Essential actions to keep staff and students safe and healthy

Do First

  • Establish a crisis response team focused on student and staff mental health and wellness.
  • Assess natural resources (personnel, existing partners) to determine if there is a need for external supports, and reach out to existing vendor community to assess the potential for expanded work.
  • Evaluate staff mental health readiness utilizing questionnaires, surveys, direct outreach.
  • Provide resources for staff self-care, including resiliency strategies.

Do Before School Opens

  • Liaise with State Education Agency (SEA) to understand and access newly available resources for student and staff mental health and wellness support. 
  • Develop and staff a direct communication channel for district stakeholders to address mental health concerns resulting from SARS-CoV-2 (this may be a telephone hotline, designated email, etc.).
  • Communicate with parents, via a variety of channels, return to school transition information including:
  • Mandate school-level outreach to at-risk students (those with previously identified mental health issues).
  • Consider procurement of additional mental health assessment services including crisis management support.
  • Set district-wide health guidelines
    • At a minimum, any child or school staff who develops respiratory symptoms should be provided and wear a surgical mask, be transported and quarantined in a health isolation area that the district identifies, and sent home until cleared to return to school by a qualified health professional.
  • Provide guidance to schools for changes to school-based health screening (hearing, vision, etc.).

Do When Schools are Open and Operating

  • Encourage schools to implement a mental health screening for all students. 
  • Establish ongoing reporting protocols for school staff to evaluate physical and mental health status. At this time, there is no guidance indicating that students would submit to a physical examination before entering the school building.