As school administration, students and parents begin to make their way back to in person learning, many now that the new normal will come with a lot of patience, safety and cleanliness.
Possible Safety Measures should be taken to prevent the coronavirus from spreading. As administration takes steps to start reopening schools, many questions still linger for parents and teachers:
“How safe is School?”
“Should we send our children back to school?”
Here are some steps that administrators, teachers and parents can take to ensure the safety of everyone.
Personal hygiene is an important measure to improve everyone’s health and wellbeing. Here are a few helpful hints/tips on how to keep and improve personal hygiene in the classroom.
Teach the child to wear a mask
All adults and children should wear face masks completely covering the nose and mouth to help stop the spread of the deadly virus. It is important to teach them not to take their masks off unless it is necessary. Pack an extra mask for a child in case it gets damaged or lost.
Teach them health and hand hygiene
Washing hands properly often limits the risk of getting sick by touching a contaminated surface and then spreading the virus to the eyes, nose, face, or mouth. Washing hands with water and soap for 20-30 seconds is the best way to prevent the coronavirus. If soap is not available, get your child some disposable paper soap to keep with them.
Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer
If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 70% alcohol.
Increase desk spacing and physical distancing
It is important to maintain a distance of at least 1 meter between everyone at school. The mixing of classes for school and after-school activities should be kept limited. Advise against crowding during school and avoid pick-up by older family members if possible. Using symbols like ground markings, barriers, tapes, or other means to maintain a safe distance in queues.
Daily cleaning and disinfecting
Proper disinfecting and sanitizing guidelines should be followed by schools. Children and staff should be encouraged to wash hands properly with soap and water regularly or use hand sanitizer. School management should ensure all restrooms, other areas in the campus, and classrooms are properly disinfected on a regular basis.
Maintain the cleanliness and sanitation in classrooms
Follow the directions to store and use cleaning and disinfecting products. Don’t keep them near students and prevent children from inhaling the toxic vapor. Clean objects and surfaces by using detergents or soap. Use of the disinfectants can further lower the risk of spreading infection. Plan a schedule for routine cleaning with teachers and staff.
Monitor children, teachers and staff each day for signs
Check in on their health and if they are not feeling well they must stay home. Encourage them to communicate how they’re feeling. It is good to take their temperature daily. Monitor them for the following possible symptoms.
COVID-19 symptoms can include:
- Shortness of breath
- Body aches
- Loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
Remember to take your child to their wellness exams. Always keep in touch with their doctor.
Be aware of fake information
It is incredibly important to educate everyone on the facts and myths about COVID-19 circulating around feeding fear and stigma. Help them understand COVID-19, how it spreads and how we can protect ourselves and others. This is a crucial step in establishing classroom procedures and protocols.
Stay home if sick
Teachers should enforce safety guidelines and remind students to follow health and safety guidelines. Teach them to consult with a doctor promptly if feeling unwell and check their body temperature before going to school. If you are not sure, do not go to school to prevent others from getting infected.
Don’t forget vaccinations
Visit their doctor for routine checkups and flu shots. Stay up-to-date on immunizations, including the flu vaccine. The first line of defense is getting vaccinated to help slow down the virus’s spread. Other safety measures are staying home and staying self-isolated if sick, washing hands, covering coughs and sneezes, avoiding touching eyes, nose, and mouth.
Additional school health and safety tips:
Follow latest safety protocols
- Increase Airflow
- Regular temperature checks and testing
- Keep in Touch with their pediatrician
- Online Learning
With many institutes offering the ease of online learning, you may decide to put your kids in 100% online classes.
The safety of your children and their peers depends on what safe practices you’ve taught them.
Parents and Teachers should work together to provide the community with the means necessary to have a safe and healthy learning environment.
In the new normal, remember that the health and safety of yourself and others is a priority.
Learn more cleanliness on how to maintain cleanliness and sanitation in the classroom: Cleaning, Disinfection, and Hand Hygiene in Schools – a Toolkit for School Administrators