Crescent has developed a pandemic re-entry strategy that is flexible, transparent, and prioritizes the health and safety of our community.
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused much uncertainty in our world. The information provided here is based on our current understanding of the situation and will be updated as additional information becomes available.
Crescent Safe COVID-19 Web Portal
Keeping Our Community Safe
We have worked diligently to ensure that our return to school complies with the most effective health and safety measures. Our goal is to not only reopen our campus, but to stay open throughout the pandemic.
We have looked critically at every aspect of the reopening that impacts the health & safety of Crescent students and staff. We re-engineered the school campus, schedule, and staff to allow all boys to learn on-site, full-time, every day.
Given the evolving nature of this public health crisis, our plans must be flexible and will be adjusted as new or updated information and guidelines are issued by public health authorities.
Toronto Public Health has provided this helpful COVID-19 Decision Tool to help determine whether you should send your child to school.
Here are some examples from TPH to help guide parents about when to send their children to school.
Hossein tests positive for COVID-19:
Hossein will need to self-isolate for 10 days from when the symptoms began.
His siblings and his family will all need to self-isolate for 14 days.
Julia has symptoms of COVID-19:
Julia needs to self-isolate at home, and arrange to get tested.
Julia’s siblings and other family members can still go to school or work while she is waiting for her test results, and if she tests negative for COVID-19.
Julia can return to school if her test is negative, and her symptoms have been improving for at least 24 hours.
Bao Lee has symptoms of COVID-19, but did not get tested:
Bao Lee will have to self-isolate at home for 10 days from when his symptoms started.
Bao Lee’s siblings and other family members can still go to school or work as long as they don’t have symptoms.
Abdul was in close contact with someone who has COVID-19:
Abdul must self-isolate at home for 14 days, and monitor for symptoms.
Abdul’s siblings and other family members can still go to work or school.
But, if Abdul develops symptoms, his siblings and family will need to self-isolate for 14 days from the day his symptoms started.
Berta’s mom was in close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19:
Berta’s mom must self-isolate at home for 14 days, and arrange to get tested.
Berta can still go to school.
If Berta’s mom develops symptoms of COVID-19 while she is self-isolating, then Berta, her siblings and other family members will also have to self-isolate until her mother’s COVID-19 test results are confirmed.
Jackson’s mom has travelled outside of Canada in the last 14 days:
Jackson’s mom must self-isolate at home for 14 days. She should stay in a separate room and keep her distance from others at home.
Jackson can go to school as long as he doesn’t have symptoms.
If Jackson’s mom develops symptoms, she should get tested. Jackson and his family will have to stay home and self-isolate if Jackson’s mom tests positive for COVID-19.
If your child has one or more (new or worsening) symptoms of COVID-19, they should stay at home, self-isolate, and get tested. Call or email the school nurse (firstname.lastname@example.org) to let them know that your child has COVID-19 symptoms, notify the school attendance office and complete the Crescent Safe app (even if your son is not going to school).
You can contact your family physician, Toronto Public Health (416-338-7600) or Telehealth (1-866-797-0000) for further questions.
Please go to the Toronto Public Health website for advice on what to do if you are symptomatic, are a close contact or have been exposed.
Individuals who are symptomatic for COVID-19 can contact Telehealth or their health care provider to advise on what to do next.
It is recommended by Toronto Public Health (TPH) that school staff and students with symptoms of COVID-19 go to an assessment centre for testing as soon as possible, and to self-isolate at home until their result is available.
Overview of when a staff/student can return to school:
Have symptoms of COVID-19: If a student/staff has symptoms, when can they return to school/work?
Students/staff who have one or more new or worsening symptoms of COVID-19 should stay at home, self-isolate, and get tested. They must notify the school that the have COVID-19 symptoms.
Students/staff who receive a negative COVID-19 test result may return to school after they have no symptoms for 24 hours.
Students/staff with COVID-19 symptoms who do not get tested must stay home andself-isolatefor 14 days from the day the symptoms started. Even if their symptoms get better sooner, they will need to stay home for 14 days.
Exposed to COVID-19: If a student/staff is advised by public health that they have been exposed to a confirmed case (i.e. they are a close contact), when can they return to school/work?
School staff and students exposed to a confirmed case of COVID-19 will be advised by public health. Public health will complete a risk assessment and determine who had high-risk exposure.
They will be excluded from the school setting for 14 days from the day of last exposure to the person who had COVID-19, if they had close contact:
These individuals must self-isolate at home and monitor for symptoms for the next 14 days.
Individuals who have been exposed to a confirmed case of COVID-19 should get tested as soon as any symptoms develop.
If asymptomatic, individuals who have been exposed are also encouraged to get tested any time within 14 days of the potential exposure. They will need to continue to self-isolate for 14 days even if the test is negative.
Contacts of a contact (e.g. household member of a student who was exposed at school) do not need to be excluded.
Have COVID-19: Students/Staff who are being managed by TPH (i.e. confirmed or probable cases of COVID-19, close contacts of cases) must follow TPH instructions to determine when to return to the school:
School staff must also report to People & Culture prior to return to work when applicable.
Clearance tests are not required for staff or students to return to the school.
Suspected and Confirmed Case of COVID-19 in the School
If a student/staff member is undergoing COVID-19 testing, the School Nurse should be informed. When a positive test result has been received, both the School Nurse and Headmaster should be immediately informed. The Headmaster and School Nurse will notify Toronto Public Health and Crescent School will follow direction and guidance from TPH.
If a student falls ill at school, he will be sent to the Wellness Centre and screened by our school nurse. If COVID-19 is suspected, the student will stay in an isolation room until pick-up is arranged. The student will be encouraged to take a COVID-19 test or get a doctor’s note. If the test is negative or the doctor’s note confirms an alternate diagnosis, he must remain at home until symptom-free for 24 hours. If no test or doctor’s note is obtained, the student must remain off campus and self-isolate for 14 days.
If the COVID-19 test is positive, the parent must notify the Head of School and the school nurse. The nurse will immediately contact Toronto Public Health (TPH). The CRT will provide to TPH a list of anyone in the school who has been in close contact with the student (or staff member) and await TPH directives on how to proceed. Close contacts will be notified by TPH and the student/staff notification leads from the school. They will be asked to self-isolate for 14 days and be tested for COVID-19 if symptoms develop. If there are no symptoms after 14 days, they can return to school. The Headmaster must also report any confirmed cases of COVID-19 to the Ministry of Education.
A Toronto Public Health Case and Contact team will be contacting the individual to assist with the isolation period for the family.
The staff or student who is a close contact of a positive COVID-19 case attending Crescent School should inform the Head of School or School Nurse (and in the case of an employee, People and Culture) immediately and stay home. They will be excluded from the school setting for 14 days from the day of last exposure to the person who had COVID-19.
There are no tests for student/staff to do to be cleared to return to work.
An outbreak in the school is defined as two or more lab-confirmed COVID-19 cases in students and/or staff in a school with an epidemiological link, within a 14-day period, where at least one case could have reasonably acquired their infection in the school.
The local public health unit (PHU) is responsible for determining if an outbreak exists, declaring an outbreak, and providing direction on outbreak control measures to be implemented. In the event of an outbreak at the school, the public health unit will assist in determining which cohort(s) may be sent home or if a partial or full school closure is required based on the scope of the outbreak.
We have re-engineered the school campus, schedule, and staff resources to allow all boys to safely learn on site, full-time, every day. Additionally, the best way to prevent infection is to avoid being exposed. This is facilitated through physical distancing, wearing a mask when physical distancing is difficult to maintain, washing hands often, and staying home when ill.
Below is a summary of the efforts taken and protocols implemented to keep our community safe.
Construction is ongoing this summer in response to the Ministry of Education’s Safe School Reopening Guidelines.
Rooms have been enlarged, and additional classrooms have been created, to accommodate an average cohort size of 15 students while maintaining physical distancing. Spaces such as the Middle School art and drama rooms have been relocated to keep the three school divisions distinct and minimize student movement across campus.
Harkness tables have been replaced by individual work stations. Classrooms have been decluttered and “soft” furniture placed temporarily in storage to minimize surface contamination. Hand sanitizer stations are liberally positioned by every classroom door and throughout the hallways.
We are adding non-contact faucets and water stations, and modifying door configurations to minimize high-touch areas. We have also improved air circulation and are in the process of completing air purification so as to reduce particulate matter, bacteria, and viruses.
Extensive wayfinding signage will be installed to direct student traffic and minimize congestion in hallways and stairwells.
We have contracted a leading cleaning consulting firm to audit our cleaning practices and recommend the optimal infection prevention and control program. This includes which procedures and processes to follow and appropriate cleaning products and sanitization misters to purchase. They will also conduct cleaning and sanitizing education and training with our Facilities Team. High touch surfaces will be cleaned at minimum twice daily. We will undertake continuous monitoring of external guidelines to ensure we are current with best practices.
Students are strongly encouraged to walk, cycle, or arrive by private transportation. Carpooling within your class cohort is an option.
If taking TTC, it is recommended to take the least amount of transfers possible, to sanitize hands before and after, wear your mask at all times, and keep a 2-metre distance from others while waiting for the bus and also while on public transit. TTC protocols in place due to COVID-19 can be found here.
All students, staff and visitors must complete a self-assessment before arriving on campus. The Crescent Safe screening app is available to download free of charge from the App Store and Google Play. Students learning on campus, and on-campus staff must complete the self-assessment every day prior to arriving on campus, even if the student/staff does not plan to be on campus on a given day.
Following public health guidelines, staff and students are required to wear masks at all times when in the school, including in the classroom.
Crescent School will provide each student with a non-medical, washable mask; a small charge will be added to the student's Sundry Account. Masks will also be available for purchase in the Coyote's Den.
Masks should be washed each day. Students should bring two Tupperware-like containers or Ziploc-type bags: one to store clean masks and a second to separately store soiled masks.
Teachers will organize "mask breaks" at lunchtime and when the boys can be outdoors and/or when physical distancing can be maintained.
School staff who are in close, regular contact with students must wear medical-grade face masks. This includes teaching faculty, support personnel, and facilities crew. The school will provide each of these staff members with two medical-grade masks daily.
Masks with valves are not recommended.
A face shield is not an alternative to a mask.
The evidence for "Gaiters" is not yet clear, and at this time we ask that your son wear a face mask.
Hand hygiene, which refers to hand-washing or hand-sanitizing, is one of the most effective ways to reduce virus transmission.
Students will be encouraged to wash their hands regularly with soap and water and/or hand sanitizer. We have increased the number of hand-sanitizing stations to make this option available in every classroom and throughout the hallways. Posters demonstrating proper hand-washing techniques are posted in all bathrooms.
Many people do not know how to wash their hands effectively. These videos from Crescent School nurse Jody Stapleton, RN show how to practice washing your hands:
Students will be encouraged to maintain physical distancing at all times. Students will enter the school through a designated entranceway and wait in a designated gathering spot according to school division. When possible, students should arrive at school immediately prior to the morning bell to avoid congregating in common spaces. Student arrival and entry flow details will be explained more fully in the weeks leading up to the first day of school and will be posted in the appropriate Academics resource post in the Green Room.
Directional signage will be used in hallways and stairwells to maintain a steady flow of traffic and minimize congestion. Signs enforcing physical distancing will be posted throughout the school. Bathrooms will be limited to two students at a time.
Classrooms have been reconfigured, and in some cases enlarged, to support the physical distancing of students and teachers.
“Cohorting” refers to minimizing the number of students and teachers any individual comes in contact with, and to maintaining consistency within those contacts as much as possible. This is done to limit the potential spread of infection should an individual contract the virus that causes COVID-19.
Crescent will maintain an average cohort of 15 students in a classroom and adopt timetabling that, to the greatest extent possible, limits the number of individuals that a student or teacher engages with during their time at school.
Health and safety training on new policies and procedures for staff will take place before the start of school, once Ministry and health authorities have provided guidance and Crescent plans for September are finalized.
Students will receive health and safety training upon their return to school.
Crescent School has a long-standing commitment to health and wellbeing. Further, we recognize the importance that positive relationships and positive mental health have on our students’ learning. With Covid-19 and the return to school, we are acutely aware that some students may require additional social-emotional support.
Support for our students will continue to be guided by our social workers and supported by our academic leaders, faculty members, and school nurse. The focus of the work of our school social workers is on self-reflection and the development of emotional intelligence to build healthy relationships and to build resilience.
Emotional wellbeing is on a continuum and when boys find it difficult to cope with the stressors of daily life, our social workers are available to provide counselling, coaching, and advice. They will also work closely with teachers to ensure that boys who are coping with excessive stress, anxiety, depression, or any other conditions are appropriately accommodated in their learning environment.
Social Work services include individual counselling, group sessions guided by Toronto Public Health measures, family support, consultation with outside professionals, and outside referrals if necessary.
Students are encouraged to reach out on their own to our social workers for support. Students may also be referred to our social workers by parents or teachers.
The approach used by our social workers is dependent on the student, the group, and the situation. Our social workers use a strength-based approach, which supports students based on where they are in their own social-emotional journey. The approach aims to help students gain a greater understanding of their own strengths through self-reflection and through the development of skills and strategies for their daily life.
In order to provide students with the support that they require, our social workers will focus on education, access to support, and intervention.
For schedules, daily routines, on campus experience and remote learning details, please refer to the following resource posts in the Green Room. (You must be logged in to the Green Room to access these posts.)