COVID-19 Health & Safety Protocols: Other School Operations

  • Food Service 

    Schools are required to:

    • Ensure that all students wash their hands or use hand sanitizer immediately before and after eating. Hand sanitizing stations will be placed at the entrances of cafeterias, at the entrance of the serving lines, at the cashier stations, and at vending machines.
    • Maintain six feet of physical distance between students during mealtimes whenever possible. When six feet of physical distance cannot be maintained, schools must create as much space as possible between students.
    • Use physical markers to indicate appropriate distancing, including entrance and exit pathways, line spacing, and mealtime seating.
    • Establish a method to document student seating during meals to support contact tracing in the event of an exposure. Seating during meals should align with class seating charts, when possible.
    • Clean and disinfect the eating area between different groups, ensuring the safe and correct use and storage of cleaning and disinfection products.

    It is recommended that all schools: 

    • Explore options for eating meals outdoors. Consider designating an outdoor eating area for each class, and marking places six feet apart for students to sit. 
    • Provide an outdoor break area, if feasible, for staff to eat.



    All students, bus drivers, and bus attendants are required to wear masks while on the school bus, consistent with the CDC’s Face Mask Order

    • Parents/guardians should ensure students have appropriate face coverings. However, drivers will be provided with a supply of face coverings in case a student forgets theirs.
    • Parents/guardians should screen students for COVID-19 symptoms and exposure before students leave home to ride the bus. Students with any symptoms or recent exposure must stay home.
    • Students will be given an assigned seat based on their pick-up and drop-off locations. Students must sit in their assigned seats. Siblings and those sharing a household will be seated together. 
    • Students should sanitize their hands when entering and exiting the bus.
    • Windows will be opened to maximize ventilation, as weather allows.
    • Frequently touched surfaces on buses will be cleaned and disinfected between uses and after transporting any individual with COVID-19, including handrails, seats, seatbelts, and windows. 



    Physical Education and Recess

    Schools are required to:

    • Utilize outdoor spaces to the greatest extent possible.
    • Prioritize activities that allow physical distancing. Individual sports create lower risk if students are appropriately distanced.
    • Ensure the proper use of face coverings during all indoor activities.
    • Require hand washing or sanitizing when equipment is shared during an activity, before play, during breaks, and after the conclusion of the activity. 
    • Clean and disinfect shared equipment between uses. Sports equipment can be touched by multiple players during practice and play if proper hand hygiene practices are followed. 


    Elementary Music

    Schools are required to:

    • Maintain at least 6 feet of physical distance between students to the extent possible.
    • Limit rehearsals to 30 minutes followed by a break to allow for at least one air change in the HVAC.  
    • Prevent the sharing of instruments. Limit the sharing of music, folders, pencils, or stands unless equipment can be properly sanitized between users.

    It is recommended that all schools: 

    • Hold outdoor classes with appropriate physical distancing when possible.
    • Explore options like “Music on a Cart” as an option, working with classroom teachers to integrate music activities to support math, science, and social studies lessons, and dedicating more class time for music theory, static skills, steady beat, rhythm, composition, and visual and aural analysis of music. 


    Band, Choir, Theatre

    Schools are required to:

    • Prioritize outdoor spaces for rehearsals and performances. 
    • Create a physical distance of at least 3 feet between students (or more if possible).
    • Consider using larger spaces (i.e. auditorium) for rehearsals.
    • Ensure masking during indoor rehearsals, including singers masks, embouchure masks
    • Use bell covers to reduce aerosol disbursement indoors and puppy pads to catch water from instruments.
    • Limit rehearsal times in spaces with good ventilation can be increased to 45 minutes.  A minimum of 3 air changes per hour is recommended.
    • Ensure there is no sharing of instruments, and limit the sharing of other equipment.  When equipment is shared, practice hand hygiene between uses and follow other protocols for cleaning and disinfection.
  • Vaccines
  • Symptoms and Cases
  • Close Contacts
  • COVID Testing
  • Face Covering Policy
  • Physical Distancing
  • Hand Hygiene
  • Cleaning and Disinfecting
  • Indoor Air and Outdoor Spaces
  • Other School Operations
  • Beyond the School Day
  • Response Plan Handbook