Safe Return Plan

LEA Plan for Safe Return to In-Person Instruction and Continuity of Service 

Pursuant to the Federal American Rescue Plan Act, Section 2001(i) 

Introduction and Background 

As announced in the New Jersey Department of Education (NJDOE)’s April 28, 2021 broadcast, in March 2021 President Biden signed the Federal  American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act, Public Law 117-2, into law. The ARP Act provides an additional $122 billion in Elementary and Secondary School  Emergency Relief (ARP ESSER) to States and school districts to help safely reopen, sustain the safe operation of schools, and address the impacts of the  COVID-19 pandemic on the nation’s students. As with the previous ESSER funds available under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security  (CARES) Act, and the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSA), the purpose of the additional funding is to support  local educational agencies (LEAs) in preparing for and responding to the impacts of COVID-19 on educators, students, and families. Additional  information on ARP ESSER may be found in the NJDOE’s funding comparison fact sheet.  

Section 2001(i)(1) of the ARP Act requires each LEA that receives ARP ESSER funds to develop and make publicly available on the LEA’s website, no later  than 30 days after receiving ARP ESSER funds, a plan for the safe return to in-person instruction and continuity of services for all schools (Safe Return  Plan) A Safe Return Plan is required of all fund recipients, including those that have already returned to in-person instruction. Section 2001(i)(2) of the  ARP Act further requires that the LEA seek public comment on the Safe Return Plan and take those comments into account in finalization of the Safe  Return Plan. Under the interim final requirements published in Volume 86, No. 76 of the Federal Register by the U.S. Department of Education (USDE),  an LEA must periodically, but no less frequently than every six months through September 30, 2023, review and, as appropriate, revise its Safe Return  Plan.  

Pursuant to those requirements, LEAs must submit to the NJDOE and post on their website their Safe Return Plans by June 24, 2021. The NJDOE  intends to make LEA ARP ESSER Fund applications available in EWEG on May 24, 2021 and LEAs will submit their Safe Return Plans to the NJDOE via  EWEG. To assist LEAs with the development of their Safe Return Plans, the NJDOE is providing the following template. 

This template incorporates the federally-required components of the Safe Return Plan. The questions in the template below will be included in the LEA  ARP ESSER Fund application in EWEG. LEAs will submit responses to the questions within the LEA ARP ESSER Fund application in EWEG by June 24, 2021.  The NJDOE hopes that this template will allow LEAs to effectively plan for that submission and to easily post the information to their websites as  required by the ARP Act. 

Note that on May 17, 2021, Governor Murphy announced that upon the conclusion of the 2020-2021 school year, portions of Executive Order 175  allowing remote learning will be rescinded, meaning that schools will be required to provide full-day, in-person instruction, as they were prior to the  COVID-19 Public Health Emergency. The NJDOE and New Jersey Department of Health will share additional information regarding State requirements or  guidance for health and safety protocols for the 2021-2022 school year as it becomes available.  

June 23, 2022 – Next periodic update of an LEA’s Safe Return Plan, as required by ESSER II, is due on or before today.   Under the interim final

requirements published by the U.S. Department of Education (USDE), an LEA must periodically, but no less frequently than every six

months through September 30, 2023, review and, as appropriate, revise its Safe Return Plan.

Wyckoff School District Plan for Safe Return to In-Person Instruction and Continuity of Services LEA Name: Wyckoff 

Date: 06/21/2021 

Date Revised: 12/3/2021, 6/6/2022

1. Maintaining Health and Safety

For each mitigation strategy listed below (A–H), please describe 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 policies, on each of the following safety recommendations established by  the CDC.  

A. Universal and correct wearing of masks 

As of March 7, 2022, there is no longer a state mandate requiring in-school universal masking. Individuals (including parents/guardians) are encouraged to make masking decisions based on their specific situation (e.g., if they or their family members are immunocompromised or at high risk of severe illness from COVID-19). 

In addition, as of February 25, 2022, the CDC announced that the requirement for wearing of masks on buses or vans operated by public or private school systems, including early care and education/child care programs has been lifted.

B. Physical distancing (e.g., including use of cohorts/podding) 

All instructional and non-instructional spaces will be configured to maintain reasonable distance between students in classroom settings to the extent possible while offering full-time, in-person learning to all students. 

C. Handwashing and respiratory etiquette  

Cleaning and promoting hand hygiene are important everyday actions in schools. The district will continue to follow the  CDC guidelines as follows:  

Teach and reinforce handwashing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Build time into daily routines for students and staff to wash hands,  especially at key times like after bathroom breaks, before lunch, or after playing outside. Hand sanitizers are available for teachers, staff, and students. Signs will continue to be posted asking students, staff and visitors to frequently wash their hands and cover mouths and nose when coughing or  sneezing. We will continue to use tissues and throw them away. We will continue to promote washing one’s hands or the use of a hand sanitizer every  time one touches his mouth or nose. We will continue to provide resources for performing hand hygiene. Appropriate grade level signs for social  distancing, face coverings, hand washing, hygiene, etc. will be posted at all schools. Signage and education materials posted at will be  utilized. 

D. Cleaning and maintaining healthy facilities, including improving ventilation 

Surfaces and areas that are frequently touched will be cleaned and disinfected throughout the day. Our cleaning products are approved by the EPA for use against the virus that  causes Covid-19. Daily cleaning and disinfecting will include desks, chairs, floors, other flat surfaces, and bathrooms using a high-capacity disinfectant  sprayer. Sanitizing wipes containing at least 60% alcohol will be available in computer labs. Sanitizing wipes will also be made available in every  classroom if needed between custodial cleanings and/or between classes. Hand sanitizer will be provided in every classroom and office space for use when hand washing is not available. Sanitizing wipes will be available in every classroom. 

With regard to ventilation, our HVAC automated programs have been evaluated and were approved to ensure that our HVAC equipment is properly  programmed to follow CDC guidance for fresh air input and circulation. The maintenance department frequently inspects and cleans our air filters and  responds to all internal work order requests involving HVAC.  

E. Contact tracing in combination with isolation and quarantine, in collaboration with the State, local, territorial, or Tribal health department 

Contact tracing is a strategy used to determine the source of an infection and how it is spreading. Finding people who are close contacts of a person who has tested positive for COVID-19, and therefore at higher risk of becoming infected themselves, can help prevent further spread of the virus. Per the CDC, close contact is defined as being within 6 feet of someone with suspected or known COVID-19 for 15 or more minutes during a 24-hour period. Individuals who have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19 should be tested at least 5 days after their last close contact, even if they do not have symptoms of COVID-19. Individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19 in the past 90 days need not be tested again. Schools and health departments may not provide contact tracing services to every person with COVID-19. Individuals (or parents of students) who test positive should notify their own close contacts of their potential exposure.

F. Diagnostic and screening testing 

Parents are asked to monitor their children for signs of illness each day. Students who are sick should not attend school. When reporting absences to the school, parents are expected to provide information about symptoms. School nurses will follow-up with the family when COVID-related symptoms are present. 

Response to Symptomatic Students and Staff

An area or room away from others is designated to isolate individuals who become ill with COVID-19 symptoms while at school. For a symptomatic student, the parent/guardian will be notified and instructed to pick up the student promptly. Should the parent/guardian not be reached, the emergency contact person will be contacted and notified to pick up the student. Children and staff with COVID-19 symptoms regardless of vaccination status will be separated away from others until they can be sent home. Ill individuals with COVID-19 symptoms or potential COVID-19 exposure will be sent home and excluded according to the New Jersey Department of Health COVID-19 Exclusion Criteria.

G. Efforts to provide vaccinations to educators, other staff, and students, if eligible 

Vaccinations for eligible individuals are widely available. State and local health departments regularly share information on vaccinations and vaccine clinics. Parents are encouraged to submit copies of vaccination records to the school nurse. All school personnel will be fully vaccinated by October 18, 2021 or will undergo regular testing, per state order (EO 253).  

H. Appropriate accommodations for children with disabilities with respect to the health and safety policies 

If a child with a disability is absent for an extended period of time because of a COVID-19 infection and the school remains open, then the IEP Team will determine whether the child is available for instruction and could benefit from homebound services such as online or virtual instruction,

instructional telephone calls, and other curriculum-based instructional activities, to the extent available. In so doing, school personnel will follow appropriate health guidelines to assess and address the risk of transmission in the provision of such services. The District understands there may be exceptional circumstances that could affect how a particular service is provided. If a child does not receive services after an extended period of time, a school must make an individualized determination whether and to what extent compensatory services may be needed, consistent with

applicable requirements, including to make up for any skills that may have been lost.

2. Ensuring Continuity of Services 

A. Describe how the LEA will ensure continuity of services, including but not limited to services to address students’ academic needs and students’  and staff’s social, emotional, mental health, and other needs, which may include student health and food services. (1000 character limit)  The Wyckoff Schools will continue to implement a multi-tiered intervention system of support of school and district-based mental health supports and  services to positively impact students in all sub-groups and to respond to students’ academic, social and emotional needs. Full-time math and reading specialists support students in math and reading achievement. The middle school has a built-in TIIE (time for intervention, extension, enrichment, etc.) period to meet the differentiated needs of learners. School counselors, social  workers, and psychologists are on staff to support the mental health of students. The Responsive Classroom approach is utilized to support peer relationships and positive student behavior. Professional learning opportunities are available to teachers and staff to support teaching and learning, and the social, emotional, and mental health needs of staff. Full cafeteria service is available at the middle school. The  elementary schools offer lunch options through vendors via the PTO. All students have the option to bring lunch. Families who qualify for free or reduced student lunches receive food-purchasing assistance. 

3. Public Comment  

A. Describe how the LEA sought public comment on its plan, and how it took those public comment into account in the development of its plan.  Note, the ARP requires that LEAs seek public comment for each revision to the plan. (1000 character limit) This plan is posted on the district website, and included on Board meeting agendas. Public comment is welcomed via Board meetings and email. 

B. Describe how the LEA ensured that the plan is in an understandable and uniform format; is to the extent practicable written in a language that  parents can understand or, if not practicable to provide written translations to a parent with limited English proficiency, will be orally translated for  such a parent; and upon request by a parent who is an individual with a disability as defined by the ADA, will be provided in an alternative format  accessible to that parent. (1000 character limit) 

The plan is accessible in multiple languages via Google Translate. Other requested accommodations will be provided.

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