Public Comment: In-Person Instruction
Please review the App State Academy at Middle Fork's plan for the safe return to in-person instruction and continuity of services.
Public comments regarding the Academy's in-person learning plan will be accepted May 17 - June 30, 2021.
All students are currently attending school four days a week. Wednesdays continue to be remote learning days.
Families who have opted to remain virtual may choose to return to in-person instruction starting with the fourth quarter. Thank you for your continued support as we maintain the health and safety of all of our students and staff.
Conducting regular screenings for symptoms and ongoing self-monitoring throughout the school day can help reduce exposure to COVID-19. Students and staff who are sick or not feeling well must stay home.
Each morning, a health screening will be conducted of every person prior to entering the school building. This includes students, staff, and visitors. The health screening includes an infrared temperature check (temperature must register below 100.4 to enter the school building) and a series of brief health questions. A second screening of students will be conducted mid-day by classroom teachers.
Students who exhibit any symptoms during the school day will be moved to a designated holding area until they can be picked up by a parent/guardian.
Students who ride a bus are required to have a health screening at home.
Health & Safety Precautions
The following health and safety precautions will be followed. All protocols are based on guidance provided by the NC Department of Health and Human Services.
- All students and staff will be required to wear a face mask throughout the day.
Handwashing & Hand-Sanitizing
- Teachers will incorporate handwashing breaks into the school day, and reinforce handwashing during key times throughout the school day such as before eating, using the restroom, and touching shared objects.
- Hand-sanitizing stations are positioned throughout the building, including all entrances, exits, classrooms, the cafeteria, and other frequently visited locations.
- Signage throughout the building promotes social distancing and safe practices such as washing hands, wearing masks, using hand sanitizer, and staying 6 feet apart.
- One-way directional travel is used throughout the building as well as staggered movement for lunch, specials, and recess.
Classrooms, Restrooms, and Other Spaces
- Classroom furniture is arranged in a manner that promotes social distancing. Kidney tables and plexiglass stands for tables and desks are utilized to help with small groups.
- All classrooms have PPE kits that include hand sanitizer, touchless infrared thermometers, antiviral Kleenexes, alcohol wipes, disinfecting wipes, etc.
- Scheduled restroom breaks are planned for each classroom throughout the day with cleaning and sanitizing between each classroom.
Families who are not comfortable returning to in-person instruction may continue remote learning. These students will join their classrooms via synchronous Zoom sessions. Families who choose the remote learning option will be required to continue remote learning through the end of each quarter.
The Academy at Middle Fork is required to report confirmed cases of COVID-19 to Appalachian State University and the Forsyth County Department of Health and work with them for follow-up and contact tracing. If a person with COVID-19 was on the school campus while infectious, the Academy will coordinate with local health officials to notify anyone who was in close contact with the infected person, while maintaining confidentiality in accordance with FERPA, NCGS 130A-143, and all other state and federal laws. Close contact is defined as being within 6 feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period starting from two days before experiencing symptoms or testing positive.
The Forsyth County Department of Health will determine through contact tracing who, if anyone, will need to quarantine. The Academy at Middle Fork, Appalachian State University, and the Forsyth County Department of Health will work together to ensure that individuals believed to have been exposed to COVID-19 are notified.
NC DHHS does not require or recommend for schools to close as a result of a student or employee testing positive for COVID-19.
What if a family wants to transition from in-person instruction to remote instruction?
If at any time a family wants to transition from in-person to remote instruction, they may do so by notifying the school. The family will have to commit to continuing remote instruction through the end of that quarter.
What if a family wants to transition from remote instruction to in-person instruction?
Families who have chosen the remote learning option will be required to continue remote learning through the end of the current quarter. Transitioning from remote to in-person instruction requires a lot of logistics, including but not limited to transportation, classroom numbers, classroom setup, and other health and safety considerations.