Update from the Head of School - Coronavirus Update 3.10.20
March 10, 2020

Dear Green Hedges Families,

I am writing to provide you with updates on the School’s plan should we need to close due to COVID-19. As noted in my March 3 email to you, the following policies have already been put into place:

Policy #1: We have determined that should a student, immediate family member (anyone who lives in your household), or faculty member be diagnosed with the virus, we will close Green Hedges effective immediately so that we may gather more information and ensure thorough cleaning of the school.
 
Policy #2: Should the entire Fairfax County School system close, we will follow suit.
 
We have identified an internal quarantine area in Kilmer House; should a student or employee show symptoms of COVID-19, he or she will be moved to that area, the parents will be informed, and an email will be sent to the School community. Should the situation warrant, we will temporarily close the school and conduct a thorough cleaning. If the individual tests positive, Policy #1 (above) will go into effect.

As you know, the situation both locally and globally continues to evolve, and I will share information with you as we make decisions on what is best for our students and the School community. Below you will see, in sections, updates on school events, Spring Break travel reporting, distance learning, resources, and general guidelines for keeping healthy. I know that it is an unsettling time for many, and my hope is that by keeping you informed, we can better adapt to an ever-changing situation, keep calm, and maintain a sense of routine for our children.

Sincerely,
Jennifer Bohnen
Head of School
School Events
The Middle School play, scheduled for this Wednesday and Thursday evening, will continue as planned. Thus far, the Fairfax County Health Department has not advised canceling large events so we will move forward with this much-anticipated event. As with all school performances, we will livestream the play through our Facebook page .

In addition, the Spring Break Camp scheduled on campus from March 16 - 20 will continue as planned.

The Middle School Spring Break trip planned from March 14 - March 19 to Canada is canceled. Grandparents’ and Special Friends Day, scheduled for May 8, is also canceled. However, we will move forward with the concert and Maypole celebration and livestream both events through our Facebook page. The teachers and students will devise ways to welcome, “virtually,” grandparents into their classrooms.

We will continue to monitor upcoming field trips and overnight trips, including the Grade 4 trip to Calleva (April 9 - 10) as well as Middle School trips scheduled for the end of the school year. We will consult local Health Departments and monitor any localized outbreaks and keep you updated on decisions regarding those trips.
Spring Break Travel Reporting
With Spring Break fast approaching, I am asking each family to complete the mandatory survey below to self-report travel plans; faculty and staff will also complete the survey. The reason for this is that we need to do everything we can to ensure the well-being of the Green Hedges community. By knowing where students, faculty, staff, and families have traveled, we will be better prepared to make a fully informed decision in regards to a temporary closing and any further necessary measures. Please note that this information will be kept confidential .
I sincerely appreciate your cooperation and timeliness in completing this survey. In order for every student to return to school after Spring Break, we require you to complete the survey by March 20 . Please reference your contract for what is required in the event of infectious and communicable diseases:

Infectious and Communicable Diseases: Parents agree to comply with the School's infectious and communicable disease policy and to follow and comply with instructions and other directions established by the School. Failure to follow and comply with instructions and other directions established by the School may serve as grounds for removal of a Student. 

In creating this policy, I have consulted with local peer schools in the area and many have implemented a similar requirement to report travel during Spring Break and this is considered a best practice in light of current circumstances.
Distance Learning
We continue to develop our guidelines and expectations for a Distance Learning Plan that we will follow should school close for an extended period of time. For now, we will continue with our normal school schedule, and the faculty are in the process of gathering materials (i.e. textbooks, activities, iPads) that will be sent home with students each day. These materials will stay in your child’s backpack unless needed for that day’s homework, and need to be at home with each student when Spring Break begins. 

I do ask that you make a concerted effort to familiarize yourself with Haiku, our Learning Management System. We will use Haiku to post school work, provide updates, and rely on as the hub for student and teacher communication. It’s our virtual schoolhouse. 

Log-in instructions for Haiku are as follows:
  1. Visit https://greenhedges.learning.powerschool.com 
  2. At the bottom of the page, click on the "Forgot your Username or Password?" link
  3. Enter your email address (the one you provided to the school during registration)

There are several tutorials available through Vimeo to learn more about Haiku. If you would like any further help, please contact help@greenhedges.org .
General Guidelines & Resources
We have begun a daily wipe down of surfaces and have hand sanitizer readily available. A deep cleaning of the school will take place during Spring Break as well. Faculty continue to remind students to wash their hands thoroughly and to sneeze or cough into their elbows. I want to remind you that students who are ill should not be sent to school, and that any communicable disease must be reported to Wanda Green in the Front Office. If you are unsure of whether or not to send your child(ren) to school, we ask that you err on the side of caution, keep them home, and let Ms. Green know what the illness is. Please refer to page 29 of the Green Hedges School Directory & Handbook for our Health policy.


Please look for weekly updates from me on Tuesdays regarding the School’s COVID-19 Preparedness Plan. I wish you and your family a safe, restful, and healthy Spring Break.
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