Social Distancing at Woodson Branch Nature School
Given our unique 30 acre campus, small class sizes, and a super dedicated and creative staff,
WBNS is able to confidently provide a safe, alternative school option. At this time, we offer 3 enrollment options for families: either 5 full days, 3 full days with 2 at-home days, or virtually.
This fall, and until further notice from the state government, WBNS will add the following new protocols to our Health & Safety Plan:
Mask Policy: per Governor Cooper’s current requirement for public schools and public spaces as well as recommendations for the state of North Carolina
Masks will be worn in all inside spaces by all ages (with age appropriate mask breaks provided regularly), and outside when social distancing is not possible.
For example: if students choose to play together in the forest, they will have to wear masks.
Adults dropping off and picking up students must wear facial coverings. Instructions for making, wearing, and washing facial coverings can be found on the CDC website. We will ask that students bring their own masks as part of their daily gear, but we will also provide reusable masks during orientation and disposable masks throughout the year as needed. *This policy will be adjusted per any changes to the statewide requirements and recommendations.
● Hand washing—additional hand washing stations and hand sanitizer will be installed in classrooms and other public spaces.
● Social distancing—we will expect all to practice social distancing. We have configured classrooms and other spaces to allow for reasonable distancing.
● Requiring staying home when sick—we will insist that students, faculty and staff with any symptoms related to COVID-19 return home, self-isolate, and contact their primary doctor for their recommendations.
● Limited gatherings—we will follow evolving state guidelines, and consider the limitations of our physical spaces in limiting the number of people allowed to gather. We have reconstructed the schedules to accommodate 10 or less indoors at any given time through a group rotation for each grade level.
● Use of outdoor spaces—our faculty and staff will be conducting classes and activities outdoors when possible, as research shows being in fresh air mitigates the spread of the virus.
● Increased disinfecting and cleaning—we have put protocols in place for cleaning and disinfecting at the recommended levels and frequencies.
● Daily screening—all students will be screened daily for temperature and symptoms of COVID-19 before arriving on campus. Staff and faculty will continue to self-screen and report.
● We have updated our HVAC systems and ventilation—there is good guidance and support for improving systems to conduct and circulate fresh air indoors.
● In the first two weeks of school we will be conducting a full orientation of the new procedures with the students, teaching them how to do all of the new expectations so that everyone is well informed and has the opportunity to practice until it becomes routine. As appropriate, we will ask families to reinforce our expectations and rationale with at-home conversations and preparations.