Important Information About
Camp Shemesh and Summer@Levine
May 20, 2020
26 Iyar 5780

Dear Levine Community,

We are very pleased to confirm with you that we will launch both of our summer camps at Levine Academy. Both Camp Shemesh, our early childhood camp, and Summer@Levine, for our elementary and middle school students, will begin on Monday, June 8.

The only change from our original schedule, issued back during the winter, is that Camp Shemesh will not be operating either pre-camp or post-camp sessions (these would include Art Camp with Ms. Cramer and PowerKids Camp with Coach Rhonda) -- these were going to be for the week of June 1-5 and July 27-31; plus Camp Invention will now be held during week 5 (June 29-July1) instead of June 2-5 for Summer@Levine. We must cancel those (pre & post-camps) particular weeks in order to sanitize, deep clean, and prepare fully our EC facility for the summer and then again for the fall. This means the final day for Camp Shemesh will be Friday, July 24. However, we will offer an 8th week of Summer@Levine, so that the final day for Summer@Levine will be Friday, July 31.

Health Protocols and Procedures
Our entire staff at Levine -- including Camp Directors, HR Director, Director of Finance & Operations, Director of Facility and Maintenance, and Head of School -- have been scrutinizing, educating themselves, and meeting and planning assiduously on all of the standards issued from the Texas State Department of Health, the CDC guidelines, in addition to pulling the expertise from numerous fields related to this pandemic. Our absolute number one aim is to do everything required, plus go well beyond these issued standards, to safeguard our campers and our teachers and counselors.

We would like to "meet" with all of you face to face, via a live ZOOM town hall meeting on all of these camp preparation topics, during the week of June 1. We will share details as soon as we finalize them. But for now, we want to share an overarching list of main categories that will be in place on day one of summer camp:
  • Drop-Off and Pick-Up Procedures:
    • All pick-up and drop-off must occur, for all campers, along the drop-off lane -- no parent will be allowed to enter the building.
    • Look for staggered arrival and drop-off times in order to moderate the arrival of children and assure proper screening procedures at the entrance.
    • Both school entrances will have a hygiene station, with use of sanitizer and temperature monitoring required of everyone entering the building.
    • Our adult staff operating carpool will always be wearing masks.
  • Screening Procedures upon Arrival:
    • Screening will be an expectation on a daily basis, both at home and at school -- for school this means we will send home any employee or child who has any of the following new or worsening signs or symptoms of possible COVID-19: Cough; shortness of breath or difficulty breathing; chills; repeated shaking with chills; muscle pain; headache; sore throat; loss of taste or smell; diarrhea; feeling feverish or a measured temperature greater than or equal to 100.0 degrees Fahrenheit; known close contact with a person who is lab-confirmed to have COVID-19.
    • The above screening procedures also includes strict measures to be followed before allowing a return to camp. 
  • Cleaning and Disinfection Efforts:
    • Extra cleaning crew staff will be in place and dedicated to clean and disinfect frequently throughout each day.
    • Following all CDC guidance on cleaning and disinfecting.
    • Routine cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfecting surfaces and objects that are frequently touched.
    • Employment of fresh air strategies whenever possible.
    • Air quality monitoring and air filtration management.
    • Handwashing protocols are extensive and very detailed, and all of these standards will be followed strictly.
    • Very strict rules regarding denial of access to the building by most all visitors.
  • Social Distancing Strategies:
    • Avoidance of large gatherings & small student-to-teacher ratios: The State standards include small student-to-teacher ratios for each age group from infants through age 13, and Levine is absolutely confident that our normal operating ratios all are well within the guidelines, assuring that we will fully comply with these ratio mandates.
    • Student groupings will seldom, if ever, be mixed.
    • Playground times will be staggered.
    • Children will be distanced from each other during table work and line-ups. 
What you are seeing above is only the beginning of what we will be doing constantly each day this summer to monitor and safeguard your children and our staff. We will also require every one of our camp staff members to take two courses offered by Texas A&M AgriLife Extension: one course is on "Providing High Quality Experiences during COVID-19 for Emergency Child Care Settings," and "Special Considerations for Infection Control during COVID-19."

You may have questions regarding our two camps, whether your questions are about program and content, or about health and safety protocols, don't hesitate to reach out to our directors, Dana Shidlofsky, Director of Camp Shemesh; or you may wish to learn more about our Summer@Levine, in which case you may contact either Co-Director Marco Rodriguez, or Helene Berke. If they don't know the answer right away, one of us on staff will be able to answer your questions.

Thank you so much for being a part of one of our camp programs, and thank you for considering Levine Academy in your summer plans if you have not yet registered. We look forward to addressing you during the week of June 1.

We hope this message finds your family healthy and staying safe,

Tom Elieff
Head of School