Health & Safety

The safety of our Little and Big KIPPsters remains a top priority for KIPP Texas Public Schools. This page is a one-stop-shop for health and safety-related information for the 2021-22 school year.

 

 

The health and safety of our KIPP Texas family — Little and Big KIPPsters included — remains our top priority. We believe that staying vigilant and following local, state, national, and CDC health guidelines is the best way to ensure the safety of our Team & Family, especially in light of the recent rise in COVID cases and the different variants.

Please see below for our 2021-22 Health & Safety Guidelines, followed by a list of frequently asked questions (FAQs):

 
Health & Safety Guidelines
MasksThe KIPP Texas mask mandate will vary by county community level as measured using the CDC Community Levels tool.

LOW
If county is in green:
- Masks are optional but not required in KIPP schools or offices.
- Masks are still required in healthcare areas.

MEDIUM
If county is in yellow:
- Masks very strongly recommended but not required in all KIPP buildings and on/off campus KIPP events.
- Masks required on school buses.
- Masks required in healthcare areas.

HIGH
If county is in orange:
- Masks required in all KIPP buildings and on/off campus KIPP events.
- Masks required on school buses.
- Masks are optional outdoors if you are able to maintain 6 feet of distance from others.
- Masks can also be removed if you are alone in a closed office space or classroom.

* When masks are required, they must be medical grade masks or doubled-up cloth masks.
Visitors on campus (beyond front lobby)LOW
If county is in green:
- Adhere to pre-COVID policies and procedures (sign in at the front office of each school and wear a visitor badge - make an appointment with school staff as appropriate.)

MEDIUM
If county is in yellow:
- Indoor, social distancing 3+ feet, masks not required, staff will take attendance by ensuring visitors sign in and out in the main office.

HIGH
If county is in orange:
- By appointment only (ie attendance conferences, parent-teacher conferences, discipline meetings, tours, etc), staff will take attendance by ensuring visitors sign in and out in the main office. Visitors must be masked.
Large group student and/or visitor event (e.g. performance, HS graduations, assembly, dance)LOW
If county is in green:
- Masks strongly recommended for students and visitors.

MEDIUM
If county is in yellow:
- Indoor, social distancing 3+ feet, masks not required and cohort attendees (approx max 150 participants), staff will take attendance.

HIGH
If county is in orange:
- Outdoors preferable, especially if outside visitors are allowed.
- If indoors: masks required, staff will take attendance and use seating charts for students.
- If family members are invited, they must be masked.
- If family members are invited must limit capacity so that 3+ feet can be maintained between groups (household members comprise one group).
Off campus day student trip: (e.g. college tours, field trip to local attraction)LOW
If county is in green:
- Utilize KIPP Field Trip Playbook for policies and procedures HERE

MEDIUM
If county is in yellow:
- Follow protocols of location being visited, Masks are required during transport, and are strongly recommended in all other settings, staff will take attendance.

HIGH
If county is in orange:
- All students must be masked during entire visit and take meals outdoors. Staff will take attendance and will know all attendees and ensure seating charts.
Volunteers on campusLOW
If county is in green:
- Adhere to pre-COVID policies and procedures (sign in at the front office of each school and wear a visitor badge - make an appointment with school staff as appropriate.)

MEDIUM
If county is in yellow:
- Indoor, social distancing 3+ feet, masks not required

HIGH
If county is in orange:
- Not allowed at this time.
Overnight student trips LOW
If county is in green:
- Utilize KIPP Field Trip Playbook for policies and procedures HERE

MEDIUM
If county is in yellow:
- Masks are required during transport, and are strongly recommended in all other settings, tests are strongly recommended before the trip and after arrival home. Testing should be done the day of arrival and repeated 2 days later. (arrival test can be waived if student or staff won’t be in school for 2 days)

HIGH
If county is in orange:
- Masks are required, students must remain cohorted (bus seating, eating), tests are strongly recommended before the trip and after arrival home. Testing should be done the day of arrival and repeated 2 days later. (arrival test can be waived if student or staff won’t be in school for 2 days)
COVID VaccineKIPP Texas believes the best way of protecting yourself from COVID-19 and its variants is by getting the vaccine. Although it is not required, we strongly recommend the vaccination for anyone who is eligible.

As of June 17, the FDA has authorized COVID-19 vaccines for kids ages 6 months - 5 years old, and COVID vaccine boosters are now available for children ages 5-11 and ages 12+.
Hand HygieneKIPP Texas believes that frequent hand washing and sanitizing are among the best safeguards against COVID-19. We will continue offering hand sanitizing stations across KIPP Texas campuses and buildings and strongly encourage frequent handwashing.
Cleaning and DisinfectingAll spaces will continue to be cleaned daily. High-touch and high-traffic areas will be disinfected with greater frequency. Where positive COVID-19 cases are reported, special deep cleaning protocols will be implemented.
COVID 19 Dashboard The cases listed include any staff member or student who has been on campus in-person and tested positive for COVID-19. This report does not include any student engaged in remote learning these nine weeks or any staff member who is only working remotely.

FAQs

Will my KIPPster be required to wear a mask?

The KIPP Texas mask mandate will vary by county threat level as measured using the CDC Community Levels tool.

If the county is in green:

  • Masks are strongly recommended but not required in KIPP schools or offices.
  • Masks are still required in healthcare areas.

If the county is in yellow or orange:

  • All KIPPsters and visitors will be required to wear a medical-grade mask (surgical style, KN95/KF94) or double up cloth masks in all KIPP buildings and school buses.
  • You can remove your mask outdoors if you are able to maintain 6 feet of distance from others. Masks can also be removed if you are alone in a closed office space.

Are Wellness Surveys required this year?

No. However, you should determine if your KIPPster is experiencing COVID symptoms or has been in close contact with any COVID-positive individuals prior to coming to school. If they are experiencing COVID symptoms or have been in close contact with a COVID-positive individual, please keep them home, seek medical assistance as needed, and contact your school to let them know. Your school will provide further recommendations on when your KIPPster should return to campus and will support your student with access to the KIPP Remote Learning Academy.

Will temperature checks be conducted before entering a KIPP Texas school or building?

No. However, you should determine if your KIPPster is experiencing COVID symptoms prior to coming to school. If they are experiencing COVID symptoms, please have them stay home, seek medical assistance as needed, and contact your school to let them know. Students and staff feeling ill or experiencing symptoms at school can have their temperature checked in the nurse’s office or clinic.

Do I need to inform KIPP if my KIPPster is experiencing COVID symptoms?

Yes! If your KIPPster is not feeling well or experiencing COVID symptoms, please keep your KIPPster at home, seek medical assistance as needed, and contact your KIPPster’s school to let them know. Your school will provide further recommendations on when your KIPPster should return to campus and may be able to provide a free COVID test.

Will my KIPPster be able to participate in virtual classes during quarantine?

KIPP Texas is committed to providing continuity of learning for our students. We have launched our KIPP Remote Learning Academy to support our KIPPsters who are quarantining due to a positive COVID test or close contact with a COVID positive individual. If your child requires quarantine, and they feel well enough to participate in learning, they will be able to access synchronous learning via our KIPP Remote Learning Academy. This will ensure that our students do not miss out on key content while out of our buildings.

 

Last year, if there was a positive case in my KIPPster’s elementary school classroom, the whole class was quarantined. Will this be the same for the 2021-22 school year?

No. A positive case in an elementary school classroom will not result in a whole class quarantine. All students who are identified as a close contact of the positive individual will be encouraged to quarantine for seven days and offered a rapid test (with parental consent). Families will be notified of all positive cases at their KIPPster’s school and in their KIPPster’s classroom. If there are several positive cases in a classroom, and all children are determined to be close contacts, then the whole classroom will be quarantined.

 

What is our visitors policy?

This year, campuses will reopen to scheduled visitors, except during meal times. 

If the county is in green:

  • Masks are strongly recommended but not required in KIPP schools or offices.
  • Masks are still required in healthcare areas.

If the county is in yellow or orange:

  • All KIPPsters and visitors will be required to wear a medical-grade mask (surgical style, KN95/KF94) or double up cloth masks in all KIPP buildings and school buses.

Please contact your KIPPster’s school to schedule a visit.

What will social distancing look like in my KIPPster’s classroom?

We expect the overwhelming majority of students will return to full-time in-person learning for the 2021-22 school year, therefore, we will maintain social distance between individuals in offices, classrooms, hallways, cafeterias, playgrounds, school buses, and other public spaces as best as possible.

What will social distancing look like on school buses?

Students arriving at school or returning home on a KIPP Texas school bus will return to normal seating arrangements. Masks are required for all students and staff. 

Will playgrounds be available for use this year?

Yes. We will recommend that staff and students sanitize and / or wash their hands before and after use.

How will meals be consumed at school?

FREE breakfast will be served “Grab n’ Go” style to every Little KIPPster along with FREE lunch. All KIPPsters automatically qualify for FREE breakfast and lunch. Additional portions may be purchased. Meals will be consumed either in the classroom or the cafeteria, depending on school operations.

Will my KIPPster be allowed to go on a field trip?

Day trips and overnight field trips are now permitted with the current mask policies followed.

Follow these steps:

  • Look at the threat level where you’re going using the CDC tool.
  • If yellow or orange, masks are required, students must remain cohorted (bus seating, eating), tests are strongly recommended before the trip and after arrival home. Testing should be done the day of arrival and repeated 2 days later. (arrival test can be waived if student or staff won’t be in school for 2 days).

Will KIPP Texas offer after-school activities such as clubs or sports?

Yes. All health & safety protocols and recommendations will apply.  

  • If the county level is green using CDC tool, no screening testing is required. All students or coaches with symptoms should still be tested.
  • If yellow, screening testing should occur once per week
  • If orange, screening testing should occur twice per week.
  • Masks are still required for spectators that are standing within 6 feet of others, both indoors and outdoors in yellow or orange levels.

Parent/guardian consent will be required to administer COVID tests.