Back to School 2020

General Information

Elementary Guidance

PLEASE NOTE: The details in this document are subject to change as directives are provided by governing authorities and/or health officials or as environmental conditions change.

Protocols for Screening and Isolation

General

All students and staff will be screened for COVID-19 symptoms regularly and individuals who present with symptoms will be separated and sent home.

Screening Protocols

  • Staff will be required to self-screen for COVID-19 symptoms prior to reporting to work each day.  
  • Parents/guardians are expected to screen their students for COVID-19 symptoms each day prior to sending their student to school.
  • Teachers will monitor students and refer to the nurse if symptoms are present.

Student or Staff Displaying COVID-19 Symptoms

  • When a student has displayed symptoms of COVID-19, the school nurse will provide a clinical assessment to determine if and when a student needs to be sent home.
  • Students who are ill will be separated from their peers and are expected to be picked up by the student’s parent/guardian.
  • Other students will be removed from the classroom and taken to an alternate location on campus (e.g. go on a walk outside, move to a different classroom, etc.) so that the classroom can be disinfected.
  • District communication will be provided to the parents of students who came in contact with a COVID-19 positive student or staff member.  
  • Staff members displaying COVID-19 symptoms will follow district protocols including isolation from students and other staff members.
  • Students or staff who come into close contact with a COVID-19 positive individual will be asked to self-quarantine for 14 days and may not return to campus during that time. The CDC defines close contact to include anyone living in the same household, caring for a sick person with the virus, being within 6 feet of a sick person with the virus for at least 15 continuous minutes without the use of a face covering, or being in direct contact with secretions from the sick person.
  • Students and staff who have tested positive for COVID-19 will be required to submit a letter of good health from a physician's office prior to returning to school.

Protocols for Face Coverings

  • Life School developed protocols for the use of face coverings based on health guidance and what is considered age and developmentally appropriate. The CDC notes the following on its website: "Younger children (e.g., preschool or early elementary aged) may be unable to wear a cloth face covering properly, particularly for an extended period of time. Wearing of cloth face coverings may be prioritized at times when it is difficult to maintain a distance of 6 feet from others (e.g., during carpool drop off or pick up, or when standing in line at school). Ensuring proper cloth face covering size and fit and providing children with frequent reminders and education on the importance and proper wear of cloth face coverings may help address these issues."
  • As a result of this guidance and the input of Life School staff, the District made the decision to have students under 10 and enrolled in grades K-3 wear face coverings as feasible in hallways, common areas and during arrival and dismissal, but not in the classroom. Students 10 and older and enrolled in 4-12th grades are required to wear masks at all times, including arrival and dismissal. Students are welcome and encouraged to wear face coverings in circumstances where they are not required. The District wants students to feel comfortable, safe, and supported at school. Students’ individual needs will be addressed on a case-by-case basis. Requests for accommodations should be submitted to campus administration.
  • Masks should be solid in color, either disposable or cloth material, or clear face masks. Life School logos, college or university symbols or school appropriate sports team logos are also acceptable.

Protocols for Campus Visitors

General

Campuses will utilize virtual meeting options to limit campus visitors when possible. All visitors who enter the building will be required to wear a face covering at all times. Individuals who proceed beyond the reception area will follow specific guidelines for visitors.

Visitor Screening/PPE Requirements

  • Individuals proceeding beyond the reception area will be subject to the following guidelines:
    • All visitors will be subject to screening.
    • Virtual meetings will be available when possible.
    • Visitors and staff will maintain physical distancing for in-person ARD and other meetings.

Protocols for Disinfecting and Hand Sanitizing

General

Frequent disinfection and hand sanitization will ensure health and wellness of students and staff.

Hand Washing/Sanitizing Expectations

  • Staff will be expected to regularly wash or sanitize their hands.
  • Requirement for hand washing and/or use of Life School-provided hand sanitizer:
    • Provide hand sanitizer dispensers in hallways leading to classrooms and periodic teacher reminders during instructional day.
    • Thorough hand washing after recess, before and after eating, and following restroom breaks.

Disinfecting Expectations

  • Facilities staff will have access to disinfectant to regularly sanitize high-touch and working surfaces and shared objects.
  • Staff will limit the use of shared supplies when possible.

Protocols for Campus Cleaning and Disinfecting

General

Frequent cleaning and disinfecting will promote a healthy learning and work environment for students and staff.

Daily Campus Cleaning

  • All areas including classrooms, administrative areas, restrooms, common areas, cafeterias, gymnasiums, athletic areas, etc. will be cleaned and sanitized daily (Mon-Fri).
  • All areas including classrooms, administrative areas, restrooms, common areas, cafeterias, gymnasiums, athletic areas, etc. will be disinfected by Life School facilities staff (Mon, Wed, Fri).
  • Additional hand sanitizer stations have been added throughout common areas, hallways, and entrances to gymnasiums at all campuses. 
  • Buses will be disinfected after each trip. Windows will be left open as often as possible for ventilation. Bus drivers will be trained on COVID-19 safety protocols. Each bus will be limited to one student per seat when feasible or two students from the same household to encourage social distancing. Bus drivers will be required to wear masks except when the vehicle is in motion.

Additional Cleaning Measure for COVID-19 Positive Cases on Campus

  • Classroom desk surfaces, entry door handle and/or equipment to be sanitized and disinfected by facilities staff immediately after class period ends.

Work and Learning Environments

Classroom Configurations and Procedures

  • Desks or tables will be socially distanced as much as instructionally possible.
  • When possible, classrooms will eliminate communal supplies. Shared supplies will be sanitized between use.
  • Remove blankets, pillows, and other shared non-essential items from the classroom.  
  • Group or pair work can be implemented while maintaining physical distancing. 
  • When possible, technology can be utilized when the use of manipulatives is needed. Teachers will consider assigning cohorts of students specific manipulatives in order to reduce the possibility of exposure or consider creating individual bags of supplementary aids and/or manipulatives for student use that could also be sent home in the event of school closure.
  • The use of outdoor space for learning will be considered when possible. Classroom groups working outside will maintain at least 12 feet of social distance from other classroom groups.
  • Whenever possible, students and staff will maintain consistent groupings of people to minimize the spread of the virus. Additionally, supplemental services will be grouped by grade level when possible.
  • The recommended procedures will be applied to all classroom settings, including special education services locations when possible and appropriate. Students’ individual needs will be addressed on a case-by-case basis.
  • Special Education Return to School Guidance

Physical Education Classroom Protocols

  • Whenever possible, physical education classes will be held outside to allow for maximum physical distance between students.
  • Any activities bringing students into close physical contact will be avoided.
  • Procedures will be implemented in the locker rooms to limit social distancing.
  • Equipment will be disinfected after each use.
  • Activities requiring multiple students to touch or handle the same equipment will be avoided.
  • Sanitizing areas and access to hand-washing will be provided.

Common Areas

Common areas include spaces that are used for meetings and collaboration. This includes computer labs, flexible spaces, campus libraries, conference rooms and other meeting rooms.  In order to provide the safest environment possible in our common/collaborative spaces, while promoting disease prevention and mitigation, the following guidelines will be implemented:

Meeting Spaces

  • Meetings will be limited to video conferencing when possible.  
  • If meetings must be held in person, all social distancing protocols will be implemented.
    • Facial coverings or masks will be utilized.
    • Social distancing will be followed.
    • Limit the sharing of materials/supplies.

Administrative Spaces (Reception, Offices, Conference Rooms, Mail Room)

When possible, meetings will be conducted virtually. However, if the need arises to meet in person please follow campus guidelines:

  • Facial coverings or masks will be utilized.
  • Hand sanitizer will be provided in front office spaces.
  • Distances of 6 feet will be provided between all occupied seats and workspaces.

Flexible Learning Spaces

  • The number of students in these areas will be limited as driven by available space and social distancing guidelines.
  • Common spaces and supplies in these spaces will be disinfected frequently.

Elevators

  • Only students and staff with a physical impairment or the need to move large/heavy equipment will be able to use the elevator.
  • No more than 2 people will ride in the elevator at the same time.
  • Masks will be worn when on the elevator.

Library

  • Visual reminders will be added and furniture rearranged to help students maintain social distancing while in the library.
  • Students and staff will wash/sanitize hands upon entering and after visiting the library.
  • High touch surfaces (i.e. table tops, chairs, door handles) will be disinfected regularly.
  • Occupancy will be limited.

Restrooms

  • Proper hand-washing techniques will be taught to all students and consistently reinforced.
  • Efforts will be made to limit the availability of toilets, urinals and sinks to certain times to comply with health agency recommendations and social distancing.
  • The scheduling of whole class restroom breaks is recommended to eliminate co-mingling of students across various classes and to ensure teacher monitoring of social distancing guidelines.
  • A campus system will be implemented to identify the number of occupants utilizing each restroom to mitigate the chance of exceeding maximum occupants per social distancing.
  • After a restroom break, students will be required to use hand sanitizer before re-entering the classroom.

Transitions

  • Where possible, one-way traffic throughout campus corridors will be established. 
  • Walking pathways throughout the building will be designated “stay to the right.” This includes the entrance and exit doors.
  • When possible, it is recommended that students make transitions outside of the building.
  • Life School has weighed the feasibility of keeping students in the same classroom all day, along with many other strategies being considered or implemented in various school systems. Life School  is currently planning the master schedule for campuses, which directly impacts the movement of students and teachers. At the elementary level, it may be possible for specialized content teachers to move to students. This is not feasible in circumstances that require specialized classroom equipment or instructional settings.

Arrival

  • Life School is continuing to monitor health and safety practices and will update arrival protocols.  
  • Early bird arrivals are strongly discouraged. Any students dropped off before the building is open will not be allowed inside the building. Any exceptions would need to be specifically arranged with campus administration.
  • Where possible, separate entrances will be utilized for car riders, walkers and daycares to encourage social distancing.
  • All staff will be utilized for duty to maintain a line of sight in hallways and distancing of hallway cohorts.
  • Lockers will not be assigned - students will carry all needed materials and lunch with them.
  • Parents will not be allowed to walk students to classrooms.

Dismissal

  • Life School is continuing to monitor health and safety practices and will update dismissal protocols.  
  • Where possible, separate entrances will be utilized for car riders, walkers and daycares.

Cafeteria

  • Depending on the number of students in the school, students may have meals in both the cafeteria and in classrooms. Cafeteria capacity will be based on current guidelines.

Recess

  • Campuses will consider limiting the number of students per recess group. Staggered schedules can be utilized when needed.  
  • All students and staff will be required to use alcohol-based hand sanitizer before entering the playground and upon exiting the playground.
  • Brain breaks will be implemented as needed, at the discretion of the campus/teacher.
  • “Mask breaks” will be implemented as needed.

Specials

  • PE classes will be conducted outdoors whenever possible. Appropriate social distancing measures will be followed.
  • Students will use their own art supplies.
  • Music and PE equipment will be sanitized and wiped down after each use.
  • Having specials in the classroom or outdoors is recommended.

On and Off-Campus Student Activities

  • Off-campus field trips will be scheduled as appropriate to meet curricular needs while maintaining proper social distancing requirements. Virtual field trips will be considered as often as possible.
  • School-wide events will be live streamed and/or occur virtually when possible.
  • Small group meetings will be conducted virtually when possible. If conducted in person, social distancing guidelines will be followed and masks will be worn.

Campus Events

  • No in-person assemblies will be held in the fall.
  • Meet the teacher, open house, parent conferences, etc. will be held virtually.

Elementary Remote Learning Information

Terms to Know

  • Asynchronous
    • Not happening in a LIVE digital setting (Instruction and materials are provided in advance and assignments are given with a timeframe for completion.)
  • Synchronous
    • Happening in a LIVE digital setting (Instruction, discussion, and/or assessments or assignments are conducted in a “real-time” virtual environment.)
  • Learning Platform/Learning Management System (LMS)
    • Digital medium by which students can access instruction and assignments and through which they may submit their work (such as Google Classroom, FlipGrid, etc.)

Role of Stakeholders within Remote Learning

Student

 Parent/Guardian

Ready to LEARN

  • Distraction free learning environment. (Global Perspective)
  • Follow the designated schedule communicated by the teacher and know when assignments are due. (Information Literacy)

Ready to LEAD

  • Be responsible for participation in the lesson. (Collaborative)
  • Be responsible for your work and demonstrate appropriate behavior. (Ethical Leadership)

Ready for LIFE

  • Students should take responsibility for their learning and ask for help when needed. (Self-Managed)
  • Be present and complete assigned activities on time. (Citizenship, Goal-Oriented)
  • Participate in learning through live class time using proper etiquette. (Citizenship, Self-Aware)

Ready to LEARN

  • Parent(s)/Guardian(s) will support student’s learning and advocate for help when needed. (Information Literacy)
  • Assist in creating a designated learning space for your student at home to learn with minimal distractions. (Critical Thinking)

Ready to LEAD

  • Ensure that your student is an active participant in their learning. (Collaborative)
  • Maintain communication with your child’s teacher by phone, email messages, and/or online meetings to create a learning partnership. (Effective Communicator)

Ready for LIFE

  • Ensure your student is on track with assignments and coursework and help them manage their schedule. (Citizenship)
  • Support your student in the participation of learning by advocating for proper etiquette. (Citizenship, Self-Aware)
  • Help your child own their learning. Provide support and encouragement, and expect your children to do their part. Struggling is allowed and encouraged! Don’t help too much. Becoming independent takes lots of practice. (Self-Managed, Self-Aware, Resilient)

Expectations

Activities are designed to ensure that students continue learning at the pace of the current Life School scope and sequence as well as develop a love of learning and gain the reading, writing, and mathematics skills essential to their future success.

ARD/IEP committees will determine the unique needs of students who are IEP-entitled in making support and service recommendations for students attending school virtually. The nature of special education interventions may require a heavier concentration of synchronous supports and services to ensure individual student needs are met. 

Life School expectations for synchronous learning

  • Students attend class on time.
  • Students will dress appropriately (Life School shirt recommended).
  • Students are ready to learn
  • Students should have a designated, distraction-free workspace to engage in learning.
  • Students will show their face on the screen as requested by the teacher.

Life School expectations for asynchronous learning

  • Complete asynchronous activities assigned each day.
  • Students show proof of participation in daily virtual learning by completing assignments and/or interacting with their teacher using the designated learning platform.
  • Communicate with the teacher when needing additional assistance.

Instructional Delivery

The goal for remote learning is to allow for continued instruction while acknowledging the additional challenges that come without traditional, face-to-face classroom learning. Life School is aware of and understands the difficulties faced by students and families and assures families that educational decisions are built to support all populations of students.

Grades K-2 Expectations

  • Instruction for K through 2nd grade appropriately focuses on student progress on standards and continuation of learning based off of standards based grading. Students may receive instruction in the following ways (included, but not limited to):
    • Authentic student work/assignments with timely and relevant feedback for continued progress in learning of the standard;
    • Hands-on activities which may need an extra pair of at “home” hands;
    • Choice boards;
    • Google classroom tasks and turning in of assignments;
    • Video lessons.

Grades 3-6 Expectations

  • Instruction for grades 3-6 appropriately focuses on student progress on standards and the continuation of learning. Students may receive instruction in the following ways (included, but not limited to):
    • Authentic student work/assignments with timely and relevant feedback for continued progress in learning of the standard;
    • Hands-on activities;
    • Choice boards;
    • Turning in of assignments;
    • Assessments;
    • Video lessons;
    • Project based learning/assignments;
    • Google classroom assignments.

Schedule

While in remote learning, time management is critical to success. Students and teachers must remain in communication regarding daily schedules and assignments (refer to the Life School handbook for grading policies). As with any face-to-face course, there is a risk of receiving a lower grade if a student falls behind. At Life School, student success is our top priority. If your student needs additional support, please contact their teacher for assistance.

In order to provide students with a meaningful learning experience, teachers will structure the remote instructional day to follow the Life School Elementary Daily Instructional Minute Schedule. Within each content instructional block, teachers will plan for students to participate in synchronous and asynchronous learning depending on the identified learning model. Teachers may structure small group time to differentiate instruction within the instructional block. This will require teachers to set up small group instruction schedules for students. It will be vital for teachers and parents to openly communicate the schedules for the students.

For students who have an IEP, progress will be carefully monitored and ARD/IEP Committees will convene and make appropriate recommendations to meet individual student needs to ensure continued growth in the general education curriculum and on IEP goals and objectives.

Sample Elementary Schedule

Time

Subject 

Daily Check In

7:55-8:25

Reading/Writing/Phonics or Word Study

8:30-10:00

Math

10:00-11:30

Lunch

11:30-12:00

Recess

12:00-12:30

Science

12:30-1:15

Social Studies

1:15-1:45

Specials

1:45-2:15

Intervention/Enrichment

2:15-2:45

End of Day Review/Dismiss

2:45-3:00

TRANSLATE

Dr. Brent Wilson - President
Sharon Williams - Secretary
Christopher Clemmons - Treasurer
Dr. Sharon Lee - Board Member
Ruben Martinez - Board Member
Chris Ransbottom - Board Member

LIFE SCHOOL (HOME)

132 East Ovilla Road, Suite A,
Red Oak, TX  75154
P: (469) 850-LIFE(5433)
F: (469)850-5434

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