Checklists, Tools and Tactics for COVID-Free Classrooms
Most everyone is understandably concerned about sending children back to school – including the school administrators, teachers and staff responsible for creating a safe learning environment.
While we cannot completely eliminate coronavirus risk, we do have proven, highly effective ways to reduce the chance of viral spread.
Create a school reopening checklist
Or use one we’ve already created: Protecting What Matters Most. It’s a comprehensive guide that details best practices, key to-do’s and essential products to keep classrooms as coronavirus-free as possible.
Plan ahead, and stock up on essential supplies while they are available. Supplies can be here today, gone tomorrow. This is why safety experts recommend buying when items are available. Conney Safety has a complete line of ready-to-ship COVID-protection supplies, including facemasks, disinfectants, social distancing supplies, digital thermometers and much more.
Cohorting (or podding) is a strategy many schools are using to limit viral transmission among students and staff.Here’s how it works:
- Assign each student to small group, or cohort. By reducing physical proximity amongst larger groups, cohort groups may help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Cohorts also facilitate more efficient contact tracing in the event of a positive case.
- Create a cohort logistics layout: Schools may keep cohorts together in one classroom, with teachers rotate between rooms. Or, you can assign each cohort a specific day or week to attend class in person.
- Another alternative is a hybrid approach. This is an alternating schedule in which cohorts are assigned either to in-person learning or online learning on specific days or weeks.
Reassure, educate and motivate students in simple, everyday ways.
Here are some ideas:
- Remind students they are safe, and that it’s okay to be worried or upset. Keep in mind that children react to what you say and how you say it.
- Use classroom lessons and experiments to help students understand coronavirus. Create an interactive lesson on handwashing technique. Conduct a science experiment that shows how supposedly clean hands are not always germ-free.
- Put up educational and motivational posters in bathrooms, classroom and hallways. The CDC has free poster PDFs you can download and print. Topics include handwashing, classroom hygiene, and more.
- Reward positive behavior. Hand out incentives like “I washed my hands” stickers, vending machine passes or whatever is low- or no-cost yet meaningful to students.
- Teach children the simple, everyday actions they can do to protect themselves against the coronavirus, like how to properly take off a facemask, what six feet of social distance looks like, and how to open doors without using hands.
- Create a COVID fact or fiction question of the day. Keep it truthful and age-appropriate. Talk about how some stories on the Internet and social media may be rumors or inaccurate.
Reach out – you’re not in this alone.
There are professional safety experts with years of experience who are ready to help you reduce viral risks with proven, highly effective tactics. They can provide you with custom coronavirus prevention training, a blueprint for health screening stations, an outbreak response plan and much more. Reach out today, and a Conney Safety school safety expert we will contact you at your preferred day and time.