This document can change frequently due to new directives, restrictions, and guidance provided by local and state health care officials, the West Virginia Department of Education, and the West Virginia Secondary Schools Athletic Commission.
Frequently Asked Questions on School Re-entry
Q: How will buildings be cleaned?
A: Facilities will be cleaned daily as normal with strict attention given to high touch areas. WCS has invested in specialized cleaning equipment to assist in sanitizing large areas of our schools.
Special attention will be given to the following areas: door handles, stair rails, panic bars on exit doors, restroom handles, and switches. Each school will develop a schedule for when the items will be addressed.
Schools have been or will be receiving signage for the facilities to promote social distancing and wearing of masks.
Elementary school classrooms will receive a Clorox based sanitation product and paper wipers for student desktops. Desktops shall be cleaned before and after meal service and at the end of the day.
Secondary classrooms will receive wipes. Students can pick up a wipe as they enter the room to wipe down the working surface and dispose of it at the end of class while leaving the room.
Q: Can outside groups/agencies use our facilities?
A: Wood County Schools is not currently allowing any outside organizations to use the interior of our facilities. As our situation improves, WCS will reassess our ability to host organizations.
Q: How often will the buses be cleaned?
A: The buses will be thoroughly cleaned between every bus run when students are not present and at the end of the day.
Q: Will bus drivers be required to check students’ temperatures before they board the bus, or will there be another staff member present to help?
A: No, our bus drivers will not be required to check students’ temperatures before they board the bus or as students exit the school bus.
Q: How will students maintain social distancing on school buses?
A: According to the West Virginia Schools Re-entry Toolkit dated July 28, 2020, “School systems will develop seating arrangements and protocols to limit the number of students to no more than two per seat. Face coverings are required, unless medically exempted. The county may provide face coverings for students if they do not have one.” School bus operators will have a supply of face masks for students without masks.
Q: Will buses make multiple runs in order to limit the number of students on board?
A: This decision will be based on student ridership and CDC Guidelines. Some bus runs have been changed to help limit the number of students on a bus.
Q: For students that ride multiple buses, how will bus transfers work?
A: There will be no significant changes that would impact student transfers.
Q: How do I know what bus and time my child will ride the bus?
A: Bus route times have changed in some instances from what they were last year. There will be a printout in the newspaper on August 31 to look up routes and times. This information is also available on the Wood County Schools website.HEALTH and WELLNESS
Q: What happens if a staff member or a student tests positive for COVID-19?
A: In consultation and with guidance from the Mid-Ohio Valley Health Department (MOVHD), a risk assessment will be completed to determine exposure for any positive case within schools and facilities. Operational status of classrooms/schools/ departments will be determined on a case by case basis with health department officials. See section V. for return to work/ school guidelines.
Q: What will be done to prevent infections?
A: Staff and students are required to perform daily health self-assessments before coming into schools and following the guidelines on the Covid-19 Health Screening form posted under Health Services on the Wood County Schools website.
Face coverings are required for all staff and students, grades 3-12; strongly recommended for PreK-2nd grades. Each student/ staff member will receive at least two face masks when school begins. Face coverings must be washed daily.
Proper handwashing/ sanitizing will be taught to staff and students. Handwashing/ sanitizing will be performed regularly and frequently throughout the school day.
Daily reinforcement will occur through school media and announcements.
Physical distancing of 6ft will be maintained.
Regular cleaning/ sanitizing of school environments will be implemented.
Q: What if I do not want my child to wear a mask/ face covering at school?
A: All staff and students (grades 3-12) are required to wear a face covering at school. There are a wide variety of face coverings available which can accommodate different needs. If mask wearing is not a family supported behavior, educational options other than face to face learning can be explored under the guidance of school administration.
ANY face covering which fully covers the mouth and nose is acceptable. For an easy, low cost face covering option, a No-Sew T-shirt Mask Pattern and Instructions are posted on the Wood County Schools website under Health Services.
Q: How will students request and visit the school nurse?
A: If a student presents with symptoms of illness, the staff member will contact the School Nurse immediately and prior to sending student.
School nurses, in collaboration with school administrators, will develop a school-wide protocol to meet the needs of each school population and to limit exposure to staff and students which outlines how student visit requests will be handled on each school campus.
One sick student will be permitted in the Health Office at a time to limit exposure to other students and staff.
Students with specialized health care procedures will receive services according to existing protocols and as scheduled.
Q: What is an isolation area?
A: An isolation area is a dedicated space for anyone with suspected Covid-19 symptoms. Anyone placed in an isolation area will remain there until assessed by the school nurse and released to return to the classroom or until discharged to a parent/ guardian by the school nurse. The space is intended to keep sick staff/ students separated from the healthy population while being provided care and/or waiting to go home. Sick staff/ students will be closely monitored while placed in the isolation area.
Q: What are the return to work/ school guidelines after testing positive for COVID-19?
A: IF person tests NEGATIVE for COVID-19,
Person may return to school once the student/ employee is fever-free without taking fever-reducing medication and is feeling well for 24 hours.
IF person tests POSITIVE for COVID-19,
Person shall stay home until every question is answered with YES and must be released by the Mid-Ohio Valley Health Department:
1. Have you been fever-free without taking fever-reducing medication and feeling well for 24 hours?
2. Has it been at least 10 days since having first symptoms?
3. Has it been at least 24 hours since your symptoms have improved?
IF person tests POSITIVE for COVID-19 but has no symptoms,
Person shall stay home for 10 days after test and must be released by the Mid-Ohio Valley Health Department.
Q: Will COVID-19 testing be provided for staff and students?
A: There are no current recommendations for staff and/ or students to be tested before entering school campuses. Current recommendations for Covid-19 testing apply to suspected illness or exposure. If staff and/ or students require testing, they will be referred to their licensed healthcare provider or the Mid-Ohio Valley Health Department.
CURRICULUM and INSTRUCTION:
Q: As a parent will I have a separate login for Schoology?
A: Parents will receive an access code from the school for their child(ren). You can also visit https://tinyurl.com/yxzzdzuf for more information.
Q: What is the expected amount of work for elementary students at home on yellow days?
A: Teachers are to plan for student learning. An assignment that may take one student 10 minutes to complete may take another student 45 minutes. Teachers need to use professional judgement in assigning tasks. What activities can be assigned for students to learn material? Is the work assigned going to help students learn? Assignments should not be “busy work.”
Q: Is it possible to stream and/or record sessions live while teaching?
A: No, not at this time due to privacy policies. However, if no students are present, recording a lesson is possible.
Q: What are state testing expectations?
A: As of today, the WVDE intends to administer the General Summative Assessment in the spring. The PSAT and SAT will be administered in the fall as scheduled.
Q: Will there be physical textbooks distributed?
Q: What type of instruction is expected Monday – Thursday when students are home on code yellow?
A: In a blended learning format, instruction that is critical to be taught using direct instruction should be priority. Time is precious during on campus days and should be used effectively with minimal downtime.
Students complete assignments or create products to demonstrate learning during off campus days.
Q: What does Friday look like in code yellow?
A: In blended learning, teachers are not required to have virtual TEAMS meetings on Fridays however a minimum of two hours shall be scheduled as “office hours” for teachers to be available to students.
Q: Will students have chargers with their iPads?
Q: How will I-Ready minutes be handled? What happens if a student fails a lesson?
A: I-Ready will need to be monitored. If a student fails a lesson, the teacher will need to communicate with the student to teach the skill so the student can move forward. I-Ready diagnostics should be completed at school; I-Ready lessons should be completed at home.
Q: Are students expected to bring iPads daily?
Q: When should students charge their iPads?
A: Students should charge their iPads at home and bring their iPads charged to school.
Q: If I have an Apple device at home, do I need a Wood County Schools device?
A: Yes, the Wood County Schools’ Apple devices have the apps students need to be utilized.
Q: Will meals be available on days when students are not physically in school?
A: Yes, students/parents/guardians will be able to sign-up for a buddy bag to be picked up at the end of the school day (Monday – Thursday) for the day they are not physically in school. Each buddy bag will contain breakfast and lunch for the day(s) they are not in school. Buddy bags will be available to all Wood County School students in PreK through 12th. On Friday of each week, parents/guardians/ students will be able to pick-up a breakfast and lunch from 11 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. at their homeschool. Pre-order forms will be available at www.woodcountyschoolswv.com.
Q: Will breakfast/lunch be available at school, or does my child need to pack each day?
A: Yes, breakfast and lunch will be available at school or students can bring their own meals. Wood County Schools Child Nutrition Department works in conjunction with guidance provided by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), West Virginia Department of Health (WVDHHR), Mid Ohio Valley Health Department, and the West Virginia Department of Education (WVDE).
Q: Is it safe for my child to eat meals prepared at school? What safety protocols are in place?
A: Yes, kitchen staff safety protocols are developed in accordance with WVDHHR, USDA, and CDC guidelines. All staff will be provided and will use appropriate personal protective equipment as recommended by CDC guidelines.
Q: Will my student still have to enter their ID number/finger scan on the pin pad when other children are also touching it?
A: At this time no finger scans will be utilized in the school system. To reduce common touch points, students will be identified utilizing rosters and/or ID cards.
Q: Do I need to complete a meal application for free/reduced meals?
A: Wood County Schools participates in the Community Eligibility Provision (CEP). Parents/guardians do not need to fill out an application.
Q: Will I be able to get a meal at any school for my student enrolled in Wood County Virtual School for 2020-21 school year?
A: Wood County School Child Nutrition Department can provide meals to students who have opted to utilize virtual learning instead of returning to school in a traditional setting. Students participating in the Wood County School System Virtual Learning will be provided with meals through curbside service. Procedures to order meals for students participating in virtual learning can be found at www.woodcountyschoolswv.com click “Parents/Students” “Virtual Schools”.
Q: Will itinerant and substitute teachers be able to access buildings?
Q: Will college students and student teachers be able to complete their experience requirements in our schools?
A: Yes, college students will complete their experience as they have previously.
Q: Is there compensation available if I have been exposed to Coronavirus or if a family member has been exposed to Coronavirus.
A: The Family First Coronavirus Response Act describes the leave available on our website at: https://tinyurl.com/y2kkhxot
Q: Is there compensation available for those with immunodeficiency diagnosis?
A: There are three types of leave available. You may use accrued (sick) leave. You may also apply for the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), which is unpaid or a Leave of Absence which is also unpaid.
Q: I do not have childcare available. Can I bring my kids to work with me on days when students are not in the building?
A: No, employees cannot bring their children to work.
Q: Can I work from home on days when students are not there?
A: Employees must report to work each day (PL, NT, Remote) unless otherwise directed by the Superintendent.
Q: Will masks/face coverings be required?
A: Face coverings/masks are required to be properly worn by all employees and students in grades 3-12 where social distancing is not possible. Face coverings for all students in Pre-K-2 is strongly recommended. Wood County Schools is providing students and employees with at least two (2) masks. In addition, face shields are available for certain staff. All school employees and students are permitted to wear their own face coverings from home. Accommodations are made for employees and students who cannot wear a face covering as determined by a physician.
Q: How will social distancing be maintained?
A: Hallways will have directional and spacing reminders throughout the buildings. Signage will be posted to promote social distancing. Student desks will face the same direction. While sitting at tables, students will face the same direction unless barriers such as sneeze guards are installed. Students will be educated on proper social distancing guidelines and expectations. Hallways and lunchrooms will be supervised to ensure guidelines are being followed.
Q: How will music/choral/band classes be managed?
A: Classes will adhere to six (6) feet of distance between students while singing or playing instruments. Classes can be held outside, weather permitting. Alternate spaces that allow for appropriate distancing will be used when inside.Q: All shared objects (e.g., art supplies, physical education equipment, music equipment) must be disinfected between use.
A: Students' personal items should not be shared with their classmates.
Q: What will be the dismissal procedure for student walkers, parent/guardian pick-ups, and student drivers?
A: Each school will establish a suitable protocol for dismissing students at the end of the day to reduce congestion.
Q: How will extracurricular activities be conducted?
A: Wood County Secondary Schools will follow guidelines established by the West Virginia Secondary Schools Activities Commission (WVSSAC). All extracurricular activities for elementary schools are on hold until further notice. Field trips, assemblies, and performances will be conducted virtually.
Q: Will certain special education staff be supplied with shields in addition to masks?
A: Yes. Teachers and aides of preschool special needs, teachers of hearing impaired, interpreters, and speech language pathologists will receive face shields to deliver specially designed instruction to students with disabilities.
Q: How will special education teachers deliver pull out and inclusion services to students in general education classrooms?
A: IEP services must be implemented as delineated in the student’s IEP. IEP Committees may need to reconvene or be amended to address the most appropriate instructional delivery method regarding re-entry guidelines.
Q: If students receive less than 60% of the school day in a special education self-contained classroom, will parents have the option of students attending on campus Monday – Thursday?
A: Yes. In addition, parents of students with disabilities may also have the option of having students attend five days per week. If transportation is a related service, be certain to contact the Department of Transportation so that these services can be scheduled.
Q: What about students receiving special education services through gifted?
A: Parents with students identified as gifted may also have the option of having students attend school four or five days per week.
Q: If special education teachers have questions regarding students with disabilities participating in Virtual School, who do they contact?
A: Please have the special education teacher contact the respective Specialist in our county Special Education Office. Our Office of Special Education will be sending guidance to principals that will also be posted on Schoology under the Department of Education.
PARENTS and VISITORS
Q: Are visitors allowed into Wood County School Buildings?
A: Yes. Signs to inform visitors will be displayed at all entrances to school buildings. Non-essential visitors to any Wood County School Building will be limited. Also, essential visitors must be assessed by a designated employee before entering a school building and will be restricted to a designated visitor area. Further, visitors are not permitted in commons areas, cafeterias or classrooms.
Q: Can parents/guardians meet with staff in the school building?
A: Yes, if deemed appropriate by the school administration. The recommended communication should be meetings conducted virtually as much as possible. If a face to face meeting is required, the space will be cleaned after each meeting. Also, all visitors are required to wear a face covering at all times.
Q: What if emergency personnel are required to respond to an emergency?
A: Emergency Service Personnel responding to an emergency are not considered visitors and will have access to the building to respond in a timely manner.
Q: How will parents pick up children from the after-school YMCA program?
A: As each YMCA program is unique to each school, each school/program will establish appropriate procedures for their school.
Q: What if my child is sick or has an appointment and I need to pick them up from school?
A: Follow the visitor protocol, go to the visitor entrance and report to the main office. Face coverings will be required. You will stay in the designated visitor area while waiting for your child.
Q: Will students who do not have online access at home be provided with some way to access the Internet?
A: The county and WVDE has established Wi-Fi “hotspots” at each school through the installation of outdoor access points on each building. This will allow students to access the Internet in the parking lot of the schools. These outdoor access points are also being installed at each public library and state parks within the state. Also “hotspots” will be provided for homes that do not have internet access and do not have the ability to get the child to one of the county “hotspot” areas.
Q: Will students be provided with a technology device to take home to work on school-related lessons?
A: Yes – Each student will be provided an iPad device to take home to work on their lessons online. Students must also have these with them each day they attend school in person and keep them charged for use.
Q: What will be the process for students to pick up their devices?
A: Between Aug 31-Sept 3, parents/guardians and students will be allowed to come to school to pick up the device. There will be an outdoor area at each school to be utilized for pick up. Do not enter the school building during this time. AUP forms must be signed by parent/guardians and students before the devices can be picked up. Contact the school for pick up areas and times available.
When schools are in:
Green: Students attending 5 days per week
Take student attendance as usual: mark students present when they are in your building; mark them absent when they are not.
Yellow: Hybrid model – students remote learning 3 days per week and in person 2 days per week
a) When students are in the buildings mark them present or absent as usual.
b) When students are remote learning mark them present.
Red: Students are attending full remote learning 5 days per week - mark students present.
Student absent notes:
When a student is absent and turns in a note upon coming back to school, mark and code the absence according to the excuse in the note.
Example: If WCS is in yellow and the student is supposed to have “in building” learning on Monday and Wednesday and the student is absent Monday and returns to school on Wednesday and the note states that the student was sick Monday and Tuesday record the absence for Monday and Tuesday.
Students coding when they have been placed on quarantine:
When a student/family is quarantined due to a positive COVID test or exposure to COVID; code the student absence as H1E.