COVID and CCS

  • COVID HANDBOOK—Our COVID handbook, describing health and safety procedures, is publicly available. Note that this document is expected to be under continuous revision throughout the year. Enrolled families and staff will be notified of all changes immediately. Primary points for health and safety include:
    • We will hire a school-day custodian to help comply with cleaning and sanitizing guidelines, including frequent disinfecting of high-risk surfaces (sinks, toilets, doorknobs, etc.), and sanitizing shared spaces.
    • Classrooms will function as “pods,” with no physical contact between children or staff of different classrooms during the school day. Number of households in a given pod will be limited to no more than 22.
    • Non-essential adults will not be allowed to enter the building. In most cases this includes parents and other family members.
    • Drop-off and pick-up will occur outside the school.
    • All people (adults and children) entering the building will be required to have a health check each day, including having their temperature taken.
    • All adults will be required to wear masks at all times at school. Children over the age of 2 will be highly encouraged to wear masks at all times, with the exception of rest and meal times.
    • Children will spend as much time outdoors as possible, since the most recent science indicates viral transmission is much lower outdoors. For older kids this will mean frequent field trips; younger kids will spend as much time in the yard as possible.
    • Shared spaces (such as the common room and yard) and materials will be sanitized according to CDC guidelines.
    • At nap and rest time, children will be spaced a minimum of 6 feet apart. At meal times children will be spaced as far apart as our physical space will allow.
    • We have clear policies, in compliance with CDC guidelines, on our response to COVID exposure, including isolating children or adults with symptoms, and shutting down classrooms or the whole school as appropriate.
    • We will cancel some program offerings beyond our preschool program. For instance, we have cancelled summer camp 2020, though we hope to bring it back in 2021. We will not offer vacation care in 2020-21, since it would necessarily involve mixing pods at school; we are working on ways to support families in finding other care on days we are closed.
    • We will institute extra staff training as needed in order to make sure all staff understand and are able to comply with all health and safety policies.
  • CLOSING AND RE-OPENING—CCS closed on March 16. We are open for the 2020-21 school year as of August 31, 2020. See our Reopening Rubric for information on our decision of when and how to re-open (as well as, potentially, re-close when necessary). During temporary closures we will offer at-home curriculum and communications.
  • ENROLLING FOR FALL—Yes, we are currently accepting mid-year enrollment for fall 2020. Apply here!

7/16/20

Testimonial for distance learning:

“I want to give huge props to [the Magnolia teachers] for the work they did when CCS moved online. A friend of mine has a daughter who is the same age as ___, and her preschool teachers were great in person, but when they moved online the curriculum was pretty much the same except over Zoom in a big group session where the kids were muted. My friend’s daughter was not engaged and ended up not really attending any of them.

In contrast, I’m not exaggerating when I say that the work the Magnolia teachers did could win a national award (Are there any awards like this? I would nominate them in a heartbeat). Every weekday we received thorough emails with activity ideas and videos from the teachers. They set up three different types of video chats each week – big group, small group and individual. I only got to witness a few of the small group sessions but when I did, the teachers were full of joy and play interacting with the children. They would play games that made sense via Zoom, like the kids hiding from the video camera. One time ___ was feeling shy or sad so she was mostly just watching and sucking her thumb. I heard Teacher Patricia say something like, “If we were in the classroom right now, I think ___ would be in the Peace Corner. Is that right, ___?” And ___ nodded.

The teachers coordinated the silk worm project which was a joy to participate in at home. They organized physical materials for a countdown chain. They put together beautiful share-and-tell videos every week. They created a special series of videos just for parents about self care, how to make a schedule, etc. They navigated the death of George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter movement online. They organized a beautiful, celebratory and safe in-person graduation ceremony complete with an obstacle course!

It was clear that the teachers poured their heart and souls into this care for the children and ___ definitely felt it. She missed her teachers greatly and knew that they loved her. All of these efforts helped her stay connected with her CCS experience and provided enrichment during a very challenging time.”

—a Magnolia class parent of a 5 year old; July 2020