Reunite - The Path Forward

The COVID-19 pandemic has, in many ways, changed our educational, economic, societal, and everyday way of life. We face an extraordinary challenge that will require the deployment of our individual and collective expertise to address the needs of students, families, staff, faculty, and school communities. Now is the time for each of us to show conviction and courage in the decisions that are made based upon historical changes in the state of Michigan and worldwide.

Click the corresponding cover to view the plan for your student's grade level. Questions? Reunite@plymouthchristian.org. 

COVID-19 PCA Dashboard

COVID19-Dashboard11-21to11-27
COVID Dashboard November 14-November 20

COVID Dashboard November 7-November 13

COVID Dashboard November 1-November7

COVID Dashboard October 17-October 23

COVID Dashboard October 10-October 16

COVID Dashboard October 3-October 10

COVID Dashboard September 26-October 2

COVID-19 Resources

Reunite FAQ's-PCA Specifics

Why does PCA feel it's important to open on campus for in-person learning this fall?

We know that learning is most effective when our students are engaged, face to face with our caring, dedicated, and committed teachers in a live, vibrant environment with their fellow classmates.  We also believe that students’ social and emotional well being are supported when they are in community with their peers. 

What is cohorting, and how does it work?

One important strategy we are using is called cohorting (or forming “pods”). Cohorting forms groups of students, and sometimes teachers or staff, that stay together throughout most of the school day to minimize exposure for students, teachers, and staff across the school environment. Currently, there is no published scientific study on optimal maximum or minimum cohort sizes in reducing SARS-CoV-2 transmission among school-aged children. However, CDC modeling demonstrates that smaller cohort sizes are generally associated with less transmission in schools. Smaller cohorts mean more limited contacts, but there is no specific threshold for optimal size.

Ideally, students and staff within a cohort would only have physical proximity with others in the same cohort. This practice may help prevent the spread of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, by limiting cross-over of students, teachers, and staff to the extent possible, thus:

  • decreasing opportunities for exposure to or transmission of SARS-CoV-2,
  • facilitating more efficient contact tracing in the event of a positive case, and
  • allowing for targeted testing, quarantine, and isolation of a single cohort instead of school-wide measures in the event of a positive case or cluster of cases.

We are using some of the following mitigation strategies for 7th-12th grade students:

  • 2-way hallways
  • no chapels (chapel will be live-streamed into classrooms)or assemblies
  • lunches in various location to allow for distancing
  • assigned entry doors
  • students waiting “in the cue” to enter their next classroom so the teacher can disinfect the classroom between each class
  • desk spacing
  • use of larger and outdoor spaces when feasible
What strategies are we using to help students, teachers and staff be successful in reducing the risk of spreading SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19?

Currently, the most effective way to reduce the spread of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, is using multiple mitigation strategies in combination. Various measures such as the following are part of that strategy:

  • Students, faculty, and staff staying home when sick
  • Use of facial coverings per CDC/State of Michigan recommendations
  • Social distancing
  • Disinfecting frequently touched surfaces
  • Hand washing and use of hand sanitizer
  • Appropriately covering coughs and sneezes
  • Increased classroom ventilation (open doors & windows, ionizing fans)
  • Touchless bathroom faucets, bottle refill stations

Some of these strategies may be new for students, teachers, and staff to implement in the school setting. Therefore, increased education, training, and having protocols to ensure these strategies are implemented as intended are necessary to increase the likelihood of reducing the transmission of SARS-CoV-2.

We will educate staff and families about when they or their child(ren) should stay home and when they can return to school, while actively encouraging employees and students who are sick or who have recently had close contact with a person with COVID-19 to stay home. We will teach and reinforce proper hygiene practices among all students, teachers, and staff. 

Who will be cleaning our buildings?

PCA's cleaning company is Corporate Cleaning. To learn more about Corporate Cleaning, click HERE. In addition to the normal cleaning services that we get with Corporate Cleaning during a regular school year, we have added two custodians to our campus during the school day. These custodians will be disinfecting high traffic surfaces such as doorknobs and restrooms throughout the day. They will also be using PCA's new electrostatic cleaner, the Clorox 360 when needed. To learn more about this brand new technology, please click HERE.

What cleaning products will PCA be using for disinfection?

PCA will be using a few different products for disinfection. Our cleaning company, Corporate Cleaning, will be supplying the majority of the cleaning supplies that will be used throughout both buildings and all classrooms.

To learn about the main product, Hillyards QT Plus, that we will be using throughout the buildings and supplying for classroom disinfection, click HERE.  According to the EPA, Hillyards QT Plus is approved for use against COVID. Click HERE to visit the EPA website and learn more.

In the case that Hillyards QT Plus is out of stock, Corporate Cleaning will be using Hillyards QT3. Click HERE to read about this product.

In addition to using the above two products, we will be supplying our classrooms with the following products:

Clorox Wipes: Click HERE to learn more.

What is contact tracing and how will PCA be doing this?

Contact tracing is a time-tested method used by epidemiologists to minimize spread of disease. Simply put, it is a system of notifying people who have had close contact with someone who tested positive, so that they can monitor themselves for symptoms and practice safe strategies to keep from spreading the virus until the incubation time has passed.

As a school, we will be keeping records of visitors entering and exiting our buildings, and their travels throughout our building.  Additionally, in accordance with state and local laws and regulations, PCA administrators will work with local health officials to inform those who have had close contact with a person diagnosed with COVID-19 to stay home and self-monitor for symptoms.

Click HERE to view the CDC's Contact Tracing Infographic.

Where can I learn more about PCA's Eagles at Home online program?

We know that there are many questions regarding our brand new Eagles at Home online program. Please click HERE to visit the Eagles at Home webpage. 

Should I wait after dropping my student off in the morning to make sure they pass their temperature check?

We are asking that parents drop their children off and allow them to walk in by themselves (1st grade and above), to limit the number of people inside our buildings. In the rare event that your child has a fever of 100.4 or higher, you will receive a phone call within five minutes of drop-off. To keep the parking lot traffic pattern flowing, we ask that you do not wait in the parking lot, but instead depart as you normally would. 

What time will temperature scanning begin?

Temperature scanning will begin at different times for elementary and secondary students. 

Elementary Temp Scanning

For elementary, temperature checks will start at 7:15 am, when BSC students begin to arrive

Secondary Temp Scanning

For secondary, temperature checks will start at 7:00 am

Reunite FAQ's-Specifics about COVID, Testing, Other Illnesses

What happens if a student or staff member tests positive for COVID-19?

A Positive COVID Case and our School Community

A single or even a few cases of COVID within our school community may not be enough to trigger a complete closure of our school. We will be working closely with the Wayne County Health Department, regularly reporting any cases within our school. We will follow the advice of the health department regarding total school closure, but that would most likely not occur unless we exceeded the level of spread in our local community.  Cases of COVID within classes could trigger quarantine of classes throughout the year. 

A Positive COVID Case and that Individual's Family

Per the Wayne County Health Department:

If a student/staff member does test positive:

The student/staff member AND all household members of the student/staff member are immediately excluded from school until:

  • 10 days since symptoms first appeared; AND

  • At least 24 hours with no fever (>100.4 F) (without the use of fever-reducing medication) AND

  • Symptoms have improved (e.g. cough, shortness of breath, diarrhea, etc.)

    The confirmed positive student/ staff member is instructed to isolate at home.

    Household members, classmates, and teachers who have been within 6 feet of the person for at least 15 minutes of the isolated student/ staff person who are close contacts are excluded for 14 days after their last date of close contact with the positive case.

What happens when a student or staff member within our school is symptomatic and pending COVID-19 test results?

The student/staff member is excluded from school while awaiting test results.

The student/staff person must be excluded from school until:

• They obtain a negative test result; AND

• They are symptom-free for 24 hours without the use of medications prior to returning to school.

Family members of the person awaiting their test result should remain home until the family member's test result is received. If negative, they can return to school. If positive, the family member must quarantine for 14 days from the last close contact. 

A student or staff member who is symptomatic, but refuses to be tested is considered to have had a positive test result.

What happens if a student or staff member is identified as a "close contact" to a confirmed COVID-19 case?

Per the Wayne County Health Department:

The student/staff member is immediately excluded from school until:

• 14 days since the last date of exposure to the person who tested positive

The “close contact” is instructed to quarantine at home.

Household members, classmates, and teachers of the quarantined student/staff member may continue to attend school and should monitor for symptoms.

If symptoms develop, they are instructed to call a medical provider and get tested for COVID-19. 

What happens if a household member of a student or staff member has been confirmed to have COVID-19?

Per the Wayne County Health Department:

The student/staff member who lives in the same house as a COVID-19 positive person is excluded from school and will self-quarantine until:

14 days have passed after the last date of close contact with the household member.

What happens if a household member of a student or staff member is both symptomatic and is a "close contact" of a COVID-19 positive test and is pending test results?

Per the Wayne County Health Department:

Students/staff members who live in the same household as a household member who is both symptomatic, and is a close contact of a COVID-19 positive case and that household member is waiting on COVID-19 test results, is excluded from school.

If the household member is positive, the student/staff member who lives in the same house as a COVID-19 positive person is excluded from school and will self-quarantine until:

  • 14 days have passed after the last date of close contact with the household member.

If the household member is negative, the student can return to school.

What happens if a household member of a student or staff member is a "close contact" to a known positive COVID-19 case?

Per the Wayne County Health Department:

Student or staff member can remain in school and is monitored for COVID-19 symptoms.

If COVID-19 symptoms develop in the household member, they are instructed to call a medical provider and get tested for COVID-19 and must be excluded from school. Students/staff members who live in the same household as a household member who is both symptomatic, and is a close contact of a COVID-19 positive case and that household member is waiting on COVID-19 test results, is excluded from school.

If I've been sick, when is it safe for me to end quarantine?

The following link provides all the details you need to know when you can end quarantine after being sick: 

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/if-you-are-sick/end-home-isolation.html

How can you tell the difference between allergies, colds, flu, and COVID?

We understand that many students and staff suffer from seasonal allergies and asthma. With that in mind, we are requesting that if these items are regularly occurring, and you don't want them to cause missed school days, please provide PCA with a letter from your child's doctor for the school to keep on file. 

We are asking our parents to partner with us to keep PCA as healthy as possible. A simple question you can ask when assessing your child's health on a daily basis each morning is whether their symptoms (if they have any) are new or unusual. For example, if you know that your child suffers from allergies in the fall and their nose has been running for days, that is a normal occurrence for them. But if they wake up with a runny nose and body aches, that would be unusual. It's the new and unusual or worsening signs that indicate they need to stay home. 

Is there a simple way to determine if I should get tested for COVID?

This simple "Self-Checker" provided by the CDC is a very easy way to determine when to get tested or seek medical help. Click HERE to visit the COVID symptom page, scroll down until you see the "Self-Checker box". This test is specifically for people 18 and over. 

 

 

How do I know when I need to quarantine?

This CDC webpage provides all the information you need to determine if and for how long you need to quarantine. Click HERE.

If one member of my family has symptoms of COVID (fever of 100.4 or over, cough, body aches, difficulty breathings, and so on), does the rest of the family need to quarantine?

If one member of your family has any symptoms of COVID: 

From the CDC: People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. People with these symptoms may have COVID-19:

    • Fever or chills
    • New or worsening cough
    • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
    • Fatigue
    • Muscle or body aches
    • Headache
    • New loss of taste or smell
    • New or worsening sore throat
    • New or worsening congestion or runny nose
    • Nausea or vomiting
    • Diarrhea

This list does not include all possible symptoms. CDC will continue to update this list as we learn more about COVID-19. If someone in your household is experiencing these symptoms, please contact your physician.

If testing is recommended, and while test results are pending, we ask that family members remain at home while awaiting the test results. If negative, they can return to school. If positive, they must self-quarantine for 14 days for the last close contact with the positive family member. 

Should your child be tested for COVID-19?

Please use the following chart to determine when you would want to consider testing for your child:

 

This article provides great information about testing in general, and what to discuss with your pediatrician. Click HERE

If I were to be infected with COVID-19, how soon would I start to be contagious?

The time from exposure to symptom onset (known as the incubation period) is thought to be three to 14 days, though symptoms typically appear within four or five days after exposure.

We know that a person with COVID-19 may be contagious 48 to 72 hours before starting to experience symptoms. Emerging research suggests that people may actually be most likely to spread the virus to others during the 48 hours before they start to experience symptoms.

If true, this strengthens the case for face masks, physical distancing, and contact tracing, all of which can help reduce the risk that someone who is infected but not yet experiencing symptoms may unknowingly infect others.

Taken from Harvard Health: https://www.health.harvard.edu/diseases-and-conditions/if-youve-been-exposed-to-the-coronavirus 

If I do get infected with COVID, how long would I continue to be contagious? At what point in my illness will I be most contagious?

People are thought to be most contagious early in the course of their illness, when they are beginning to experience symptoms, especially if they are coughing and sneezing. But people with no symptoms can also spread the coronavirus to other people if they stand too close to them. In fact, people who are infected may be more likely to spread the illness if they are asymptomatic, or in the days before they develop symptoms, because they are less likely to be isolating or adopting behaviors designed to prevent spread.

People who test positive for COVID-19 can end self-isolation 10 days after their symptoms began, they are fever-free for 24 hours, and are experiencing an improvement in symptoms.

If I do get COVID, how long would it take for me to feel better?

It depends on how sick you get. Most people with mild cases appear to recover within one to two weeks. However, recent surveys conducted by the CDC found that recovery may take longer than previously thought, even for adults with milder cases who do not require hospitalization. The CDC survey found that one-third of these adults had not returned to normal health within two to three weeks of testing positive for COVID-19. Among younger adults (ages 18 to 34) who did not require hospitalization and who did not have any underlying health conditions, nearly one in five had not returned to normal health within two to three weeks after testing positive for COVID-19. With severe cases, recovery can take six weeks or more.

Some people may experience longer-term physical, cognitive, and psychological problems. Their symptoms may alternately improve and worsen over time, and can include a variety of difficulties, from fatigue and trouble concentrating to anxiety, muscle weakness, and continuing shortness of breath.

Taken from Harvard Health: https://www.health.harvard.edu/diseases-and-conditions/if-youve-been-exposed-to-the-coronavirus

How long after I start to feel better would it be safe for me to go back out in public again?

The most recent CDC guidance states that someone who has had COVID-19 can discontinue isolation once they have met the following criteria:

  1. It has been more than 10 days since your symptoms began.
  2. You have been fever-free for more than 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medications.
  3. Other symptoms have improved.

The CDC is no longer recommending a negative COVID-19 test before going back out in public.

Anyone who tested positive for COVID-19 but never experienced symptoms may discontinue isolation 10 days after they first tested positive for COVID-19.

Even after discontinuing isolation, you should still take all precautions when you go out in public, including wearing a mask, minimizing touching surfaces, and keeping at least six feet of distance away from other people.

Taken from Harvard Health: https://www.health.harvard.edu/diseases-and-conditions/if-youve-been-exposed-to-the-coronavirus

Reunite FAQ's-Face Coverings 

What is the definition of a face covering?

A facial covering is cloth material that covers the nose and mouth. Facial coverings may be secured to the head or simply wrapped around the lower face. They can be made of a variety of materials, such as cotton or linen, and can be factory-made or made by hand.

 

Are face shields acceptable alternatives to face shields?

No. The CDC does not recommend the use of face shields as a substitute for cloth face coverings.  However, a face shield that covers the eyes, nose, and mouth can be worn in addition to a cloth mask if desired.  Moreover, a face shield may be worn by younger children who are not required to wear a cloth face mask.

 

How do you safely wear a face mask?

Who determines whether or not a student/staff member can medically tolerate a facial covering?

People who should not wear facial coverings include the following:

  • Children younger than 2 years old
  • Anyone who has trouble breathing
  • Anyone who is unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove the cloth face-covering without assistance

Schools should require documentation from a medical professional, as they do for other types of accommodations.

 

Do masks really work to prevent COVID from spreading?

We understand the polarizing climate that surrounds the use of face masks. However, as a school, we are going to abide by the mandates set forth by the State of Michigan regarding the use of face coverings. We also believe that the use of face coverings, along with other mitigation strategies, will help to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The following articles from a variety of sources provide great information about the use of face coverings and the effectiveness of them. 

Mayo Clinic: COVID-19: How much protection do face masks offer?

Stanford: 5 Questions: Stanford scientists on COVID-19 mask guidelines

MIT Medical: Do cloth masks actually work? 

LiveScience: Visualization shows exactly how face masks stop COVID-19 transmission

Gospel Coalition: 4 reasons to wear a mask, even if I hate it? 

Reunite FAQ's-Miscellaneous

What if a family or staff member travels to another state?

State and local governments may have travel restrictions in place, including testing requirements, stay-at-home orders, and quarantine requirements upon arrival. Currently, the state of Michigan is not one of the 14 states with travel restrictions in place. For up-to-date information and travel guidance, check the state and local health department where you are, along your route, and where you are going. Prepare to be flexible during your trip as restrictions and policies may change during your travel.

Town Hall 2020

Thanks to all who attended the 2020 Town Hall. Thank you for submitting your questions in advance, and throughout the event. We did our best to answer as many as we could, but if we missed them, we will be posting answers in the FAQ's below. If you were unable to attend the Town Hall, the video can be viewed below. If you still have questions after reading the Reunite documents above and viewing this webinar, please send them to Reunite@plymouthchristian.org.