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Reopening Schools After COVID-19 MCO | Safety Guide

by on 19/06/2020     879 6206

This safety and hygiene guide provides precautionary measures that should be taken by early childhood centres to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The guidelines may require adjustments according to individual school settings to minimise operational disruption.

KEY ACTIONS FOR:

1. CHILDREN

✔ Children should understand basic, age-appropriate information about the coronavirus. Here is a simple guide.

✔ Protect yourself and others by remembering to wash your hands often, not touch your face and not share food or drinks with your friends.

✔ If you feel confused, scared or worried, know that you can always talk to your teacher about it.

2. PARENTS

✔ Monitor your child’s health. If they display any symptoms, e.g. fever or cough, keep them out of school. 

✔ Coordinate with the school so that your child can continue learning at home.

✔ Find out how you can support school safety efforts and work together with the school.

3. SCHOOL TEACHERS

✔ Know the latest facts and stay informed through reputable sources, such as health ministry advisories, UNICEF and WHO.

✔ Clean and disinfect the school facility at least twice a day. Reinforce frequent handwashing and implement social distancing practices.

✔ Establish procedures if children or staff become unwell.

✔ Plan for continuity of learning with the use of remote learning tools. Discover our top picks here.

✔ Address children’s psychosocial support needs. Reassure them that they can always discuss their emotions and concerns with you.

PREVENTION MEASURES FOR EARLY CHILDHOOD CENTRES

GOOD PERSONAL HYGIENE

Handwashing

  • Sneeze and cough into the elbow or tissue.
  • Wash hands with soap frequently for 20 seconds (that’s singing “Happy Birthday” twice).
  • Ensure hand sanitizers are conveniently available at entrance and exit points, classrooms, toilets and hallways.

If you are a school, head over to SC Johnson for a FREE trial of their hand hygiene solutions. 

 

No sharing

  • Do not share food, drinks, utensils, towels, etc.

Wear a mask

  • Staff should wear a face mask at all times.
  • Dispose masks in a sealed bag.

 

CLEAN ENVIRONMENT

Frequent disinfection

  • Perform frequent cleaning and disinfection, at least twice a day. These include tables, chairs, door knobs, countertops, toys, learning equipment, stationeries, etc. 
  • Household bleach diluted with water (1:100) is an effective disinfecting solution.  

Reduce clutter

  • Remove unused objects and close off shelves to reduce the possibility of spreading the virus due to unplanned touching.
  • Ensure trash is removed daily and disposed safely.

Better ventilation

  • Keep windows open to increase air flow and for better ventilation.

Put up posters

  • Pin up posters, at children’s eye level, to remind everyone about the new hygiene practices.

Click here for a poster to wash your hands thoroughly.

Click here for a poster to wear a mask the proper way.

 

SCHOOL DESKTOP ACRYLIC PROTECTION SHIELDS

Another sensible thing to do is to put up protection barriers on student’s desks and lunch tables for added safety. Sam Sport, a customer-centric manufacturer, can customise acrylic shields that can act as sneeze guards to prevent the spread of the virus. When the dividers are erected on the tables, it reduces the risk of droplet infection and children can take off their face masks to eat during lunchtime. The acrylic panels are easily configurable to any space, lightweight, washable, durable and more affordable than tempered glass. They minimise the use of personal protective equipment (PPE) and allow 100% clear vision. These acrylic protection shields are one of the first lines of defence against the spread of the virus whenever personal contact is unavoidable.

Sam Sport has been producing and supplying high-quality products to meet all its customers’ needs and requirements for over 30 years. Powered by a team of skillful in-house designers and experienced craftsmen, the company can respond quickly to protect customers with school protection product solutions including acrylic table dividers, sneeze guards and counter barriers.

The desktop acrylic protection shields can be fully customised to meet the requirements of individual schools. Call 019 660 6073 or email samsport328.marketing@gmail.com to speak with a customer service representative today.

Image: Sam Sport and Reuters 

 

SCHOOL ARRIVAL & DISMISSAL

Spread out drop-off & pick-up times

  • Spread out the arrival and dismissal times for children into 10-15 minute intervals. Try to keep it to 5 children at a time.

Temperature & Health Screening

  • Conduct temperature checks and health screenings at the entrance and exit points for all children, staff and visitors.
  • Everyone should sanitise their hands before entering and leaving.
  • If a child displays any suspicious symptoms, tell parents that the child should stay at home until s/he has recovered. Set up a space where a sick child can temporarily isolate himself or herself while waiting to be sent home.  

Social distancing for parents

  • Put up 1-metre queue markers as guidance while parents wait.
  • If possible, parents should just drop off or pick up their child at the main gate and not gather around the school compound.  
  • Limit nonessential visitors.

Communicate digitally

  • Try to update and communicate with parents via the phone instead of in-person to avoid gathering a crowd for a prolonged period. 

 

SOCIAL DISTANCING (During School Hours)

General rule

  • Maintain 1 metre distance with other people. Chairs and tables should be set up with a 1 metre distance in between.
  • No touching other people.

Teach children to stretch their arms or “flap their wings” to keep enough distance between themselves and their friends.

 

Adjust class schedules

  • Adjust class schedules to avoid overlapping movement and interaction of children from different classes at the walkways or common spaces.
  • Avoid inter-class mixing for common activities, such as toileting, mealtimes and nap times. 
  • Avoid children from going to the toilet all at the same time, e.g. after mealtimes.
  • Staggered mealtimes should be arranged and individually packed food is recommended.
  • Avoid showering children in the school unless necessary.
  • Children should nap in their own respective classrooms.

Class sessions

  • Try to cancel all group activities, such as sharing of common learning aids, water and sensory play, and excursions.
  • Instead, set up more individual activities spaced out around the room with a maximum of 2-3 teachers with 3 students at a time.
  • Examples of some activities that are suitable for safe social distancing include storytelling, watching videos, stationary exercises, and art and craft.

Where physical distancing cannot be avoided

  • If under situations where physical distancing cannot be avoided, such as supporting children with special needs, teachers must always wear masks and wash their hands frequently.

 

CHILDREN ARRIVING HOME AFTER SCHOOL

  • Children should take a shower immediately before touching anyone or anything.
  • Their clothes should be soaked in soapy water.

 

STAFF TRAINING

  •  If possible, try to conduct all staff training and meetings online or via emails/video calls.

 

IF THERE’S A CONFIRMED CORONAVIRUS CASE IN SCHOOL, …

  • Close the school and inform other parents. Do not reveal the identity of the infected individual to prevent discrimination.
  • Carry out proper disinfection procedures according to the Ministry of Health.
  • Close off infected areas and wait for at least one day before carrying out disinfection procedures. Open windows to increase ventilation. This is to minimise potential transmission through respiratory droplets. 
  • Cleaning staff must put on and take off proper personal protective equipment (PPE) in the correct order to prevent contaminating themselves. Areas should be disinfected with diluted bleach solution. PPE should be sealed and disposed properly after. 
  • Schools are only allowed to reopen after getting approval from their respective district health office.

Reopening strongly relies on all of us to play our roles in making sure our communities stay safe as possible to remain open. Practice social distancing and other necessary daily hygiene habits to reduce our risk of exposure to the coronavirus. 

 

Reference: Jabatan Kebajikan Masyarakat and National Early Childhood Intervention Council  


Important message for Schools, Kindergartens, Daycare centres & Enrichment centres:

Get a FREE trial to find out how SC Johnson Professional's hand hygiene solution can work for your school by sending an email to enquiryasia@scj.com or visiting www.scjp.com today. 

 

For fully customisable school desktop acrylic protection shields, speak with a Sam Sport customer representative at 019 660 6073 or email samsport328.marketing@gmail.com today.

SamSport, Kajang

2G/3G, Jalan Hentian 1A, Pusat Hentian Kajang, Jalan Reko, Kajang, Selangor 43000
Malaysia
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