As we make plans to return to campus for the 2020-2021 school year, we are keeping an unwavering focus on our mission. In the context of a safe and healthy community, we look forward to providing an outstanding Christ-centered college preparatory school experience for students in our ongoing commitment to bolster Christian families in the education of their children. 

 

We have planned for four modes of operations, and the mode chosen at particular times during the year will depend on the risk level of infection based on the amount of spread of the virus in our area and level of impact on our school community. Because our school places such a high value on the importance of close relationships and Christ-centered community, our goal is to provide as much on-campus engagement for students as possible while maintaining a primary focus on the health and safety of our students, faculty, and staff.

 

As you read through our plans, please feel free to provide any suggestions, ask questions, or provide feedback by clicking on this link.

 

As we prepare for the 2020-2021 school year, we have created broad areas of focus, and we are diligently making plans for all four modes of operation based on these areas of focus:

Our four modes of operations account for uncertainties related to the amount, duration, and timing of the spread of COVID-19, and we anticipate movement among these modes at different points of the school year. The mode chosen at particular times during the year will depend on the risk level of infection based on the amount of spread of the virus in our area and level of impact on our school community. Our goal is to provide as much on-campus engagement for students as possible, while ensuring their health and safety. Having a brand new Lower School building, along with all of the space that we were previously using for Lower School, is an incredible blessing from God during this time as it provides us additional flexibility and opportunity for on-campus engagement, even at higher risk levels.  

For the 2020-2021 school year, we anticipate that we will need to move in and out of the various modes of operation. Therefore, a driving factor in developing plans and the daily class schedule for this school year was to provide for seamless transitions among all four modes. In this way, teachers are able to plan in advance for any of the four modes, and students are supported consistently, with minimal interruption to teaching and learning.

Goal: Ensure that the teaching and learning approach fulfills the school’s mission, regardless of format dictated by health and safety guidelines.

 

Updates on Plans

 

For the 2020-2021 school year, we anticipate that we will need to move in and out of the various modes of operation. Therefore, a driving factor in developing plans and the daily class schedule for this school year was to provide for seamless transitions among all four modes. In this way, teachers are able to plan for any of the four modes, and students are supported consistently, with minimal interruption to teaching and learning. As always, the designs for our academic program accounts for differences in students based on their stage of development. Click on the links below for a summary of our plans for each division.

 

Overviews for each mode of operation:

 

Schedules:

Informational videos explaining the academic program overviews:



Goal: Design and continually update a decision matrix that informs how operations should commence based on current health and safety guidelines. Ensure the buildings/grounds are maintained and modified to meet health and safety requirements.

 

Updates on Plans:

  • Developing standards and procedures for facilities cleaning, sanitizing and disinfecting.
  • Training faculty and staff on proper disinfecting of various areas of campus.
  • Updating various ways to provide health screenings as well as information on COVID-19 testing to students, faculty, parents, and visitors entering campus.
  • Providing hand sanitizing/washing stations and signage.
  • Developing standards for protective equipment based on risk level.
  • Working with the food service, transportation, and safety committees on how to monitor and alter changes, as needed.
  • In order to increase our ability to respond quickly to a change in risk level as well as improving our normal cleaning process, we have purchased an in-house disinfecting solution that allows us to produce our own chemical free, hypochlorous acid sanitizer and disinfectant which can be distributed using handheld and backpack electrostatic sprayers, spray bottles, and in-house made wipes.

Goal: Ensure extracurricular, after school, and summer programs are responsive to the needs of the changing situation.

 

Updates on Plans

  • Determining which programs are possible and which are not in varying levels and what safety measures and precautions are needed in order to maintain our programs.
  • Monitoring communications from the Georgia High School Association on summer workouts as well as fall competition.
  • Maintaining communications with the Center for Disease Control and the Georgia Department of Public Health on guidelines for opening camps, activities, as well as school
  • Summer academic opportunities: We are working on some possible academic jump-start offerings. We feel confident that we have a clear sense of where students are following last school year, but these offerings could provide an opportunity for students to reengage in an on-campus learning experience. If you are interested in your child beginning to engage in some academic work in June, we recommend the following sites as valuable resources:
  • Limited small group cardio conditioning will begin Monday, June 8th for fall varsity and JV athletes only for the remainder of the month of June. We hope to expand, as restrictions loosen, to allow winter and spring athletes and middle school students to participate in the month of July.
  • Please reach out to your respective head coach if you have any questions regarding summer workout schedules or practice times. Click here for a contact list for our coaches.  

Goal: Work to connect students during this time of uncertainty. Serve as a safety net for students. Work to maintain school community and parent support regardless of health and safety guidelines. 

 

Updates on Plans:

  • Focused on existing and needed structures to ensure our students feel connected and engaged and are healthy upon return to school
  • Preparing support to foster student well-being:
    • Emotional and social support through school counselors
    • Advisory structure          
    • Academic support through the Academic Enrichment Center and our learning specialists
    • Expanded student support teams in the Middle and Upper School
  • Spiritual support through daily devotionals, breakout sessions, worship and service opportunities
  • Social support and leadership development through our student life programming
  • Student physical wellness with protocol for assessment of sickness and response in partnership with our health teams
  • Reviewing ways to help our new students acclimate to Whitefield and find community in spite of the summer social limitations
  • Overall focus on the emotional, mental, spiritual support students may need at the outset of the year, in this new normal of school, schedules, Covid-19 concerns, and cultural climate

Goal: Monitor and respond to the overall well-being of faculty/staff.

 

Updates on Plans:

  • Identified nine key areas where the school will invest additional time and resources to support all of our faculty and staff as we return to school
    1. Employee community building activities
    2. Stress mitigation recommendations
    3. Communication & support systems
    4. Health benefits
    5. Access to counseling services
    6. Leave options specific to COVID-19 needs
    7. Additional support staff for classrooms when a teacher needs to work remotely or is out due to COVID-19
    8. Technology
    9. Additional opportunities are being added for faculty professional development

Goal: Ensure that the school is equipped with the infrastructure, equipment, and software necessary for each scenario.

 

Updates on Plans:

  • Made specific recommendations regarding infrastructure, device procurement, and professional development needs for the faculty/staff
  • Particular attention has been placed on the effective and consistent use of current platforms and management and distribution of hardware to be fully prepared for the coming school year
  • Because of the lingering effects of COVID-19, quarantining for individuals exposed to the virus, and protection for those who are more vulnerable, we anticipate that some students and staff will not be able to come to campus, even when we are in modes that provide on-campus activities and instruction. We are working on securing the technological functionality that will enable us to provide access and engagement to individuals who need to remain off-campus for periods of time.