October 16 – Ojai Valley School reopened grades 1-6 for in-person classes after receiving an elementary waiver from the state and Ventura County Public Health in September. Now, with coronavirus cases declining locally, the school is poised to reopen grades 7-12. Please review our Roadmap to Reopening to learn more about our reopening plan, as well as our Roadmap Addendum for Grades 1-8, and Addendum for Grades 9-12, which each outline health and safety protocols for those specific grades, as well as information on arrival and dismissal times and locations.
Below you will find many of the Frequently Asked Questions about the Reopening Plan. We will update this document regularly as new information and policies develop.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: When will the first day of in-person classes be?
A: Students will return to campus with staggered arrivals by grade as follows:
|1st and 2nd||Tuesday, September 29|
|3rd grade||Wednesday, September 30|
|4th and 5th||Friday, October 2|
|6th grade||Monday, October 5|
|7th grade||Wednesday, October 21|
|8th, 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th grades||Thursday, October 22|
Q: When and where do I drop off and pick up my child?
A: At Lower Campus, there are designated areas for drop off and pick up for grades PK-8. At Upper Campus, high school students should arrive on campus for health screenings at the pool parking area before continuing to their first morning classes at 8:10 a.m.
|Grade||Drop-off Time||Pick-up Time||Location|
|PreKindergarten||7:45 a.m.||2:00 p.m.||East Entrance|
|Kindergarten||7:45 a.m.||2:45 p.m.||East Entrance|
|1st & 2nd||7:55 a.m.||2:45 p.m.||West Entrance|
|3rd & 4th||7:55 a.m.||2:50 p.m.||East Entrance|
|5th||7:45 a.m.||2:50 p.m.||West Entrance|
|6th, 7th, & 8th||7:45 a.m.||2:55 p.m.||West Entrance|
Q: What if I have children assigned to different pick-up/drop-off times?
A: At Lower Campus, parents should drop off both children at the earlier time, and pick up at the later time. Students will stay in their classrooms for those extra 10 minutes.
Q: What if I am late to school?
A: Please stay in your car and call the Front Office at (805) 646-1423 for Lower Campus or (805) 646-5593 for Upper Campus. A staff member will come to your vehicle to perform a temperature and wellness check. At Lower, that staff member will then supervise hand washing and escort your child to class.
Q: Where will wellness checks take place, and what happens during a wellness check?
A: Wellness checks will take place while your child is still in the car. The child’s temperature will be taken, and more importantly, you will be asked a series of questions related to COVID symptoms and possible exposure.
Q: Will parents be allowed to visit classrooms?
A: Unfortunately, at this time parents and visitors will not be allowed on campus to limit exposure.
Q: What are cohorts?
A: Cohorts are small groups of self-contained students, and staff, that allows separation from the other cohort groups during the school day. It is a way to mitigate exposure and ensure more accurate contact tracing.
Q: Will there be Aftercare?
A: Due to the challenge of keeping students in small cohort groups, we will not be able to offer Aftercare for 1st-6th grade at this point. Teachers will be offering after-school tutoring and office hours, this may be in person or virtual. PK and K students will continue to have their Aftercare since this falls under different CA state licensing.
Q: How often will classes be held outside?
A: We have established outside spaces to hold many of our classes. We will take advantage as much as possible of the opportunity to be outside and teach in the safest way possible.
Q: How do I drop something off for my child during the school day?
A: Please stay in your car and call the Front Office. A staff member will come to your vehicle and retrieve the item and deliver it to your student.
Q: Does my child have to wear a face mask?
A: Yes, all students and staff members — in all grades — will wear protective masks both inside and outside the classroom. There will be exceptions to this rule when eating, possibly during physical education classes, depending on the activity. Students are encouraged to have a minimum of 2 spare masks at school. Please send your student in a clean mask each day.
Q: What type of face masks are recommended?
A: We recommend at least a two-layer cloth mask that is appropriately sized.
Q: Are there any changes to the dress code due to COVID?
A: Yes. Because the Lower Campus locker rooms will not be accessible for changing, we are relaxing our dress code to allow students to participate in the full breadth of the program without the need to change clothes for sports or other activities. The spirit and purpose of the Ojai Valley School dress code is to uphold a learning environment that contributes to the development of a positive, age-appropriate self-image while maintaining student focus on the academic process. The general expectation is that students’ clothing should be clean, neat, well-fitting, tasteful, and appropriate for the occasion. Please choose daily dress based on the spirit of the dress code and the guidelines below:
- Students of all ages will wear closed-toed shoes and socks.
- Dresses, skirts, pants, and shorts may be worn that are of appropriate size and length. Dress appropriately for days when you have PE and Equestrian.
- Short and long sleeve collared shirts, or official OVS spirit wear may be worn on any given day.
- Non-collared T-shirts may be worn to accommodate PE and Equestrian activities. Students will not be changing in the locker rooms. Please avoid t-shirts with graphics that may be inappropriate for younger students.
- At no time should undergarments and/or straps of undergarments be visible.
- Torn or ragged clothing or shoes are not allowed—this includes cut-offs and clothes that have holes by design.
- Modest athletic wear (leggings, athletic shorts, riding pants) are permitted to accommodate PE and Equestrian activities.
Hats and hoods may not be worn indoors.
- If you participate in Equestrian, please wear closed-toed shoes and bring your riding boots.
Q: What if my family travels for a holiday break, will we be required to self-quarantine?
A: Yes. If your family travels by plane or any public transportation, your child will be required to be quarantined for two weeks before returning to school. We ask families to self quarantine for 14 days if you attend any large gatherings of 25 people or more (ie: weddings, family reunions) where people remove masks to speak, eat, or drink
Q: How often will the bathrooms be cleaned?
A: We have designated housekeeping staff to maintain a constant cleaning rotation of all bathrooms, door handles and commonly-used surfaces
Q: Are all the staff following the same guidelines as the students?
A: Yes, all staff on campus are following the same guidelines.
Q: At Lower, will my child still have art, music, woodshop, equestrian, physical education, and Spanish?
A: Yes, and most co-curricular classes will be taught in outdoor spaces.
Q: How will lunch work?
A: Our Food Services Department will provide students with fresh snacks and lunches prepared on-site.
Q: Will the different classes have activities together?
A: No, student interaction will be limited.
Q: Is the school disinfecting the campus on a regular basis?
A: Yes. Bathrooms and other high-touch areas are being sanitized with OSHA-approved and CDC-approved disinfectant supplies. Bathrooms and classrooms are being cleaned regularly on a rotational basis.
Q: Under what circumstances would a student be asked to stay home?
A: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has defined protocols for isolation that could possibly change over time. For now, these include:
1. The student has a fever of 99.5 degrees or higher, and/or other COVID-19 symptoms listed in the chart below; or 2. The student has had direct exposure (within 6 feet for more than 15 minutes) with a person who has tested positive for COVID-19. In either circumstance, your child must self-quarantine immediately. It is recommended that your child be tested depending on the exposure timing. The length of quarantine ranges from 10 to 14 days depending on symptoms, type of exposure and testing results. In the event of a potential exposure, the cohort group (class) will be notified while awaiting test results or completion of the isolation period. The school will abide by legal confidentiality rules (FERPA) in dealing with all medical situations involving staff or students. Indirect exposure, when someone is exposed to someone who has had direct exposure to someone with COVID, does not require quarantine.
People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of reported symptoms – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure. Symptoms can include:
|Fever of 99.5 degrees or higher||Sore Throat|
|Shortness of breath||Cough|
|Headache||Repeated shaking with chills|
|Congestion or runny nose||Fatigue|
|Nausea or vomiting||New loss of taste or smell|
Q: After quarantine, when may my child return to school?
A: You must consult with the school administration and the OVS Health Center before returning to school due to the evolving CDC guidelines. Fever free is premised if medications were not used to lower the fever. Below are general guidelines:
1. Symptomatic and a positive test. The child will be allowed to return after 10 days from symptom onset and at least 24 hours after fever resolution.
2. Symptomatic and no test.The child will be allowed to return after 10 days from symptom onset and at least 24 hours after fever resolution (if present) and improved respiratory symptoms.
3. Symptomatic and the child is determined to have alternate cause or illness by their primary medical doctor. The child will be excluded until fever-free for 24 hours (if fever is present) and symptoms improving.
4. Symptomatic individual/child with a negative test: The child will be excluded until fever-free for 24 hours (if fever present) and improved respiratory symptoms. This will also be determined by the circumstances surrounding the negative test.
5. Exposed and asymptomatic: If a student does not have any symptoms but has had direct exposure, they will be allowed to return to school once they test negative; If they are not tested they must stay home for 14 days. If a child tests positive they may return to school after 14 days, and they need to be symptom-free for 48 hours.
Q: Who will decide if the school needs to temporarily close due to COVID-19?
A: The school administration makes that decision in consultation with our local public health department.
Q: How will I be informed if there is a class or school closure?
A: All parents will receive an e-mail notice and a phone call.
Q: Will teachers offer remote learning if there is a quarantine situation?
A: Yes, the teachers are prepared to transfer to remote learning in this event. The student needs to be prepared with a device and location at home to learn remotely. We will use the Seesaw program, which is a platform for managing remote learning. If an individual child is doing remote learning, each class has been provided with a web camera to allow them to participate in daily lessons.
If you have any other questions or need clarification, please call the Front Office. We are all in this together and we can’t emphasize enough that we all must be aware of our interactions outside of school and follow our local health authorities’ guidance to minimize the risk of spreading COVID-19. Thank you.