Buzzin' in the Hive

Graden Family Newsletter Health & Safety Edition

Health & Safety

The number one priority at Graden is the health and safety of our students and staff and of course, our Graden families. A great deal of thoughtful preparation from many stakeholders has taken place to create a plan that will safely welcome our students and staff back into the building. Please keep in mind that as information continues to develop from public health officials our plan may also need to be adapted. Thank you for your patience and flexibility as we navigate the school year together.

Health Guidelines for Students and Staff

Students and staff who are feeling sick must stay home. Parents will self-assess their child(ren) for for COVID-19 systems daily. Staff will self-assess for COVID-19 symptoms daily. Staff and students will stay home if they have a fever of 100.4 F or greater. All members of our Park Hill family will follow these guidelines to screen for symptoms of COVID-19, and must stay home if ill.

  • fever
  • cough
  • rash
  • sore throat
  • shortness of breath
  • nausea or vomiting
  • diarrhea
  • fatigue
  • headache
  • muscle pain
  • lack of appetite
  • loss of taste or smell

Exposure to COVID-19

If students or staff members feel healthy but have recently had close contact with a person with COVID-19, they need to stay home and monitor their health for 14 days after their last exposure. Families should notify their child's principal, and staff should notify their supervisors of the exposure.

Guidelines for Returning to School

Direct exposure~ < 6 feet for > 15 minutes with an individual who has tested positive for COVID-19:

  • Quarantine for 14 days~ must complete the entire 14 days regardless of a negative test

Positive COVID test with symptoms~ must meet all these conditions:

  • At least 10 days since symptoms first appeared
  • At least 24 hours with no fever, without the use of fever-reducing medication
  • symptoms have improved

Positive COVID test with no symptoms~

  • At least 10 days since + test result
  • If begin to have symptoms, will need to follow conditions for positive COVID test with symptoms and self-isolate from when symptoms began

Health Room and Quarantine Room

Our school nurse will follow all of the recommended health guidelines if a child is sent to the health room with COVID-19 symptoms. The following is a list of extra precautions we have in place for the health room.

  • frequent hand washing, use of hand sanitizer, gloves
  • visitors will wash their hands upon entering and exiting the health room
  • masks will be worn by our nurse, students, and staff
  • proper PPE will be worn based on the individual's health needs
  • cots, chairs and other surfaces will be cleaned and disinfected between staff/student visits and throughout the day as needed
  • custodial staff will clean and disinfect as part of their regular cleaning routine
  • a designated quarantine room has been established for students/staff who may have COVID-19 symptoms

Basic Building Procedures

All students and staff must wear a mask upon entering the building. Masks must be worn at all times except when eating, drinking, or playing outside during recess and during physical education. All students will receive a lanyard. Masks and student ID cards will be attached to the student's lanyard. This will keep masks from getting lost and falling on the floor.

Hornet arrows and signage will be placed on the floors and walls and on lunch room benches to remind students the direction they are to walk, sit and for social distancing purposes.

For the safety of our students and staff, visitors will not be allowed in the building. Only school district employees are allowed to enter Graden Elementary. Unfortunately, this means no lunch or classroom visitors-even on the first day of school.

Backpacks and Lunch Boxes

Backpacks and lunch boxes are allowed at school. All students will be given an IPad (K-1) or Laptop (2-5) carrying case which can hold an additional folder and loose papers. Teachers are committed to limiting the number of items that are sent home each night so that they can easily fit into the case provided by the district. If you feel it is imperative that your child(ren) bring a backpack to and from school, please feel free to send one and classroom teachers will locate a safe spot in the classroom to store it. If you feel comfortable using the carrying case, classroom teachers will send these home the first day of school and a backpack will not be needed.


Classrooms will be set up to ensure maximum safety, following social distance guidelines to the extent possible. Masks will be worn by students and adults. Direct physical contact will be avoided when possible. Students will remain with their class cohort throughout the day; this includes recess and lunch. Plexiglas barriers will be used by the classroom/special services teachers when meeting with small groups of students. Students will use their own classroom supplies. If it is absolutely necessary for students to share materials, these materials will be cleaned between student use. Students will be encouraged to wash their hands frequently. Hand sanitizer will be available in every classroom.

Breakfast and Lunch

Students who choose to have breakfast will go directly to the cafeteria upon entering the building. Students will be offered a grab and go breakfast. Students will wash their hands and eat their breakfast in the cafeteria. If students arrive after 9:10 they will obtain breakfast and eat in their classroom as they complete their morning work and classroom routines.

In order to maintain social distancing, students will either eat lunch in the cafeteria or in their classroom. Food in the cafeteria will no longer be self-serve. Cafeteria staff will serve students as they come through the lunch line. All utensils and trays will be disposable. Stickers will be used as a visual for student seating. Students will sit in a staggered arrangement and will be at least 3 feet apart. Students will wash their hands before lunch and will use hand sanitizer as they enter and exit the cafeteria.

Special Events

For now, all evening events, assemblies, music performances, field trips, etc. are canceled. An update regarding school clubs will be sent as soon as we have updated information.

We cannot distribute any outside food or beverages to our students. This means we will not have birthday treats from outside the school. If families or teachers would like to purchase birthday treats for their students, please work through our Park Hill Nutrition Services Department. You can reach them at 816-359-6419.

Extra Cleaning Procedures

We are increasing our cleaning, including sanitizing surfaces at least once a day. We will also disinfect devices like computers. We will provide wipes and spray bottles with disinfectant in every classroom. Cafeteria tables, classroom desks, classroom frequently used surfaces, and playground equipment will be cleaned between each use. Materials that cannot be wiped down or cleaned will be taken out of circulation for at least 72 hours between use.


Classes of students will be assigned to zones for recess. Students will be expected to stay in their zones for the entire recess period. Zones will rotate which will give students a different recess experience through the week. Students will be encouraged to wear masks during recess, but masks are not required. Masks will be required once students line up to enter the building. Playground equipment will be cleaned and disinfected between uses. Students will use hand sanitizer after recess and wash their hands before entering the classroom

Specials Classes- Art, Library, PE and Music

Students will attend specials classes with their consistent cohort. Students and teachers will wear masks during specials classes. Students participating in PE will not be required to wear masks while participating in physical activities. Specials teachers have made modifications to their regular routine to maintain social distancing and student safety. Learning materials in specials classes will be disinfected between each group.

Some Last Requests

  • Send a reusable water bottle to school with your child.
  • Talk with your child about the importance of wearing a mask and have your child practice wearing a mask for longer periods of time.
  • Be patient with us as we navigate through a very different school year.
  • Contact us if you have questions or if your child is struggling.
  • For more detailed information please refer to the Health and Safety Precautions on our district website: HEALTH AND SAFETY PRECAUTIONS


Principal: Vanna Easley


Assistant Principal: Courtney Bishop


Executive Administrative Assistant: Nikki Suchanick


Graden Registrar: Meghan Wheeler


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