Welcome to our COVID response page.
Below you’ll find all the critical information about how Queens Explorers is changing the way we operate to reduce the risk of COVID infection.
We are doing everything we can to make sure staff, students, and families are safe.
Please check back regularly, as we will update the information here as conditions change.
Our school district also has important information and resources for you.
Last updated: August 13, 2020
HYBRID LEARNING SCHEDULE FOR FALL 2020
We are starting the school year with a hybrid learning schedule. That means that your child will be in school some days and working from home some days.
If our county moves into a Level 4 Health Emergency, we will switch to 100% remote learning for all students. Check this page for updates.
The school day will run from 8:30 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. Students may be dropped off no earlier than 8:15am and must be picked up promptly at the end of the school day.
- Two In Person Cohorts, 1 remote
- Group A and B will rotate on Mondays
- Group A, Group B: in-person learning on two consistent days per week; remote learning for non-in person days.
- Group D: remote every day; consists of students who opt out of in-person instruction.
If you have any questions about the COVID-19 plan, please fill out our Parent Communication Log and the appropriate person will get back to you:
90-07 101st Ave Ozone Park, NY 11416
Parent Coordinator: Barbara Luciano
*You can also connect with your teachers directly using the Staff Directory.
Our school has implemented a number of changes to ensure everyone's safety.
Your Responsibilities While in the Building
We have put safety procedures in place to keep our students and staff healthy.
- Masks: Masks must be worn at all times by all adults (teachers, staff, and visitors) and students while in the building. If your child is unable to wear a mask for medical reasons, they must have an excuse signed by a doctor on file in the office.
- Hand washing: Students and staff are expected to wash hands thoroughly before and after eating, after using the bathroom, if exposed to body fluids (like saliva or a sneeze), and at other times necessary throughout the day.
- Drop-off and pickup procedures: Please maintain social distancing between families during drop-off and pickup. Parents are not allowed to enter the building with their child unless arrangements have been made in advance with the office. Please move through the drop-off and pickup line as quickly as possible to make room for families behind you.
- Visiting our school: We are limiting visitors to the school during this time. Parent and community members have been suspended until further notice. Most parent-teacher conferences and other meetings can be held virtually. All visits must be pre-approved and scheduled with the office.
- While in the building: When you enter the building, please check in at the front desk where your temperature will be taken and hand sanitizer will be provided.During check-in, you will be given a name tag and reminded to wear your mask at all times.
- Traffic flow in hallways and common areas: Hallways are marked with arrows. Please keep at least 3 ft. distance between yourself and others.
- Illness: Students and staff exhibiting signs of illness or having a fever of greater than 99.9°F must stay home. If you or someone you know has COVID-19 (or shows symptoms of COVID-19 such as coughing or fever), it is required that you stay home or at a designated care facility for a minimum of 14 days. Please contact us via phone or email as soon as possible.
- Directions for local COVID testing: Please visit the NYS Coronavirus Find a Test Site page to find a test site closest to you.
Safety Precautions Taken By Our School
In addition to asking everyone to wear masks, wash hands, and maintain social distancing, our school has taken several steps to improve the safety of our staff and students. These steps have been recommended by local health authorities to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19 and other illnesses.
- Changes in class sizes: We've reduced the average class size from 14 to 9 for in-person instruction.
- Improvements in ventilation: In an effort to maximize air circulation, we are opening windows whenever possible .
- Increases in cleaning frequency: Our custodial team is committed to cleaning all high-touch zones will be cleaned multiple times throughout each day. In addition, all classroom teachers have been provided with sanitizing wipes to wipe down surfaces and shared resources on an as-needed basis throughout the school day.
- Hand sanitation: All bathrooms have been stocked with extra soap for frequent hand washing. In addition, we have provided teachers with hand sanitizer for the classroom and added hand sanitizer stations in common areas.
- Overnight our school building will be disinfected overnight, every night .
- Electrostatic disinfectors will clean surfaces daily with zero physical contact.
- Random Testing: 20% of our building will be covid-19 tested monthly: this will include all staff & students. City-run testing sites will prioritize free COVID testing and expedited results for school staff; free testing is also available to all students, families, and New Yorkers citywide
GUIDANCE FOR HYBRID & REMOTE LEARNING
Please see the hybrid & remote learning information below.
How Hybrid Learning Works
Hybrid learning combines in-class instruction and at-home learning. This allows us to limit the number of students in the building each day for safe social distancing, while still ensuring that students can benefit from direct interaction with teachers and peers.
- During days in class, teachers will provide direct whole-class instruction and small-group instruction. These days will be used primarily to introduce new topics, provide small group and one-on-one instructional support, and conduct assessments to monitor student progress towards standards.
- Students will be assigned additional activities to work on independently for there at-home learning days. These activities will allow students to apply and practice what they learned in class. There may be a combination of technology-based learning activities and offline worksheets, projects, and writing assignments. At-home learning activities are an important part of the learning process and will be graded.
- Teachers and intervention specialists will have limited virtual "office hours" (on Google Class) after school hours Monday - Fridays at 2:00 to 2:20. Students who have questions or need extra support can check in with their teachers during their office hours for help with at-home learning assignments.
- Students with IEPs or 504 plans, or who have been identified as at-risk for not meeting academic standards, may have additional one-on-one intervention provided virtually.
Remote Learning Expectations
During hybrid or 100% remote learning, your child is expected to complete all assignments provided by the teacher. At the same time, we recognize that working independently at home is different and difficult for many students, so we want to provide flexibility.
- Students and families should check their Google Classroom daily for important updates from their teachers. You can find a link to your teacher's Google Class in the Staff Directory.
- At-home assignments for the week will be posted in Google Class by Sunday night each week.
- At-home assignments for each week should be turned in by 4:00 each Friday. Assignments will be graded.
- All students are expected to sign into Virtual Home Room at 9:00 on Fridays through Google Hangouts. Look for the link in your teacher's Google Class.
- During 100% distance learning, your teacher may conduct live classes via Google Hangouts. Check Google Class for your live class schedule.
- When signing in for virtual classes or meetings, students are expected to be on time, appropriately dressed, and ready to learn. We suggest signing in 5 minutes before class starts. Please try to reduce background noise and distractions as much as possible.
Technology: Getting a Device and Internet Access
We are committed to making sure that all students can successfully connect to online learning during their at-home learning days.
- If your student needs a laptop or tablet, fill out the Device Request Form to reserve your device. Borrowing a device is free! Students in grades 3K - 3 will receive tablets and students in grades 4-5 will receive laptops.
- Borrowed devices should be used for school purposes only and kept in a secure location. Take your device with you on in-school days.
- If you are using your own device, make sure it meets the technology requirements for online learning.
- If you do not have internet access at home, LOCAL INTERNET SERVICE PROVIDER is providing free connection for families earning less than $50,000 per year with students learning at home. You can request free internet access directly with the company.
- If you are not able to get internet hooked up in your home, your child's teacher will work with you to provide alternative offline assignments.
- If you are having trouble connecting to Google Classroom, Google Meets, or any of our online learning resources, contact Ms. Tracy through Class Dojo.
Tips for Successful At-Home Learning
At-home learning will look different than a typical school day. The amount of time your child should be expected to engage in learning activities will vary by age and grade level. The expectations below are guidelines. If your child is not able to complete at-home learning assignments within the time periods recommended below, contact your child's teacher to discuss a modified assignment load.
- Make sure your child has a quiet place to work (ideally a desk or table) and the school supplies they need. Try to remove distractions like the television or other technology not needed for learning.
- For grades K-2, expect your child to work up to 2 hours per day, broken up into sessions of no more than 30 minutes.
- For grades 3-5, expect your child to work up to 4 hours per day, broken up into sessions of no more than one hour.
- Your child may benefit from focusing on a limited number of subjects each day. For example, If they are working at home Monday-Tuesday-Wednesday, they may want to work on science and math on Mondays, Social Studies and English Language Arts on Tuesdays, and use Wednesdays to catch up on any assignments not yet completed.
LEARN AT HOME RESOURCES
Please see below for important resources.
Help for Families
We know that many families are struggling during this time, and we are here to help.
- We are providing free breakfast and lunch for all students during in-school days. Students and families needing additional food support may pick up free meals through the Meal Hub program (see link to the left).
- Our guidance counselor and parent coordinator are available for virtual meetings. They can also connect your family with community resources to help you.
- Please contact Ms. Abernethy, our Guidance Counselor, if your child is experiencing trauma or mental health issues or needs to be evaluated for an IEP or 504 plan.
- Please contact Ms. Luciano, our Parent Coordinator, if your family has lost housing, is experiencing a crisis, or needs additional support during this time.
- There are many community resources available for families who need help with housing support, utilities, mental health services, crisis services, and other supports during this time. Use the quick links to the right to connect with more community resources.
To stay up to date with any changes to procedures or scheduling, please bookmark this page on your browser.
We'll also be sending out emails as well as Dojo messages to all families.
Sign up for updates through the Notify App using the school code: 2TX50X . Download the app using the Notify tab to the right.
MEETING SPECIAL NEEDS
- Families wishing to continue to learn remotely: If your child or a family member is at high-risk for complications due to COVID-19 may opt to continue 100% remote learning. Contact Ms. Luciano at firstname.lastname@example.org to enroll your child in our remote learning program.
- Special needs students: Students with special needs will receive a separate email from your child's teacher with instructions. We are committed to fully complying with IEP and 504 accommodations for all students to the fullest extent possible during in-school, remote, and hybrid learning models