- Aug 4, 2020
“Back to School 2020” will take on different meanings across the country depending upon where school districts are located and upon which guidance or state mandates each school district must follow. For some, “Back to School” will mean fully virtual/online education, and for others it will mean partial or full reopening of schools. When “Back to School” occurs will also vary across the country depending upon the severity of COVID-19 infection rates in each community. Our partner GRS Reconstruction Services (GRS) and our K-12 Center of Excellence are teaming to provide support and assistance to school districts with the following considerations to assist school operations and facilities managers for the eventual safe reopening of schools across the country.
Re-Occupy Considerations and Best Practices
- Establish priorities
- Perform site assessments
- Establish common health and safety protocols
- Implement PPE recommendations based on workspace and role
- Develop pre-entry checklists
- Develop signage
- Perform HVAC/mechanical assessments
- Consider social partitioning and social distancing Methods
- Develop vehicle disinfection protocols
- Provide training for cleaning and janitorial staff
- Legal considerations: best practices, precedence
Pre-Planning Phase: Buildings and People
- Establish procedures for testing, screening and tracking
- Understand impacts to learning functions, re-orientation of the students, residential housing
- Ergonomics: identify what works and what training is necessary
- Getting faculty on board: what needs to change to improve safety in the classroom, the library, etc.
Re-Occupancy Processes: Environmental Health
- Establish procedures and expectations for cleaning, sanitization and disinfection
- Cleaning the Air: fogging/electrostatic/aerosols
- Provide training of maintenance and transportation staff
Physical Barriers & Social Distancing
- Consider partitions/Plexiglas
- Establish traffic patterns
- Establish personal protective equipment expectations
- Perform a population risk assessment
- Adjust traffic patterns
- Make space accommodations that are specific to space and use recommendations
Protecting Students, Faculty, Administration and Parents
- CDC signage
- Floor decals
- Social distancing recommendations
- Face mask/PPE recommendations
- HVAC modifications
- Filtration improvements
- Indirect UV lighting in classrooms
How Gilbane’s K-12 COE and GRS are partnering to help clients get back to school safely
GRS was created to service the needs of clients and their facilities due to both natural and man-made disasters. Many will have a need for rapid reconstruction which is different than planned construction projects. The primary goal is to reduce downtime and control costly interruption expenses.
GRS believes there are two main platforms upon which the re-occupancy program is built: People and Buildings.
GRS has a team of industrial hygienists, architects, HVAC engineers and construction experts that will work with you to develop the best plan for your facilities with options in both people and building-focused solutions.
To augment this, Gilbane’s K-12 Center of Excellence, which is comprised of our most experienced K-12 professionals across the country, can assist GRS by lending expertise in K-12 construction and renovation to assist in ensuring that the re-occupancy program is executed quickly and safely.
School administrators and staff: What actions are you taking to get back to school this fall? Please take the survey below: