Last update: 24 August 2020
Updated section: Guidance on School Access Points
Guidance on School Access Points
An access point is a point of access into or out of the school premises, such as a main gate, parking entrance, etc.
All access points should be designated as either an entry or an exit to privilege one-way directionality. If unfeasible, a priority direction should be designated at specific times of the day (i.e. incoming direction on arrival; outgoing direction on departure – with, for example, an arrow sign to indicate the priority direction).
To maximize flow, schools are advised to use as many access points as possible, preferably by designating access points to different groups according to proximity to their classroom to minimize mixing. For example, if access point A is closer to the Cycle 1 areas and access point B is closer to the Cycle 2 areas, designate access point A for only Cycle 1 students and access point B for only Cycle 2 students.
Access points should be manned by trained security personnel to oversee flow and enforce the preventive measures (social distancing, PPE, and hygiene, (see Framework for Policies and Guidelines).
Non-contact temperature screening must be held for each person prior to entering the school or taking the bus. To maximize flow, schools are advised to install thermal scanners in an indoor area at the main access points. Infrared thermometers are not suitable for access points with heavy circulation but may be used for less frequented access points. Persons with temperatures of 37.5 C or higher should be screened again with a handheld infrared thermometer and transferred to the isolation area upon confirmation of fever for further follow up as per the incident management protocol (see Guidance on Protocols for Managing a COVID-19 Related Incident at School under Incident Management and Emergency Readiness.)
Queuing areas at all access points must be demarcated with standing intervals 1.5 m apart.
Entry/exit should be staggered, with limited crossover between students arriving by private transportation and bus-riders.
Parents of younger children can accompany their child beyond the gates to the classrooms during the first few days only if the parents show proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR test (72 hours validity). This discretion should be used sparingly and only in cases where the child is showing signs that he/she is unable to stay in school without the parent. Parents should observe all safety measures that are imposed on all staff.
Hand sanitizing gel dispensers should be installed (preferably contactless) at every access point for obligatory use by every person entering the premises.
An isolation area close to the main access point should be installed for students who did not pass screening to wait to be picked up by their parent/guardian. This isolation area is simply a closed waiting area and is different from the quarantine room. The only requirement is that facemasks and sanitizers be available. It is also recommended to have some form of touchless distraction (i.e. a TV or screen) or toys and books that can be easily disinfected. The isolation area and all objects within should be cleaned and disinfected after use.
Arrival and departure times for each group, alongside the protocol for entering and exiting shall be clearly communicated to parents.
Students may be accompanied by a maximum of 1 parent or guardian during drop off or pick up. Guardians must wear masks at all times and may accompany the student until the access point (but not enter the premises). Accompanying guardians may remain in the waiting area for a maximum of 10 minutes. It is recommended that accompanying guardians be in good general health (to protect themselves from exposure).
Fingerprint check-in devices for staff should not be used at this time, and alternative contactless methods such as remote ID verification is recommended.
Students of Determination may have designated arrival and departure points and measures in place to accommodate specific needs. These should be developed and discussed through the Risk Assessment and development of an Individual Educational Plan (IEP).
Students of Determination and their parents should be made aware of the arrival and departure points and the process entailed in arrival and departure. This may need to be communicated in a differentiated manner according to age, ability, and behavioral needs.
Students of Determination and their parents should be provided with all information on school timings as per school communications. Where necessary timings may need to be adapted slightly by 5-10 minutes to provide a quieter, calmer arrival and departure dependent upon need. This should be clearly communicated to parents.
Entering the School
All authorized persons must enter one at a time, spaced 1.5m apart (as per the floor markings).
All authorized persons must enter wearing the appropriate PPE. Schools should stock extra PPE to accommodate authorized persons who do not have the required PPE for entry.
The requirement for PPE for Students of Determination and those working with them should be evaluated through the Risk Assessment process.
Exiting the School
Exiting priority should be given to bus-riders in order to empty the school as much as possible.
Exit times for bus-riders should be staggered to reconfigure bus groups with class groups (see Student Grouping).
Students leaving with private transportation should be picked up after buses have left to avoid overlapping (and crowding).
Adult guardians waiting to pick up children should maintain a 1.5m social distance, wear masks, and should wait in their vehicles (if applicable) until the designated pick up time.
Waiting areas at all access points must be properly designated (with 1.5m social distancing demarcations).
School staff are discouraged from exiting the school premises during school hours.
Entry/Exit Protocol for Other Authorized Persons
Other authorized persons may include external providers and authorities (i.e. heavy item delivery personnel, construction workers, etc.).
Other authorized persons may only enter upon meeting the health requirements for entry (see Health Requirements for Entry under Requirements for Entry).
Other authorized persons must wear appropriate PPE at all times while on school premises.
Schools shall ensure that the activity is supervised (with distance measures in place) and conducted after school hours. If an emergency requires the intervention during school hours, school shall ensure that neither employees nor students are present in the vicinity.
Appropriate cleaning and disinfection must be carried out following the completion of the activity.
Where the support of a third party is required for any Student of Determination, exemptions should be made as appropriate to allow their entry onto the school premises with the appropriate PPE as is determined in the student’s individual Risk Assessment.
This section lays out policies and guidelines aimed at ensuring that teaching and learning processes are adapted to the COVID-19 context but remain central to the school’s mission.
This section lays out policies and guidelines aimed at ensuring that schools are prepared to assist students and staff with the maintenance of health and wellbeing.