Post-MCO Covid-19 Safety Policy

(Version 11 : updated on 11.10.2021)

 

This is a working document and will be reviewed as we understand more about the epidemic. Ministry guidance will be followed and this policy updated as Ministry guidelines are communicated.

 

Contents

This Covid-19 Hygiene and Safety Policy is intended to provide guidelines to minimise the spread of the Covid-19 disease in the KIS community. This is a working document and will be revised as we understand more about the epidemic.

 

It is important that KIS takes hygiene and safe physical distancing measures seriously. All members of our community play an important role in continuing good hygiene practices and safe physical distancing during the recovery phases as announced by the government.

 

These guidelines are set up in the best interests of the children and staff and families of KIS. They recognise that we are a single community that comes into close contact on a daily basis, and therefore we need to assume a collective response to dealing with the threat of Covid-19.

 

All members of our community must be familiar with:

  • Good personal hygiene practices
  • Health checks and screening procedures
  • Cleaning and disinfection procedures
  • Distancing measures for routines and rooms

 

Families that choose NOT to follow the guidelines must understand that their child will be unable to attend KIS as they pose a risk to everyone.

  • Handwashing (See Appendix 1)

Sneeze and cough into the elbow or tissue (with proper disposal)

Soap and hand sanitiser are easily available and within reach

  • Masks are compulsory in school (with the exception for physical exercise and eating). When worn, they must be worn properly – covering the mouth and nose (See appendix 3).
  • Masks should not be removed for the whole duration of meals, but only when actually eating/drinking.
  • No sharing of food, utensils, cups, plates, bowls, towels, etc.
  • Dispose dirty tissues or wipes into covered waste bins
  • If a new mask is required, remove and dispose of face mask in a covered bin
  • General use / wearing of gloves creates a false sense of security and will be avoided.

3. Clean Environment

  • Routine cleaning and disinfection of surfaces and objects that are frequently touched will take place daily
  • The school will provide a deep clean of all areas on a two-weekly basis (or as required)
  • Frequently touched surfaces include: doorknobs/handles, light and Air Con switches, tables, chairs/stools, handrails, bathroom and classroom sink handles, mats, countertops, smartboards etc. Frequently touched objects include: toys, learning equipment/apparatus, stationery, toy/utility baskets, computer (keyboard, mouse), remotes, etc.
  • Air-condition units will be regularly cleaned and maintained
  • Fans and windows will be in good working order to help ventilation of areas

4. Physical Distancing

  • Everyone must maintain at least a 1 metre distance with other people
  • No handshaking, hugging, high-fives or touching another person (common sense will be used for certain occasions e.g. child in distress)

 

Where physical distancing cannot be avoided:

Such as the school medical room, in these circumstances, adults (teachers, parents) must wear a mask and gloves, and wash their hands frequently.

5. Visitors in School

  • All visitors must use and display the MySejahtera phone app before entering
  • All adult visitors must have low risk / casual contact / no symptoms on MySejahtera
  • All adult visitors must be fully vaccinated
  • Nonessential visits from parents, caregivers and contract workers will not be allowed
  • Appointments to meet with academic or administration staff must be made in advance
  • Parents are allowed into school to collect their children at the end of the day
  • Only visitors who are needed to support the running of KIS are allowed entry
  • Prospective parents who want to enrol their children will be limited to select hours of operation and by appointment only. A virtual tour can be arranged on request
  • Essential repair work or inspection from authorities will be limited to outside of school hours

6. Health Checks and Screening

KIS will continue to perform health checks, temperature screening, and hand cleaning at the school entrance for ALL staff, students, and visitors. Failure to comply will result in entry being refused.

 

Persons exhibiting the following symptoms will not be allowed entry to the school, please check for these symptoms before you leave home:

  • Fever (+37.5C)
  • Runny nose
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Shortness of breath

 

The school nurse will oversee a second health check with temperature screening during the school day for all staff and students.

7. Close Contact with Covid-19 Positive Person

  • Staff and parents must inform the school immediately if they or their child or a member of their household has had close contact with a Covid-19 positive person
  • A mandatory 10 day leave of absence will be required from last date of contact

8. Confirmed Case of Covid-19 in School

The school will immediately communicate a case of Covid-19 to the relevant authorities as well as parents and staff. We will never identify the infected member to our community and may take action against those who spread fake or defamatory news through our community. KIS will not condone any acts of discrimination or potential stigma associated with the news of a Covid-19 case in our community.

 

On confirmation of Covid-19 case, the school grounds will be closed to allow for a deep clean of all areas. Home learning will take place for the period of school closure.

 

The school will inform all persons considered close contact. The school will inform the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Education and will follow their guidance. The outcomes of close contact tests will determine if any new close contacts are to be tested. The school will notify the community of outcomes when they are available.

 

It is important that all members of the community who have been asked to self-isolate do so rather than putting others at risk by attempting to go for further Covid-19 testing.

 

Protocol for Cleaning (by KIS Staff):

  • To protect our staff we will wait at least 24 hours before beginning cleaning and disinfection to minimise potential for exposure to respiratory droplets. Outside doors and windows will be opened to increase air circulation in the area
  • Cleaning staff will clean and disinfect all areas (e.g. offices, bathrooms, and common areas) used by the ill persons, focusing especially on frequently touched surfaces.

9 . Returning from Outside of Malaysia

All staff and students who have just returned from out of Malaysia (within last 10 days), and have not isolated, will require a mandatory 10 day leave of absence from school.

10. Remote Learning for Homebound Children

Children that may be required to stay at home include:

  • Children with a compromised immune system
  • Children with complex medical needs
  • Children who live with a household member on a quarantine order or known to be Covid-19 positive
  • Children who live with someone who has outside Sabah travel history within the last 10-days
  • Children unable to enter Sabah

 

The school will arrange work for students in these situations on a case by case basis.

11. Signage

KIS will clearly publicise:

  • Hand hygiene
  • No sharing policy
  • Safe Physical (Social) Distancing policy
  • Guidelines for entering and leaving school

12. Work Preparation for Staff

  • All staff must use and display the MySejahtera App on entry to school each day
  • On entry and exit of shared rooms staff must use the provided hand sanitiser in shared rooms
  • Staff must wear a face mask at all times
  • Teachers and TLAs are advised to prepare lessons in their respective classrooms and maintain minimum 1 metre distance from each other
  • If materials are in common areas, the maximum number of adults allowed will depend on the size of the space at any one time allowing for physical distancing. In the staffroom, staff must not sit more than two per table
  • When there is more than one person in the preparation area, they must stand or sit facing away from each other and maintain a safe physical distance

13. Staff Meetings and Trainings

Where physical distancing is an issue, the school will limit face-to-face meetings and staff training, especially non-essential ones:

  • Conduct meetings through email or videoconferencing for small groups
  • Choose online training whenever possible
  • Provide individually packed food instead of buffet-style meals when appropriate
  • Staff should not congregate or socialise during break or class changes
  • If staff are required for physical group meetings the MPR / Hall will be set up with distancing in mind and staff must wear face masks

14. Dealing with Stress

Children may respond to stress in different ways. Common responses include having difficulties sleeping, bedwetting, having pain in the stomach or head, and being anxious, withdrawn, angry, clingy or afraid to be left alone. We will respond to children’s reactions in a supportive way and explain to them that these are normal reactions to an abnormal situation. We will listen to their concerns and take time to comfort them and give them reassurance they are safe. Our school Counsellor will be available at all times to support the wellbeing of all members of the KIS community.

15. Arrival at School

  • All students (Yr10-13) must use the MySejahtera phone app before entering
  • All students (Yr10-13) must have low risk / casual contact / no symptoms on MySejahtera
  • Secondary students to arrive at school before 7.30am, Primary students before 7.45am and EYFS after 7.45am and before 8am (Parents with both Primary and EYFS may come together after 7.45am)
  • Parents / drivers must let children out of their cars at the usual drop off point and children must be wearing face masks
  • Only children (with the exception of EYFS Parents) can enter the school and parents / drivers can proceed on to U-turn at the top of the road
  • Children must enter through the usual front gate and walk past the thermal scanner
  • Children must proceed straight to their classes in primary and secondary. TLAs will be on hand to support the movement of younger children
  • We will review the arrival process on a regular basis to ensure this runs smoothly

16. Physical Distancing During School Hours

  • Students must travel in one direction around the school, following all signage. Signs will indicate ‘Up’ staircases and ‘Down’ staircases
  • Extra time will be given between lessons to allow for slower movement times
  • The Secondary locker area has been modified to support physical distancing and students must only use their own lockers
  • Students must only wait outside classrooms when a teacher is not present. In these instances students must self-distance in a single line in the corridor adjacent to the room
  • Students must not stop and socialise during lesson change over
  • Students in the sixth form common rooms will be required to wear masks at all times and practice physical distancing
  • If in an emergency situation e.g. lockdown or evacuation, the school’s priority will be on safety first, with physical distancing factored in as appropriate

17. Classroom Environment

  • Tables will be separated with at least one metre distance and students will be sat at separate tables or on opposing ends, similar to test conditions
  • Group work will be kept to a minimum in order not to disrupt table arrangements
  • EYFS & KS1 will limit students per area
  • Students must not share resources, especially class sets. Students will bring their own equipment to school and not share from friends
  • Classrooms will be ventilated at the end of each lesson (windows and doors open with AC turned off, fans turned on)

18. Group Activities

  • All group activities larger than one year group will be suspended until such time when it is safe to do so
  • Activities that require touching another person, e.g. holding hands, shake hands, high 5, etc. will be avoided
  • Group activities that require everyone to sit on a mat or close together will not take place. Instead, teachers will use informal opportunities to engage with the children, for example: read books or do story telling with one or two children at a time throughout the day

19. PE Lessons

  • All PE lessons will take place in school until further notice
  • Contact sports will not be practised until such time it is safe to do so
  • Extra time will be given to allow for students changing kit / uniform in smaller groups
  • Masks will not be worn during physical exercise and extra physical distancing will be used during physical exercise
  • Equipment used will be sanitised following each lesson
  • PE Department will update Parents and Students directly with lesson detail

20. Handling Homework and Library Returns

  • Where possible work will be collected digitally
  • Libraries will have hand sanitiser for students to use on entry and exit
  • Library books are to be placed in a collection box for the Primary / Secondary libraries

21. Toileting

  • Students will only be allowed to go to the toilet one at a time during lessons
  • At break times, toilets will be monitored to ensure no overcrowding
  • Everyone must wash their hands with soap after using the toilet

22. Breaks and Lunch

  • EYFS will have a rolling break time within the EYFS area
  • EYFS will have staggered lunch in the EYFS area
  • The school canteen will provide pre-packed meals through advance ordering
  • Food deliveries will not be allowed
  • If not using the canteen, staff and students must bring food from home in the morning. Parents are not allowed to bring food to the school during the day. Sharing of food for Birthdays etc. is not allowed
  • Primary & Secondary breaks will be modified to allow for physical distancing
  • Students must be spaced out on the benches whilst eating to allow distancing, the school hall will be available for extra space
  • Students must not share food or utensils
  • There will be a gap between Primary and Secondary lunches to avoid physical close contact during the cross-over
  • Contact games will not be allowed to be played during the breaks
  • Masks should not be removed for the whole duration of meals, but only when actually eating/drinking.

23. Mid-Day Health Check

The school will conduct a second health and temperature screening part way through the school day, usually following the lunch break. If a member of staff or child is unwell (or exhibiting symptoms) while attending the school they will be separated from others in the Nurse’s room. For these students, parents will be required to immediately collect their children and take back home or for medical treatment. Staff exhibiting symptoms will be required to leave school to seek further guidance from an external medical clinic.

24. End of School Day

  • EYFS will finish school at 1.45pm (Reception as usual at 11.30am)
  • Primary Years 1-3 will finish at 1.50pm
  • Primary Years 4-6 will finish at 2pm
  • Secondary Years 7-9 will finish at 2.45pm
  • Secondary Years 10-13 will finish at 3pm
  • To avoid congestion on stairs, as the end of day bell rings, teachers on the first floor will release classes first, a minute later, second floor classes will be released and a minute later top floor classes will be released
  • Parents must use and display the MySejahtera phone app before entering
  • Parents must have low risk / casual contact / no symptoms on MySejahtera
  • Parents must enter through the front gate to have their temperature recorded
  • Parents waiting for their child must keep themselves separated across the benches under the walkway and in front of school
  • Parents leaving with children must use the wider exit to the side of the gate
  • Parents and children must leave immediately, the play area will be closed
  • There will be no ice-cream sales until further notice
  • If you need to speak with your child’s teacher, please communicate via email or Dojo
  • We will review the end of day process on a regular basis to ensure this runs smoothly

25. Extra-Curricular Activities (ECAs)

These will be suspended until further notice.

26. Children Arriving Home

  • Children should immediately shower after returning home and before interacting with other household members (avoid touching or hugging before showering)
  • School uniform must be washed on a regular basis, if possible everyday

27. Outside School Hours

To prevent increasing the risk of infection across the school community:

  • Parents are advised to reduce and postpone play dates and parties outside of school
  • Parents are advised to observe safe physical distancing guidelines outside of school

 

Parents and staff are advised to keep the safety of the entire KIS community in mind when planning travel, attending gatherings, meeting with others and when out of their homes. Let’s all work together to limit the opportunities for Covid-19 infections at school.

28. School Trips

Whilst trips are currently suspended, planning for the academic year (21/22) will include trip planning. Decisions for trips will be monitored termly on a month to month basis to support both planning and health & safety requirements. International travel for school trips will be suspended until further notice.

  1. Appendix 1: WHO / What Is Covid-19

What is COVID-19?

COVID-19 is a disease caused by a new strain of coronavirus. ‘CO’ stands for corona, ‘VI’ for virus, and ‘D’ for disease. Formerly, this disease was referred to as ‘2019 novel coronavirus’ or ‘2019-nCoV.’ The COVID-19 virus is a new virus linked to the same family of viruses as Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and some types of common cold.

 

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

Symptoms can include fever, cough and shortness of breath. In more severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia or breathing difficulties. More rarely, the disease can be fatal. These symptoms are similar to the flu (influenza) or the common cold, which are a lot more common than COVID-19. This is why testing is required to confirm if someone has COVID-19.

 

How does COVID-19 spread?

The virus is transmitted through direct contact with respiratory droplets of an infected person (generated through coughing and sneezing). Individuals can also be infected from touching surfaces contaminated with the virus and touching their face (e.g., eyes, nose, and mouth). There is currently no evidence to support transmission of COVID-19 associated with food. The COVID-19 virus may survive on surfaces for several hours, but simple disinfectants can kill it.

 

Who is most at risk?

We are learning more about how COVID-19 affects people every day. Older people, and people with chronic medical conditions, such as diabetes and heart disease, appear to be more at risk of developing severe symptoms. As this is a new virus, we are still learning about how it affects children and other vulnerable groups. We know it is possible for people of any age to be infected with the virus, but so far there are relatively few cases of COVID-19 reported among children. This is a new virus and we need to learn more about how it affects children. The virus can be fatal in rare cases, so far mainly among older people with pre-existing medical conditions.

 

What is the treatment for COVID-19?

There are currently a number of available vaccines for COVID-19 which reduce severity of illness if infected. However, many of the symptoms can be treated and getting early care from a healthcare provider can make the disease less dangerous. There are several clinical trials that are being conducted to evaluate potential therapeutics for COVID-19.

 

How can the spread of COVID-19 be slowed down or prevented?

As with other respiratory infections like the flu or the common cold, public health measures are critical to slow the spread of illnesses. Public health measures are everyday preventive actions that include:

 

√ staying home when sick

√ covering mouth and nose with flexed elbow or tissue when coughing or sneezing (disposing of used tissue immediately)

√ washing hands often with soap and water

√ cleaning frequently touched surfaces and objects

 

As we learn more about COVID-19 public health officials may recommend additional actions.

30. Appendix 2: Handwashing

Hand hygiene is an important measure to prevent the transmission of viruses. When should you wash your hands?

  • Before preparing, serving or eating food & after eating
  • After using the bathroom
  • After wiping noses, mouths, sores or cuts
  • After handling any body fluids
  • After playing outdoors
  • Anytime your hands look dirty

 

Some tips to ensure you wash your hands thoroughly:

  • Use liquid soap
  • Scrub hands for at least 20 seconds (quietly sing / think of a hand washing song while you wash your hands to help remember to scrub thoroughly. “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star” or “Happy Birthday” through twice or “Baby Shark” should take about 20 seconds)
  • Use hand sanitisers sparingly, only when soap and water is not available; hand sanitisers should not replace handwashing with soap and water when available
  • Use disposable paper towels and tissues (properly disposed afterwards)

31. Appendix 3: How to Use a Face Mask

How to Put on a Face Mask:

  • Choose the appropriate mask size. Use a child size if available for children
  • Clean your hands with soap and water or hand sanitiser before touching the mask
  • Take a mask and make sure there are no holes on either side of the mask
  • Make sure you have the mask on its correct sides: a) stiff metallic strip is the top, b) coloured layer is outside if using a 3-ply surgical mask. A cloth mask is also useful and allows for medical masks to be kept for healthcare professionals
  • Cover your mouth and nose with the mask and make sure there are no gaps between your face and the mask. Secure the mask firmly according to the instructions for the relevant type of masks
  • Avoid touching the mask while using it. If you touched your mask, clean your hands with soap and water or hand sanitiser
  • Replace the mask with a new one as soon as it is damp and do not reuse single-use masks. Cloth masks must be washed with soap and water and dried before reuse

 

How to Remove a Face Mask:

  • Avoid touching the front of the mask, because it is contaminated. Only touch the ear loops/ties/band and remove from behind
  • Immediately throw the mask in a covered waste bin or sealed plastic bag
  • Clean your hands with soap and water or hand sanitiser
  • Cloth masks must be removed carefully and placed into a sealed plastic bag or a pail with soap and water