Health and Safety Plan Summary:

Philly Agile Learning Community

Updated: September 7, 2022

This plan describes the steps Philly ALC plans on taking this upcoming school year to help prevent the transmission of COVID 19, and why we are taking them.

Philly Agile Learning Community plans to make decisions about how we operate during this pandemic based on the best available science; within the bounds of state directives; subject to financial and logistical constraints; and with a focus on protecting the health and welfare of students and their families, Facilitators, and the broader public. 

 

In order to prepare for the widest range of possible scenarios, and to respond to unforeseen circumstances as they arise, we must lay out and continually update our assumptions. Our assumptions are informed by the most relevant research, scientific consensus, and current guidance from public health officials. 

 

Covid-19  (Hat Tip to Abrome school for this)

  • Covid-19 will still be present in Philadelphia during academic year 2022-2023, and we have direct members of our community that are in “increased-risk” categories for Covid-19 complications

  • Transmission assumptions:

    • Covid-19 is contagious 

    • Covid-19 spreads through person-to-person contact, especially in group settings

    • It is highly likely that asymptomatic individuals (infected people not exhibiting symptoms) are able to spread the disease

    • Airborne transmission (e.g., breathing) is more likely than fomite transmission (e.g., touching a doorknob, handshake) 

    • The greater the number of virus particles someone comes into contact with, the greater likelihood they will develop Covid-19.

    • Transmission is far more likely to happen in indoor environments than outdoors 

  • Groups of people tend to have a greater risk of serious complication or death include:

    • Older adults

    • People with certain underlying medical conditions (e.g., asthma, diabetes, obesity, lung disease, cardiovascular disease)

    • People with weakened immune systems due to medical conditions or treatments (e.g., cancer treatment)

  • Non-pharmaceutical interventions that reduce risk of transmission include:

    • Increasing the distance between individuals; disperses the viral particles expelled into the environment, reducing the number of viral particles that any one person is exposed to 

    • School closures and stay-at-home orders; greatly reduces the average number of people an infected person interacts with

    • Quarantine or self-isolation; prevents someone who may have come into contact with an infected person from further spreading the disease 

    • Wearing a mask covering the nose and mouth; reduces the number of viral particles that others are exposed to

    • Regular hand-washing and disinfecting of surfaces; reduces the likelihood of fomite transmission

  • Vaccination

    • COVID-19 vaccines are now widely available and strongly encouraged. Children six months of age and older are now eligible for the primary COVID vaccine and those five and older are eligible for booster shots. To learn more about vaccines and where to get them, visit the Covid-19 Information Hub, the City of Philadelphia’s website here or www.vaccines.gov.

  •  Needs of young people

    • Human connection is vital to mental health and well-being

    • Human connection is vital to a sense of psychological safety

    • Human connection is vital to learning

    • People of all ages need human connection

    • Online learning platforms limit the potential for human connection

    • Unreasonable and overly restrictive social distancing measure limit the potential for human connection

    • Access to and time spent in nature produces physical and mental health benefits 

  • Needs of families

    • Parents who are required to work or attend school outside the home need care for their children.

    • Parents who are juggling working from home and caring for their children need support providing opportunities for socialization, learning, and enrichment for their children.

 

Our goal is to make it possible for students to meet face to face while limiting the likelihood of transmission of COVID. The following helps us to achieve this goal:

  • Masking

    • We will continue to mask while inside the building.  The only exception will be for people who are eating in our designated indoor eating areas.  

    • Masks will not be required outside.

    • Every student should have at least one extra mask with them daily.

    • After the first two week of school, the students and ALFs will reevaluate how masks are working in the school, and request a change in the policy from the assembly if needed/desired.

  • Isolation

    • Students and staff who test positive for COVID-19 are required to isolate at home for at least 5 calendar days.  Parents should notify the school of any positive test.  If symptom-free for 24 hours after 5 days of isolation, students and staff may return to school with a negative rapid test but must wear a high-quality (N95 or KN95) mask for an additional 5 days. Students and staff are permitted to return after 10 days with no additional precautions.

    • Students and staff who show symptoms of COVID-19 should stay home, and not return to school until they have been symptom free for 24 hours.

  • Communication

    • Transparency keeps us all safe. In the event that there is confirmation that someone who has tested positive for COVID was in the school building the day of testing positive or up to two days before, we will communicate that fact to the community, and alert anyone we think had close contact.

  • School Closure

    • If school is ever closed for more than one day, we will make online programming available to all students. 

    • We will respond to the requirements of city and state governments and close school if required.

    • In an effort to contain wide community spread, we will close school for up to five days in the event that there is a confirmed likely transmission of COVID at school.  (ie one student tests positive, and then another student tests positive, with the likely cause being transmission at school.)   

  • Vaccines

    • COVID-19 vaccines are encouraged but not required. Children six months of age and older are now eligible for the primary COVID vaccine and those five and older are eligible for booster shots. To learn more about vaccines and where to get them, visit the Covid-19 Information Hub, the City of Philadelphia’s website here or www.vaccines.gov.

  • Visitors

    • Caregivers and guests are now allowed inside the building, following all the masking and other COVID protocols.

  • Pick up and Drop Off

    • Students may now directly enter the building at drop off, without screening. Families should continue to self-screen before leaving for school. Anyone exhibiting two or more covid symptoms should stay home or take a home rapid test before returning to school.

    • Caregivers are welcome to come inside at drop off and at pick up.

    • The door will usually be unlocked between 8:30 and 9:30, and between 3:30 and 4.

Health and Safety Plan Governing Body Affirmation Statement

The School Assembly for Philly Agile Learning Community reviewed and approved the Phased School Reopening Health and Safety Plan on July 31, 2020