Safety requirements for students, teachers, and staff
•We have in place protocols and procedures for students, faculty, and staff to ensure appropriate social distancing when on school grounds and in school facilities.
• We have received signage, including but not limited to signs to remind individuals to remain six feet apart, signs to support appropriate movement protocols, and floor markers that show six feet in distance. We redesigned movement protocols within our building to minimize congestion, including but not limited to designating one-way direction stairwells, single file routes, and requiring students to stay in their classrooms during lunch periods. This includes larger shared spaces (e.g.: gym, cafeteria, auditorium, school-yard) and protocols on entrance and departure from the building.
PPE and Face Coverings:
• We have put in place protocols and procedures for students, faculty, staff, and other individuals to ensure appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is used to protect against the transmission of the COVID-19 virus when on school grounds and in school facilities, including buses.
• Face coverings are a proven effective tool in preventing the spread of COVID-19 and are a necessary component for our plans for school reopening and for ensuring the safety of students and staff. As face coverings contribute to slowing the transmission of COVID-19, face coverings will be required inside school buildings. Exceptions will be developmentally- and age-appropriate, consistent with guidance of health agencies, and paired with increased PPE for staff.
• We will distribute appropriate PPE for students and staff to use when inside school building. Students and staff will be able to bring their own face coverings, but if for any reason someone comes to a school building without the needed PPE, our school will have face coverings available. The nurse/health professional and any additional staff supervising our school building’s Isolation Room will be given the appropriate PPE, including, but not limited to, N95 respirator masks, gloves, gowns, and face shields or goggles.
• Signage will be provided to remind students, faculty, and staff of the importance of wearing appropriate PPE.
• Physical distancing guidelines and mandatory use of face coverings will be enforced for all individuals while in the building. Exceptions to face covering usage are as follows:
- Students who cannot tolerate a face covering medically, including where students with such coverings would impair their physical or mental health, will not be subject to wearing a face covering.
- Where the use of face covering is inappropriate considering the development level or age of the student.
• Appropriate signage will be used outdoors as needed, and will be visible upon entry and throughout school building, including entrances, exits, classrooms, offices, public assembly spaces and corridors.
• Signage, face coverings, and other forms of personal protective equipment (PPE) such as hand sanitizer, gloves, and thermometers, will be available.
• Hand sanitizing dispensers have been installed throughout high traffic areas and in every classroom.
• Wellness barriers have been placed in the general office, and at the main school safety desk.
• Custodians will sanitize school building on a nightly basis with an electrostatic sprayer
that is CDC approved. Cleaning and disinfection will include all high touch surfaces: classrooms, desks & chairs, conference tables, drinking fountains, door handles and push plates, conference tables, light switches, restroom fixtures, partitions and hardware, buttons on hardware, buttons on vending machines, elevator buttons, gym padding, and physical therapy equipment.
• We have a plan in place to support movement that upholds physical distancing throughout the building, e.g. the use of one directional stairwells and single file travel patterns.
• Face coverings will be worn at all times except while eating or drinking.
• Per SDOH guidelines, appropriate signage, e.g., directional markers and physical
distancing guidelines, are displayed on walls and floors throughout all travel routes.
• Travel areas will be appropriately staffed to support students with physical
• To reduce movement throughout the building, teachers will travel from class to class,
with students remaining in the same room throughout the day to the extent possible. If
students have to travel, proper social distancing protocols will be followed.
• Where possible, students will remain with the same group of students, in a cohort,
throughout the day.
Bathroom Usage (For Students and Staff)
• Bathroom use will not exceed established cap (based on physical distancing guidelines) at any given time.
• We have adjusted how bathrooms will be used to accommodate for physical distancing requirements, e.g., use of alternate stalls and/or sinks.
• Appropriate signage regarding hand washing and physical distancing is displayed.
Public Assembly Spaces
• Use of large assembly spaces (e.g. cafeteria, auditorium, library, and, gymnasium) will comply with physical distancing guidelines.
Exterior Spaces/Play Yards
• Multiple cohorts of students may use larger exterior spaces concurrently, provided that physical distancing is practiced between and within cohorts and students are well supervised.
• Ground markings will be used to encourage physical distancing.
• We will endeavor to maximize the use of outdoor space for multiple uses, including instruction where feasible and appropriate.
• We will adopt procedures that allow students to engage in physical distancing while exiting the building.
• Additional school personnel will be deployed strategically to assist students.
• We have identified designated points of egress using signage visible to all.
• For students being dismissed, e.g., play yards, physical distancing markers and directional signs will be in use.
• Families have beeen notified of the exit procedures and encouraged to arrive at designated times to avoid congestion.
• We have assigned staff to school yard or exterior of school to encourage students and parents to not congregate outside.
• We have posted signage at points of egress conspicuously identifying the dismissal protocols and DOHMH’s four core actions to stop the spread of COVID-19: stay home if sick, keep physical distance, keep your hands clean, and wear a face covering. Signage will be available in multiple languages.
Hygiene, Cleaning, and Disinfection:
• There will be increased access and regular opportunities for students and staff to wash hands or use hand sanitizer throughout the day. At the start of the school year, DOE will provide all schools with necessary health and cleaning supplies to help protect students and staff from COVID-19, including hand sanitizer, soap, and disinfectants. We will make the maximum number of sinks available for handwashing. We will also increase cleaning throughout the school day, with special attention to high-touch areas.
- Umit Serin, Principal: USerin@schools.nyc.gov
Joyce Heskial, Assistant Principal: JHeskial@schools.nyc.gov
Tammy Tucker, Assistant Principal: TTucker4@schools.nyc.gov
Pei-Hsia Wang, Parent Coordinator: PWang@schools.nyc.gov
Nadege Normil, Guidance Counselor: NNormil@schools.nyc.gov
Anna Marantidis, School Psychologist: AMarantidis@schools.nyc.gov
Updates/ Important School Opening News
Mental Health, Behavioral, and Emotional Support Services and Programs
Unprecedented levels of stress, trauma, and social isolation from COVID-19 have created a public health emergency, with a notable disproportionate impact for low-income communities and communities of color. When students return to school this fall, many will be struggling with increased anxiety, depression, trauma, and grief that will impact their ability to engage in learning and remain focused on their educational goals. Addressing the social-emotional needs of our school community through trauma-informed approaches to teaching and learning wil be our top priority for school re-opening and throughout the year. To advance this priority, we will support our staff at all levels to understand trauma and build trauma-informed approaches into their practices and plans for the coming school year. We are committed to partnering with communities to create trauma-informed school that offers robust SEL and mental health support through a tiered infrastructure, with a focus on community building and resilience.
In order to fulfill the vision for comprehensive mental health and SEL supports we will work on developing the following core components:
- Trauma-Informed Care
- Bridge to School Plan
- Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS) Infrastructure
- Strengthen Tier 1 SEL (Explicit SEL Instruction and SEL-Academic Integration)
- Targeted Mental Health Supports
Trauma-Informed Care (TIC)
We will implement a comprehensive, multi-part professional learning series that empowers teachers with foundational knowledge and basic skills of trauma-informed care.These trauma modules include examination of equity and cultural considerations, the importance of adult self-care, and actionable trauma-informed strategies for classroom teachers and all support staff.
Bridge to School Plan
In order to support the long-term mental health of students, families, and educators, we will prioritize SEL and wellness during the initial re-opening transition, ensuring that all students have access to a foundational period of stabilization and support. This period will include opportunities to build coping skills, process grief, re-connect, build community, and orient themselves to the new dual environments and expectations. By establishing this emotional foundation, the number of students requiring intensive clinical mental health services may be reduced. Standardizing this initial care also prevents adults from pathologizing behavior that reflects a normal stress response and prevents students from being re- traumatized by a premature referral for clinical services.
Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS)
Our school is equipped to offer tiered social-emotional and mental health supports to students, as determined through a data-based decision-making process.
Strengthen Tier 1 SEL (Explicit SEL Instruction and SEL-Academic Integration)
This year, we will continue using SANFORD HARMONY( an age- and developmentally-appropriate SEL program).
Integrating social-emotional learning (SEL) into core academic instruction ensures that students are experiencing safe, welcoming, and culturally responsive environments, that students have daily opportunities to experience SEL within content-driven lessons, and that they are developing the SEL competencies they need in order to be successful in school and in the future.
Targeted Mental Health Supports
The DOE has a robust network of mental health services for students. We have established relationships with programs and resources to provide direct services, community linkages and referrals, staff coaching and training, and crisis response.
These include School Mental Health Clinics, on-site CBO-provided direct counseling services (Prevention and Intervention Program, Community School Mental Health), School Mental Health Consultant Program, School Response Clinicians, Children’s Mobile Crisis Team, and DOE Social Workers and School Counselors. All programs and partners are prepared to address the expected increase in student mental health needs upon returning to school.
Students’ increased exposure to trauma and loss and the extended separation from core support systems will also necessitate expanded access to on-site, direct mental health supports (in person or through tele-therapy). Following implementation of the aforementioned “stabilization period” and concurrently with robust Tier 1 interventions, we will use data to make determinations about the appropriate group or individual intervention for students in need.