Given the complex and rapidly evolving situation, we encourage you to visit the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Virginia Department of Health (VDH), and City of Alexandria Health Department for the most detailed and up to date information on COVID-19. Please bookmark this page. We will update this page with information about COVID-19 as it relates to Potomac Crescent Waldorf School.
Our school plans to reopen on September 8, 2020. Teachers and school administrators are available for questions from current and prospective families. If you would like to contact a member of our staff, please use the following email addresses:
Jade Hines, Enrollment Coordinator: firstname.lastname@example.org
Paul Nary, Director of Administration, Marketing and Communication: email@example.com
Please stay tuned for our COVID-19 Plan for reopening in Fall 2020
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Potomac Crescent Waldorf School reopening?
We intend to reopen on September 8, 2020. We will keep you up to date in case a closure is necessary for some period of time.
What about events and gatherings?
PCWS will follow the latest guidance from CDC, VA DSS and DOH, which call for number limitations on gatherings.
What can families, students, and school personnel do to keep from getting sick and spreading COVID-19?
The CDC recommends the following preventive actions to help prevent the spread of COVID-19:
Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face covering when you go out in public.
Cloth face coverings should NOT be put on babies and children under age two because of the danger of suffocation.
Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
Maintain social distancing of at least 6 feet when you go out in public.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
Cough or sneeze into your elbow or a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash and wash hands.
Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
Stay home when you are sick (do not return to school until you are fever-free for 24 hours, without medication). We ask you to strictly adhere to this policy.
What if someone in my family has tested positive for COVID-19?
If you or a family member test positive for the virus, after first taking care of yourselves, please contact PCWS Administration, as we will need to confidentially work with health authorities to determine the extent of exposure within PCWS.
What additional steps are the school taking at this time?
We will continue to inform you of our latest plans and guidance.
We continue to closely monitor the situation and will keep you updated as things change.
Dear parents and interested families:
Right now, PCWS is expecting to open on September 8, 2020, and we are pleased to present below our best thinking so far: four scenarios that describe what that would look like. As we get closer and closer to reopening, we will refine and revise the details as necessary. Please stay tuned for the PCWS COVID-19 Plan, which we aim to publish before reopening in the Fall.
Our Commitment -- Potomac Crescent Waldorf School is committed to the goal of returning to as much in-person instruction as is safely possible for all students during the academic year 2020 – 2021. Under the current challenging and unpredictable times, we aim to remain adaptable and to ensure the best education and care possible for all the students and families we serve. This document is intended to clarify -- to the extent possible given the evolving COVID-19 epidemic and changing official guidance -- what a return to in-person or other alternative scenarios would look like for families and staff at PCWS in September 2020. We rely on the guidance from the State of Virginia “Phase Guidance for Virginia Schools” and the CDC as a basis for our decision making.
VA Phases and Overall Implications – Under an announcement by Virginia Governor Ralph Northam, on July 1, 2020, Northern Virginia moved from Phase Two to Phase 3 guidance, thus allowing schools to return to in-person instruction, while observing certain prevention guidelines.
PCWS scenarios linked to phases – Based on the above guidance and developments, PCWS currently proposes four scenarios for reopening its doors in September. We present these scenarios below, linking them to the Virginia “phases” that inform each scenario. Note: these scenarios could change depending on the status of the COVID-19 epidemic and further changes in VA State/CDC recommendations.
Scenario One (In-Person Learning) – Our Optimal Scenario
Under Virginia Phase 3 Guidance, in-person instruction would be permitted for all students, with social distancing and other recommended mitigation measures. Under Scenario One, PCWS would offer in-person instruction for all children,
Staggered outdoor drop-offs and pick-ups with daily temperature and health checks
Limited class sizes with "cohorting" (limited intermixing) wherever possible
Limits of no more than 50 at gatherings with social distancing (6 feet) whenever possible
Enhanced hygiene and regular cleaning of classes (toys, surfaces, etc.)
More time for handwashing, cleansing and disinfecting before/after classes
Distance learning for enrolled students/families that need to stay home
An isolation waiting room for children who become ill during the day
Face coverings in accordance with the latest public health guidance
Emphasis on remote tours for visitors
Scenario One: specific, additional guidance for Early Childhood (EC)
Emphasis on mostly outdoor time with Forest Days for mixed age kindergartens
Afternoon Program children will be kept together as much as possible in morning classes
Scenario Two – Mixed Approach
Under Phase 2 Guidance, in-person instruction would be permissible for preschool through Third Grade. Therefore, PCWS would offer mixed, in-person and remote instruction to grades students. In-person instruction would be offered to EC students with flexible approaches based on enrollment and status of the epidemic. All Scenario One mitigation measures would be followed. In addition:
For Grades – PCWS would:
Offer in-person instruction for Grades 1-3, 8:30 a.m. till 12:30 p.m. or if possible, full day
Offer some specialty classes remotely (or outside + remotely)
Explore pursuing a variance from the State Superintendent for Grade 4 to be offered in person. If a variance cannot be obtained, Grade 4 would be offered remotely.
Note: Half-day grades instruction would reduce risk of transmission in the event such risk increases significantly.
Early Childhood (EC)
PCWS Scenario Two Guidance would be the same as that for Scenario One, with additional adjustments made as required due to changes in the epidemic and/or official guidance.
Scenario Three – Remote Learning
VA Guidance stipulates that, under a return to Phase One, remote learning is the dominant form of instruction. So:
PCWS faculty would design flexible, innovative, remote curricula for grades and EC, with a mix of traditional Waldorf instruction and special projects/curricula designed appropriately for each child’s developmental level.
The VA Guidance also allows for in-person day care. Therefore, PCWS would explore the option of offering in-person day care, with mitigation efforts such as those outlined above.
Scenario 4 – “Business as usual”
A return to “a new normal,” under future, “Beyond Phase Three” VA Guidance and CDC recommendations, would include resumption of full, in-person instruction and extracurricular activities.
We welcome your questions and comments and look forward to further discussion of these important scenarios. Please write to: firstname.lastname@example.org