Preliminary Health & Safety Protocols

2022-23 School Year

Below are the preliminary COVID-19 health and safety protocols for the 2022-23 school year. Please note that our plans may need to adapt depending on how the summer months progress. Changes will be considered primarily in response to updated public health guidance or other information specific to children and schools.

Questions about health and safety? Please email [email protected] and a member of the leadership team will get back to you.

This page last updated July 26, 2022.


Vaccination

Vaccination

All eligible students and employees must be vaccinated (primary series) against COVID-19 for the 2022-23 school year. Exemptions will be accepted for medical or religious reasons only. Email [email protected] to request an exemption.

We also strongly encourage families to consider ensuring their student is up to date on any boosters as recommended by public health or your healthcare provider.

Masking

Masking

Masks are optional indoors and outdoors unless otherwise directed by public health, or in the event of an outbreak or similar situation.

In the event of a known exposure, close contacts will be asked to mask indoors for ten days.

We will continue to fully support the masking choices of each family and student, acknowledging that there are still those who are immunocompromised or have other high risk factors that require additional protection while attending school.

Exposures

On-Campus Exposures

We anticipate that public health will continue to direct schools to inform impacted families when there is an in-school exposure to COVID-19. Families of students considered close contacts will receive timely communication of these.

In the event of an on-campus exposure, families of students considered close contacts will receive an alert and the recommended guidance from public health to follow on their own using home tests or community-based testing.

If a family needs access to additional rapid tests for use at home, we can provide those.

Testing

COVID-19 Testing

We will have rapid tests for individuals who become symptomatic while on campus. If families need access to additional at-home tests to use following exposures or when experiencing symptoms, we have a limited supply and can distribute those on an as-needed basis.

Symptoms

Symptomatic Individuals

Students with one or more COVID-19 symptoms should stay home and take a rapid test. Notify [email protected] for next steps.

We currently follow the WA DOH guidance for symptomatic individuals. We continue to monitor updates or changes to this guidance.

If your child begins exhibiting any COVID-19 symptoms while at school, the main office will contact you for immediate pick up and next steps, including offering on-site testing.

Please note:

  • Siblings of symptomatic students or other family members do not need to stay home
  • If your child has a documented condition that may occasionally present symptoms similar to COVID-19 (such as seasonal allergies), we can accept a letter from a healthcare provider to serve as an exemption from quarantine or testing in certain situations
Positive test

Positive Cases

Families will be asked to report if their student tests positive as soon as possible to [email protected], including over breaks and weekends. Individuals who test positive will be required to isolate according to public health guidance.

Students who are asymptomatic will be allowed to return to school after five days of isolation and will be required to mask indoors and outdoors through the tenth day of isolation.

  • Students and siblings of a confirmed COVID-19 positive family or household member do not need to stay home if they are and asymptomatic, however they should plan to mask while at school for ten days from exposure and we may recommend daily rapid testing at home
Hand hygiene

Hand Hygiene

Frequent hand washing and sanitizing will be part of the school day. Learning spaces feature the following:

  • Touchless sink faucets
  • Touchless toilet flushers
  • Hand sanitizer dispensers
  • Separate student supplies by cohort/classroom for certain resource classes
Snack lunch

Snack and Lunch

Students in all grades will eat snack and community lunch in classrooms. See ventilation below.

Ventilation

Ventilation

The ventilation in all learning spaces has been optimized using the following measures:

  • Three or more HEPA ionizer air purifiers in each classroom depending on square footage
  • Classroom window fans with reversible air flow

Bertschi School was recently evaluated by the Seattle & King County Public Health program called COVID-19 Recovery Ventilation & Indoor Air Quality. Our school met or exceeded all recommendations and was commended for the measures in place.

Cleaning

Cleaning & Disinfecting

Classrooms, bathrooms, and all common areas throughout campus are cleaned and disinfected thoroughly on a regular, and often daily, basis after school by the facilities and custodial staff. This includes disinfecting all classroom surfaces and bathrooms using electrostatic sprayers and vacuuming carpets. Teachers are also required to perform the following daily cleaning in all classroom spaces:

  • Disinfect desktops, countertops, classroom sinks, and any shared supplies between resource classes
  • Disinfect desktops, countertops, and classroom sinks after school
  • Disinfect laptops
  • Disinfect all other common surfaces
Extended day

Extended Day

Extended day programming will allow students across grade levels to play, learn, and relax together in a variety of indoor and outdoor spaces.

Travel

Travel Policy

We will continue to follow public health guidance around travel quarantines and expect that any ineligible/unvaccinated students will need to quarantine following certain types of travel. Following school breaks, we may ask families to test upon return, depending on the circumstances.

Distance learning

Distance Learning Support

Bertschi does not offer a distance learning program for students in quarantine or isolation. Teachers will continue to provide or suggest school work that can be done at home, as possible, as they would any other student home with an illness.

Future Considerations

Over the summer months, we are monitoring information and guidance for schools. We will communicate any plans or decisions with the community if there is news in these areas.

Families can expect to receive more finalized health and safety plans for the 2022-23 school year in early August. This allows the school time to monitor important information and evolving guidance while balancing the need for our families and faculty/staff to plan.