FOOD LOCATIONS FOR CHILDREN IN OUR COMMUNITY
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March 16, 2020 News Update
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Family Center is planning the cancellation of its Early Childhood program starting Wednesday, March 18. We understand that the childcare we provide for your family is critical to your ability to work and that our closure will cause difficulties for many of you, but the safety of the children, families, and staff needs to be ensured.
Other services impacted include childcare transportation, playgroups, parent education, and parent support groups, effective starting Tuesday March 17. The duration of the postponement for all the services listed will last until April 6.
The Family Center offers an array of services, most of which we will continue to deliver with some modifications. Unfortunately, some of our services involve close human contact and we cannot continue to put children, families, and staff at risk of contracting the virus.
This is a constantly evolving situation and as we obtain additional information, we will do our best to keep families informed. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Claire Kendall, Co-Executive of the Family Center at 262-3292 ext. 151 or email at [email protected]
March 15, 2020 News Update
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Phil Scott has announced a Continuity of Education Plan for the orderly dismissal of all schools, and cancellation of all school related activities, no later than Wednesday, March 18. This directive will last through April 6 but may very well be extended for a longer period.
Governor Scott’s directive will task local districts with three key components to support the State response:
- Food and special needs services for children;
- Collaborating with the state to provide childcare options for healthcare workers and others essential to the response; and
- Systems for ensuring maintenance of education during the initial dismissal; and a continuing education plan if schools are dismissed for an extended period.
The Governor declared that no student is required to be in school Monday or Tuesday, if their parents or guardians would prefer to keep them home.
The Family Center childcare program will remain open Monday and Tuesday as we obtain additional information from the state specific to private childcare programs tomorrow. Further communication regarding the childcare program and our ability to continue providing services after Tuesday, will be announced tomorrow evening.
We want you keep you informed of the practices and procedures that the Family Center is following. The health and safety of our children and staff is our top priority. We are closely monitoring all guidelines and updates from the Vermont Department of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, VT Child Development Division, Agency of Education and the local public-school system. Please be sure to read this email in its entirety as there is important information regarding Family Center policies around school closing and sickness procedures.
People are urged to go to healthvermont.gov/covid19 for the most up-to-date information and guidance about COVID-19.
FAMILY CENTER POLICY UPDATES DUE TO COVID-19
We have received guidance from the VT Department of Health, the Agency of Education and the Department of Children and Families, specifically for childcare centers, recommending certain procedures and policies as follows:
- If a child has a fever, cough or shortness of breath and have not been around anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19, they will stay home until72 hours after the fever has broken (without the use of fever reducing medication) and symptoms resolve. For example: If your child has a fever over the weekend, please keep them home for 72 hours after their fever is gone. A fever is a temperature of 100 degrees or greater. They should be fever free without fever reducers for 72 hours before coming back to the Family Center.
o Staff will continue to be vigilant in detecting fever and other symptoms. As stated in our Parent Handbook, we reserve the right to refuse service to any child if, in the opinion of the staff, the child is too sick to be at the center or poses a health risk to other children or staff.
o If a parent/guardian is sick, but not suspected of or diagnosed with COVID-19, the child may attend as long as the child is not sick as outlined above. The sick parent/guardian will NOT be allowed to enter the building for pick up or drop off. Please arrange for a healthy individual to drop off and pick up your child.
- If an individual believes they have had close contact with someone with COVID-19 but are not sick, they should monitor their health for fever, cough and shortness of breath during the 14 days after the last day they were in close contact with the sick person with COVID-19. They should NOT go to work, childcare, or school and should avoid places for 14 days.
- We are asking all children and adults to wash their hands immediatelyupon entering the building. Please use the hallway bathroom sinks. This will help us eliminate germs being brought into the common areas and classrooms. While we might hand sanitizer available for adult use, due to very limited availability, please DO NOT use it on your children when soap and water are available.
GENERAL HEALTH PRACTICES:
Person to person spread of the virus is thought to occur mainly via respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Take these everyday preventive actions to help stop the spread of germs:
- Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick
- Stay home when you or your child are sick
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash
- Clean frequently touched objects and surfaces
FAMILY CENTER SPECIFIC HEALTH PRACTICES
- As you all know you and your children are required to wash your hands upon entering the building. Please remember that this is not just for the children, but adults as well.
- In addition to washing their hands upon arrival, children are asked to wash their hands prior to and after eating, after playing outside, after using the toilet, after blowing their noses, etc.
- We will continue to clean, sanitize and disinfect all surfaces, focusing on frequently touched objects, such as toys, door handles, railings, equipment, common spaces, etc. We use cleaners and wipes to clean, sanitize and disinfect all surfaces and do this at various times during the day as well as at closing after children have all left.
Thank you for your cooperation and understanding as we navigate this new virus and the implications it has on our community. If you have any questions, please let us know.
The Family Center Management
Family Center News and Events
What We Do
- One woman from entering a correctional facility;
- One teen pregnancy.
- One child from needing foster care placement; and
- One mother and child from requiring public assistance.