Fall Plans, Procedures and Policies
Our Commitment to Health and Safety
University of Michigan-Dearborn Early Childhood Education Center is committed to protecting the health of our children, families, staff, and community. The following policies were designed in response to guidance from the Michigan Departments of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) and Health and Human Services, in accordance with best practices from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Wayne County Health Department and with everyone's well-being in mind. To limit the potential spread of COVID-19, we will be making some temporary changes to our programming that include robust cleaning and disinfecting procedures and minimizing opportunities for person-to-person exposure (e.g., an infected person spreading respiratory droplets through actions such as coughing, sneezing, or talking). The following plan outlines the recommended practices and strategies will use to protect the health of our children, staff, and families while at the same time ensuring that children are experiencing developmentally appropriate and responsive interactions and environments.
Changes to Our Physical Spaces
We will use the following strategies in our classrooms and facility to minimize the spread of illness:
- Where possible, dividing large group spaces to allow more children to safely use the space (e.g., using child- sized furniture, such as rolling shelves and kitchenettes, to divide a room and prevent mixing between groups of children).
- Using touchless trash cans to provide a hands-free way to dispose of tissues and contaminants.
- Ensuring ventilation systems operate properly and increasing circulation of outdoor air as much as possible (e.g., keeping windows and doors open to the extent that this does not pose safety risks).
- Water bottles will be used by all children and staff, will be sanitized often and refilled as necessary.
Availability of Toys and Classroom Materials
Toys and classroom objects will continue to be available in the classroom and will be sanitized at the end of the school day and as needed throughout the course of the school day.
Mealtimes and Naptimes
All food will be brought from home each day (lunch, AM snack, PM snack). Birthday and holiday food snacks/treats are not permitted. Children will continue to wash hands immediately before and after eating.
Children’s bedding from home will be stored in their cubby or bag throughout the week and sent home at the end of the week for sanitization.
Items Brought From Home
During this time, we are trying to limit the number of items brought into the facility because this can be a way to transmit the virus, so we ask that families refrain from bringing items from home as much as possible. However, we recognize that placing limits on children's comfort items may increase stress for children and staff as they may be especially needed during this time of transition.
We ask that families and staff follow these guidelines with regard to children's comfort items:
- To avoid these items coming into contact with many children, efforts will be made for these items to be placed in a cubby or bin and be used at naptime or as needed.
- If possible, comfort items should remain at the ECEC for the week to avoid cross-contamination.
- Nap items will be sent home weekly to be washed.
Drop Off and Pick Up
- Before coming to the ECEC each morning, families should monitor their child’s health and watch for any symptoms of COVID-19 or other illnesses.
- Drop Off times are restricted to 8:00-9:30 a.m. The gate will lock at 9:30 a.m. to minimize classroom disruption.
- Parents should take their child to their classroom through the playground. Doors are labeled with room numbers. Please knock on the outside classroom door and a teacher will greet you.
- If you arrive after 9:30 a.m., you will need to go to the front desk and a staff member will walk your child to class.
- Pick up and Drop off is restricted between 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. If you need to pick up your child due to an appointment or emergency, please communicate that information with the classroom teacher or front desk.
- Pick-up times are restricted to 3:30-4 p.m. After 4 p.m. children will go to Late Stay.
- At pick up time, please enter through the playground gate and go directly to the classroom door. Please knock on the door and a teacher will assist you.
- At this time the procedures for Drop Off and Pick Up will remain the same regardless of the weather.
Symptom Monitoring Protocols
We will use the following recommended practices, policies and protocols to protect the health
of children, families, and staff:
The ECEC will follow the guidelines issued by Michigan’s Child Care Licensing And Regulatory
Affairs and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as well as coordinate with University of Michigan protocols.
If a staff member, child, or visitor exhibits any of the following symptoms, they cannot enter the
One of these symptoms:
- Fever of 100.4F or higher, new cough, shortness of breath, vomiting, diarrhea, new rash
Two of these symptoms:
- Chills, muscle aches, new runny nose/nasal congestion/sore throat, new loss of sense of smell/taste, new headache
If a child has a fever OR a new cough:
- A child with a NEW cough must stay home until the cough diminishes. If a child has a fever they must stay home for 24 hours without the use of medicine that reduces fevers.
If a child becomes ill at school:
- Children must be picked up as soon as possible after the parent is notified that they have symptoms requiring them to go home. Per the ECEC Parent Handbook, failure to pick up a sick child within an hour can result in fees to the account.
- Children should not return for at least 5 days if sent home with multiple COVID symptoms unless symptoms subside and a negative PCR test is presented to the office.
Additional guidance will be sought by contacting the Wayne County Health Department, Michigan Child Care Licensing, UM-Dearborn Emergency Management, and UM Occupational Health Services.
- Always check with your child’s doctor if you are unsure of any health concerns related to your child.
We will use the following recommended practices, policies, and protocols to protect the health of children, families, and staff.
- Staff and families are required to report to the ECEC Academic Director if they become symptomatic or receive positive COVID-19 test results.
- We will communicate to families that a confirmed case has been identified in an individual classroom.
- Individual health information will not be disclosed in this process.
- If there is a confirmed exposure or case, we will follow all recommendations from the Wayne County Health Department, Michigan Child Care Licensing, UM-Dearborn Emergency Management and UM Occupational Health Services.
If an individual tests positive for COVID-19: (isolation guidelines)
Individuals over 2 who will wear a properly fitting mask: If an individual tests positive for COVID-19 at the ECEC, the individual will be required to isolate for 5 days. If symptoms subside and the individual has been fever free for 24 hours without the use of fever reducing medications, the child may return to school with a negative antigen test. If families choose to not get an antigen test completed, the child must wear a mask on days 6-10.
Individuals under 2 and those who are not able to wear a mask properly: If an individual under 2 or an individual who does not wear a properly fitting mask tests positive for COVID-19, the individual will be required to isolate for 10 days. If symptoms subside and the individual has been fever free for 24 hours without the use of fever reducing medications, the child may return on day 6 with a negative antigen test. If families choose to not get an antigen test completed, the child must isolate until day 11.
Exposures at the ECEC: If a classroom or individual has been directly exposed to COVID-19 at the ECEC we will notify you via email with the date of exposure and symptoms to look for. If at any time symptoms arise, we ask that you immediately isolate your child and contact the ECEC front desk at 313-593-5424.
Reinforce Best Practices to Promote Hygiene
We will reinforce the best practices already used at the ECEC to limit the spread of COVID-19 including but not limited to:
- We will reinforce regular health and safety practices with children and staff.
- Continue to implement CDC handwashing guidelines.
- Use these guidelines from the CDC for cleaning and disinfecting.
- Frequently clean and disinfect toys and materials and deep clean at the end of each day.
- Frequently clean and disinfect door knobs, handles, light switches and other high-touch surfaces in addition to regular cleaning of floors, bathrooms, rooms etc. each evening.
- Children should bring their own lunch, snacks and water bottles. Lunch boxes, snack containers and water bottles will be sanitized upon arrival if possible and will be sent home daily for cleaning.
The ECEC is currently on a “masking pause” because of the lower positive cases in our area. We may change that stance if cases in our area rise. Families are welcome to ask that their children wear masks while at school and our team will make their best efforts to comply.
A child who is exhibiting symptoms of illness should remain home - mask wearing does not supersede our ECEC Illness Policy.