Safe Return to School

Crescent's Safe Reopening Task Force is working diligently to develop a 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. We will let you know as details change and as additional information becomes available.

Safe Return to School

Reopening Plans for September 2020

We are working diligently to ensure that our return to school in September 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.

Our Safe Reopening Task Force is looking critically at every aspect of the reopening that impacts the health & safety of Crescent students and staff. 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.

Parents will be required to acknowledge having read and understood Crescent School’s health and learning policies in place during the pandemic.
 

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  • Our Safe Reopening Guiding Principles

    Our reopening plans will be guided by the following principles:
     
    • We will place the health, safety, and wellbeing of students, staff, and families at the centre of how and where we learn and operate;
    • We will provide the best possible, mission-aligned Academic program for our boys;
    • We will make decisions that consider Crescent’s immediate needs and long-term sustainability; and
    • We will engage and communicate with stakeholders in a timely and effective manner.
  • Our Working Assumptions

    • Additional waves of infection will continue to affect the Province of Ontario until a vaccine is available;
    • Public health guidelines will be applicable to private & independent schools;
    • When the school reopens, physical-distancing, students grouped in cohorts/pods and the wearing of PPE will be required;
    • Remote learning will continue for students who are not able to return to campus;
    • Non-teaching staff will continue to work remotely;
    • Faculty with high-risk medical concerns can be accommodated; and
    • The campus facility will be modified to accommodate teaching and learning in response to the Ministry of Education’s Safe School Reopening Guidelines.
 

Contact Information

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The content of this web portal is updated regularly as decisions are made and protocol is finalized. We encourage you to visit this page often.

Preparing Our Campus

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  • Building Modifications

    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.
     
  • Facilities Cleaning & Sanitizing

    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.

Health & Safety Guidelines

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.

The following guidelines and protocols may change as directed by health and governing authorities. All details should be forthcoming by mid-August. Please ensure that you and your son are aware of the protocols outlined below.
 

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  • Transportation To and From School

    Recommendations regarding health and safety best practices relating to transportation to/from school will be forthcoming in August.
  • Health Screening

    We are investigating self-assessment apps for use by students and staff prior to school entry each day. This protocol will assist in screening and illness surveillance in our school.

    Students/staff exhibiting any COVID-19 symptoms will be required to stay home.

    More details will be provided in August.
     
  • Face Masks

    Staff and students will be required to wear masks in common spaces when physical distancing is not possible. The 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 Den. Masks should be washed each day.
  • Hand Hygiene

    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.  

  • Physical Distancing

    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

    “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.
     
  • Staff & Faculty Preparedness

    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.
     
  • Visitors in the School

    To reduce the potential of virus spread in the school, there will be no visitors allowed in the school. This includes parents, alumni, new family prospects, etc.
  • Quarantine & Isolation Protocols

    Students and staff who are not well must not come to school.

    Any student/staff who has been out of the country must quarantine at home for 14 days and is not permitted in the school. Read about the Government of Canada’s Quarantine Act, here.

    Students/staff must also quarantine at home if they:
    • are asymptomatic and awaiting results of a lab test for COVID-19
    • have been in contact with someone who has a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19, but are not themselves symptomatic
    • have been told by public health that they may have been exposed to COVID-19

    Students/staff are required to self-isolate if they:
    • have symptoms of COVID-19, even if mild
    • have been diagnosed with COVID-19

    Quarantine/Self-isolation is required until:
    • If symptomatic, self-isolation is required for 14 days, fever is gone and symptoms improved
    • If asymptomatic and tested, follow advice from public health
    • If the student/staff had contact with someone with COVID-19 or COVID-19 symptoms, has isolated for 14 days after the last contact with the infected person, and experiences no symptoms
    If a student/staff is advised to self-isolate by Toronto Public Health, he/she must follow the direction provided by Toronto Public Health in order to return to school.
     
  • Supporting Student Wellbeing

    Crescent Student Services continues to support students’ physical and social-emotional wellbeing. A health and wellbeing team consisting of academic leaders, faculty members, social workers, and school nurse will be working together to ensure that students continue to practice the principles of STEM 1.0 (Sleep Soundly, Think Clearly, Eat Smarter, Move Move), build positive relationships with peers and teachers, manage stress levels, and develop resiliency. Individual counselling sessions will continue to be available.

Academic Continuity

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  • Scenario Planning

    As we hope for the best, we are planning for all eventualities. Our three planning scenarios include:
    • Conventional: All students learning on campus five days a week; enhanced health and safety measures in place and some restrictions enforced
    • Modified: A blend of in-campus and online learning
    • 100% Online
    Conventional and modified scenarios can be impacted by intermittent local virus outbreaks resulting in periodic campus closures and/or teachers and students who are exposed to the virus and need to self-quarantine.
    Return to school is voluntary, and we will provide a quality educational program for students who don’t return to in-person learning.
     
  • Design Features

    • Our schedule will help protect the health, safety, and wellbeing of students, staff, and families;
    • Our schedules will be conducive to meaningful teaching and learning;
    • Our schedules will allow for a flexible response to changing conditions;
    • Our schedules will facilitate a comprehensive school experience;
    • Co-curricular activities will be embedded into the day.
  • Lower School Snapshot

    • All students are in school five days a week
    • A shift from 8 courses to 6 courses
    • Average class of 15 students 
    • All classes are organized into cohorts
    • Lunch service provided to students in their classes 
    • Dedicated block for clubs, activities, and daily physical activity
    • Intramural and competitive athletics offered after school
  • Middle School Snapshot

    • All students are in school five days a week
    • A shift from 8 courses all year to 4 courses in each half of the year
    • Average class size of 15 
    • All classes are organized into cohorts
    • One teacher assigned to each cohort
    • Lunch service is provided to the students in their classes
    • An “X Block” is scheduled into each semester
    • Dedicated block for co-curricular activities
    • Features a flexible model for course delivery
  • Upper School Snapshot

    • All students are in class five days a week
    • Average class 15 students or less
    • A shift from 8 courses all year to 4 courses in each half of the year
    • Grade 9 courses are organized into cohorts 
    • Grade 10 to 12 classes are cohorted wherever practical
    • Lunch service is provided to the students in their classes
    • Dedicated block for co-curricular activities and additional programming
    • Features a flexible model for course delivery

Student Experience

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  • BeforeCare and AfterCare for Lower School

    Due to the COVID-19 restrictions, there will be no BeforeCare and AfterCare offered during the 2020-2021 school year. Students are to arrive at school between 8:00 and 8:15 a.m. Students dropped off earlier will not be allowed inside the school and will not be supervised until 8:00 a.m.
  • Dress Code

    The dress code at Crescent School for the 2020-21 school year has been adjusted significantly in order to promote adherence to the strictest possible health and safety standards. 
    The school uniform for all students will consist of the following:
    • Washable grey flannel or grey cotton pants (pants must have belt loops, no cuffs)
    • Black belt
    • Black closed-toe and heel-covered footwear (dress shoes, athletic shoes, deck shoes, Blundestones, etc.)
    • Crescent short sleeve or long-sleeved polo shirts OR Crescent branded tops. This includes team, club, or spirit wear as well as graduation hoodies, essentially anything purchased from the Den and branded Crescent School.
    All clothing must be washable and should be laundered before the student wears it again to School. 

    Parents may return unworn and unaltered blazers to the Den for a refund beginning September 14. The refund process will be announced in August.

    Visit the Coyote's Den resource post in the Green Room for more information and to access the online store.
     
  • Lunch

    Crescent will continue to serve lunch through Chartwells, our food service provider. Chartwells has implemented enhanced health and safety guidelines for food preparation and staff.
    Students will receive pre-packaged lunches delivered and to be eaten in their classrooms each day. All students will participate in our lunch program for the first few weeks of school, after which students will be given the opportunity to opt-out of the lunch program and bring their own bagged lunch to school;  bagged lunches must comply with Crescent’s Anaphylaxis Policy. Details regarding the opt-out refund will be provided in August. 

    Food delivery services such as UberEats are not permitted on campus. 

    Food service in the CCL Cafe has been suspended until further notice.
     
  • Lockers and Personal Belongings

    Students will not have access to personal lockers when school begins. Students will need to carry their belongings, which should be kept to a minimum.
  • Athletics

    The Conference of Independent Schools of Ontario Athletic Associations (CISAA) has outlined a framework for decision-making in support of a multi-phased return to sport for the 2020-2021 school year.

    You can read the CISAA Return to Sport Plan and the proposed multi-phased approach document here.
  • Co-curricular Activities

    More details will be provided in August.
  • Private Music Lessons

    Crescent will offer private music lessons, to be delivered online. More details will be forthcoming.
  • Field Trips and Outreach Trips

    There will be no field trips or Outreach trips planned until further notice.
  • Supporting Student Wellbeing

    Crescent Student Services continues to support students’ physical and social-emotional wellbeing. A health and wellbeing team consisting of academic leaders, faculty members, social workers, and school nurse will be working together to ensure that students continue to practice the principles of STEM 1.0 (Sleep Soundly, Think Clearly, Eat Smarter, Move Move), build positive relationships with peers and teachers, manage stress levels, and develop resiliency. Individual counselling sessions will continue to be available.

Protocols for COVID-19 in the School (to come)