Campus Reopening Plan
Georgetown Prep is planning to open campus for the fall semester for students and faculty who choose to join us in person. We will continue to follow a modified version of our daily schedule that allows synchronous daily classes for each course. We are also making significant upgrades to our technology infrastructure to allow students or faculty who cannot return physically to campus to connect with those live classes virtually through the Zoom platform. In order to do this and reduce the risk of spreading the COVID-19 virus we anticipate the following:
- Re-entry Procedures
- An Investment in Campus Infrastructure
- Health and Safety Precautions
- Summary of Key Dates
As students and faculty return to campus, we will implement a COVID-19 testing regime, ask students and faculty to reduce their social interactions, and follow quarantine procedures in order to minimize the spread of the virus.
Access to Quick and Accurate COVID Testing: We have developed a partnership with a local medical group and testing lab that will allow us to screen all resident students for COVID-19 before they enter the dormitories, conduct a follow up screen after they self-quarantine in the dormitories, and provide ongoing testing throughout the school year for students who present symptoms or are exposed to a confirmed case of COVID-19, as well as regular randomized sample testing to monitor for asymptomatic cases. We will also require local students and faculty to provide proof of a negative test result before returning to campus and all resident students to provide evidence of a negative test result before they leave their hometowns.
Quarantine and Isolation Procedures as the Campus Reopens: We will ask returning students to remain isolated from their peers as they return for the fall semester.
- For students traveling from international locations:
As we prepare for the opening of school on August 31, we will expect that students comply with the Center for Disease Control and local guidelines which ask students traveling from an international destination to self-quarantine for 14 days before the beginning of classes. This means that international students should plan to arrive in the local area no later than August 17. We are currently investigating options with local hotels to assist families in securing a place to quarantine. We will provide more details to our international families as they become available.
- For domestic resident students and international resident students who have remained in the U.S. throughout the Summer of 2020:
We will ask that all domestic resident students and international resident students who have been living in the United States throughout the Summer of 2020 move onto Prep’s campus starting August 21 but by no later than August 24 and to isolate or self-quarantine in their dorm room for the week leading up to August 31. Our health office staff will conduct daily health screenings including temperature checks during this week.
- For Local Day Students:
Local day students will be asked to return to the DC area, avoid further travel, and self-quarantine at their home beginning August 24.
Our campus facilities staff will upgrade classroom technology, the student health office, and the air filtration system. In addition, we will modify classroom furniture layouts and add additional hand sanitizing stations.
Classroom Technology that Allows for a Hybrid Environment: We are making significant upgrades to our technology infrastructure to allow students or faculty who cannot return physically to campus to connect with live classes virtually through the Zoom platform. These upgrades will also allow individuals who show any symptoms of illness to protect the community by isolating themselves physically while remaining connected virtually to the work of our classrooms whenever possible.
Improvements to the Student Health Office/Creation of Overnight Isolation Rooms: Our campus facilities staff in conjunction with outside subcontractors are upgrading our Health Office facilities in order to prepare for the additional challenges of the current health crisis. The upgrades will include overnight isolation rooms for students who are exhibiting flu-like symptoms. We will also increase the health office staffing by providing additional nursing and physician resources.
Upgrades to Air Handling/Air Filtration Systems: Our campus facilities staff is upgrading the air filtration system in MacKavanaugh, Gunlocke, Haas, Hanley, and the George Center.
Modified Classroom Furniture Setup: We have conducted a thorough inventory of each classroom furniture setup. Layouts are being modified and some furniture will be changed in order to provide the maximum possible social distance between students in the classroom.
Additional Hand Sanitizing Stations and Hand Washing Procedures: The campus facilities staff is adding additional hand sanitizing stations throughout the campus and students will be directed to wash or sanitize their hands throughout the school day.
The administration and faculty will implement new daily routines and procedures and train students to develop new habits that will keep the community safe. These will include the following:
Mandatory Use of Face Masks and Physical Distancing: Students, faculty, and staff will be expected to wear face masks at all times while on campus when in the presence of other people except while eating meals or while in their own dorm room. Everyone on campus should maintain a physical distance of at least 6 feet whenever possible.
Daily Health Screening and Self-Reporting: All students, faculty, and staff will be expected to conduct their own daily health screening including a temperature check and symptom check before coming to campus (day students, faculty, and staff) or leaving the dorm floor (resident students) and input the results into an app on their phones. Students, faculty or staff who have a fever or other symptoms of illness must remain off campus or isolated in their dorm room. Resident students with a fever or symptoms must report them to the health office for further observation and diagnosis.
Adjustments to the Daily Schedule: The daily bell schedule will be altered to allow additional passing time between classes to assist in the social distancing process and additional sanitization.
Alterations to Lunch and Other Meals: A group of faculty and administrators is currently studying our options to safely feed lunch to all students each day as well as breakfast and dinner to our resident students.
Enhanced Cleaning and Disinfection Procedures: Our facilities staff will enhance their procedures to frequently disinfect hard surface and provide for deep cleaning of classrooms, bathrooms, dining, and dorm facilities on a regular basis.
Adjustments to Pedestrian Traffic Patterns Within and Between Buildings: Using enhanced signage and training during orientation week students, faculty, and staff will be asked to follow new pedestrian traffic patterns on campus in order to allow for maximum social distancing and limit contact between individuals. Hallways, stairwells, doorways, and sidewalks will have a one-way traffic pattern wherever possible.
Limitations to Group Gatherings: We will limit or eliminate large in-person group gatherings including indoor assemblies, liturgies, and meetings larger than a classroom of students.
Limitations to Athletic Competition in the Fall: The I.A.C. has postponed league-sanctioned athletic competition for fall 2020. Although there will be no formal inter-school competitions this fall, we look forward to providing our student-athletes a safe environment for team-based workouts on campus.
Limitations to Off-Campus Sign-Outs for Resident Students: We will closely monitor the spread of COVID-19 in the local Maryland, DC, and Virginia area and limit or eliminate off-campus sign- outs for our resident students. Resident students with a specific request to sign-out will be considered on a case-by-case basis but significantly restricted during the initial weeks of school. We anticipate a closed campus for much of September.
Limited Access to Campus: Access to campus proper will be limited to students, faculty, and staff and those with pre-approved business on the campus. The Georgetown Prep Tennis Club will continue to operate with patrons limited to tennis club facilities only.
Local Guardians for all Residential Students: As is our custom, all residential students must identify a local guardian within a 90-minute drive of campus who would be able to pick up and house the student in the event of illness. The local guardian will have to certify that he or she is ready and able to house the student even if they have tested positive for COVID-19.
Contact Tracing: Over the past month members of the staff have been trained through Johns Hopkins University to serve as internal contact tracers in the event of a suspected case of COVID-19 within our community.
Bringing the Prep community back together this fall will be a complicated task involving families from around the globe. The following highlights key dates along the way.
- August 17:
- All students traveling from an international location should arrive back in the DC area no later than Monday, August 17, to comply with CDC guidelines and spend two weeks in the local area under self-quarantine.
Domestic resident students and all other international resident students who have remained in the United States throughout the summer of 2020 will move onto Prep’s Campus.
Week of August 24:
Resident students who are on campus will self-quarantine.
Local day students should return to the DC area, avoid further travel, and self-quarantine at their home.
Students who arrived in the U.S. from an international location (who have been in self-quarantine since August 17) will move back onto campus at the conclusion of the week.
Week of August 31:
Orientation Week for all students
Faculty and administrators welcome students back to campus by grade level and orient students to new policies and procedures.
Local day students continue to self-quarantine at home aside from orientation activities on campus.
Tuesday, September 8:
First Day of First Quarter
All students and faculty begin academic coursework.