Plan Your Activity
Plan Your Activity
On the Pandemic Front Line: Children and Schools
Resources for Parents and Personnel, Schools and Childcares, and their Communities:
Millions of Children in the Community - Tips for Parents
- How to Talk to Children: Talking to Children About COVID-19 (Coronavirus) A Parent Resource, NASP & NASN
- Parents Meeting the Challenge of the Pandemic: NYU Langone Health
- CDC People with Asthma and COVID19
- CDC’s Tips for Parents While School’s Out: Children and Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
- US Department of Education Supplemental Fact Sheet on Addressing the Risk of COVID19 Elementary and Secondary Schools While Serving Children with Disabilities
- Helping Children Cope With Stress During the 2019-nCoV Outbreak: World Health Organization
Millions of Jobs in Schools and Childcares - Tips for Employers and Employees
- Faculty are working on distance learning; kitchen and support staff are producing and bagging or delivering meals
- Facility leaders and custodians have an unexpected opportunity to help:
- First, a few cautions if employees work in the building:
- FOLLOW ALL STATE AND LOCAL COVID19 POLICIES AND PROTOCOLS FOR YOUR WORK PLACE
- Ensure social distancing and other health-protective measures in the workplace.
- OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration): Preparing the Workplaces for COVID19
- NIOSH (National Institutes of Occupational Safety and Health)
- "Paying School Employees During Prolonged Shutdowns Is a Major Dilemma”, Education Week, March 19, 2020, names ideas for continuing work for support staff, including distribution of meals, improving grounds, bus drivers transport student meals, athletic coaches can maintain fields, tech staffers can provide training on electronic communication platforms, and more like landscaping and repairing parking lots. A separate blog in ED Week noted janitors on overtime to clean and disinfect schools.
School and Childcare Officials:
- Stay connected: reach out to board and staff, parents and others
- Ideas for staying virtually connected: morning Pledge; school notices; welcome to …; thank you to staff/volunteers; tips on how to talk to children; student art or music show; gym class lessons
- Services for Children: New York City Example
- New York City Department of Education: Learn at Home for All Students, the nation’s single largest school district with over 1.1 million children enrolled
- NYC DoEd Regional Enrichment Centers
- In order to successfully fight COVID-19, our first responders, health care providers, transit workers, and other key personnel must be able to come to work. That is why we have created Regional Enrichment Centers—places where the children of these front-line workers can be safely cared for while their parents continue to serve the city in this time of need.
School Leaders: While Buildings Are Empty, Get Ready for Children to Return
- Retain in-house facility workers: clean, disinfect, maintain building systems; assess asbestos and lead paint status; pest-proof inside and out; check water and ventilation filters; assess water damage, fix leaks.
- Hire local trades as needed: plumbing repairs; electrical upgrades; masonry and walkway repairs; lead and/or asbestos remediation; green-scape grounds to direct water away from foundations and reduce run-off; plant shade trees; use native species.
Guidance for Cleaning and Disinfecting Schools and Childcare:
- Worried About the Virus at School? (Cleaning and disinfecting schools from the states of WA and NY and lists of approved disinfectants)
- Responsible Purchasing Network: Safer Disinfectants
- Green Seal Blog on Safer Disinfecting for COVID19
- Cleaning for Healthy Schools
- NYS Joint Memo on Cleaning and Disinfecting Appendix C (2020)
- Washington State Department of Health on Cleaning for Healthy Schools
- Enhanced Green Cleaning Training Manual (NYS 2010)
Guidance for Improving Buildings and Grounds
- Building Evaluation Walk-Through: Identify common trouble spots in and around school buildings where the sources of problems may hide.
- Inventory Cleaning Products: Identify cleaning products currently used and begin replacing them with safer substitutes.
- EPA on Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting Program
- Safer Pest Control: Smart, Sensible and Sustainable Pest Management in Your School, US EPA Webinars
- EPA’s 3T’s for School and Child Care Drinking Water
- EPA Fresh Air: Optimal HVAC Management for Improved Health
- HS Network Our Parent's Guide to IAQ
- Buildings and Grounds Extreme Weather Resilience Strategies
- General Services Administration (GSA) Sustainable Facilities Tool for Child Care
For Communities and Nongovernmental Organizations:
- Blogs, OpEds, Letters to Editor to distribute/post
- Support and thank your schools for all that they are doing today!
- Support US EPA Proposed Healthy Schools grants program
- Support Proposed Federal Funding: Rebuild America’s Schools
- Webinars on key issues
- See Sample Op-Ed above
- Host: Indoor Environmental Quality Virtual Workshop: Present and discuss child environmental health and indoor air quality using US EPA's IAQ Tools for Schools.
- Host: Virtual Green Cleaning Workshop: Present and discuss how to phase in green cleaning products.
- Healthy Schools Day Proclamation/Resolution: Ask your elected officials to support healthy school environments.