PCPS Adopts Safety Protocols for Health, Instruction and Activities

Mike Seals - July 30, 2020 10:30 pm

The Ponca City Public School Board of Education has adopted School Safety Protocols for Instruction, Health Protocols including Face Coverings, and Activities. Protocols are correlated with the Oklahoma COVID-19 Alert System, which provides new data regarding the county risk level of a 7-day rolling average of new cases of COVID-19. With weekly cases on the rise, this protocol was approved based on the current situation and is subject to change at any time. Please see the attached written protocol.

It is the goal of the District to keep students, staff, and community as safe as possible. The District also wants to mitigate the spread of the virus to keep students in the buildings for interactive learning. We want to avoid short, intermittent closure due to quarantine, avoid alternative schedules allowing for a minimum number of students in the buildings, and avoid going to full remote learning.

A major component of the Health Protocol portion is the use of face coverings. Face coverings are required for all students PreK-12, staff, and visitors. Frequent breaks from face coverings will be taken when distancing is possible at all grade levels; we understand our younger students will need even more frequent breaks. We also understand this is a new procedure, and we will approach it by educating our students as to why they are wearing the face covering and how to wear it as they are learning. Teachers will coordinate mask breaks throughout the day as long as social distancing requirements can be observed.

If students/parents would like to change from Learning Option 1 to Learning Options 2 or 3, or from Learning Options 2 or 3 back to Learning Option 1 due to this change, please refer to the make-up enrollment press release. It may be found at www.pcps.us, the Ponca City Public Schools Facebook page, or the PCPS App Notifications.

Plans almost certainly will change as the school year progresses, and the Board could make changes to decisions at any time as new information becomes available and the situation continues to evolve. Thank you for your patience, and we will continue to keep you informed regularly.

Ponca City Public Schools Safety Protocols Instruction, Health Protocols, and Activities:

This information is based on the current situation and is subject to change at any time. It is the goal of the District to keep our students, staff, and our community as safe as possible. We also want to mitigate the spread to keep our students in our buildings for interactive learning. We want to avoid short, intermittent closure to quarantine, avoid alternative schedules allowing for a minimum number of students in the buildings, and avoid going to full remote learning. Plans almost certainly will change as the school year progresses and the Board could make changes to decisions at any time as new information becomes available and this situation continues to evolve. Thank you for your patience, and we will continue to keep you informed regularly.

GREEN LEVEL: (Fewer than 1.43 cases per 100,000)

Instruction: PCPS will offer in-person, on-site instruction in accordance with the 2020-2021 Return to Learn Plan.
Health Protocol: PCPS will follow all applicable health orders and required protocols, and adhere to the 2020-2021 Return to Learn Plan.

Face Coverings: Face coverings are strongly recommended for all students and staff in buildings. Face coverings are required on buses and in site face covering zones. See face covering exemptions and accommodations.
Face Coverings in Special Education Classrooms: Teachers and staff in SPED classrooms are strongly recommended to wear protective face shields and/or face coverings. In addition, gloves and gowns are recommended for staff when providing services for medically vulnerable students.
Extracurricular Activities and Group Assemblies: PCPS will remain vigilant and plan with caution. Group gatherings, assemblies and spectators at indoor and outdoor events without PPE or social distancing can accelerate community transmission and a loss of GREEN LEVEL status.

YELLOW LEVEL: (1.43-14.38 cases per 100,000)

Instruction: PCPS will offer in-person, on-site instruction in accordance with the 2020-2021 Return to Learn Plan.
Health Protocol: PCPS will follow all applicable health orders and required protocols, and adhere to the 2020-2021 Return to Learn Plan.

Face Coverings: Face coverings are required for all staff and students PreK-12 in buildings and on buses, with exemptions for adults and children who are physically unable to wear them. See face covering exemptions and accommodations.
Frequent breaks from face coverings will be taken when distancing is possible at all grade levels; we understand our younger students will need even more frequent breaks. We also understand this is a new procedure, and we will it approach by educating our students as to why they are wearing the face covering and how to wear it as they are learning. Teachers will coordinate mask breaks throughout the day as long as social distancing requirements can be observed.
In addition, exemptions are allowed for the following: when eating meals, naptime, recess, and during physical education if social distancing is possible.
Adults are required to wear face coverings around other adults.
Face Coverings in Special Education Classrooms: Teachers and staff in SPED classrooms are required to wear protective face shields and/or face coverings. In addition, gloves and gowns are recommended for staff when providing services for medically vulnerable students.
Extracurricular Activities and Group Assemblies: PCPS will limit gatherings, assemblies, and spectators at indoor and outdoor events to decrease community transmission.

ORANGE LEVEL 1: (14.39 -24.99 cases per 100,000)

Instruction: PCPS will make determinations on in-person instruction, alternate schedule, or distance learning when deemed appropriate or as advised by local and state health officials and OSDE.

If it is deemed necessary to transition to distance learning, students with disabilities, who are unable to receive a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) solely through a distance learning environment (as determined by the IEP team) and those students who are unable to receive instructional services through distance learning, may receive certain services at a school site that is closed. Teachers and staff may be on campus as assigned.

Health Protocol: PCPS will follow all applicable health orders and required protocols, and adhere to the 2020-2021 Return to Learn Plan. Further mitigation techniques may be developed.
Face Coverings: Face coverings are required for all staff and students PreK-12 in buildings and on buses, with exemptions for adults and children who are physically unable to wear them. See face covering exemptions and accommodations.

Exemptions are allowed for the following: when eating meals, naptime, recess, and during physical education if social distancing is possible.

Adults are required to wear face coverings around other adults.

Face Coverings in Special Education Classrooms: Teachers and staff in SPED classrooms are required to wear protective face shields and/or face coverings. In addition, gloves and gowns are recommended for staff when providing services for medically vulnerable students.

Extracurricular Activities and Group Assemblies: Buildings and campuses will limit public events when social distancing guidelines are not possible.

ORANGE LEVEL 2: (25-49.99 cases per 100,000)

Instruction: PCPS will make determinations on in-person instruction, alternate schedule, or distance learning when deemed appropriate or as advised by local and state health officials and OSDE.

If it is deemed necessary to transition to distance learning, students with disabilities, who are unable to receive a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) solely through a distance learning environment (as determined by the IEP team) and those students who are unable to receive instructional services through distance learning, not to exceed 25% of students enrolled at a site, may receive certain services at a school site that is closed. Teachers and staff may be on campus as assigned.

Health Protocol: PCPS will follow all applicable health orders and required protocols, and adhere to the 2020-2021 Return to Learn Plan. Further mitigation techniques may be developed.

Face Coverings: Face coverings are required for all staff and students PreK-12 in buildings and on buses, with exemptions for adults and children who are physically unable to wear them. See face covering exemptions and accommodations.

Exemptions are allowed for the following: when eating meals, naptime, and recess if social distancing is possible.

Adults are required to wear masks around other adults.

Face Coverings in Special Education Classrooms: Teachers and staff in SPED classrooms are required to wear protective face shield and/or face coverings. In addition, gloves and gowns are recommended for staff when providing services for medically vulnerable students.

Extracurricular Activities and Group Assemblies: Buildings and campuses will not be used for extracurricular activities, including spectator sports, assemblies, and performances.

RED LEVEL (more than 50 cases per 100,000)

Instruction: PCPS will close buildings and require distance learning until community transmission declines or as advised by local and state health officials and OSDE.

Students with disabilities, who are unable to receive a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) solely through a distance learning environment (as determined by the IEP team) and those students who are unable to receive instructional services through distance learning, not to exceed 15% of students enrolled at a site, may receive certain services at a school site that is closed. Teachers and staff may be on campus as assigned.

Health Protocol: PCPS will follow all applicable health orders and required protocols, and adhere to the 2020-2021 Return to Learn Plan. Further mitigation techniques may be developed.

Face Coverings:
Face coverings are required for all staff and students PreK-12 in buildings and on buses, with exemptions for adults and children who are physically unable to wear them. See face covering exemptions and accommodations.

Exemptions are allowed for the following: when eating meals
Adults are required to wear face coverings around other adults.
Face Coverings in Special Education Classrooms: Teachers and staff in SPED classrooms are required to wear protective face shields and/or face coverings. In addition, gloves and gowns are recommended for staff when providing services for medically vulnerable students.
Extracurricular Activities and Group Assemblies: Buildings and campuses may not be used for extracurricular activities, including spectator sports, assemblies, and performances.

Face Covering Exemptions and Accommodations
– Persons who work or directly interact with individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing, and who rely on lip-reading to communicate, may remove a face covering for the duration of time as is necessary to communicate or interact directly with the individual(s). In this situation, consideration should be given to using a clear face covering. If a clear face covering is unavailable, staff members should consider using written communication, closed captioning or decrease background noise to make communication possible while wearing a cloth face covering that blocks the lips.
– Persons with a medical condition or disability that prevents wearing a face covering must wear a face shield.
– Persons with a medical condition for whom wearing a face covering could obstruct breathing or who are unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove a face covering without assistance.
– Persons who are hearing impaired, or communicating with a person who is hearing impaired, where the ability to see the mouth is essential for communication.
– Persons for whom wearing a face covering would create a risk to the person related to their work, as determined by local, state or federal regulators or workplace safety guidelines. This requirement includes people who work in a setting where cloth face coverings may increase the risk of heat-related illness or cause safety concerns due to introduction of a hazard (for instance, straps getting caught in machinery). District may consult with an occupational safety and health professional to determine the appropriate face covering for a particular setting.
– Persons who are obtaining a service involving the nose or face for which temporary removal of the face covering is necessary to perform the service.
– Note: Persons exempt from wearing a face covering due to a medical condition who are employed in a job involving regular contact with others should wear a non-restrictive alternative, such as a face shield with a drape on the bottom edge, as long as their condition permits it.

 

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