Campus Procedures – Face to Face Learning
Students will attend class in-person, five days a week, utilizing additional safety measures that align with state and federal guidelines and recommendations.
- In this setting, campus administrators will implement RISD safety procedures daily.
- Teachers will create lesson plans understanding that they may need to quickly transition to virtual learning in the event of a temporary school closure if ordered by health authorities.
- Teachers will provide in-person instruction, using TRS, designed learning experiences and Google Classroom.
- Assessments, including the measure of academic progress, will be used at the beginning of year, middle of the year and end of the year to ensure student growth.
The following are the return to school health and safety protocols for Richardson ISD campuses and administration buildings.
Since this is an ever-changing situation, the district may need to change protocols at any time to address specific needs based on the recommendations of the CDC, the TEA, DCHHS, or other governmental entities/ public health authorities. The district will comply with all applicable federal and state employment and disability laws, workplace safety standards and accessibility standards to address individual needs.
It is important to remember that the virus can be spread by infected people who have few or no symptoms. Even if an infected person is asymptomatic (meaning feeling or demonstrating no symptoms), they can spread the virus to others who may become seriously or fatally ill, especially those over 65 or with pre-existing health conditions. Because of the hidden nature of this threat, RISD expects all employees, students and families to follow these health and safety practices.
Preparation for the Opening of School
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides guidance, recommendations and resources to assist with plans and protocols for health and safety. Before schools re-open, Richardson ISD will implement the following:
- Ensuring adequate supply of personal protection equipment (PPE), cleaning supplies, and hand sanitizer.
- Cleaning with products approved by governing authorities and per guidelines from the Environmental Protection Agency.
- Ensuring compliance with policies mandated by the CDC, Dallas County Health and Human Services, and the TEA.
- Providing communication of procedures and expectations for all people upon entering facilities and throughout buildings.
On the first day of in-person instruction, RISD will instruct students on appropriate hygiene practices and other mitigation and social distancing practices adopted by the district. Staff and students must cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or with their elbow. Used tissues must be placed in the trash and hands should be washed immediately with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, or hand sanitizer should be used. This training will take place periodically throughout the school year with daily reminders from teachers and campus support team. Visuals, including posters, will be used throughout all buildings to provide reminders to students and staff on all health and safety protocols.
- Students will complete district and state required training, within the first two days of face-to-face instruction.
- All students will be trained on information about COVID-19 screening, identification of symptoms, prevention of spread, and sanitation of work areas.
- Any student experiencing symptoms must notify an adult immediately.
Teacher / Staff Training
- All staff will be trained on what COVID-19 is and how it spreads and impacts both children and adults.
- All staff will be trained on COVID-19 screening, identification of symptoms, prevention of spread, and sanitation of work areas.
- All staff will be trained on district protocols and procedures for health screeners, isolation protocol and return to school/work guidelines.
- Campus administrators will provide follow-up training and reminders as needed.
- Parents are encouraged to talk to their students about COVID-19, as appropriate, and help them understand the safety guidelines required to return to face-to-face instruction.
- Parents will be asked to review all district health and safety guidelines and adhere to guidelines to ensure the safety of all staff and students.
Protocols for Screening Staff
Staff will be required to complete a self-screening process prior to entering a Richardson ISD building, and the district may require further screening of employees at any time based on state and federal guidelines. Staff are expected to sign in any time they are entering a district facility or building utilizing the district provided links/QR codes on the doors or a paper screener available at the front office.
Protocols for Screening Students
Parents must ensure they do not send a child to a school campus if the child has COVID-19 symptoms or has a lab-confirmed positive case of COVID-19. Instead, parents should opt to receive virtual instruction until conditions for re-entry are met per CDC guidelines. Parents should also opt to have their students receive virtual instruction if their child has had close contact with an individual who has a lab-confirmed positive case of COVID-19 until the 14-day incubation period has passed. Close contact is defined as within six feet for 15 minutes or longer.
Students will be formally screened for symptoms weekly.
- A paper screening questionnaire will be sent home in the weekly folder for elementary students and returned questionnaires indicating potential exposure will be sent to the school clinic for evaluation.
- The weekly screening questionnaire will be completed online for secondary students via their gmail school address. Results of the questionnaires will be available to appropriate RISD staff members through the LIGHT dashboard. First-period teachers will review the results of the screener and report any potential positive results to their campus nurse.
- RISD staff will spot-screen many students daily and take their temperature as they enter the building though not every student will be screened by an RISD staff member every day. Parents and caregivers are encouraged to take their student’s temperature often and keep the student home if their temperature is higher than 100, which indicates a fever is present.
- If a student’s fever is identified by RISD during the school day, that student will be moved to an isolation area then sent home within one hour. Parents of students who develop COVID symptoms during the school day, or staff, may request that the campus nurse administer a rapid test before departing school/work. To expedite this process, the front office staff may call parents for pickup; and staff will also provide a list of students sent home to the nurse. The school nurse will follow up with parents via phone to discuss symptoms and quarantine status.
- Teachers will perform a visual screen of their students each morning. Any student with severe coughing or respiratory issues will be sent to the clinic for further evaluation.
Identifying COVID-19 Cases on Campus
For students displaying symptoms of COVID-19 or those who are feeling feverish, the school nurse will provide a clinical assessment to determine if and when a student needs to be sent home.
In evaluating whether an individual has symptoms consistent with COVID-19, students will be asked if they have recently begun experiencing any of the following in a way that is not normal for them:
- Feeling feverish, or a measured temperature greater than or equal to 100 degrees Fahrenheit
- Loss of taste or smell
- Difficulty breathing
- Shortness of breath
- Sore throat
- Congestion or runny nose
- Shaking or exaggerated shivering
- Significant muscle pain or ache
- Diarrhea, nausea, or vomiting
Students who are ill will be separated from classmates and should be picked up within 30 minutes and no later than one hour from the time the campus has contacted the parent or guardian. Every campus will maintain an isolation area that will keep students isolated while also allowing for supervision from campus staff including the nurse or an administrator. Parents of students who develop COVID symptoms during the school day, or staff, may request that the campus nurse administer a rapid test before departing school/work.
All other students in the class with an isolated student will be removed from that classroom and taken to an alternate location on campus (go on a walk outside, move to the gym) until the classroom has been disinfected.
After Confirmation of COVID-19
If an individual who has been in a school is lab-confirmed to have COVID-19, the district must notify the local health department (Dallas County Health and Human Services), in accordance with applicable federal, state and local laws and regulations, including confidentiality mandates required under the Americans with Disabilities Act, or ADA, and Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, or FERPA. The district will also notify parents and staff of a lab- confirmed case at a campus in accordance with current TEA and public health authority guidelines.
Schools will close areas that were heavily used by any individual with a lab-confirmed case until the non-porous surfaces in those areas can be disinfected.
Returning to School After Recovery
Students and staff who have tested positive for COVID-19 will be permitted to return to school only after all of the following occur (per CDC guidelines):
- They have been fever-free for 24 hours without using fever-reducing medication.
- Symptoms (cough, difficulty breathing) have dissipated and improved.
- 10 days have passed since symptoms began.
Students that test positive for COVID-19, but do not have any symptoms may return to school after 10 days since the test.
The campus nurse will work closely with administration and the front office staff to coordinate the student’s return to school. Students who return to school without meeting the CDC criteria will immediately be sent home and the campus principal will be notified.
Contact tracing will occur in collaboration with the local health department.
Students, teachers, or staff who have come into close, prolonged contact with a student or employee who is lab- confirmed to have COVID-19 will be asked to quarantine away from in-person school activities for up to 14 days depending on the date of exposure. Close contact is defined as:
- Being directly exposed to infectious secretions such as being coughed on while not wearing a mask or face shield.
- Being within six feet for a duration of 15 minutes or more of a COVID-19 positive person.
- If either occurred at any time in the last 14 days while the infected individual was considered infectious; individuals are presumed infectious one to two days prior to symptom onset or, in the case of asymptomatic individuals who are lab-confirmed with COVID-19, two days prior to the confirming lab test.
Based on updated (December 2020) guidance from the CDC and Dallas County health authority, students or staff who are exposed but not experiencing symptoms may quarantine away from in-person school activities for 10 days from exposure, instead of 14, if they choose. Exposed people may still choose to quarantine for 14 days from exposure date.
Staff members only, in their role as critical infrastructure employees, may further choose to limit their quarantine period to 7 days from the date of exposure, provided they receive a negative PCR test result, with the test taken on days 5-7 from the exposure date. All people returning to school/work after a quarantine period must remain diligent to monitor themselves for symptoms and exclude from any in-person school activities if any COVID-19 symptoms are experienced.
Other staff and students who do not meet the criteria for close, prolonged contact may be asked to quarantine at the direction of the local health department for unique situations.
Students who test positive for COVID-19 will be monitored and tracked via Focus, the district’s student information system. Quarantine reports generated by Focus will be monitored daily.
Students who are sent home for quarantine will be documented in Focus. An icon will appear next to a student’s name while they are on quarantine. This will be a visual indicator for each teacher showing who should and should not be in class.
Personal Protective Equipment
RISD has implemented a universal mask requirement for all students and staff while indoors. Students and staff are required to wear cloth face coverings during school hours.
PPE and other safety requirements will be addressed in the RISD Student Code of Conduct, along with identified campus procedures if requirements are not followed.
- It is important to note cloth face coverings do NOT preclude social distancing. Cloth face coverings should be worn, and social distancing followed when possible.
- Acceptable masks include non-medical grade disposable face masks or cloth face coverings worn over the nose and mouth. Face shields, neck gaiters, or fleeces are not recommended.
- It is a universal requirement that all students and adults wear face coverings while at school, when possible and appropriate.
- Students in grades 3-12 and all adults must wear a face covering throughout in-person instruction (except while eating/drinking/exercising).
- Students in grades PK-2 must wear face coverings while moving within the school and will be strongly encouraged and reminded to wear face coverings while in class as possible and appropriate.
- Children younger than 2 years old should not wear a mask at any time.
- It may be impractical for students to wear a cloth face covering while participating in some non- UIL athletic or other extracurricular activities; however, those students required to wear a cloth face covering should wear them when entering and exiting facilities and practice areas and when not actively engaging in those activities.
- Schools may allow students who are actively exercising to remove their cloth face covering as long as they maintain social distancing.
- Schools must require students, teachers, and staff wear cloth face coverings as they arrange themselves in positions that will allow them to maintain safe distancing.
- Individual needs regarding face coverings will be addressed on a case-by-case basis. Requests for accommodations should be submitted to campus administration.
- Additional protective equipment will be provided to school nurses for use in the clinic.
- Students and staff will be provided with a reusable mask. Families will be responsible for daily cleaning and replacement should the one provided by the school become unusable or lost.
- Students who do not comply with the requirements to wear PPE will be provided with a mask. If the student refuses to wear a mask/cloth face covering, the student will be sent home.
- The campus nurse will work closely with the principal and front office staff to determine how to best meet the needs of all students while maintaining confidentiality and possible isolation. Plans will be campus specific because of the multiple sizes and layouts of each clinic.
- In an effort to minimize exposure, clinic traffic will be divided between students that are feeling ill and students that are not.
- All teachers will be provided with a basic first-aid kit, and teachers will assist and direct students to handle minor injuries in the classroom or front office.
- Nurses will determine processes for medication administration, keeping healthy students separate from those complaining of illness. Medication administration may occur (where confidentiality permits) in the classroom, in another room within the school or in the clinic. Medication administration may be delegated to other staff designated by the principal.
- RISD staff will only administer those medications that must be given during the school day. If the therapeutic use of the medication can be accomplished by dosage outside of the school day, the medication should not be administered at school.
- Nurses will determine processes for performing medical procedures to maintain a clean area where the student will not be exposed to others. Medical procedures may take place in the classroom (where confidentiality permits), in another room within the school, or in the clinic. Nursing procedures may not be delegated to other staff; however, clinic coverage may be needed if the nurse must leave the clinic in order to perform a procedure.
- An isolation area will be determined for students exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 while they are waiting for pick up. Isolation areas should be located such that staff can visually monitor the child while still maintaining social distancing.
- Clinics can no longer be used for rest, cool down, or an emotional safe place for anxiety. Principals should identify an alternate space for students in these situations.
- Clinics can no longer be used for incontinence issues, which is not a medical issue. Students may bring spare clothing in their backpack and use a designated restroom for cleanup. Front office staff may call home for spare clothing if necessary.
- Clinic restrooms will be for student use while in the clinic. Staff may not use the clinic restroom and should use designated staff restrooms.
- It is recommended that teachers call before sending a student to the clinic so that the nurse can prepare the clinic if the student is symptomatic, relocating any healthy students, and allowing the nurse to don proper PPE.
- Additional plexiglass and screens may be considered when working through clinic flow; however, plexiglass and screens do not preclude the need for social distancing.
Asthma, Anaphylaxis, Allergies
- Students with asthma, anaphylaxis, or other life- threatening conditions will be encouraged to carry and/or self-administer medication prescribed for these conditions provided the physician and the parent/ guardian provide permission for the student to do so on the medication administration paperwork. All students who self-carry medication at school are still required to complete and provide the appropriate paperwork to their campus nurse.
- Students with symptoms of COVID-19 should not attend school. Symptoms of asthma and COVID-19 may overlap, including cough and shortness of breath. Parents should collaborate with the campus nurse and personal healthcare provider to determine the best option for what to do when their child experiences an acute asthma attack.
- According to the CDC, during this COVID-19 pandemic, asthma treatments using inhalers with spacers are preferred over nebulizer treatments whenever possible. Aerosols generated by nebulizer treatments are potentially infectious. If students require a nebulizer at school, a physician note will be required explaining why that student cannot use an inhaler with spacer.
- Students with seasonal allergies will be permitted in school. Students that have significant sneezing and coughing may be referred to the clinic so that the campus nurse can work with that parent to achieve better control.
Due to COVID-19, no campus visitors will be permitted until further notice is communicated by the district and campus. Campus staff and parents should consider virtual meeting options to limit campus visitors. All visitors who enter the building will be required to wear a face covering and those who proceed beyond the reception area will follow specific guidelines for visitors.
- Parents are discouraged from entering the campus and will not be allowed beyond the front office area.
- All visitors, including parents, will be required to complete the RISD Health Screener.
- Virtual tools will be used to conduct PTA meetings, ARDs, LPAC, Parent Conferences, etc.
- If visitors have COVID-19 symptoms, or are lab confirmed with COVID-19, they must remain off campus until they meet the criteria for re-entry.
- All individuals entering the building will be required to wear face coverings.
- Visitors will stand behind the shield guard installed at reception desks.
Disinfecting and Hand Sanitizing
Frequent disinfection and hand sanitization will ensure health and wellness of students and staff. In the first two days of face-to-face instruction, all students will receive explicit instruction on best practices for hand washing and hand sanitization. These practices will be modeled and reinforced throughout the school year. Additionally, visual reminders will be posted throughout the campus.
- Hand sanitizer will be available at the main entry to the campus, in classrooms, in the cafeteria, and in all common areas throughout the campus.
- Paper towels will be provided near all doors to use on high-touch areas.
- Staff and students will be expected to regularly wash or sanitize their hands. Hand washing will be built into the schedule for all students in PK-6 including after recess, before eating and following restroom breaks.
- Staff will have access to disinfectant solutions to sanitize high-touch and working surfaces and shared objects frequently.
- Staff will limit the use of shared supplies when possible. The district will provide elementary students with individual art supplies.
- Staff should supervise and limit the number of students that enter the bathroom at one time to comply with health agency recommendations and social distancing.
- Plexiglass shields will be installed in between handwashing stations.
- Custodial employees have been trained on COVID-19 safety protocols.
- Medical-grade, CDC-approved disinfectants will be used for deep cleaning campuses on a regular and ongoing basis.
- If a classroom or facility is closed, in addition to deep cleaning the identified classroom, custodial staff will disinfect classrooms, restrooms, athletics and fine arts areas as well as all additional areas throughout the school facility.
- Cleaning and disinfecting will occur nightly in every classroom, restroom, common areas, and on high-touch surfaces utilizing electrostatic disinfectant sprayers.
- Every classroom and office area will have disinfectant in a spray bottle with appropriate cleaning cloths provided for employees and students to use on high-touch areas throughout the school day.
- Based on state recommendations, each RISD campus will provide students the opportunity to clean their own spaces before and after they are used in ways that are safe and developmentally appropriate.
- Restrooms and cafeterias will undergo extensive cleaning each day using electrostatic disinfectant sprayers.
- Where available, windows should be opened to help with ventilation.
Arrival and Dismissal
Sanitizer stations will be placed at each entrance and exit. Students and staff are encouraged to sanitize hands prior to entrance and exit.
Separate entrances will be utilized for car riders, bus riders, walkers and daycares. Staggered arrival times will be assigned by the school to minimize arrival traffic. Students will be assigned to a cohort and location to meet every morning. Staff will monitor hallways and all entrances for social distancing and ensure cohorts meet in designated locations. Parents will not be allowed to walk students to classrooms.
- Wash hands or use hand sanitizer upon arrival.
- Campuses must plan for entry procedures that reduce large group gatherings, including staff, students and families in close proximity.
- Students and staff must wear masks when entering the building and when in the designated waiting areas.
- Once students are in the assigned location for arrival, students should choose seats that have empty seats between each person.
Each campus will designate staggered dismissal groups, including walkers, car riders, bus riders or by grade level to help limit student movement in the building and decrease the risk of crowding outside waiting for a bus or a car pick- up. Separate exits will be used for car riders, bus riders, walkers and daycares.
- Once students are in the assigned location for dismissal, students should choose seats that have empty seats between each person. Elementary students are expected to stay seated until a staff member dismisses them.
- Campuses will develop building-specific procedures based on building configuration.
When bus transportation resumes with face-to-face instruction, students using bus transportation services will follow revised protocols. These expectations will begin when students arrive at their designated bus stop, board the school bus and exit the bus to enter the school building.
- Richardson ISD will provide bus transportation for all students who register for transportation services and meet the eligibility requirements for transportation.
- RISD encourages families to drop students off at school, carpool, or walk with their student to school to reduce possible virus exposure on buses.
- Bus drivers will be trained in COVID-19 safety protocols.
- Drivers and students are required to wear a face covering or mask entering, riding and exiting the bus.
- Students should practice social distancing while waiting for and approaching the school bus.
- Students should NOT share food, drinks or personal devices.
- Hand sanitizer will be provided on all buses and are to be used by students when entering and exiting the bus.
- Each bus and route will be limited to one student per seat or two students from the same household in order to encourage social distancing. The seat immediately behind the driver will remain empty.
- Students will be seated starting from the back seats, then toward the front. Students will unload starting from the front to the back.
- Depending on the number of students, multiple runs of each route may be necessary to accommodate all students.
- Bus riders will be encouraged to sit apart from one another and will be required to sit facing the front of the bus and keep their hands to themselves.
- When possible, parents should help with student supervision at the bus stop both at arrival and pick-up times.
Disinfecting Protocol Between Drop-Offs
- Seats, handles, and high-touch areas will be disinfected every day, per TEA guidelines, using CDC-approved disinfectant through electrostatic disinfectant sprayer.
- Seats, handles, and high-touch areas will be disinfected after every route, per TEA guidelines, utilizing CDC-approved disinfectant.
- When possible, bus windows will be opened to allow outside air to circulate in the bus.
- All students must follow all rules and expectations for bus transportation, including these new health and safety guidelines.
- As students exit their car, they will be expected to maintain social distancing guidelines when walking toward the building entry. Students should not congregate with other students on the campus when walking toward the school.
- Students or volunteers will not be allowed to open car doors or assist with carpool arrival. Campus staff will be visible at carpool drop-off and pick-up to help monitor safety expectations including wearing PPE and social distancing.
- Students will report to their cohort location as assigned by the campus principal.
- Parents and students will open their own car door and carry their own backpack and other supplies at drop-off and pick-up.
- Parents should remain in their car and refrain from congregating with other parents as they wait for arrival or dismissal.
- It is recommended that walkers from different households maintain social distance when walking to and from school.
- It is strongly recommended students AND parents avoid large groups or gatherings with other students on the campus before or after school.
- Students will be asked to immediately leave campus and begin walking home at the end of the school day.
- Campus staff will be visible at walker entry and exit to help monitor safety expectations including wearing PPE and social distancing.
- Students will report to their cohort location as assigned by the campus principal.
- Students will use every other space in the bike rack to keep distance when arriving at school.
- Students will immediately leave campus and begin riding their bike home at the end of the school day.
- Students are not to congregate in large groups with other students on the campus when dismissed from school at the end of the day.
- Teachers assigned to supervise this area will ensure students follow these guidelines.
- Students arriving on bikes will report to their cohort location as assigned by the campus.
Campus administrators will determine the areas that may be used for breakfast and lunch that allow for social distancing, including the library, gym or other large areas within the school building.
Campus staff will monitor the cafeteria and other meal locations to ensure social distancing. Cafeteria capacity will be based on the most current guidelines. Physical distance will be provided around each occupiable seat. Hand sanitizing stations will be available at entrances and exits of the cafeteria. RISD staff will implement as many touchless procedures as possible to reduce potential spread of the virus. No visitors will be permitted in the cafeteria or other spaces where students are eating .
Entering the Cafeteria
- Students should only enter the cafeteria if they intend to have breakfast or lunch, and only using the designated entrance door.
- No gathering of students is allowed in the cafeteria.
- If a student does not plan on eating breakfast in the cafeteria, they will go directly to their assigned location.
- Students must wash their hands or use the sanitizer stations prior to entering the cafeteria service line.
Entering the Service Line
- Just a few students should enter the service line, at least 3 feet apart, using the floor decals as a guide to maintain social distancing.
- A cafeteria monitor or school staff will stand outside of the serving line to control flow and ensure social distancing.
Inside the Service Area
Floor decals will indicate where students should stand to ensure social distancing.
- Main entrée, vegetables and fruit will be packaged by child nutrition staff when possible.
- Meal items will be handed to the student by a child nutrition staff member.
- Students will be able to select type of milk.
Students must always stand on the opposite side of the protective shield placed by the cashier
Procedures in order from fastest to slowest:
- Students must scan their ID card if possible to ensure touchless transaction.
- Cashier can look up student on touch screen to avoid use of keypad.
- Students may enter their ID number into the keypad; but the keypad then MUST be sanitized before the next student arrives.
- Cashier can find students name on a printed roster, and scan the roster.
After verifying the identity of the student via card scan or number lookup:
- Student will hold up amount of money or check they wish to deposit into their account.
- Cashier will verify the amount and enter the deposit amount into student account.
- Student will place money into dropbox near the cashier to avoid cross contact.
- Students who have handled cash should wash hands or use sanitizer before eating.
- Campuses should encourage parents to always use the online deposit system.
- Cash envelopes will be provided to campuses to use for lunch deposits. account Student name and PIN or ID number must be written on the envelope before turning in to the cafeteria.
- The district’s charge policy still applies and will be enforced.
The following procedures apply to all meal locations per campus plan:
- Signs will be posted on the walls and floors to ensure appropriate social distancing during breakfast and lunch.
- A seating plan for students will be followed for social distancing.
- Assigned staff will supervise students in cafeteria lines, direct students to open seats, and ensure students maintain social distance.
- Staff will monitor to enforce consistent student cohorts during breakfast and lunch.
- Seats will be marked to ensure proper social distance is provided between each student.
- Cafeteria tables will be cleaned and disinfected between use by each student cohort.