FORT LAUDERDALE LOWER SCHOOL AFFECTED. SCHOOL FORTHCOMING, PROACTIVE WITH DETAILS, GUIDANCE, PLANS.
FORT LAUDERDALE, FL (BocaNewsNow.com) — Setting the standard for how private and public schools in the region should react to positive COVID-19 tests involving students and faculty, Pine Crest School has released the following statement to BocaNewsNow.com following reports of a positive COVID-19 test on its Fort Lauderdale campus. We note that this is NOT the Boca Raton campus.
BocaNewsNow.com wants to stress that Pine Crest was forthcoming, open and honest about the COVID-19 reports that we received earlier in the day.
Spokeswoman Christine Dardet provided the following information as well as a statement from the school. We are publishing — unedited — what we were provided.
THE FOLLOWING WAS PROVIDED TO BOCANEWSNOW.COM BY PINE CREST:
This morning, Pine Crest School’s Health Office shared with employees and families that a family of a Fort Lauderdale campus Lower School student notified the Health Office late last night (September 10, 2020) that one of their children tested positive for COVID-19. Another child in this family has developed a symptom of COVID- 19, and therefore, we have deemed this a potential second case.
The student who tested positive was present on our Fort Lauderdale campus on Wednesday, September 9, but not Thursday, September 10. While we cannot identify this family or their contact(s) due to privacy concerns, consistent with our policies, we are requiring the student who tested positive, the student’s sibling, and all individuals who are known at this time to have been in close contact with these students to self-quarantine. We have also notified the Broward County Health Department of the situation, and we are working in concert with health authorities to ensure that we continue to meet all requirements. The Health Department is conducting an independent contact tracing investigation, and we encourage families to participate in the Health Department’s contact tracing process if contacted directly.
Our cleaning crews have since sanitized the classrooms and common areas thoroughly.
In March 2020, Pine Crest’s COVID-19 Response Planning Team, which includes security, health, compliance, educational technology, and senior administrative professionals, began developing policies and implementing safety protocols in preparation for the start of the 2020-21 school year. The Team spent the entire summer preparing, anticipating the measures that would be needed to deliver on-campus instruction and distance learning to the School’s students. Enhancements included:
• developing an entirely new set of health and sanitation protocols;
• acquiring new technologies for synchronous distance learning,
• installing plexiglass dividers in classrooms and offices, and;
• adjusting classroom layouts and foot traffic for physical distancing.
Pine Crest families have been given the option to choose either on-campus or distance learning for their children. All students started the school year on August 19 in distance learning and began arriving on campus on August 27 in a staggered schedule by grade level.
“Over the past several months, Pine Crest teachers, staff, parents, and students have demonstrated extraordinary resilience and adaptability,” said Pine Crest School President Dr. Dana Markham. “We feel a tremendous sense of responsibility to keep our students and employees safe, and our decisions are guided not only by what is good for Pine Crest students, but for the community at large. Local public and private schools continue to support and partner with each other by sharing resources and expertise, which has served as a wonderful reminder that we are all playing an important part in educating the next generation.”
Detailed information about Pine Crest’s plans and preparedness are posted to the School’s COVID-19 webpage: https://www.pinecrest.edu/coronavirus-updates
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