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In-Person Instruction Plan

Independent School Plan for In-Person Instruction

K – 12 during the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency

Revised April 2021

 

Aaron is a private K-12 special education school whose mission is to serve students with learning disabilities in the areas of reading, writing, and math in addition to attention, sensory, and social challenges. 

 

Capacity:

In-school instruction will take place two consecutive days for every student with no more than 50% of the cohort present in the building.  The remainder of the cohort will attend class virtually every day they are not present in the building.  The school will be closed on Fridays for cleaning and disinfecting.  All students will attend school online. All students will be in the school building two consecutive days and three days online

 

Operational Activity:

  • For 80% of the day, students will remain in class with their cohort and teachers.
  • Therapists and other school staff will move to student cohorts or deliver services remotely.
  • For student break out groups, such as math, reading, and therapies, students will move under the supervision of a staff member to ensure appropriate social distancing. Some therapies will take place in the classroom; some will take place remotely.
  • Twenty-four teaching spaces will be used for instruction. 
  • Students will not share any supplies or books etc. 
  • Librarian, art, music, subject matter, and technology teachers will push into cohorts.  Cohorts will participate in PE in the gymnasium working on individual physical skills. 
  • Cohorts will eat lunch in classrooms while maintaining the social distance policy.  
  • Outside field trips will be suspended and take place virtually.  
  • All school social events have been canceled until further notice.
  • The campus will be closed to individuals who are not students, teachers, administration, staff therapists, and administration support.  Parents will drop off and pick up students outside of the building.
  • Deliveries will be met at the door by our building manager.  
  • Parents and visitors will not be permitted into the building.  
  • All meetings, staff, parents, vendors, admissions, etc., will be held virtually. 
  • Classrooms will have webcams and external microphones to accommodate online learning.
  • All students and personnel will adhere to the floor markings. 
  • For students break out groups such as math and reading, staff will be available to direct students while they transition.
  • Six feet of distancing will be maintained between adults (teachers, staff) and between students and adults
  • Six feet of distancing will be maintained when eating or drinking or at other times when masks are removed. This includes meals in classrooms where distancing has been set at 3 feel.  
  • Six feet of distancing will be maintained during activities that require projecting the voice, i.e. singing.  
  • Mandatory face mask policy is in effect.

 

Restart operation:

  • The building will be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected (all desks, door handles, bathrooms, classrooms, and offices) before allowing students and staff to enter the building.
  • High touch items, books, manipulatives, etc.  will be covered and not in the reach of students.  
  • Floor markings, wall signs, and plexiglass dividers will be in place.

 

Hygiene, Cleaning, and Disinfection:

  • The school nurse will provide training on proper hygiene and PPE to all students, faculty, and staff.
    – How to properly store and discard PPE
    – How to report of symptoms and or exposure to COVID 19
  • The school will follow cleaning guidelines as outlined in the Guidance of Cleaning and Disinfecting of Public and Private facilities for COVID 19.
  • Faculty and staff will have disposable wipes to use on high touch services, i.e., keyboards, desks, mouse.
  • Hands-free sanitizer dispensers will be in all shared spaces and hallways and will be made available to students upon entry into the building.  
  • Hands-free soap dispensers and paper towels will be available in faculty, staff, and student restrooms.  Only one person will be allowed in the restroom at time. The school nurse will train and promote hand and respiratory hygiene for students, teachers, and staff.  The school nurse will train all faculty, staff, and students on how to put on, take off, and discard PPE adequately. 
  • The building will be cleaned and disinfected throughout the day, in the evenings, and every Friday.Signs will be posted throughout the building, explaining:– Proper hand sanitizing and hygiene
    – The usage of face masks
    – Social distancing
    – Remaining home if sick

 

The facility manager will maintain logs that include the date, time, and scope of cleaning and disinfection, as well as identify cleaning and disinfection frequency for each facility and area type and assign responsibility to staff.

 

Mandatory PPE and Face Coverings: 

  • Students, faculty, and staff will be required to wear face masks in all shared spaces and hallways except for when eating or drinking.
  • Student and teacher desks will be outfitted with Plexiglas.
  • Face masks and Plexiglas for desks will ensure safety.
  • Teachers and staff will have full face shields available.
  • The school will have a supply of face masks, disposable Nitrile Gloves, Disposable Gowns, Eye Protection, Face Shields, alcohol wipes, and N-95 Ventilating Masks available to faculty, staff, and students.
  • The school used the calculation tool from the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to determine the number of PPE and face coverings required.

 

Positive Screen Protocols:

Health screenings, including temperature checks, of students, faculty, staff, and, where applicable, contractors, vendors, and visitors to identify any individuals who may have COVID-19 or who may have been exposed to the COVID-19 virus will be conducted before entry to the building.

If an individual presents a temperature of greater than 100.0°F, the individual must be denied entry into the facility or sent directly to a dedicated area before being picked up or otherwise sent home. A daily screening questionnaire will be required for faculty and staff reporting to school, and periodically a questionnaire will be used for students.

If a member of the community tests positive, in order to return to the learning environment, the individual must provide documentation from a health care provider evaluation. The member will also need to present upon reentry into the building:

  • Negative COVID 19 testing
  • Symptom resolution including remaining fever free form 48 hours
  • A health care provider documentation from a health care provider

 

In addition, if a member of the community is sent home due to a temperature of 100.0 or higher will be required to supply the school with a health care provider evaluation, a negative COVID test, symptom resolution, including being temperature free for 48 hours, before reentry. The school nurse will be responsible for obtaining, reporting, and maintaining this information.

The school nurse will notify the state and local health department immediately upon being informed of any positive COVID 19 diagnostic test results by an individual in the school community, including students, faculty, and staff.

 

Contact Tracing:

The responsible party and the school nurse will immediately notify the state and local health departments of any positive cases and then follow directions as given by the state and local health department.

  • The school nurse will maintain metrics to determine if COVID-19 cases are increasing beyond an acceptable level, as established by state and local health departments. 
  • Daily recording of all critical data through the use of a spreadsheet will track information to help determine steps that need to be taken as established by state and local health departments.
  • The data gathered will include the number of individuals sent home due to a temperature of 100.0 or over, the number of individuals who test positive for the virus, and the necessary documentation received for building reentry.    
  • The tracking will be done for the entire school, student cohort, and faculty and staff.

 

Extracurricular:

All extracurricular has been canceled.

 

Before and Aftercare:

Before and after school, care is not available.

 

Vulnerable Populations:

Services addressing our students’ needs are built into the program and are part of each day. These services will continue both in the in-school learning environment and the online learning environment. Services include required remediation in all subject areas, all related services, and any necessary accommodations or modifications to instruction to meet individual learning needs

  • The vulnerable student population will be permitted to attend school, virtually 100% of the time. 
  • Clear facemasks will be used for speech and language delivery and individuals with hearing impairments.
  • All faculty and staff will have available clear facemasks.

 

Transportation:

The school does not provide transportation.  Transportation for our student population is the responsibility of the DOE as outlined in the student’s IEP.

The school will reinforce with students the use of masks and social distancing while on the bus.

 

Food Service:

  • Students will bring lunch, snacks, and water from home.
  • Students will be required to sanitize their hands before and after eating. 
  • All students will eat in their cohort, at their desk, while maintaining the social distance policy.  
  • Sharing of food and beverages will be discouraged.    

 

Ventilation:

All classroom doors and windows will remain open throughout the day while students and staff are in the building.  

 

Mental Health:

Trauma Informed Group  

Facilitated by:  Counseling Department

Our clinical team has put a trauma plan into place to address any difficulties students may present upon reentering the school.  

 

Grades 8 -12

Based on the current climate of the world due to COVID-19, and the pervasive social injustice that continues to play a role on the social/emotional development of adolescents, all students at Aaron School will participate in this grade-based group one time per week. Using the Dialectical Behavior Therapy Steps-A curriculum, the primary goal of this group will be to help students manage emotionally charged and/or traumatic situations, better cope with stress, and use effective problem-solving skills when needing to make decisions. Based on the core of this curriculum, students will learn about skills in mindfulness, distress tolerance, emotion regulation, and interpersonal effectiveness.  This group will be teacher led, and there will be time allotted during each session for peer discussion and questions. 

 

Grades k-7

Based on the current climate of the world due to COVID-19, and the pervasive social injustice that continues to play a role on the social/emotional development, all students at Aaron School will participate in group social skills/peer group classes one time per week. The primary goal of this group will be to help students manage emotionally charged and/or traumatic situations, better cope with stress, and use effective problem-solving skills when needing to make decisions. Based on the core of this curriculum, students will learn about skills in mindfulness, distress tolerance, emotion regulation, and interpersonal effectiveness.  This group will be counselor led and there will be time allotted during each session for peer discussion and questions. Additionally, the counseling staff will assess each child in September to identify those students in particular need of additional counseling support. Students will follow their allotted counseling sessions, and all students can receive additional counseling support as necessary. Counselors will be in touch directly with parents to provide effective resources and websites for information and support. Counselors will continue to work with students outside providers to ensure effective carry over into the school environment.

 

  • The school has ordered all materials to provide intervention. 
  • Our clinical team is also available to our staff if needed.

 

Communication Plans:

Before the opening of school, the school will communicate the following information to stakeholders: 

  • Plans for social distancing, proper hand and respiratory hygiene, and proper wearing face masks 
  • Clarification and elaboration of instructional formats, i.e., both in person, hybrid, and online
  • Communication will be handled through the use of already established email groups.  
  • The school uses the Honeywell Alert System for parent notification.  

The school will also communicate with families and staff, providing the following information:

  • How parents are to drop off and pick up students from school
  • Protocols for how parents or legal guardians should pick up their sick student with instructions that that their student must be seen by a  health care provider. 
  • Protocols for the faculty and staff to follow about the return to the building after being sick including a negative COVID test and documentation from a health care provider stating they can return to work
  • Protocols to be followed in the event the school needs to close due to a positive COVID test of a staff or student in the building.

Ongoing communication will be sent to families providing regular updates about health and safety, and other information families should be aware.  Families will be encouraged to direct questions, feedback, and concerns.

 

Screening Monitoring:

  • The school nurse is responsible for in-person screening.  The nurse will be provided with and required to use PPE, including mask, gown, gloves, and face shield. In the absence of the nurse, a school administrator will be responsible for all in-person screening and will wear all the necessary PPE.
  • All students, teachers, and staff will have temperature checks upon entering the building.  
  • A periodic COVID questionnaire will be sent to student families.
  • All faculty and staff will be required to hand in upon entry into the building each day the COVID questionnaire.
  • A designated area has been identified to hold students who present with a temperature of 100.0 or higher. Students will be supervised while in the designated area.  Parents will be contacted to pick up the student immediately.
  • Faculty and staff who develop a temperature or symptoms during the day will be immediately sent home and will be required to follow the COVID building reentry guidelines.
  • If one person in the community tests positive for COVID 19, the school building will close for 14 days and immediately go to our online learning plan.

 

Testing Protocols:

In the event diagnostic testing for students, faculty, or staff is required, the school will strictly follow the Department of Health protocols and not allow reentry of the person into the building until all protocols are met.

 

Testing Responsibility:

The school nurse will have available to families and staff testing information. i.e., health department testing sites, hospital systems, or physician offices.

 

Arrival and Dismissal

 

Arrival

  • Upon arrival, temperatures of students, faculty, and staff will be taken before entering the building.  Students and staff will be admitted into the building one at a time. The use of hand sanitizer is required upon entry to the building.
  • They will be no congregation of students upon entry.  Students will report directly to the classroom.
  • Students with a temperature of 100.00 or higher will be placed in a designated area, and parents will be called for immediate pickup.
  • Faculty and staff with a temperature of 100.00 or higher will be sent home.

Dismissal

  • Students will wait with their cohort for dismissal and their bus we will call one bus at a time for either bus; personal pickup will be called one at a tine.  Parents will not be permitted in the building.  Student pickup will be outside the building.
  • Staff will be stationed throughout the building to ensure that social distancing is maintained.

 

School Closure:

In the event, the school is required to close due to:

A confirmed COVID case in the building will result in the closure of the building for the 14 day quarantine period.  

  • The school will immediately move to our online Virtual Learning Plan. 
  • The school will survey students concerning technology availability outside of the building.
  • The school will supply technology to students where needed.
  • Closure plans will be communicated to all stakeholders via email and the Honeywell Alert System. The communication will come directly from the Executive Director or appropriate school Principal.
  • The plan will outline the reason for the closure, and all relevant student materials needed to participate in the Virtual Learning Platform.

 

Emergency Drills: Fire and Lockdown

The school will continue to conduct emergency drills to the best of our ability without deviating from current requirements.

 

Fire Code Compliance:

The school will not be making any changes to the physical facilities.

 

Students with Food Allergies:

Students will be eating lunch at their desks with their cohort. Student desks will be cleaned before and after lunch. Additionally, students will be required to wash their hands and/or use sanitizer gel several times a day and specifically before and after eating snacks and lunch. Students will bring their snacks and lunch from home and will be required to eat at their desks behind the Plexiglass dividers. Students will be required to wear masks after eating. Each student will put their containers back into their backpacks, which will be next to them at their desk. They will be provided an opportunity to throw away their trash and will be called upon to do so to ensure that there is one person at the trash can at a time. As usual, classrooms are designated specific allergen-free for any student with that allergy. For example, if a child is allergic to nuts, then the classroom is deemed nut-free. If an allergy cannot be managed in this way we will find a separate location for the student to eat.

 

Attendance:

  • The school will collect and report daily student attendance, regardless of the instructional setting. *
  • The school has a plan for communication with parents or guardians regarding student attendance.

 

*To ensure student participation in live virtual classes, attendance is taken every class period via an online platform. Student attendance is documented by teachers and related service instructors after each Google Meet and is monitored daily by administration.  The administrative assistant also utilizes this information to update student attendance documents. Parents are contacted should a student neglect to participate in a Google Meet.  Student participation and work production is monitored on a daily basis, and assignments are graded.  In addition, the parents/guardians of students who did not initially log in for Google Meet classes were identified and contacted to troubleshoot any difficulties.

 

20-21 Virtual Learning Plan Hybrid 

Should the school implement a blended learning model students in school will participate in class students at home will participate live classes using webcams using the Google Platform.

 

Grades K – 7

20-21 Online Program Description Grade K

Aaron School adapted the regular full day program to accommodate both in person and online remote instruction. The school day will be from 8:15-2:35 pm and students will follow their regular school schedule. The school will have a blended approach whereby students will attend school in person for two days and three days virtually, thereby using Fridays as a school cleaning day while students learn remotely. Google Meet will continue to be utilized and material will be presented through multimedia resources such as video conferencing, chat, SMART Notebook, PowerPoint, Google Docs, etc. Academic periods will be structured to include 30 minutes of online instruction. If students are having difficulty following this schedule, it will be adapted to 15-minute instructional periods followed by 15 minutes of independent work offline. Students will receive reading and math instruction daily in a small group setting. Students will receive social studies and/or science three times a week, language arts once a week, handwriting four times a week, circle time five times a week, read aloud once a week, and choice time four times a week. There will be daily opportunities for social time through independent preferred activities. Students also receive a push-in yoga class once a week taught by the occupational therapist. In addition, library and music classes take place three times week for 30 minutes, gym classes take place daily for 30 minutes, art classes take place twice a week for 30 minutes, and technology class takes place once a week for 30 minutes. Therapies will be delivered in full group instruction as well as individual and dyad sessions per the regular schedule. Aaron School will continue to accommodate student needs for the in person and online program as necessary.

 

20-21 Online Program Description Grade  1

Aaron School adapted the regular full day program to accommodate both in person and online remote instruction. The school day will be from 8:15-2:35 pm and students will follow their regular school schedule. The school will have a blended approach whereby students will attend school in person for two days and three days virtually, thereby using Fridays as a school cleaning day while students learn remotely. Google Meet will continue to be utilized and material will be presented through multimedia resources such as video conferencing, chat, SMART Notebook, PowerPoint, Google Docs, etc. Academic periods will be structured to include 30 minutes of online instruction. If students are having difficulty following this schedule, it will be adapted to 15-minute instructional periods followed by 15 minutes of independent work offline. Students will receive reading and math instruction daily in a small group setting. Students will receive social studies and/or science three times a week, language arts and writing once a week, handwriting twice a week, and choice time five times a week. There will be daily opportunities for social time through independent preferred activities. Students also receive a push-in yoga class once a week taught by the occupational therapist. In addition, library and music classes take place three times week for 30 minutes, gym classes take place daily for 30 minutes, art classes take place three times a week for 30 minutes, and technology class takes place once a week for 30 minutes. Therapies will be delivered in full group instruction as well as individual and dyad sessions per the regular schedule. Aaron School will continue to accommodate student needs for the in person and online program as necessary.

 

20-21 Online Program Description Grade 2

Aaron School adapted the regular full day program to accommodate both in person and online remote instruction. The school day will be from 8:15-2:35 pm and students will follow their regular school schedule. The school will have a blended approach whereby students will attend school in person for two days and three days virtually, thereby using Fridays as a school cleaning day while students learn remotely. Google Meet will continue to be utilized and material will be presented through multimedia resources such as video conferencing, chat, SMART Notebook, PowerPoint, Google Docs, etc. Academic periods will be structured to include 30 minutes of online instruction. Students will receive reading and math instruction daily in a small group setting. Students will receive social studies, science, and handwriting two times a week, language arts, writing, and journal time once a week, and choice time five times a week. There will be daily opportunities for social time through independent preferred activities. In addition, library classes take place four times week for 30 minutes, art and music classes take place three times a week for 30 minutes, gym classes take place daily for 30 minutes, and technology class takes place once a week for 30 minutes. Therapies will be delivered in full group instruction as well as individual and dyad sessions per the regular schedule. Aaron School will continue to accommodate student needs for the in person and online program as necessary.

 

20-21 Online Program Description Grade 3

Aaron School adapted the regular full day program to accommodate both in person and online remote instruction. The school day will be from 8:15-2:35 pm and students will follow their regular school schedule. The school will have a blended approach whereby students will attend school in person for two days and three days virtually, thereby using Fridays as a school cleaning day while students learn remotely. Google Meet will continue to be utilized and material will be presented through multimedia resources such as video conferencing, chat, SMART Notebook, PowerPoint, Google Docs, etc. Academic periods will be structured to include 30 or 45 minutes of online instruction. Students will receive reading and math instruction daily in a small group setting. Students will receive social studies, science, language arts, and writing two times a week, handwriting three times a week, journal time once a week, and choice time three times a week. There will be daily opportunities for social time through independent preferred activities. In addition, library classes take place three times week, twice for 30 minutes and once for 45 minutes, music classes take place three times a week for 30 minutes and once for 45 minutes, art classes take place three times a week, twice for 30 minutes and once for 45 minutes, gym classes take place three times a week, once for 30 minutes and twice for 45 minutes, and technology class takes place once a week for 45 minutes. Therapies will be delivered in full group instruction as well as individual and dyad sessions per the regular schedule. Aaron School will continue to accommodate student needs for the in person and online program as necessary.

 

20-21 Online Program Description REDWOOD 4

Aaron School adapted the regular full day program to accommodate both in person and online remote instruction. The school day will be from 8:15-2:35 pm and students will follow their regular school schedule. The school will have a blended approach whereby students will attend school in person for two days and three days virtually, thereby using Fridays as a school cleaning day while students learn remotely. Google Meet will continue to be utilized and material will be presented through multimedia resources such as video conferencing, chat, SMART Notebook, PowerPoint, Google Docs, etc. Academic periods will be structured to include 30 or 45 minutes of online instruction. Students will receive reading and math instruction daily in a small group setting. Students will receive social studies, science, language arts, and writing two times a week, handwriting two times a week, journal time once a week, and choice time four times a week. Student also receive a push-in “Zones of Regulation” class, taught by the occupational therapist. There will be daily opportunities for social time through independent preferred activities. In addition, library classes take place four times week, three times for 30 minutes and once for 45 minutes, music classes take place twice a week, once for 30 minutes and once for 45 minutes, art classes take place twice a week, once for 30 minutes and once for 45 minutes, gym classes take place three times a week, once for 30 minutes and twice for 45 minutes, and technology class takes place once a week for 45 minutes. Therapies will be delivered in full group instruction as well as individual and dyad sessions per the regular schedule. Aaron School will continue to accommodate student needs for the in person and online program as necessary.

 

20-21 Online Program Description 5

Aaron School adapted the regular full day program to accommodate both in person and online remote instruction. The school day will be from 8:15-2:35pm and students will follow their regular school schedule. The school will have a blended approach whereby students will attend school in person for two days and three days by remote thereby using Fridays as a school cleaning day while students learn remotely. Google Meet will continue to be utilized and material will be presented through multimedia resources such as video conferencing, chat, SMART Notebook, PowerPoint, Google Docs, Google Slides, Google Calendar, etc. Academic periods will be structured to include 30 and 45 minutes of online instruction. Students will receive reading and math instruction daily in a small group setting for 45 minutes. Students will receive science, social studies, and writing, each two times a week, once for a 30-minute period and once for a 45-minute period. The class will have handwriting 2-3 times a week for 15-minute periods and language arts once a week for 45 minutes. Students will participate in additional periods such as Student Advisory, journal, and DEAR (Drop Everything And Read), along with being provided periods to make up work. There will be daily opportunities for social time through independent preferred activities. In addition, students will receive technology once a week for 45 minutes and gym three times a week, twice for 45-minute periods and once for a 30-minute period. The class will have art, music, and library each two times a week, once for a 30-minute period and once for a 45-minute period. Therapies will be delivered in full group instruction as well as individual and dyad sessions per the regular schedule. Aaron School will continue to accommodate student needs for the in person and online program as necessary.

 

20-21 Online Program Description 6-7

Aaron School adapted the regular full day program to accommodate both in person and online remote instruction. The school day will be from 8:15-2:35pm and students will follow their regular school schedule. The school will have a blended approach whereby students will attend school in person for two days and three days by remote thereby using Fridays as a school cleaning day while students learn remotely. Google Meet will continue to be utilized and material will be presented through multimedia resources such as video conferencing, chat, SMART Notebook, PowerPoint, Google Docs, Google Slides, Google Calendar, etc. Academic periods will be structured to include 45 minutes of online instruction. Students will receive English Language Arts (ELA) and math instruction daily in a small group setting for 45 minutes. Students will receive science and social studies three times a week for 45 minutes, and writing twice a week for 45 minutes. The class will have Health and Human Development (HHD) once a week for 45 minutes. Students will participate in additional periods such as Student Advisory, journal, public speaking, and DEAR (Drop Everything And Read), along with being provided periods to make up work. There will be daily opportunities for social time through independent preferred activities. In addition, students will receive gym, art, music, and technology each once a week for 45 minutes. Therapies will be held once a week as 30- or 45-minute whole group instruction classes in the form of Study Skills, Writing Lab, and Peer Group, in addition to Alliance and Mindfulness/Yoga. Students receive individual Connection Time sessions once a week for 30 minutes with a counselor or speech-language pathologist. Aaron School will continue to accommodate student needs for the in person and online program as necessary.

 

Grades 8 – 12

Students have an asynchronous, independent preparation period at the start of each day, followed by six synchronous, live class periods per day.  Teachers, Speech-Language Pathologists, Counselors, and the Transition and Guidance Coordinator are conducting live, virtual classes daily via Google Meet.  The virtual instructional schedule reflects each student’s course load of core academics, social development courses, and specialty area classes (i.e., PE, Health, Art).  Virtual classes facilitate synchronous instruction during which teachers are providing direct instruction in real-time.  All virtual classes allow for two-way audio communication and visual presentation.  Lessons involve a multi-modal approach to instruction (i.e., discussion, interactive activities, video learning, guided practice).  While participating in Google Meet classes, students can access all instructional materials in their Aaron School Google Drive account, through which they work simultaneously with instructors, receive learning support, submit work, and receive feedback.  Students will have seven instructional periods a day.

 

Assistant Teachers are supporting virtual classes in accordance with their typical daily schedules, providing support to both students and teachers.  Assistant Teachers have access to all Google documents associated with a class, allowing them to monitor student progress with assignments, and provide learning support and feedback accordingly.  Assistant Teachers also assist with the differentiation of class materials and monitoring of student participation.   

 

Technology 

Students and teachers used their own computers to deliver and engage in instruction. Teachers, therapists, and administrators were in close contact via email and phone with each family to evaluate and troubleshoot computer issues. The school provided loaner computers (Chromebooks and Dell) to those students/faculty who required a device to ensure 100% participation. Students logged onto their school Google Drive account to access and submit class assignments.