Learning Groups Stage 2 K-12 Protocols

Guiding Principles
  • It is important to act responsibly with care for the community as a whole.
    • Our overarching Mission, Vision, Values, HCOS Protocols, Code of Conduct, etc. continue to apply.
  • It is our desire to get it as close to what we have traditionally offered as possible, and we are willing to be creative, flexible and innovative in making that happen. 
    • BC CDC indicates that children are at a low risk of catching and spreading COVID-19
    • Childcare & Schools FAQ
  • Learning Groups come in a variety of shapes and sizes so specific practice will vary by event as we work together with venues, facilities and coordinators to help ensure health and safety measures are met. 
  • The health of a student’s whole being, mind, soul and body is important to us.
  • Our goal is to make any precautionary measures as routine and natural as possible with increased use of outdoor spaces, designated cohort groupings and implementation of guidelines outlined by the Ministry K-12 Protocols for schools.

Back to School Stages: The Provincial Health Office (PHO) and the Ministry of Education have determined that K-12 schools in the province can re-open safely for in-class instruction as per Stage 2 guidelines.

  • In elementary, students can socialize with peers in different cohorts if they are outdoors and can minimize physical contact. 
  • In any grade, students may socialize with peers in different cohorts if they consistently maintain a physical distance of 2 m or more.
Summary of School-Based Control Measures 

In Preparation to Attend an Event

In accordance with the K-12 Educational Protocols, parents and/ or caregivers are responsible to assess their child(ren) daily, the morning of that date's attendance to a face to face learning opportunity, such as HCOS Learning Camps, Co-ops, and Community Connections. 

  • Sample of Questions to assess your child(ren)’s health and well- being the day of, prior to attending the event
  • Common symptoms present due to seasonal allergies exempt
  • If a Student or Adult at the event develops symptoms
    • He or She must stay at home.
    • If symptoms occur on-site the individual will be separated from the group and the Parent/Guardian will be contacted for pickup.
  • If you have questions regarding your child(ren)'s health, please contact your local health practitioner. To aid in your assessment, refer to the COVID-19 Assessment Tool (https://bc.thrive.health/) for further guidance.
  • Please review protocols with your child(ren), as appropriate, to help prepare for their attendance to face-to-face activities.
    • We appreciate that students will be excited to see friends and teachers and request that parents discuss with their child(ren) alternatives to hugs or handshakes, and that students should keep their hands to themselves when possible.
  • Each child should be provided snacks, lunch and a full water bottle as appropriate to the LG opportunity. A water bottle may be refilled; mouths should not touch fountains.

HCOS Personnel or any other adult participant has any symptoms of a cold, influenza, COVID-19, or any other infectious respiratory disease, they must not participate in face-to-face activities such as HCOS Learning Group events. 

  • Families should consider the inherent risk of the activity prior to application
    • BC CDC indicates that children are at a low risk of catching and spreading COVID-19
    • Childcare & Schools FAQ
  • If students plan to attend more than one LG event families should carefully consider the number of children they will be exposed to and take appropriate precautionary measures like physical distancing or choosing to wear a mask.
  • HCOS LG will implement the K-12 Protocols for Schools applicable to the learning activity, as outlined by the Ministry of Health and Education.
    • Most events will be composed of a single cohort. 
    • Single events with more than one cohort will consider additional timetabling measures at peak periods.
    • All Coordinators will be trained on the K-12 Protocols, submit their proposals for approval and practice precautionary measures applicable to the learning event.
    • In Stage 2, Learning Camps will be limited to the mass gathering guidelines i.e. 50 participants with a greater number of outdoor and virtual opportunities. Overnight and International trips are not permissible at this time.
    • If students are attending a field trip only private vehicles will be used for transportation. If carpooling occurs then the use of masks is encouraged. The host site's covid policy will be reviewed prior to booking to help ensure student safety. 
The Premises
  • Visitors will be admitted on a limited basis as needed, and will be required to complete the health questionnaire and share contact information.
  • Parents are requested to drop off and pick-up their child(ren) outside the premises in assigned areas as directed by the Coordinator, remaining physically distant from other family units. 
  • Teachers will attempt to provide maximum ventilation to rooms by opening doors and windows when possible.
  • Where numbers warrant, students may gather outside in designated spaces with their cohort supervised by HCOS Personnel, with staggered entry and exit times.
  • If there are questions or concerns to discuss with the Coordinator or Teacher, rather than entering the facility please arrange to meet via Zoom or email outside of class time unless urgent.

School assemblies may occur if within the single cohort size. Otherwise at this time, assemblies, information evenings, open houses and term celebrations will occur in a virtual context where possible.

Physical Contact, Cleaning, and Sanitization

All members of the learning community are reminded to provide verbal, not physical, greetings to one another. 

Learning Groups will work with Coordinators to ensure there are appropriate hand washing routines incorporated for the specifics of their event including: 

Where a sink is not accessible for handwashing, students may be asked (or LG) to provide alcohol based hand sanitizing solution for student use as needed. Students are responsible to bring personal hand sanitizer if allergies present.

Cleaning Practices

Will be implemented in accordance with the PHO's Covid-19 Public Health Guidance for Childcare Settings.

  • General cleaning and disinfecting of the premises will occur at least once a day, especially at the end. Frequently-touched surfaces will be cleaned and disinfected at least twice a day (for a full day activity). This includes items that only a single student uses, like a desk or locker. 
  • Students will be instructed to bring personally labelled supplies. Shared items will be removed or cleaned between uses. 
Personal Protective Equipment
  • Generally personal protective equipment (mask or face shield) is not required, but is an optional choice, except in the following case:
    • Non medical masks are required for middle school and highschool students in situations where a person is in close proximity with a person outside of their regular cohort for extended periods of time and cannot maintain physical distance.
    • Students who can not tolerate wearing a mask are exempt from doing so. 

For the health and safety of all staff and students, homemade food may not be brought or shared among participants; this includes homemade birthday treats, bake sale items, etc.

Please contact Christine Loewen, Director of Learning Groups, or one of our team members at lg@onlineschool.ca should you have any further questions or concerns. 

We look forward to your participation in HCOS LG as we learn together in Community!