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Covid-19

Interim Health & Safety Protocols

BumbleBeesRus provides a safe and healthy environment for our community. The following mandatory protocols and handling of cases are in place to ensure the safety of all students, staff, and family members in addressing COVID-19, in addition to our existing stringent health and safety policies and procedures. BumbleBeesRus follows all DOE, DOHMH and CDC guidelines related to children and staff in childcare programs. These protocols will be updated regularly based on new guidance from governing agencies.


SCREENING

  • All staff and children must pass the daily health screening that includes a temperature check and visual inspection for illness, along with questions regarding symptoms or contact with anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19 upon entry to the program.
  • If a child or staff member’s screening indicates a fever, other symptoms related to COVID 19 or knowledge of close contact with an individual diagnosed with COVID-19, they will be prohibited from entering the program. In such cases, they should refer to their physician for further guidance.
  • All centers have a designated Safety Monitor who is responsible for overseeing all screenings, documentation and reporting of any exposure or positive cases of COVID 19. Screening logs are maintained at the center.
  • Employees and children are required to complete a daily screening survey in addition to the temperature check upon arrival. Screening questions include:
  1. Have you experienced any symptoms of COVID-19, including a fever of 100F or greater, a new cough, new loss of taste or smell or shortness of breath within the past 10 days?
  2. In the past 10 days, have you gotten a positive result from a COVID-19 test that tested saliva or used a nose or throat swab?
  3. To the best of your knowledge, in the past 14 days, have you been in close contact (within 6 feet for at least 10 minutes) with anyone who tested positive for COVID-19 or who has or had symptoms of COVID-19?

If any responses to screening questions indicate that a child or staff member has current symptoms of or exposure to COVID-19 upon arrival, they will be prohibited from entering the program.

  • If a parent/guardian of a child must be isolated because they have tested positive for, or exhibited symptoms of COVID-19, the parent/guardian cannot enter the site for any reason, including picking up their child.
  • If a parent/guardian who is a member of the same household as the child isexhibiting signs of COVID-19 or has been tested and is positive for the virus, anemergency contact authorized by the parent/guardian must be utilized to come pick up the child. As a close contact, the child must not return to the childcare center for the duration of the quarantine.
  • If the parent/guardian who is a member of the same household as the child isbeing quarantined as a precautionary measure, without symptoms or a positive test, a staff member will walk out or deliver the child to the parent/guardian at the boundary of, or outside, the premises. As a contact of a contact, the child may return to thechildcare during the duration of the quarantine.
  • If a child or their household member becomes symptomatic for COVID 19 and/ortests positive, the child must quarantine for 10 days and may not return or attend the childcare program until after the required quarantine period is complete. The 10-day quarantine period shall be counted from the 1st day of the onset of symptoms or 10 days from when a positive test result was determined.

SICK POLICY

It is recommended that staff and families conduct their own health screenings every day at home (i.e., temperature check and assessment of COVID 19 symptoms or other illness) prior to entering the program to ensure the safety of the program’s community.

  • Per BBRU Sick Policy, parents/guardians are required to keep sick children home and staff are instructed to stay home if they are sick.
  • If a child or employee develops a fever at school, they must be sent home immediately and cannot return to the center until they are fever-free for 24 hours.
  • If a child or staff member exhibits persistent cough or runny nose while in attendance at the center, they will be sent home.
  • If an illness persists and their symptoms worsen, parents/guardians and staff are encouraged to seek the advice of their physician.
  • If a child exhibits symptoms related to COVID 19 at the center, parents/guardians will be notified immediately. Sick children will be isolated in a designated area until a parent/guardian picks them up. Parents/guardians should seek guidance from their physician regarding possible exposure to COVID 19 and testing.
  • If a staff member exhibits symptoms related to COVID 19 at the center, they will be sent home immediately and cannot return to work until their symptoms subside. They should seek guidance from their physician regarding possible exposure to COVID 19 and testing.
  • Should a staff member or child receive testing for COVID 19, they cannot return to the program until they have received a negative test result. Should they receive a positive test result, they must complete their designated quarantine period.
  • It is the responsibility of each employee and parents/guardians to notify the center immediately if the staff member or the child have tested positive for COVID 19 so that the school may act quickly in notifying the Department of Health. Please refer to our Policies and Procedures for Handling a Case of COVID 19 in City-Regulated Child Care in this document for more information.

PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT

  • Per current DOH regulations, face coverings are optional for employees, students, parents/guardians, and visitors.
  • If requested, employees are provided with an acceptable face covering, at no cost to the employees and an adequate supply of coverings are available in case of need for replacement.
  • Acceptable face coverings include but are not limited to surgical masks or cloth (e.g., homemade sewn, quick cut, bandanna).
  • Face coverings are prohibited from being shared.
  • Employees have been trained how to put on, take off, clean (as applicable), and discard PPE.
  • Employees who wear face coverings should replace their face covering with a new one should it become soiled or wet.
  • Sharing of objects (e.g., electronic equipment, arts and crafts materials, touch screens) and surfaces is limited; when in contact with shared objects or frequently touched areas, employees are required to wear gloves (trade appropriate or medical). Employees and children are required to practice hand hygiene (i.e., hand washing) before and after contact.

PHYSICAL DISTANCING

  • Employees are encouraged to maintain distance from each other when feasible.
  • Employee and child groupings are as static as possible by having the same group of children with the same staff whenever and wherever possible. Group size is limited to required ratios as defined by the Department of Health and Department of Education based on the class age group, including adults.
  • Adequate social distancing between staff will be maintained in small areas as feasible, such as restrooms and break rooms, and signage and systems are in place (e.g. flagging when occupied) to limit occupancy.
  • Classroom space is reconfigured to limit overall density of children if feasible.
  • Non-essential visitors on site are prohibited.
  • Parents/guardians are not permitted to spend an excessive amount of time in the childcare facility and are encouraged to maintain social distancing practices.
  • Designated areas are established for pick-ups and deliveries, limiting contact to the greatest extent possible.
  • In-person gatherings of employees (e.g. breaks, meetings) should follow social distancing guidelines.
  • Meetings with families are conducted with social distancing guidelines in place and remote meetings are encouraged when possible.
  • Tours with prospective families must follow social distancing guidelines.

HYGIENE, CLEANING & DISINFECTION

• In adherence to hygiene, cleaning, and disinfection requirements from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Department of Health (DOH), logs are maintained on site that document date, time, and scope of cleaning and disinfection.

• Hand hygiene stations are provided and maintained: hand washing with soap, running warm water, and disposable paper towels; alcohol-based hand sanitizer containing 60% or more alcohol for areas where hand washing is not available/practical.

• Hand sanitizer is available throughout common areas in the facility and inside classroom, restrooms and offices.

• Employees and children are required to practice hygiene in the following instances:

– Immediately upon arrival to the center;

– After using the restroom;

– Before eating.

• Appropriate cleaning /disinfection supplies are readily available for shared and frequently touched surfaces (e.g., door handles, multi seat strollers, toys, art supplies, areas where children eat), and employees must use these supplies before/after use of these surfaces, followed by hand hygiene.

• Centers are equipped with a EM360ô Roller Cart Electrostatic Disinfectant Application System. Its patented application system places an electrostatic charge to liquid disinfectants as they leave the spray nozzle, which allows them to cling to virtually any surface and destroy 99.9999% of germs*.

• Equipment and toys are regularly cleaned and disinfected.

• Rest periods for children will have individual clean bed coverings as provided by parents/guardians and are prohibited from being shared. Cribs and cots are clearly labeled with each child’s name and are prohibited from being shared. Cribs and cots will be safely cleaned before and after use.

• Additional measures:

– Frequent and thorough hand hygiene for both staff and children.

– Whenever a child is soiled with secretions, the child’s clothes will be changed, and the child will be cleaned as needed.

– When diapering/aiding with toileting, staff must wear gloves, wash hands (staff and child), and follow with cleaning and disinfection.

COMMUNICATION

• All staff are required to receive training on applicable precautions/policies in the State’s guidance either remotely or in person, using appropriate social distancing and required face coverings for all participants.

• Signage is posted inside and outside of the facility to remind individuals to adhere to proper hygiene, social distancing rules, appropriate use of PPE, and cleaning and disinfecting protocols.

• Programs will communicate with parents and families regarding any COVID-19 updates.

ACTIVITIES

• Gross Motor Activities:

– Stable groups of children will be maintained as feasible.

– Focus will be on activities that promote limited physical contact between children and shared equipment when possible.

• Enhanced Cleaning Protocols: Shared equipment is sanitized thoroughly before and after a child or employee comes in contact with the equipment.

• Food Services:

– Individual portions of food are served to children.

– Stable groups of children are separated as feasible.

– Tables with seating are separated at least 3 ft. apart from other tables, as feasible.

• Excursions away from program are discouraged for centers that have an on-site playground or outdoor play area. Children over the age of 2 who are medically able to tolerate a face covering are required to wear a mask.

Policies and Procedures for Handling a Case of COVID-19 in City-Regulated Child Care

BumbleBeesRus is committed to providing a healthy and safe environment for our students, families, and staff. We believe that a strong partnership within our community is essential in maintaining vigilance in the face of Covid-19. We encourage all of our members to be mindful of their important role in keeping our community safe.

The following policies and procedures have been implemented at BumbleBeesRus per NYC Department of Health requirements and provide clarity regarding all activities that the organization and its members should be aware of in addressing any potential or confirmed cases of Covid-19 at any of our childcare facilities. BumbleBeesRus will update our policies when directed by governing health and education agencies.


How will the center know if a staff or child has received a positive COVID-19 diagnostic test?

Staff and parents are responsible for notifying the center immediately if they or their child attending the program has tested positive for COVID-19. The center will contact their Bureau of Child Care Borough Office to report the case. The NYC Health Department will follow up with the center to know whether the person is a confirmed case and, if they are, inform the center of what the next steps are to determine if others at the school should be considered close contacts who require exclusion and quarantine.

While a staff member or child is waiting for their test results, can they attend the childcare program?

No. A staff member or child whose health care provider tested them for COVID-19 due to potential exposure within the last 10 days must stay home while they wait for their test results. If a parent has been directed by their physician that their child must quarantine because they were identified as a close contact or because of recent travel, they must stay home for the full 10 days even if the test result is negative.


QUARANTINE VS. ISOLATION

  • Isolation is the practice of staying home, monitoring your health and separating from others when you have COVID-19 or COVID-19 symptoms. Anyone who tests positive for COVID-19 must isolate. This means the individual should not go to the program and should not leave their home, except to seek medical care. 
  • Quarantine is the practice of staying home, monitoring your health and separating from others after being recently exposed to someone who has COVID-19. For early childhood populations, children must enter a precautionary quarantine period after being exposed to a COVID-positive person, while that person was infectious. While not sick or symptomatic, individuals in quarantine are helping to prevent the spread of COVID in the event they become infectious without knowing.

What should staff do if they test positive for COVID-19?

The teacher/school-based staff member must be asymptomatic OR have only mild symptoms, AND:  

o   They must be fever-free for 72 hours without the use of medication;  

o   They must not have a runny nose; and/or, 

o   They must have a minimal cough only without phlegm.   

o    Symptoms must be improving or mild.  

At work, from Day 6 through Day 10, the positive teacher/school-based staff member must consistently and correctly wear a well-fitting higher-level face covering, such as a KN95 mask.

Note: Test date is the date when the specimen (e.g., nasal swab) was collected, not the date when the test results were reported to a health care provider or patient.


DETERMINING THE INFECTIOUS PERIOD FOR  INDIVIDUALS DIAGNOSED WITH COVID-19

The infectious period is the time period during which a person with COVID-19 can transmit the virus to another person. Only people who have been in close contact to an infectious person with COVID-19 during this period will need to quarantine.

• The start date of the infectious period is two days before the person had their first symptom or two days before the test date if they did not have symptoms. If there were symptoms and a test date, use the first of the two dates. If you have a specific time as to the onset of symptoms you can count back 48 hours.


What steps are taken if the program learns that a child or staff member has had a positive diagnostic Covid-19 test?

The program will contact their Bureau of Child Care Borough Office immediately.

  • All childcare programs must cooperate with the NYC Health Department and NYC Test & Trace Corps to identify and exclude persons with symptoms of COVID-19, persons who test positive for COVID-19 and persons who have been exposed to COVID-19.
  • If there is a positive case in a classroom, all children who shared space with the case in the two days preceding their positive test result or onset of symptoms (whichever occurred first) and notify the families that their children need to quarantine for 10 days since their last exposure

– Close contacts may test out of quarantine to return to their classrooms after the seventh day.  In order to do so, students must take a rapid antigen or PCR COVID-19 test on their fifth day of quarantine in order to re-enter class on the eighth day. Only authorized test results (rapid antigen or PCR) administered by a child’s physician or health clinic will be accepted by the program.

The NYC Health Department will determine the person’s likely infectious period, which is the time period when they can spread the virus, to determine whether they attended the childcare program during the infectious period.

If the NYC Health Department determines the person was not in the childcare program during their infectious period, unless they direct otherwise, there is nothing else to do.

If the NYC Health Department determines the person was in the childcare program during their infectious period, they will work with the program to identify everyone who could have been a close contact. A close contact includes, at a minimum, all students and staff who were in the same classroom or similar type space for 10 minutes or more with a person with COVID-19 irrespective of the use of face masks, barriers, or social distancing.

The affected classroom will be closed immediately for the time specified by the NYC Department of Health if the children in the classroom are unmasked. All children determined to be close contacts are required to quarantine as specified above. The classroom will be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized prior to reopening.

– In early childhood settings, children who are masked and maintain at least a 3 feet distance apart will not have to quarantine if they are identified as a close contact and the classroom will not be required to close. They should continue to be monitored for symptoms.

COVID-19 POLICY REFERENCE TABLE

Exposed to COVID-19 At School: Needs to Quarantine 

 

Under two years old

Two years old to Pre-K

Staff 

Current Policy 

Quarantine for 10 days 

Option to test out of quarantine via lab-based test on Day 5 or later and, if negative, return on Day 8. 

Quarantine for 10 days 

Option to test out of quarantine via lab-based test on Day 5 or two home rapid tests on Day 4 and Day 5. If negative, return on Day 6. 

Regardless of vaccine status, no need to quarantine and must use a home rapid test immediately and then on Day 5.

Exposed to COVID-19 Outside School: Needs to Quarantine 

 

Under two years old

Two years old to Pre-K

Staff 

Current Policy 

SAME AS AT SCHOOL EXPOSURE

Quarantine for 10 days

Option to test out of quarantine via lab-based test on Day 5 or later and, if negative, return on Day 8. 

SAME AS AT SCHOOL EXPOSURE

Quarantine for 10 days 

Option to test out of quarantine via lab-based test on Day 5 or two home rapid tests on Day 4 and Day 5. If negative, return on Day 6. 

Should not impact staff as they should all be fully vaccinated. 

 

If not fully vaccinated, must quarantine for 5 days.   

Isolation: Tests positive for COVID-19

 

Under two years old

Two years old to Pre-K

Staff 

Current Policy 

Isolate for 10 days 

Isolate for 10 days 

Isolate for 5 days 

Can return on Day 6 wearing a well-fitting mask from Days 6-10

How will staff members and families be notified about the positive Covid-19 case?

The center director will notify all identified close contacts (staff members, and parents/guardians of students) immediately to tell them they or their child were exposed to COVID-19. They will be informed that there was an exposure but will not reveal the name or other identifying information of the person with COVID-19 or other identifying information, per confidentiality requirements.

Close contacts may not enter the school during the quarantine period and should otherwise stay home except for essential medical care

– If unmasked students and staff identified as close contacts are already on-site, the center will follow its existing isolation protocol, contact children’s parents/guardians for immediate pick-up, and send staff who are confirmed close contacts home.

What will the center do if they learn during nonbusiness hours that a staff member or child has COVID-19?

If a staff member or a child’s parent/guardian notifies the center that they have tested positive for COVID-19 during nonbusiness hours:

ï Remind the parent or guardian they or their child cannot enter the childcare program for at least 10 days and should isolate at home. Staff cannot return to work until day 6 after their positive test result and must be asymptomatic OR have only mild symptoms.

ï If the center learns of a confirmed COVID-19 case during business hours (Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.), they will contact their Bureau of Child Care Borough Office; during all other times, phone calls will be made to the NYC Health Department at 866-692-3641.

The center has reported a case to the NYC Health Department. What are the next steps?

Most childcare programs will receive a call back from a NYC Health Department case investigator within one to two days. During this time, any students or staff in the classroom or other close contacts of the case should quarantine at home while they wait for further instructions. If the NYC Health Department’s case investigators determine they are close contacts, they will hear directly from the NYC Test & Trace Corps with further instructions about quarantine. Staff and families should be prepared to answer the phone during this period as contact tracers will be trying to reach them.

Will the center share information about the person with COVID-19 with the families in the program?

No. BumbleBeesRus cannot reveal the identity of the person with COVID-19 (other than to the NYC Health Department staff assisting in the investigation) or share information about the person with COVID-19, including the classroom the person attended or any information about the symptoms the person may have had. That information is confidential. Maintaining confidentiality will help encourage other people to disclose when they have COVID-19. 

Thank You for Your Partnership in Helping BumbleBeesRus Stay Safe and Healthy!