Upper Moreland Township School District Health and Safety Plan for the 2021-2022 School Year

  • A PDF Version of the UMTSD HEALTH AND SAFETY PLAN may be accessed by clicking here.

    The below section may be translated using the GOOGLE TRANSLATE feature at the bottom of the webpage.

  • This Plan is current as of August 17, 2021 and is subject to change.

    Changes from the July 27, 2021 plan are highlighted in red font.

    As per Order of the PA Department of Health, all students, staff and visitors in UMTSD buildings are required to wear masks effective September 7, 2021 at 12:01 AM and until further notice.  This order supercedes UMTSD's Health and Safety Plan for masking requirements based upon community transmission levels.

    INTRODUCTION

    The purpose of this Health and Safety Plan is to provide the Upper Moreland Township School District Community with an overview and outline for the efforts undertaken to provide full in-person instruction for five days a week during the 2021-2022 school year.  The plan was developed using information from the implementation of last year’s plan; continued feedback provided by stakeholders over the course of the previous school year; and recommendations from the Center for Disease Control (CDC), Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH), Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE), and the Montgomery County Office of Public Health (MONTCO OPH).   The plan will be monitored and revised as federal, state and local agencies dictate through continual monitoring of community COVID-19 transmission data.

    DECISION MAKING

    The Upper Moreland Township School District is committed to maintaining the health and safety of our students and staff and works with local and state agencies to understand and implement recommendations they have made to guide school districts as they prepare for the 2021-2022 school year and make full day, in-person K-12 instruction a priority.  The District continues to strongly encourage eligible individuals to get vaccinated and recommends that unvaccinated individuals wear face coverings.  Please contact your healthcare provider for more information regarding vaccinations.

    FEEDBACK

    This plan was posted for public review beginning July 27, 2021.   Utilizing a feedback form, community and staff members submitted comments/feedback regarding the plan.   The Health and Safety Plan was submitted to the Pennsylvania Department of Education on July 31, 2021.  All feedback received was reviewed and taken under consideration by administration prior to review and public comment at the UMTSD Facilities and Operation Committee Work Session on August 10, 2021.   The UMTSD Health and Safety Plan will be brought for approval by the School Board of Directors on August 17, 2021.  Any changes or revisions made to that approved plan will be submitted to the Pennsylvania Department of Education.  UMTSD Administration will continue to monitor federal, state and local regulations as well as community transmission/incidence/ positivity rates of COVID-19.  Changes may be recommended/made/approved as needed throughout the 2021-2022 school year.

    Information Used to Develop the Health and Safety Plan

    ARP ESSER Health and Safety Plan
    Guidance & Template

    Section 2001(i)(1) of the American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act requires each local education agency (LEA) that receives funding under the ARP Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) Fund to develop and make publicly available on the LEA’s website a Safe Return to In-Person Instruction and Continuity of Services Plan, hereinafter referred to as a Health and Safety Plan

    Based on ARP requirements, 90 percent of ARP ESSER funds will be distributed to school districts and charter schools based on their relative share of Title I-A funding in FY 2020-2021.  Given Federally required timelines, LEAs eligible to apply for and receive this portion of the ARP ESSER funding must submit a Health and Safety Plan that meets ARP Act requirements to the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) by Friday, July 30, 2021, regardless of when the LEA submits its ARP ESSER application.  

    Each LEA must create a Health and Safety Plan that addresses how it will maintain the health and safety of students, educators, and other staff, and which will serve as local guidelines for all instructional and non-instructional school activities during the period of the LEA’s ARP ESSER grant. The Health and Safety Plan should be tailored to the unique needs of each LEA and its schools and must take into account public comment related to the development of, and subsequent revisions to, the Health and Safety Plan.

    The ARP Act and U.S. Department of Education rules require Health and Safety plans to include the following components:

    1. How the LEA will, to the greatest extent practicable, implement prevention and mitigation policies in line with the most up-to-date guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for the reopening and operation of school facilities in order to continuously and safely open and operate schools for in-person learning;
    2. How the LEA will ensure continuity of services, including but not limited to services to address the students’ academic needs, and students’ and staff members’ social, emotional, mental health, and other needs, which may include student health and food services; 
    3. How the LEA will maintain the health and safety of students, educators, and other staff and the extent to which it has adopted policies, and a description of any such policy on each of the following safety recommendations established by the CDC: 
    4. Universal and correct wearing of masks;
    5. Modifying facilities to allow for physical distancing (e.g., use of cohorts/podding); 
    6. Handwashing and respiratory etiquette; 
    7. Cleaning and maintaining healthy facilities, including improving ventilation; 
    8. Contact tracing in combination with isolation and quarantine, in collaboration with State and local health departments; 
    9. Diagnostic and screening testing; 
    10. Efforts to provide COVID-19 vaccinations to school communities; 
    11. Appropriate accommodations for children with disabilities with respect to health and safety policies; and 
    12. Coordination with state and local health officials.

    The LEA’s Health and Safety Plan must be approved by its governing body and posted on the LEA’s publicly available website by July 30, 2021. *The ARP Act requires LEAs to post their Health and Safety Plans online in a language that parents/caregivers can understand, or, if it is not practicable to provide written translations to an individual with limited English proficiency, be orally translated. The plan also must be provided in an alternative format accessible, upon request, by a parent who is an individual with a disability as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act.

    Each LEA will upload in the eGrants system its updated Health and Safety Plan and webpage URL where the plan is located on the LEA’s publicly available website. 

    The ARP Act requires LEAs to review their Health and Safety Plans at least every six months during the period of the LEA’s ARP ESSER grant. LEAs also must review and update their plans whenever there are significant changes to the CDC recommendations for K-12 schools. Like the development of the plan, all revisions must be informed by community input and reviewed and approved by the governing body prior to posting on the LEA’s publicly available website.

    LEAs may use the template to revise their current Health and Safety Plans to meet ARP requirements and ensure all stakeholders are fully informed of the LEA’s plan to safely resume instructional and non-instructional school activities, including in-person learning, for the current school year. An LEA may use a different plan template or format provided it includes all the elements required by the ARP Act, as listed above. 

    * The July 30 deadline applies only to school districts and charter schools that received federal Title I-A funds in FY 2020-2021 and intend to apply for and receive ARP ESSER funding.

    Additional Resources

    LEAs are advised to review the following resources when developing their Health and Safety Plans:

    REVIEWS AND SUBMISSIONS

    Date of Last Review: August 11, 2021

    Date of School Board Approval: August 17, 2021

    Initial Effective Date: August 1, 2021

    Date of Last Revision: August 11, 2021

    REVISIONS

    Upper Moreland Township School District will make updates and changes to this plan as necessary based upon levels of community/building spread.  The District will adhere to federal, state and/or local governmental restrictions and/or mandates.  Revisions will be highlighted and notification will be communicated with the school community. 

    AMERICAN RESCUE PLAN (ARP) ELEMENTARY and SECONDARY SCHOOL EMERGENCY RELIEF (ESSER) REQUIREMENTS

    1. How will the LEA, to the greatest extent practicable, support prevention and mitigation policies in line with the most up-to-date guidance from the CDC for the reopening and operation of school facilities in order to continuously and safely open and operate schools for in-person learning? 

    Upper Moreland Township School District will continue to partner with the Montgomery County Office of Public Health to understand guidance and implementation of practices from the CDC.  The District intends to open and maintain in-person education for all students with layered mitigation measures described below.   Adjustments to mitigation measures will be made based upon classroom/school/district and/or community COVID-19 transmission, incidence and positivity rates. 

    2. How will the LEA ensure continuity of services, including but not limited to services to address the students’ academic needs, and students’ and staff members’ social, emotional, mental health, and other needs, which may include student health and food services?

    Upper Moreland Township School District has created a K-12 School Safety, Security and Attendance Officer position, a K-12 Social Worker position, and added an additional Certified School Nurse position to work in partnership with the Services Department, including Counselors and other Nurses, to ensure that social, emotional, general health, mental health, and other needs are being met.  The Services Department will continue its collaboration and partnership with the Programs Department to identify supports needed to ensure academic access and success of all students.  The District will continue to offer free meals through its Food Services Department as supported by federal programs and other sources.  The District will continue partnerships with community resource organizations, such as Aldersgate and Employee Assistance Programs,  to provide support to students, staff and families.

    3. Use the table below to explain how the LEA will maintain the health and safety of students, educators, and other staff and the extent to which it has adopted policies, and a description of any such policy on each of the following safety recommendations established by the CDC.

    ARP ESSER Requirement

    Strategies, Policies, and Procedures

    • Universal and correct wearing of masks; 

    Upper Moreland will consider CDC, PA Department of Education, the PA Department of Health, and Montgomery County Department of Health/Office of Public Health guidelines as it relates to masking for staff members based upon classroom, school level and/or community levels of COVID-19 positivity and incidence rates. In an effort to comply with all relevant federal, state, and local guidelines, Upper Moreland will follow the below procedures for masking:

    Staff: Masking for all staff members will be dependent upon community transmission levels of COVID-19. The chart embedded at the end of the HSP details masking requirements based upon community transmission levels. Transportation staff are required to properly wear masks when operating vehicles with students aboard regardless of community transmission levels. 

    Students: Masking for all students will be dependent upon community transmission levels of COVID-19.  The chart embedded at the end of the HSP details masking requirements based upon community transmission levels.Students will be required to properly wear masks when using district transportation and when visiting the Health/Nurse Suite at any school building regardless of community transmission levels. 

    Transportation: Under CDC guidelines published on January 29, 2021, and updated on June 10, 2021, all students and staff members are required to properly wear their masks on District provided transportation.


    Visitors/Volunteers: Masking for all visitors will be dependent upon community transmission levels of COVID-19. The chart embedded at the end of the HSP details masking requirements based upon community transmission levels. Visitors/Volunteers will be required to properly wear masks when using district transportation and when visiting the Health/Nurse Suite at any school building regardless of community transmission levels.

    Information regarding masking procedures will be clearly communicated through a variety of portals, including the District website, emails, and school-based newsletters.  Information will be offered in translated formats as well.

    Upper Moreland Township School District has reviewed and considered CDC guidance as it relates to physical distancing requirements in indoor and outdoor spaces.


    GENERAL: Upper Moreland School District will maintain a 3-foot distance between all students and staff members whenever possible.


    CLASSROOMS: Schools will maintain physical distance practices per recommendations of the CDC, PA DOH, and/or MONTCO OPH to the maximum extent feasible. 


    WATER FOUNTAINS:  Water fountains will remain closed this year.  Touchless hydration fill stations and classroom sinks will be available. 


    TRANSPORTATION: Face coverings will be required while riding District transportation for all individuals, vaccinated or unvaccinated.  This includes field trips, sporting events, activities and regular riding of buses/vehicles to and from school. Assigned seats may be implemented based on level of building/community spread.  Buses will be loaded back to front.


    FOOD SERVICES:  Maximum capacity will be determined to accommodate social distancing to the maximum extent feasible.  Meals will be served in the cafeterias and other spaces as appropriate with limited, spaced, or assigned seating.  Entrance and exit flow paths will be determined in each building.   Cohort seating will be prioritized to the maximum extent when feasible.


    Upper Moreland School District will consider and comply with the CDC, the PA Department of Education, the PA Department of Health, and Montgomery County Department of Health/Office of Public Health guidelines for physical distancing, including the appropriate spacing of students and staff members at work, learning, and eating spaces.  The District will continue to focus efforts on eliminating unnecessary furniture, identifying alternate eating locations, and maintaining reminder signs for distancing requirements.

    Upper Moreland Township School District has reviewed and considered CDC guidance as it relates to handwashing and respiratory etiquette.


    Upper Moreland School District will continue to promote handwashing and respiratory etiquette through posted signs, teacher reminders, and other forms of advertisement throughout the school day.


    Hand sanitizer stations will be maintained throughout the buildings.


    Upper Moreland School District will consider and comply with the CDC, the PA Department of Education, the PA Department of Health, and Montgomery County Department of Health/Office of Public Health guidelines for handwashing and respiratory etiquette.  This includes maintaining signage throughout the buildings with reminders and how-to instructions for proper handwashing and respiratory etiquette.  Staff members will be instructed to frequently wash or sanitize their hands and to instruct their students to do the same.   

    Upper Moreland Township School District has reviewed and considered CDC guidance as it relates to cleaning and maintaining healthy facilities, including improving ventilation.


    CLASSROOMS/BUILDINGS: Upper Moreland School District will consider and comply with CDC, the PA Department of Education, the PA Department of Health, and Montgomery County Department of Health/Office of Public Health guidelines for cleaning and maintaining healthy facilities, including improving ventilation.  Upper Moreland School District will continue to schedule and implement appropriate cleaning schedules for all buildings and offices.  In addition, custodians and maintenance staff will clean high-touch and frequently used locations throughout the school day with approved disinfectants to limit the spread of germs.  All ventilation systems are frequently serviced and maintained.  All systems are approved according to ASHRAE standards.


    TRANSPORTATION:  Hand sanitizer will be provided for students and drivers on each bus/van.  Students entering/exiting the bus/van will be encouraged to use hand sanitizer.  Buses will be disinfected after the morning runs and following the end of day runs.  


    KITCHENS/CAFETERIAS:  Food services and custodial/maintenance staff will clean and sanitize kitchen equipment, surfaces, hand washing stations , and all other frequently touched surfaces throughout the day.  Serving lines will be sanitized after breakfast and each lunch period.  Cafeteria tables will be disinfected after each lunch period or general use. 

    Upper Moreland Township School District has reviewed and considered CDC guidance as it relates to contact tracing, isolation and quarantine. 


    Students and staff members who report flu or cold-like symptoms will be encouraged to stay home and seek advice from their healthcare provider for testing and care. 


    Upper Moreland School District will consider and comply with CDC, the PA Department of Education, the PA Department of Health, and Montgomery County Department of Health/Office of Public Health guidelines for contact tracing, isolation and quarantine. School nurses, located in each building, will be responsible for overseeing student and staff health checks when there are questions of illness.  All students and staff members with COVID-19 symptoms will be reported via a contact tracing form and individual questions will be forwarded to the MONTCO Office of Public Health for further consultation.

    Upper Moreland Township School District has reviewed and considered CDC guidance as it relates to diagnostic and screening testing.


    Upper Moreland School District will consider and comply with CDC, the PA Department of Education, the PA Department of Health, and Montgomery County Department of Health/Office of Public Health guidelines for diagnostic and screening testing.  


    Students, families  and staff are expected to conduct daily health and wellness self checks that include a review of symptoms that may be indicative of COVID-19. Students and staff members who are suspected of having or having been in contact with someone with COVID-19 will be referred to local diagnostic and screening facilities.  


    Should the District receive confirmation of a positive test, assigned staff members will follow mandated guidelines regarding quarantine and contact tracing reporting procedures.


    The District will investigate state-sponsored testing practices for those that are considered a close-contact exposure in order to potentially reduce isolation/quarantine requirements at the direction of MONTCO OPH. 

    Upper Moreland Township School District has reviewed and considered CDC guidance as it relates to vaccinations to school communities.


    Upper Moreland School District will continue to provide timely communication to all stakeholders regarding vaccine requirements and clinics in the area.  When available, Upper Moreland School District will partner with local pharmacies to administer vaccinations to individuals in need.

    • Appropriate accommodations for students with disabilities with respect to health and safety policies; and 

    Upper Moreland Township School District has reviewed and considered CDC guidance as it relates to appropriate accommodations for students with disabilities with respect to health and safety policies.


    Upper Moreland School District will utilize the appropriate systems (IEP, GIEP, 504 and Student Health Plan) to identify needed supports and accommodations for individual students. 

    • Coordination with state and local health officials.

    Upper Moreland Township School District has reviewed and considered CDC guidance as it relates to coordination with state and local health officials.


    Upper Moreland School District will consider and comply with CDC, the PA Department of Education, the PA Department of Health, and Montgomery County Department of Health/Office of Public Health guidelines for coordination efforts.  Administrators will continue to attend planned informational meetings to acquire new knowledge and make community minded decisions.  In addition, staff members will work in concert with local officials to determine necessary procedures for closures, mask wearing, and other mitigation efforts as needed based on case numbers, vaccination rate, and other determining factors. 

    Upper Moreland Township School District will continue to monitor and adjust its COVID-19 mitigation strategies as part of its Health and Safety Plan.   Although most components of the plan are consistent, masking requirements while in buildings will be dependent upon community levels of COVID-19 Transmission.  The following MONTCO OPH Definitions of Level of Transmission will be used:

    Low

    Moderate

    Substantial

    High

    0-9 cases per 100,000 and <5% positivity

    10-49 cases per 100,000 or 5-7% positivity

    50-99 cases per 100,000 or 8- 9.9% positivity

    100 to> 100 cases per 100,000 or >10% positivity 

    In considering the definition of “community,” the following District transmission levels will be considered in making changes to UMTSD masking requirement:

    Abington • Hatboro-Horsham • Lower Moreland • Upper Dublin 

    The following masking requirements will be enacted if any of the above districts or Upper Moreland Township School District has the following community transmission levels:

    Level of Transmission

    K-12 Students

    District Staff

    Visitors/Volunteers

    Low

    Inside:

    Masks Optional

    Inside:

    Masks Optional

    Inside:

    Masks Optional

    Outside:

    Masks Optional

    Outside:

    Masks Optional

    Outside:

    Masks Optional

    Moderate

    Inside:

    Masks Recommended

    Inside:

    Masks Recommended

    Inside:

    Masks Recommended

    Outside:

    Masks Optional

    Outside:

    Masks Optional

    Outside:

    Masks Optional

    Substantial

    Inside:

    Masks Required

    Inside:

    Masks Required

    Inside:

    Masks Required

    Outside:

    Masks Optional

    Outside:

    Masks Optional

    Outside:

    Masks Optional

    High

    Inside:

    Masks Required

    Inside:

    Masks Required 

    Inside:

    Masks Required

    Outside:

    Masks Optional

    Outside:

    Masks Optional

    Outside:

    Masks Optional

    UMTSD Staff will monitor the Montgomery County Office of Public Health COVID-19 Data Hub on a weekly basis.  Generally, by Wednesday the hub has been updated with the previous two-week averages.   The day after that the COVID-19 Data Hub has been updated,  an update will be provided to staff, students and families with any Health and Safety Plan changes that will be required starting the following day.  If community transmission levels move into SUBSTANTIAL or HIGH, masking requirements will remain in effect for a minimum of one week after a drop back into MODERATE or LOW to ensure consistent mitigation.