute will be in the classroom
  • All staff will be in masks and possibly other appropriate PPE while on SJS campus

  • At this time, vendors are not allowed on campus - which includes specialists from outside sources and after school activities
  • SJS is asking parents to refrain from visiting inside the building to reduce exposures and encourage additional physical distancing
  • Parent meetings will be held via Zoom
  • According to the CDC, in order to practice physical distancing (six feet) within each group of students as much as possible, create space between students and reduce the amount of time they are close with each other. Our ability to do this will depend on students’ ages and developmental and physical abilities
  • In all classrooms, K-8, desks will be placed accordingly - see CDC recommendation above. 
  • Physical distancing markers will be indicated on the floor and will allow for children to move throughout the room as necessary 
  • Physical distancing, mask, and handwashing signs will be placed in classrooms, hallways, and all common areas as visual cues and reminders for students. Floor markers will be on the ground designating places for students to stand to wait in hallways and also there will be directional signs placed throughout the building (such as designating up and down staircase)
  • Teachers will maintain physical distance from each other as well as maintain distance from the students
  • All faculty and staff are required to wear masks 
  • Any staff member who works directly with students is required to wear a disposable surgical mask
  • All students in grades K-8 are required to wear masks
  • CDC guidelines and features:  
    • Must fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
    • Completely cover the nose and mouth
    • Masks are secured to the face with ties or ear loops
    • Includes multiple layers of fabric
    • Allows for breathing without restriction
    • Can be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape
    • Gaiter masks are not allowed
  • Students may remove masks for brief periods to eat and drink during designated break and meal times
  • Students will arrive at SJS with masks from home and are expected to keep them on 
  • Parents must provide two back-up masks for each child (to be kept in their backpacks) 
  • If your child uses one of their back-up masks, you must send a replacement the following school day 

  • SJS will intensify cleaning of all spaces and high touch areas, including restrooms
  • Children will be provided with individual sets of materials and supplies where possible to avoid cross contamination. Shared spaces and supplies will be cleaned regularly
  • Students will wash hands and/or use hand sanitizer after outdoor play

  • Restrooms have touchless faucets, toilets, and dispensers for soap and paper towels
  • Adequate ventilation provided in all restrooms
  • SJS will also designate bathroom times for each grade and ensure that there are a limited number of students who use the bathroom at any given period of time

  • All students will eat in their classrooms (hot or cold lunches are available for purchase; orders must be submitted through Veracross on Thursday by 3:00pm of each week for the following week)
  • Lunches ordered through Veracross will be delivered to the classroom and left outside the door
  • Each class will remain/play only with their cohort at recess
  • Each class will have their own playground equipment which will be cleaned each day
  • Supervisors and students will be wearing their masks and other appropriate PPE

  • Events, meetings and gatherings will not be held on campus at this time. 
  • Assemblies may be held on campus, via Zoom or an alternative structure to ensure a limited number of people in any given space. 

SJS will continue communication with families through Veracross.

  • SJS will continue to teach SEL lessons and use additional SEL resources focused on the current COVID-19 crisis
  • SJS’s counselor will also give classes once a week to each grade level around Social Emotional Learning
  • Ms. Moyer-Taylor, our counselor, will teach focused SEL classes once a week remotely
  • Mrs. Crocker will teach Art remotely
  • Mr. Hayes will teach PE remotely
  • Mrs. Mickey will teach Music remotely
  • Mrs. Tucker will teach Tech and Library remotely
  • Mrs. Karll will teach Spanish remotely

The Learning Resource Center will continue to provide service to students. The LRC will work remotely with students 1:1 and in small groups. Advanced Learning will work with students in small groups remotely.

At this time, there will be no before and after school care

Our intention is to use in-house substitutes

Facilities Response

Middle School

  • Each classroom has a fresh air intake and exhaust system
  • Dampers fixed to 100% fresh air on the intake unit ventilator
  • Smart switches installed to allow scheduling of system to turn on 2 hours before occupancy and off 2 hours after
  • Air filters replaced with higher efficiency MERV rating

Primary School

  • All classrooms have operable windows for fresh air
  • 16” window exhaust fan installed in each classroom
  • Smart switches installed to allow scheduling of system to turn on 2 hours before occupancy and off 2 hours after
  • 20” window exhaust fans installed on the 3rd floor to draw fresh air from the opposite side of the building.

LRC/Main office

  • HVAC system connected to centralized controller for scheduling
  • Scheduled system to turn on 2 hours before occupancy and off 2 hours after
  • Air filters replaced with higher efficiency MERV rating

Common areas

  • Portable HEPA air filtration units set up in common areas
  • Rooms without air ventilation will not be used

General
Daily

  • Disinfecting of door handles, railings, high touch surfaces, etc
  • Shared/common areas when used: desks, chairs, tables, floors, etc
  • Deep clean/disinfecting of the restrooms: sinks, toilets, counters, walls, etc
  • Mopping and disinfecting the restroom floors
  • Confirming all soap and paper dispensers are completely full and always working for the high demand

Weekly

  • Mopping and disinfecting hard floors in hallways and common areas
  • Vacuuming carpet with HEPA filter equipment

Carpets

  • Area rugs were removed from classrooms and offices
  • Vacuumed when children are not present, using a vacuum with a HEPA (high efficiency particulate air) filter – or using HEPA vacuum bags.

Outdoor Areas
Following CDC and King County Health Department recommendation:

Outdoor areas, like playgrounds in schools and parks, generally require normal routine cleaning, but do not require disinfection.

  • Do not spray disinfectant on outdoor playgrounds—it is not an efficient use of supplies and is not proven to reduce risk of COVID-19 to the public.
  • High-touch surfaces made of plastic or metal, such as grab bars and railings, will be cleaned routinely.
  • Cleaning and disinfection of wooden surfaces (play structures, benches, tables) or groundcovers (mulch, sand) is not recommended.

Disinfecting Products

  • Disinfection using EPA-approved disinfectants against COVID-19
  • Trained custodial staff on the proper mixing ratio and application of disinfecting products, wet contact time, personal protective equipment, etc.

Products:

  • Oxivir Tb Cleaner Disinfectant
  • Oxivir Tb Disinfecting Wipes
  • Brighton Professional Hepastat 256 Disinfectant Cleaner