Stay Safe to Stay Open


Key Safety Protocols

In order to support the safe reopening of schools to face-to-face instruction, the WUSD adopted key safety protocols to address the following areas:  educating and informing, physical infrastructure, transportation, activities and athletics, food service operations, staffing, and health and behavior norms.  The WUSD Board of Education adopted these key safety protocols at the August 24th, 2020, Board meeting.  The WUSD Key Safety Protocols are posted on the WUSD COVID-19 website, have been emailed to all families in the WUSD, and are posted in all WUSD facilities.

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Educate and Inform

  • CDC Coronavirus education materials will be posted throughout our sites in English and in Spanish in highly visible locations to include:  handwashing hygiene practices, when to stay home, cough/sneeze safely, and everyday protective measures.

  • Staff will be provided training on safe practices

  • Informational materials will be provided to students and staff through multiple venues to include the website, videos, and written communications

  • Regular routines will be established for handwashing and sanitizing

  • Through teachers and daily announcements classroom practices and routines will be established.

  • Parents will receive regular communication via multiple venues – email, website, videos and written communications.

  • Parent support will be critical to our success – urging families to keep sick children home and follow hygiene practices at home and at school


Physical Infrastructure

  • Plastic barriers may be used in public spaces

  • Floor adhesives may be used to mark six feet of separation and hallway traffic patterns

  • Bubblers will not be available; bottle fillers will be able to be used

  • Sanitation stations will be used throughout our sites

  • Teaching spaces and classrooms have been reconfigured as necessary to create additional spaces for physical distancing

  • Isolation rooms are established at each site to be used as needed with students or with staff

  • Classroom desks/tables are placed three to six feet apart with a preference for six feet whenever possible

  • Cleaning and disinfecting has been increased with daily and weekly protocols and in between new groups of students

  • Hand hygiene will be taught and reinforced



  • Shuttle service will be resumed for students

  • Sitting at windows with 1-2 students per seat is preferred and should be used whenever possible – 2-3 students may sit per seat if necessary

  • Students from the same household are strongly encouraged to sit together and may sit with three in a seat

  • Buses will be disinfected following each route with special attention to high touch areas

  • Whenever possible, bus windows should be open to increase circulation of outdoor air, but not if doing so might pose a health or safety risk (temperature too cold, risk of falling, etc.)  If the weather is cold outside, bus drivers may choose to open two windows up to one inch to increase ventilation while keeping the bus temperature warm and safe for students and staff.

  • All buses will have and use seating charts, and every attempt will be made to keep cohorts of students together whenever possible.  Students will ride near the same students in the morning and afternoon whenever possible.

Food Service

  • Routines have been established for handwashing and sanitizing before and after any food handling/consumption

  • Students will be kept in cohorts and with six feet of physical distancing when consuming food whenever possible

  • Cafeterias/gyms/common spaces may be designated for eating with student cohorts if appropriate

  • Food service will serve only nut-free food items during the 2021-2022 school year


  • In-person trainings will be conducted with six feet of physical distancing maintained if possible

  • Appropriate personal protective equipment will be provided to staff as needed



  • We will rely on guidance from the WIAA to hold safe athletic practices, competitions, and events

  • All key safety protocols will be followed as established for activities and athletics as they are during the school day

  • Virtual options will be pursued when appropriate/necessary


Health and Behavioral Norms

  • We will limit all non-essential visitors and visits

  • Visitors will follow temperature and face-covering protocols

  • School families/cohorts will be maintained whenever possible - keeping together smaller groups of students to limit interactions outside the classroom/grade level to the greatest extent possible

  • School staff will work with students and staff with high risk/vulnerable conditions to address concerns on a case-by-case basis

  • Upon arrival at school, students will have a staff member complete a visual symptom checker and check his/her temperature.  Any child with a temperature of 100 or above or exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 will be escorted to an isolation area or outside to return home

  • Regular hygiene practices will be used and all desks/work areas will be disinfected in between classes

  • COVID-19 positive cases will be handled on a case-by-case basis in cooperation with the Watertown Health Department