At Early Steps Learning Center, we are guided by our purpose of looking out for people and always our first priority is the safety of our children, colleagues and community. As we monitor the ongoing developments and safety information related to Coronavirus (COVID-19) we are following guidelines from public health authorities, including the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and our own operational preparedness plan to ensure the center’s continuity and fulfillment of services while working to protect the well-being of our families.
In addition, to the information provided in our parent communication letter, several new precautions have been adopted. The precautions are listed in Italic print at the end of this letter.
Our Preparations and Protocols
School Cleaning + Hygiene
- Deep cleaning the center daily and disinfecting surface areas with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and EPA-approved cleaning disinfectant
- Ensuring that all school buildings have adequate hygiene materials and supporting so that bathrooms are continuously stocked with soap and paper towels
- Supplying all schools and early childhood programs with facemasks to be used if a child or staff member exhibits symptoms and requires isolation prior to transport to a doctor and/or
- Enforcing our handwashing procedures and policy. Have children and staff regularly wash their hands throughout the day, particularly before meal time, when entering a classroom, before and after toileting and diaper changes, after outdoor play time, and any time hands are soiled; and to make changes as needed to assure children have the time. Please make sure you assist your child upon arrival to wash hands properly for 20 seconds
- Teaching children to cough/sneeze in their elbows.
- Mid-day spray- disinfecting toys, shelves, tables and books. Same procedure is followed at end of each day as classrooms are being closed.
- Mid –day spray disinfecting restrooms, interior and exterior door handles, Procare Kiosk and ODJFS tablets.
- Disinfecting main working offices and equipment daily.
- Removing busy toys for visiting children from the foyer.
Additional procedures/practices since 3/14/2020:
- All staff went through a 2 ½ hour training on the protocol ESLC is using to prevent the spread of Covid-19.
- Lesson plans will include proper handwashing techniques and catching your cough/sneeze for children 2 ½ years of age and older.
- Diaper bags are not permitted to stay on the premises upon drop off
- Children’s blankets are not permitted unless provided by the center. (all blankets will be sent home on March 16, 2020)
- Sippy cups from home will not be permitted.
- Parents must wash their hands upon entering in our classrooms or the child will be accepted at the classroom door (no exceptions)
- We will limit the exposure to our staff and children. Visitors and individuals other than parents authorized to pick up must remain in the foyer. Children will be escorted to them after proper identification has been presented.
- All volunteer programs has been cancelled.
- Drinking fountains will be disconnected so that children cannot use them for water
- Tours of the building are suspended until further notice.
- Outside foods such as cups cake, birthday cakes, etc. will not be permitted.
- Social distance protocol will be used for parents at arrival and pickup. No more than 2 parents at a time
Continue to Practice General Viral Infection Prevention Measures Including:
- Wash your hands with soap and water often.
- Please use hand sanitizer where soap and water is not available.
- Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue or sleeve when sneezing or coughing.
- Do not touch your face with unwashed hands.
- Do not shake hands. Instead wave or elbow bump.
- Monitor your health more closely than usual for cold or flu symptoms.
The health and safety of our children continues to be our chief priority, and we will continue to
follow all guidance and take all appropriate measures accordingly and stay in consistent
communication with our families.
Angela Barringer Executive Director
Sharon Jackson, Business Manager