Guidelines for Phased Reopening Issued for Child Care and Summer Camps
Child care programs licensed by EEC will be required to submit plans to the department to be approved once Phase II reopening begins. The Department will provide templates for submission as the process is launched and will utilize an attestation approval process. In order to mitigate the impact of business interruptions caused by fluctuations in family demand and changes in group sizes outlined in the health and safety guidelines, EEC will provide grants to programs that currently receive CCDBG subsidies through the first two months of reopening. More details on the reopening process and child care provider grant program will be released shortly.
Preparedness Planning: Prior to reopening, all programs must develop plans for daily health screenings and ways to identify children and staff who are sick, symptomatic, or who become exposed to coronavirus. Programs must also have a plan in place to handle possible closings, staff absences, and gaps in child attendance, as well as determine how to communicate with staff, parents, local boards of health and others.
- Programs must screen all staff and children with a temperature check, before they are permitted to enter the child care space. Programs must establish one entry point to ensure no one is allowed in the building until they pass a health screening.
Group sizes and staffing: Group sizes must be restricted to a maximum of 10 children, with a total of 12 individuals including children and staff in each room. The infant-to-staff ratio is smaller, with 7 infants to 2 staff members and a maximum of group size of 9.
- Children must remain with the same group each day and at all times while in care. Siblings should be kept in the same group, when suitable.
- Groups must not be combined at any time.
- The same staff must remain with the same group of children each day. Staff should not float between groups either during the day or from day-to-day, with some limited exceptions. Group transportation should only be provided during the phased reopening when there is no other option to transport children to and from the program. Programs intending to provide transportation services should follow detailed guidance.
For summer day camps: Campers and counselors will need daily health screenings, including temperature and other checks for signs and symptoms of illness. Camps will need plans in place for when a staff member or child becomes sick.
- Camp spaces will need to be prepared to ensure physical distancing.
- Camps will need to have at least two health services staff on site at all times.
- Other protocols require campers and counselors to stay together in their groups and staff will not be able to move between groups either during the day or from day-to-day, unless needed to provide supervision of specialized activities such as swimming.
- Snacks and meals should be brought from home, pre-packaged, or ready-to-serve in individual portions to minimize handling and preparation. When this is not feasible, staff must prepare and serve meals. No family-style food service.
- Camps may not take campers on field trips or for other offsite travel.