We hope this email finds you and your family in good health. Our country has been through a lot over the past two months, and all of us at WMLC are looking forward to resuming “business as usual.” We are happy to announce that West Metro has reopened and staff have been onsite since Tuesday May 26, 2020.
After discussions among WMLC administration, we have decided not to try to squeeze in spring term sessions before we start our summer term on June 8. Families of clients previously enrolled, paid for and receiving only one or two of their sessions of spring term will be contacted individually regarding funds and how best to finish the curricula.
Going forward, we have carefully developed a plan for our re-opening. Your and your children’s health and well-being are especially important to us, and we have gone to great measures planning how we can best ensure health and safety for you, your children and our staff.
Screening and policies for signs and symptoms of COVID-19
- WMLC will check temperatures before anyone enters the building.
- Anyone who registers a temperature of 100.4 will not be permitted entrance to the building and should go home.
- Every client’s parent or guardian will complete a screening checklist before entering the building. Anyone who endorses any critical symptoms on the checklist will not enter the building and should go home.
- If a client who is already at WMLC reports not feeling well or begins to cough or sneeze, he/she will be go to a designated “clean room,” and staff will take his/her temperature. Staff will call parents anytime a child has a fever. If he/she registers a temperature between 99 and 99.9 degrees, he/she will stay in the designed “clean room” for twenty minutes, and staff will again take his/her temperature. If it has not gone down or has gone higher, he/she will stay in the designated “clean room” until a parent arrives. Staff will walk the client to the parents outside the building. If a client coughs or sneezes only a few times and otherwise feels okay, they will cleanse their hands with hand sanitizer.
- Staff will clean he designated “clean room,” according to OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) COVID-19 standards anytime anyone with a fever has been in the room.
- If anyone goes home with a fever of over 100 degrees or tests positive for COVID-19, WMLC administration will notify all staff and parents, keeping the name of the individual private.
- Everyone will wash his/her hands and/or use sanitizer upon entering or exiting the building, before and after eating, after using the restroom, and after hanging/playing in high traffic areas.
- Signs with instructions on proper handwashing are in each restroom and in the kitchen.
- All visitors to the facility will need to wash and/or sanitize their hands prior to or at once upon entering the building. WMLC has hand-sanitizer dispensers (that use sanitizers of greater than 60% alcohol) and soap and water (when hands are not visibly soiled) for hand hygiene. WMLC has hand sanitizers and reminders to use hand sanitizer throughout the building.
- WMLC will allow no animals in the building.
- Our waiting room no longer offers magazines, children’s toys, etc., since those items are difficult to clean and disinfect.
- Whenever possible, WMLC will prop open front and back doors for extra ventilation.
- Parents and employees should not bring in food to share unless it is still in the package. An employee will wipe the outside of the package with a bleach wipe. Anyone who serves food will wear gloves.
- Lunchtime will be outside or in the SwanShip room (our large room in the middle of the building), with 6-foot distancing between individuals, using tape/visuals to socially distance.
- If a client needs first aid, staff, as per our current policy, will wear gloves.
- Each client will be required to bring his/her own labeled water bottle. WMLC uses purified water from the machine in the lobby. Each room will have its own clean pitchers of purified water. Staff wearing gloves will fill clients’ water bottles. On outings, each staff and client will receive bottled water to refill their water bottles when needed. Staff will sanitize the outside of the water bottle. WMLC will also provide disposable cups and/or bottled water for those who forget their water bottles.
- Staff will send feedback sheets, skills-to-practice, invoices, etc., electronically to avoid any COVID-19 bacteria that can stay on paper for 24-48 hours.
- Clients will receive only prepackaged treats and beverages, served by staff wearing gloves.
- Disinfectant soap, paper towels, and hand sanitizer are available in every restroom for staff and clients. Before and after each use, an employee will sanitize the toilet seat, toilet handles, and door handles.
- All employees will clean, sanitize, and disinfect all surfaces at WMLC—upon arrival and departure and throughout the day.
- Teachers and assistants will keep their work areas and classrooms sanitized from the time they arrive until they leave.
- At the end of each day, WMLC will thoroughly disinfect the entire building.
- Staff will disinfect all vehicles before and after use.
- Each group will have an assigned COVID manager. The COVID manager will follow the comprehensive checklist provided to them, to ensure all stay safe and healthy.
- Staff will take bleach wipes on all outings to use on tables, bowling balls, games etc.
Based on the MN Department of Health recommendations for youth programming, social distancing guidance will support a 3-foot radius around each participant, resulting in a 6-foot total distance between any two people.
- All staff will wear face masks or face shields.
- All clients will be required to wear face masks or shields. WMLC understands this may be difficult for some clients, so like any rule they have to follow we will work through it with them. We will also include supports to prepare clients for the COVID changes in their welcome packets.
- Bathrooms will have no more than two people in at a time, keeping distances of six feet and taking turns at the hand washing station.
- Based on guidelines at the time, outings will be low-capacity venues, in-center, or out-of-doors. Playgrounds, picnic tables, water fountains will be off-limits – Until restrictions on them are lifted.
- Due to the continued restrictions, we have changed many of our outings for the first few weeks, and they will continue to be subject to change throughout the summer. We will post updated schedules on our homepage as they are available.
- WMLC groups will be 10 people or less.
- Pre-school and elementary groups will be limited to four participants.
- Day Camp will be limited to 6 participants per group, per day.
- Tween/Teen/Transition groups will be limited to 6 participants.
- Signage, tape, and arrows will serve as guidelines around the center to show the proper distances to stay apart and the directions to travel. Groups will walk single file in the hallways. The circle around the SwanShip room includes traveling one direction only.
- Younger participants will be provided 4ft. circular sit-upon mats to help them social distance when sitting in their classrooms.
- Parents should mail in checks and/or schedule an appointment outside of busy times to run a credit card. If anyone cannot come in to have a credit card run due to a COVID 19-related reason, WMLC will take credit cards over the phone, for an added fee of $10.
- Curbside drop-off and pick-up
- There will be a minimum of four WMLC parking spots marked as “pick-up/Drop-off Only.” Use those spots when you arrive. If there isn’t one available, temporally park within sight of the spots, if possible, and wait until one opens up. Once parked, wait in your car until a WMLC staff comes to check your child’s temperature and complete a screening checklist. When responses meet criteria, staff will bring your child into the building to sit in his/her assigned spot in the classroom until the rest of the group arrives. If a staff member is not outside when you arrive, please call the office at (952) 474-0227.
- At pick-up time, clients will be waiting in the lobby on their sit-upon mats to ensure social distancing. When you arrive, please stand outside on the sidewalk, and a staff member will bring your child out to you. Teachers will talk with parents outside. Staff will email feedback sheets, unless parents say they prefer direct hand-off. If a staff member doesn’t come out within a few minutes with your child, please call (952) 474-0227 to let us know you have arrived and continue to wait outside.
For Those Who Have Been in Contact, Been Ill, or Tested Positive for COVID-19
- If anyone has had a confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis, but never did or no longer feels ill, he/she may return if they meet the following conditions:
- At least 10 days have passed since the date of the first positive COVID-19 test
- Has not become ill
- Wears a mask to limit respiratory secretions
- Those with illness, but no confirmed COVID-19, may return if they meet the following conditions:
- At least 3 days have passed since recovery, with no abnormal temperature for a minimum of 72 hours without the use of any fever reducing medicines
- Respiratory symptoms have improved
- 7 days have passed since the beginning of any symptoms
- Those with confirmed COVID-19, who do get ill, may return if they meet the following conditions:
- At least 3 days have passed since recovery, with no abnormal fever for a minimum of 72 hours without the use of any fever-reducing medicines
- Respiratory symptoms have improved
- No continuing illness: the employee shows no symptoms of COVID-19
- Have had two confirmed negative COVID-19 tests, administered by a medical professional, and spaced 24 hours apart
- Those who are “severely immunocompromised patients should follow the instructions of their medical teams and only return upon medical team’s approval and with a note from a licensed medical professional, e.g., a doctor, physician’s assistant, nurse practitioner, etc.
We look forward to seeing you again and are happy to answer any questions you may have about the steps we take to keep you, and every client, safe in our center. To make an appointment, please call our- office at 952-474-0227.
Thank you for your understanding as we work to adjust to these scheduling and protocol changes. We will be further defining this plan as the summer progresses, and we will provide the latest detailed plan in your summer welcome packets.
Please know that we will do our best to accommodate everyone. And thank you for being our client. We value your trust and loyalty and look forward to welcoming you, our clients, neighbors, and friends, back to West Metro Learning Connections.