Update for Fall 2020

Hello families!  I have patiently waited for school districts to share their plan and I am ready to share what Fall will look like at Woodinville Country Day School!  First and foremost, your decision for Fall is simply that…your choice!  This will be a year of flexibility!  We will offer in person classes on campus as well as a remote option.  I would love for you to take the next week to decide what will work for YOUR family.  As for me, I have absolutely no clue what my daughter’s elementary schooling will look like and how I am going to help facilitate their learning, but I will work on that puzzle later. 

The plan that I am creating has many layers and I want everyone to realize that the focus right now is on FALL…September 8thto Winter breakDecember 18th.  We know that the situation in our state is changing frequently, so we must adapt to the phase that we are in.  With that being said, the Department of Health has set aside guidelines to follow when reopening an early learning center. I am very confident that with the protocols in place, we will be able to have a spectacular and healthy year. Here’s what we are looking to offer this school year:

  • REMOTE OPTION: For families who want to stay home in the Fall (or longer), we have a remote virtual preschool option 1-5 days a week at 10am!  This will provide your learner with a preschool routine and follow up family activities. Given what worked (and could’ve worked better) in the Spring when we had to switch to a virtual platform, this time around promises to be more solid and robust because we have experience under our belt!  I know many families have voiced their desire to begin online and possible start on campus later in the school year.
  • IN-PERSON OPTION: For families that are choosing our in-person option, we are tweaking our schedule and ratios to ensure the safety of our students and staff.  The next 6 weeks will be focused on getting the school ready!  I would love to share SOME of the following protocols we will have in place:
    • All students will have a wellness screening at the front door including a contactless temperature check.
    • Classes will be staggered by 15 minutes to allow a socially distanced wellness check. 
    • Parents will be allowed to walk their children to the front door and socially distance from the window and wave goodbye.
    • Students will immediately visit the restroom before school and wash their hands with soap and water. They will also wash hands before snack and lunch as usual.
    • Each class will have a reduced ratio with 1 teacher and 10 students.
    • Students will stay with their classmates for the entire class day and invited to use the playground as the only class outside!  We will have lots of time outside! Students will sanitize upon exiting and entering classroom.
    • Teacher floaters will be on site to help with recess, teacher prep, and constant sanitizing of bathrooms and classrooms.
    • We have well monitored heat pumps that circulate the air and serviced every 3 months.
    • We will have an updated set of Covid guidelines and procedures to share in our parent and staff handbook, posters to share, as well as accessible information on our website!   All of this is a working draft and will be available August 15th.
    • We are currently in the process of upgrading our bathrooms with touch free sinks, toilets, and soap/sanitizer dispensers.
    • Teachers will always be wearing a mask.  I am still uncertain about the littles but I will make a final decision in the next 3 weeks!
    • Students will bring a snack and lunch each day.  We will ask that the items be easy for children to get to.  They will be socially distanced with 2 students per table.
    • Students will be walked to the curb for valet pick up every day.
    • We will be pausing our after-school enrichment program.
    • We will be running our PreK classes and 4’s classes as normal.  We will be postponing our 3’s class until January, however, if you turn 3 by December 31stand are potty trained, you may enroll in the 4’s class.

We have been closed for the summer for multiple reasons…most of them obvious.  Sacrificing these 2 months of business help encourage families to stay home and stay safe was the best option.  Rather than hoping that we will be opening any week, I have made the decision to dedicate the next month to getting our school ready for Fall!  At this time, I would be thrilled to receive any ideas and feedback!  Keep in mind, all my inspiration is coming directly from the Department of Health, World Health Organization, Department of Early Learning, and the CDC!  I put the emphasis on Fall because this year may evolve.  With a vaccine on the horizon, families who may want to stay home to begin the year could join us in January or even in the Spring!  We have an incredibly large outdoorspace and I know that we can provide a safe, nurturing environment!  I am anticipating January to be a time when school districts consider moving to the next phase of their model. If that is the case, then we can increase our class sizes so families that have been working remotely will be able to join!

Of course, we cannot control what families do on nights and weekends and we are asking that families who are planning to return to school are following the social distancing recommendations that have been set in place for our county. We will also have a procedure to follow if your family member encounters Covid OR if it actual enters the classroom.  Our actions will follow the recommendations of the CDC and WHO!   The guidelines are updated frequently, and I have been in contact with a number of centers who have been chose to remain open during the pandemic.

The biggest schedule change for Fall is that we will be offering 3 different KINDERGARTEN options!  Yes, you heard me right!  We will have an option for students to attend 2 FULL days a week for the Fall quarter (beginning September and ending at Winter Break).  We will also have an AM option 2 days a week and a PM option 2, 3, or 5 afternoons a week.  The goal is to provide a safe, nurturing environment for students to socialize and grow!  We will be using the same curriculum as NSD and LWSD for reading, writing, and math.  This is meant to compliment the online learning that our district will be providing.  I will be dedicating lots of time over the next 6 weeks to gathering resources! As we know how the NSD learning 3.0 rolls out, we will be able to confirm the best schedule for our kindergarteners!  This is a chance for them to have at least part of a “normal” kindergarten experience!  Also, this may be something that goes so well that we continue to offer the option in the future!  I am happy to answer any questions!  If this is something that you may be interested in, consider reaching out to your friends and having them sign up for the same class!  Space will be limited!  We will be running all classes at half capacity for Fall!

So now that you have read all of this information…breathe!  WCDS is an extension of my family!  I adore all of you and your entire family!  Here is what I need from you by August 1st:

  • Confirm your plan for Fall (remote or in person)
  • If you registered for Fall, you are IN the class you registered for!  The classes are still the same, but we will be cutting the class size in half.  In other words, space will be limited but it will increase later in the year.  This is the time to let me know that you wish to do a remote option for Fall or for the entire year.
  • If you are interested in the Kindergarten option, feel free to inquire but keep in mind that I won’t be finalizing the schedule until I know what our districts are requiring of us!  I don’t want kids to unenroll from their district, I want to supplement!  Of course, I LOVE teaching Kindergarten, so either way they are going to have an amazing year!  Tell your friends…we can keep kids together!
  • I will send out more information including as detailed of a schedule as possible August 3rd…this is in hopes that the districts have rolled out their plan! We are all anxiously waiting to find out when our elementary kids will be learning and how we can help facilitate!  
  • I would like to have all kids registered by August 15th
  • If you are registering for a Preschool (4s and Pre-K) class in-person, you will be registered for the entire year.  If you are registering for Kindergarten, you will re-enroll in December for the next quarter!  This way, if they invite Kindergarteners back to school, you can join without hesitation…or stay! 

We hope that you are doing well!  You probably have a million more questions and I am happy to answer!  Also, they are helping me guide my next moves!  Keep in mind, if there is a guideline, we are following it!  The staff and I are confident that we can open in person and have a terrific year!


Danielle Beresford
Director & Teacher Woodinville Country Day School