Questions and Answers Regarding Procedures Surrounding COVID-19
All locations of Little People’s College will be closed on Monday, March 16, 2020 for Professional Development. All staff will be updated on modifications to LPC policies and procedures. We will also be reviewing our existing procedures of hand-washing, cleaning, sanitizing and disinfecting.
Please be sure to check our page several times daily, as information and instruction may change at any time.
Are school age children able to attend while public schools are closed?
We are encouraging families to keep their children at home. However, we are planning to remain open for any child who needs care.
What are Little People’s College’s routine preventive measures to stop the spread of germs?
Hand washing. We ensure children wash hands upon arrival, before and after eating and sand/water play, after toileting/ diapering, after wiping a nose, and after catching a cough or sneeze in the elbow. We have hands-free sinks, and many hands-free paper towel dispensers and wastebaskets.
Cleaning, Sanitizing and Disinfecting. We clean, sanitize and disinfect throughout the day with the recommended bleach solution that is prepared daily.
Mouthed Toys. Young children naturally explore with their mouths. We remove mouthed toys from the environment immediately when a child is through playing with them. Those toys are collected and placed out of children’s reach and cleaned/ sanitized before being returned to the classroom environment.
Hand sanitizer. Hand sanitizer (63% alcohol) is available outside on playgrounds and on the LPC vehicles. Hand washing takes place as soon as running water is available. Vehicles are disinfected in the morning and afternoon. Surfaces are wiped, including but not limited to seat straps and plastic surfaces. Additional cleanings are done throughout the week.
Is Little People’s College changing any of their policies to further stop the spread of germs?
- Toothbrushing. Toothbrushing has been suspended.
- Meal Times. Family style meal time practices have been altered.
- Drop off and Morning Greeting. We will be evaluating your child’s health upon arrival. At this time, we are asking that parents/guardians do not enter the classrooms but instead remain in the front area during drop off. Your particular LPC site may have specific arrangements. Please sanitize your hands before checking your child into the program. We are always willing to help your child transition into our program at drop off. Our routine includes: taking off and hanging his/ her coat, putting belongings away, hand washing and then engaging in play.
- Pick up. We are asking parents/guardians to use our hand sanitizer upon entering our building and before checking your child out of the program and to remain up front. We are requesting that you do not enter the classrooms but instead remain in the front area during pick up. We will bring your child/children to you.
- Help reduce face touching. We know that it is a challenging task to prevent children from touching their faces. To help reduce the number of face touches, we are asking our children and staff to keep their hair pulled back and off of the face.
- Transported children. We are asking parents/guardians not to board our vehicles. We will receive your child at the door and buckle him/her in the seat.
- High-Touch Areas. We have increased the frequency of all sanitizing and disinfecting procedures, especially high-touch areas (doorknobs, light switches, etc.)
- Illness. A child should not attend if he/she is sick, has a respiratory illness, chronic cough or a fever greater than 100.4˚ orally. A child can return to school when the cough subsides or when the fever is less than 100.4˚ orally for at least 24 hours, without the use of fever reducing medication.
- Quarantine. If someone in the child’s household is required to be quarantined due to the possibility of an exposure, the child cannot attend the program until the quarantine is over (at least 14 days).
- Potential Exposure. If your child or a household member comes into contact with someone that has traveled either internationally or within the United States, we ask for this information to be shared with us. Depending on the circumstance, the child may be excluded from care.
What is LPC doing to help children manage stress during this emergency?
As Early Educators, several of us are trained in trauma informed care. In addition to our companywide training on Monday, March 16, 2020, we will continuously train our educators on how to recognize and provide developmentally appropriate support to the children that we serve. Some of these general practices include things as simple as providing opportunities for conversations, giving reassurance of support, and modeling a calm demeanor.
The Center for Disease Control (CDC) offers the following suggestions for dealing with stress: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prepare/managing-stress-anxiety.html
What can I do to support my own child and family?
Illness. Please keep your child home if he/ she is sick. If your child has a fever, please do not bring your child to school until he/ she is fever free for 24 hours without the use of medicine. Fever should be less than 100.4 on an oral thermometer. If your child has a chronic cough, please contact your doctor and keep the child home until the cough subsides.
How to hand-wash. Be sure to follow the proper hand washing procedure. Your child may need your help. Rub hands vigorously with soap and water for 20 seconds. Don’t forget the wrists, the top side of hands and in between fingers. Sing Happy Birthday twice or Row, Row, Row Your Boat. If soap and water is unavailable, use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol and then wash hands as soon as possible.
When to hand-wash. Practice good hygiene at home. Be sure to wash your and your child’s hands before and after eating, after diapering/ toileting, after cleaning a nose, and after catching a cough or sneeze in a tissue, in your hand or in your elbow.
How to “catch” sneezes and coughs. Remind your child to “catch” his/ her sneeze/ cough in the elbow and encourage him/ her to keep hands away from the face.
Emergency phone numbers. Confirm that the phone numbers we have on file are accurate in case we need to reach you.
How do I talk to young children about the coronavirus?
For guidance on how to help children understand what’s going on, please click here. The CDC also offers guidance on talking with your child. The link is: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/schools-childcare/talking-with-children.html
If the program closes all operations, will parents be required to pay?
At this time, the program is planning to remain open for families in need of our services. Those families who communicate the need for services, will be required to pay the regular weekly tuition. For families who are subsidized, we will comply with the policies set forth by EEC and will continue to keep you updated on any changes. At this time, families who communicate that they do not need services are not required to pay the parent fee.
Questions Regarding Subsidy:
If I have a voucher or a slot and I choose to keep my child home, will those absences count against me? The absence policy is written by the Department of Early Education and Care. They have offered the following in their published FAQs:
What if a child is quarantined or otherwise unable to attend? Will their absences count?
They will not count as long as you follow the directions from EEC: Children who need to be quarantined or have other COVID-19-related absences may use the Medical Waiver process in CCFA. Days the child is out of the program will be recorded as absences but the Medical Waiver process will keep the days from being counted towards the child’s absence limit. For documentation, the parent should complete Section I of the Excessive Absence Medical Waiver form. Section II of the form does not need to be completed by a medical professional but if available, the parent should attach documentation from a doctor, local board of health, or other entity instructing the need for a quarantine. If you provide subsidized care, please refer to the Emergency Reimbursement Guidelines for COVID-19 posted in the notification section of CCFA.
I have an appointment to reauthorize my voucher or income eligible slot but do not want to meet in person.
The Department of Early Education and Care is allowing us to work with families to obtain documentation and signatures via e-mail temporarily.
What if a child is quarantined or otherwise unable to attend? Will their absences count?
Children who need to be quarantined or have other COVID-19-related absences may use the Medical Waiver process in CCFA. “Other COVID-19 related illnesses” includes all situations including, but not limited to, children who have been instructed to remain out of the program due to other symptoms or parents who wish to keep their children home due to concerns. Days the child is out of the program will be recorded as absences but the Medical Waiver process will keep the days from being counted towards the child’s absence limit. For documentation, the parent should complete Section I of the Excessive Absence Medical Waiver form. Section II of the form does not need to be completed by a medical professional but if available, the parent should attach documentation from a doctor, local board of health, or other entity instructing the need for a quarantine. If you provide subsidized care, please refer to the Emergency Reimbursement Guidelines for COVID-19 posted in the notification section of CCFA.
What about unexplained absences?
In a public health crisis, it’s more important than ever for parents to be informing providers if their children are attending on a daily basis. Providers should work with parents to ensure timely communications of any absences so they can be coded correctly for EEC reporting. Please ensure that parents understand the importance of communicating about attendance during this time and are clear on their obligation to report all absences. For coding of COVID-19 related absences, please see guidance in question 18.
I’m a parent. What will happen to my subsidy if I’m laid off?
A parent who has been laid off due to the impacts of the COVID-19 health emergency will be considered by EEC to have a Temporary Change. For documentation, you must complete a Temporary Change Form and whatever documentation you can provide from your employer about the layoff. If this layoff or reduction in hours will cross into the time where a parent needs to reauthorize subsidized child care, subsidy administrators should please contact email@example.com on a case-by-case basis for detailed assistance. EEC encourages all providers to talk to parents about any changes in employment or income and process reductions in income as allowed under policy.
I am a parent on a subsidy and my work hours and income have gone down, but I cannot provide four weeks of paystubs yet to prove the reduction in income. Is there anything else I can submit to reduce my parent fee now?
Under this COVID-19 emergency policy, EEC is relaxing the documentation requirements for parents who have reduced income and need to reduce their parent fee. For documentation, the parent should complete a Household Income Statement and documentation of the reduced income (one paystub or a letter from the employer detailing the reduced hours/income). EEC encourages all providers to talk to parents about any changes in employment or income and process reductions in income.