We are opening in remote mode on August 19, and are finalizing procedures to issue iPads to students in grades K-8. Upper School students already have their own laptops and will receive instructions on how to access their classes. Please check the Covid-19 FAQ page for more details. Parents and students will receive emails with additional information.
We are working in conjunction with Metropolitan Health District to determine the appropriate metrics that best indicate when conditions are safe for widespread return to campus. In addition, our administration, Safety Committee and our Medical Advisory Committee are consulting with the appropriate organizations — the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Texas Education Agency (TEA), National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) and the Independent Schools Association of the Southwest (ISAS) — to gather additional data and guidance to assist us as we make appropriate decisions for our community.
To reopen successfully, we are making changes for the safety of our students, faculty, staff and families. These changes will ask more responsibilities of every member of our community. When we return to campus, spaces will look different, schedules will shift, daily activities will shift and new rules will be in place. But at Keystone, we learn and adapt and we know that our goals, values and resilience will keep our community strong.
As the Keystone community adapts to the far-reaching effects of the COVID-19 virus, we remain committed to the core values in our school’s mission statement. We will continue to provide our PK-12 students with an academically excellent education in a diverse and inclusive environment. In addition to academics, Keystone students will learn ethical growth, community involvement, and responsible leadership on the school’s campus and via distance learning.
The core Keystone values form our guiding principles:
The ultimate criterion for Keystone’s decision-making will be the physical, social, and emotional safety of students, families, faculty, and staff.
Keystone will design programs, schedules, and facilities to meet the developmental level of students in each division while balancing the demands of the entire school.
Keystone will maintain constant and clear communication with all constituencies regarding the school’s response to COVID-19.
We are planning four returning scenarios:
In Distance Learning, all students K-6 would continue to work on their school-issued iPads, and students attend classes via a combination of synchronous and asynchronous learning.
When students are allowed to return to campus, Keystone will offer families the choice of participating in a 100% remote learning program for 2020-2021. The School is realigning roles and responsibilities, as well as investing in additional classroom technology for this program.
To help guide Keystone through the COVID-19 threat and reduce risks to students, faculty, staff and families, two committees meet regularly and offer guidance to school administrators:
This group, consisting of teachers, staff and administrators, is focused on creating a healthy and safe environment at Keystone, and keeping up with the ever-changing array of public health conditions, governmental rules and best practices from around the world.
Consisting of current parents, alumni, alumni parents, and other local physicians, this group will provide guidance on different medical related topics.
Below is a summary of new procedures for the 2020-2021 school year when students return to campus. Additional details will be available here as the school year progresses.
Face coverings will be required on both campuses as recommended by the CDC, local health authorities, and the Keystone Medical Committee.
We will follow the guidance of TAPPS, the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools, while reserving the right to make our own decisions when student or adult health may be compromised.
Increased hand washing on campus is mandatory. Cleaning and disinfection protocols are in effect.
Visitors will be greatly restricted on campus and strongly discouraged.
Lunch will occur either in classrooms or in small groups outside. Students who wish to buy the school lunch program will receive box lunches.
All persons entering the Keystone campus will be screened for temperature prior to entering the campus.
After school pick up will be staggered for students in the Lower School. Middle and Upper School tudents will be alphabetically assigned to different locations to wait for their ride. Parents are to remain outside the campus perimeter during drop-off and pick-up.
The status of extracurricular activities is still undecided. Whenever possible, arts productions will take place on film or other physically distanced manner.
Anybody on campus with an illness will be quarantined/isolated immediately. For students, parents are contacted immediately, and the student is sent home. Keystone would notify and coordinate with local health officials, and begin Contact & Trace protocols. Other actions could include closing a classroom, a building or the entire campus.
Reducing the spread of COVID-19 at Keystone will require the diligence and commitment of every member of the community. We will have a screening procedure in place to help us identify if students or faculty/staff have any symptoms of, or any exposure to, COVID-19. It is important that families and faculty/staff complete this information thoroughly and accurately every day.
If a student or faculty member has symptoms, tests positive for, or has been exposed to someone with COVID-19 symptoms or a confirmed case (with or without symptoms), please stay home and notify the Nurse’s Office of the symptoms or exposure.
Keystone will immediately separate any student who shows COVID-19 symptoms while at school until the student can be picked up by a parent or guardian. The school will clean the areas used by the individual who shows COVID-19 symptoms while at school as soon as feasible. Students who report feeling feverish will be given an immediate temperate check to determine if they are symptomatic for COVID-19.
If an individual who has been at Keystone is lab-confirmed to have COVID-19, the school will notify its local health department, in accordance with applicable federal, state and local laws and regulations, including confidentiality requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).
Keystone will close off areas that are heavily used by the individual with the lab-confirmed case (student, teacher, or staff) until the non-porous surfaces in those areas can be disinfected, unless more than 3 days have already passed since that person was on campus.
Consistent with school notification requirements for other communicable diseases, and consistent with legal confidentiality requirements, Keystone will notify all teachers, staff, and families of all students in a school if a lab-confirmed COVID-19 case is identified among students, teachers or staff who participate in any campus activities.
The Keystone Safety Committee will evaluate cases to ensure that the safety of the Keystone community is not at risk. Depending on circumstances the safety committee may decide to move to Phase Three (temporary shutdown) or Phase Four (remote learning mode) of the plan.
We will ask families and faculty/staff to fill out health questionnaires before the start of school and after long weekends when some people may travel. Depending on the answers, we may ask people to stay at home. Students, faculty, staff and visitors will have a temperature check before they’re allowed to enter campus.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC), recommends wearing cloth face coverings to reduce the potential spread of COVID-19. The CDC explains that COVID-19 spreads mainly from person to person through respiratory droplets shared when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or talks. Wearing a cloth face covering is shown to greatly reduce the transmission of respiratory droplets.
The SARS-CoV-2 virus, which causes COVID-19 is easily killed with plain soap and water. Health experts also agree that frequent handwashing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds is one of the best ways for people to stay safe and reduce the spread of germs. This basic hygiene practice has proven effective in slowing the spread of COVID-19.
In keeping with CDC guidelines, Keystone has reconfigured its classrooms to allow for six feet of physical separation for students and faculty, has reconfigured other spaces into classrooms, and has changed various policies and procedures to enforce physical distancing on campus, where feasible.
Hand washing upon entry and periodically is mandatory. Regular use of hand sanitizer in every room is encouraged. Custodial staff will clean and disinfect highly touched objects throughout the day. Disinfex will treat campus monthly. Student technology devices will be wiped down daily.
To help reduce the risk of infection, we are implementing changes in design and procedures that aim to include reduce group sizes and limit the number of contacts that each person has. Toward those efforts, we are implementing the following: