We regularly update these FAQs as more information is available. Thank you for being part of the BSD community.

Topics in this section:

Childcare


Will before and after-school care be provided?

Before and after-school care will be available. Please see the Early and Extended Learning Programs page for more information.


Contact Tracing


What happens if there is a case of COVID-19 in a school/classroom?

If someone tests positive for COVID-19 in one of our district schools or classrooms, trained district staff will conduct contact tracing. Contact tracers work to determine who was a ‘close contact’ of the person who tested positive during their infectious period. The close contacts are asked to quarantine at home and away from others for 14 days.

What is a close contact?

A ‘close contact’ is someone who was within 6 feet of the person who tested positive for 15 minutes or longer over a 24-hour period.

How do you find out who was a close contact?

District staff working as contact tracers do this by talking with the person who tested positive, looking at Health Check and Lobby Guard logs, and, if the person who tested positive is a student, speaking confidentially with staff who work with the student to find out who the student was in close contact with.

Anyone who is found to be a close contact is called directly by the contact tracer. The contact tracer cannot tell close contacts who tested positive for COVID-19 – this is a violation of privacy.

What about students on the same bus or in the same carpool?

When conducting contact tracing, our trained staff ask questions about and look for information about whether the person who tested positive was a bus rider or participated in a carpool.  If contact tracers find out that the person who tested positive did ride the bus or carpool, we work with Transportation to determine who else was on the bus, including viewing video footage of the bus ride if needed, to determine who was a close contact of the person who tested positive so we can know to alert them. If the person who tested positive participated in a carpool, we would work to determine who the members of the carpool were, and how long the ride was, to determine if they were close contacts of the person who tested positive.

What are the protocols for closing a school or classroom?

The Bellevue School District has established closure protocols in accordance with guidelines from the Washington State Department of Health and Public Health Seattle King County. When a positive case of COVID-19 is discovered in the school setting, BSD alerts Public Health Seattle King County, who follows up with a phone conversation with district contact tracers to determine if additional next steps are needed, beyond isolation and quarantine already taking place for affected staff and students.

The school learning community will also be notified of COVID-19 positive cases.


Decision-Making


What research led to the guidelines to be increased from 75/100,000 over 14 days, to 350/100,100 over 14 days? Why is there no community rate guidelines for younger students?

The revised Washington State Department of Health guidance also describes the rationale for the new guidelines and includes links to the research that supported the decision. The revised Washington Department of Health (DOH) guidance also describes the rationale for the change and links directly to the research that supported  the update. The Centers for Disease Control indicators chart shows high risk at over 50 cases per 100,000 over 14 days and highest risk at over 200 cases per 100,000 over 14 days.

The DOH decision to adjust the metrics was made based on multiple sources for information and data, including published literature, modeling studies, data from school outbreaks in Washington state and a review of other states’ school metrics, and more.

Looking for more sources? The University of Washington Alliance for Pandemic Preparedness published a literature review on school reopening in October.

Why are you opening schools now, what has changed?

Public health experts have learned a lot since schools were first closed. Taken together, the science and early experience of schools in Washington state and across the nation suggest that rigorous health and safety measures can limit transmission of COVID-19 in the school environment, especially at the elementary grade level. This new information led Gov. Jay Inslee on to announce a change in guidelines on December 16.

How were educators and staff involved in or informed of decisions?

The decision had significant input and feedback from our association leaders who in turn regularly gather input with the members that they represent. With nine different labor groups, the District engages in regular communication and consultation through labor/management and negotiations processes.

How is two hours per day a better option for students and working families?

The half-day model is intended to be short-term and temporary, with the ultimate goal of returning K-2 students to in person learning full-time as soon as possible. Starting with half-days allows us to implement and practice safety protocols before we implement lunch and recess where students remove face coverings.  We also learned from other in-person services implemented this year that students need some adjustment time to build stamina for a full day of in person. Any split schedule creates some hardships.  However, this is a temporary model, and allows for students to receive in person instruction each day until a shift to full-time learning is made.

What data is used as part of decision making?

Virtual learning is working for some students and not for others. Given the guidance from the department of health, students can attend in person in small groups while mitigating the risk of the spread of COVID-19. This shift offers families the opportunity to select to remain virtual or come back in person, depending on what would work best for the student and family.

What is the process for another closure? Will students be moved among educators and classes again?

If another closure is needed, or a temporary quarantine, students would shift to virtual instruction. Students would not be moved again among educators and classes.

The half-day model of hybrid in-person appears to have less instructional time with the educator. Is that true?

It is true that the half-day in-person model provides less direct instruction time with students. This model is intended to be temporary, with the goal to move to a full-time in-person model for grades K-2 as soon as possible. Until then, students will participate with very small class sizes, allowing the educator to effectively serve students in person. Students will have specialists and independent learning during their virtual learning time.

Why isn’t the district waiting until after the holidays to announce a date, which might see a rise in infection rates?

We do anticipate an increase in the infection rate following the holiday. For this reason, the start date for K-2 was pushed out for two weeks following the holiday break. The current guidance from the Washington State Department of Health guides schools to provide an in-person instructional opportunity for small groups for the youngest learners at any transmission rate. Our plan aligns with this guidance and we will continue to align any in-person plans to guidance provided. Recognizing the need for families and educators to plan for the change to in-person learning, it was important to provide ample notice on the return date(s).

What is the timeline for reopening other grades?

District leaders, educators and staff have been working on planning for all grade levels. The district will share information through our regular communications channels when additional information is available. We will include 3rd grade in the next phase after K-2.


Face Coverings


How will staff ensure that every student is wearing appropriate masks?

Staff will be observing students that are in our buildings and will ensure that students are wearing masks that meet the requirements of the Washington state mask mandate. BSD has approved masks available for both children and adults.

What kind of masks should students wear?

Publications and government sources have explained and demonstrated how exposure risk can be mitigated with properly made and fitted masks. Recommendations for basic protection include a high-quality surgical mask or a fabric mask of at least two layers with high thread count. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) define cloth face coverings as fabric coverings including cloth face masks, scarves and bandana coverings, or any homemade face coverings made of cotton fabric. The CDC also makes clear that cloth face coverings should:

  • Fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
  • Be secured with ties or ear loops
  • Include multiple layers of fabric
  • Allow for breathing without restriction
  • Be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape

More helpful information on masks is available from the Centers for Disease Control.

Are students required to wear face coverings for the entire time they are at school?

Students are expected to wear face coverings when they are at school. Teachers will provide regular, safe, mask-free time (mask breaks) for students, with a focus on breaks for students in kindergarten through fifth grade. If you have questions about how your student’s teacher will coordinate and manage mask-free time, please contact your student’s teacher or building leadership at your student’s school.

When will students be permitted to remove face coverings?

Students may remove face coverings to eat, drink and when they go outside for recess. If a student needs a “mask break” staff will take them outside or to a large, well-ventilated room where there will be more than 6 feet between people.

Are educators and staff required to wear masks for the entire time they are in the classroom and school?

All BSD employees are required to wear face coverings when inside school buildings.

Will educators and staff wear face coverings when they are outside?

If educators and staff cannot stay 6 feet away from others, they must wear a face covering when outside.

If students refuse to wear a face covering, will they be sent home?

All students are required to wear a face covering when inside district buildings, unless they meet one of the acceptable exemptions to the mask requirements below. If a student is able to wear a mask and refuses to do so the student may be excluded from in-person learning. If parents and guardians need resources to teach students how to wear a mask, please reach out to your teacher or principal.

Exceptions to the mask requirement:

  • Babies and toddlers under age 2 should never wear cloth face coverings
  • Anyone with a disability that makes it hard for them to wear or remove a face covering
  • Anyone who is deaf and moves their face and mouth to communicate
  • Anyone who has been advised by a medical professional to not wear a face covering because of personal health issues
  • Anyone who has trouble breathing, is unconscious, or unable to remove the face covering without help

Can students, educators and staff wear see-through plastic face shields instead of a face covering?

No. According to Public Health – Seattle & King County, plastic face shields should be used only by those who cannot wear a cloth face covering, or in some instructional instances.

Are face masks with exhalation valves or vents allowed?

No. The Centers for Disease Control indicates that these masks are not adequate for mitigating the spread of COVID-19 as they allow virus particles to escape.

Are gaiters and one-layer face coverings going to be accepted as proper face coverings for students, educators and staff?

Public Health – Seattle & King County indicates that face coverings should:

  • Offer 2 or more layers of tightly woven fabric such as cotton and cotton blends
  • Be breathable and provide a snug fit without large gaps
  • Cover over your nose and mouth

The Duke University study which indicated that neck gaiters are not acceptable forms of face coverings has since been found to be inaccurate. Rather than spreading viral particles from the gaiter during the study, small pieces of the gaiter were being spread during exhalation.


Health and Safety


Are handwashing/sanitizing times built into the schedule? Do all students wash their hands upon arrival?

Hand sanitizer is available at all student entrances for students to use when they enter the building. All classrooms have hand washing and/or hand sanitizing available for teachers to schedule during the instructional day.

What is the cleaning process between AM and PM sessions?

Each school has a schedule for cleaning between AM and PM sessions. Surfaces are wiped down throughout the day and even between activities. Custodians will disinfect classroom desks and high touchpoints daily. Educators will disinfect desks between students with alcohol-based surface sanitizer. Educators will also separate items in various ways, such as having bins for used items, separating materials for AM/PM, and assigning materials to individual students. Further, disinfecting wipes and hand sanitizer are available in all instructional spaces. Students can help clean by spraying their desk with a diluted soap and water solution and wiping it off with a paper towel.

Are there enough rooms and staff in place to separate students showing symptoms from each other while they wait to go home?

School nurses have been working with their building administrators to designate wellness rooms that will accommodate more than one student with appropriate physical distancing between students while they wait to go home.

Schools with larger in-person student populations have identified an ‘overflow’ wellness room. Both child- and adult-sized medical masks are available in all wellness rooms for students who may need a replacement mask while waiting.

In addition to the health attestation, what other health screening for students is in place?

When students arrive at school, staff will conduct a visual screening of students for signs and symptoms of COVID. These include flushed cheeks, rapid or difficulty breathing (without recent physical activity), fatigue, runny nose, cough and symptoms of fever. Students without obvious symptoms will have their temperature checked at the classroom door by their teachers. Students who have signs and symptoms of fever will be sent to the school wellness room for observation and a temperature check and staff will call parents/guardians.

What happens when students arrive at school without a completed health attestation?

If a student does not have a fever or symptoms of COVID, but their parent/guardian has not completed the health attestation, school staff will call a parent/guardian to remind them about the attestation and coach them on how to use Health Check or determine another appropriate attestation alternative.

How will BSD hold families accountable for socializing and gathering after school and on weekends? Choices made by families may directly affect educators, staff, students and their families.

We cannot control what families do outside of school. However, we do encourage all families and staff to follow all mitigating measures. Further, we will be communicating regularly to families, reminding them to stay physically distanced and keep our community safe.


Quarantine

Do people who have been exposed as a close contact to someone who tested positive for COVID-19 have to quarantine for the full 14 days?

Yes. Our goal is to keep our students learning in person and our buildings open for learning. If there are outbreaks of COVID-19 in our school buildings, we will have to follow Washington State Department of Health classroom quarantine and school building closure protocols. The longer someone stays in quarantine (up to the full 14 days), the lower the risk of them spreading COVID-19 to others if they’ve been infected:

Number of days of quarantine Risk of transmission with negative PCR test Risk of transmission with no test
7 4% 10%
10 0.3% 1%
14 0% 0.1%

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/more/scientific-brief-options-to-reduce-quarantine.html

Can people who will experience hardship due to a 14-day quarantine have their quarantine period shortened?

Yes. On a case-by-case basis, people who have been asked to quarantine for 14 days may be able to have their quarantine period shortened. Hardship criteria includes the likely risk of experiencing severe harm from a 14-day quarantine, including:

  1. Loss of employment
  2. Loss of housing
  3. Severe mental or physical harm

School nurses and building principals/assistant principals can assist to determine if a person asking to reduce their quarantine period will experience severe harm, and what steps are needed to shorten the quarantine period.

I’m fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Do I still have to quarantine if I’m exposed as a close contact to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19?

According to Public Health Seattle & King County, if you are fully vaccinated*, you do not need to quarantine after an exposure to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 unless you have symptoms.

If you develop symptoms within 14 days after an exposure, isolate yourself from others and talk to a healthcare provider to be evaluated for COVID-19. Your provider should ask about your vaccination status and/or previous infection status. They will talk with you about next steps, including potentially getting tested for SARS-CoV-2 or ending isolation early.

If you do not develop symptoms after an exposure, you should monitor for symptoms for 14 days, but you do not need to quarantine or be tested.

*People are considered fully vaccinated:

  • 2 weeks after their second dose in a 2-dose series, like the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or
  • 2 weeks after a single-dose vaccine, like Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine.

If it has been less than 2 weeks since your shot, or if you still need to get your second dose, you are NOT fully protected. Keep taking all prevention steps until you are fully vaccinated, including the quarantine guidance above.

I’ve had COVID-19 and recovered. Do I still need to quarantine if I’ve been exposed as a close contact to someone who tested positive?

No. According to the CDC and Public Health Seattle & King County, People who have tested positive for COVID-19 within the past 3 months and recovered do not have to quarantine or get tested again as long as they do not develop new symptoms.

People who develop symptoms again within 3 months of their first bout of COVID-19 may need to be tested again if there is no other cause identified for their symptoms.

If you suspect you’ve previously had COVID-19 but did not have a lab-confirmed result, you should still quarantine and get tested if you have a new exposure to a person with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 regardless of if you develop symptoms.

Are students and staff expected to quarantine after traveling?

Yes. Travel increases your chance of spreading and getting COVID-19. The CDC recommends you delay travel and stay home to protect yourself and others from COVID-19. If you have been vaccinated, please see the next question.

According to the CDC, if you must travel, take steps to protect yourself and others:

  • If you are eligible, get fully vaccinated for COVID-19.
  • Before you travel, get tested with a viral test 1-3 days before your trip.
  • Wear a mask over your nose and mouth when in public.
  • Avoid crowds and stay at least 6 feet/2 meters (about 2 arm lengths) from anyone who did not travel with you.
  • Get tested 3-5 days after your trip and stay home and self-quarantine for a full 7 days after travel, even if your test is negative. If you don’t get tested, stay home and self-quarantine for 10 days after travel.
  • Follow all state and local recommendations or requirements after travel.

If I’m fully vaccinated, do I still need to quarantine after I travel within the United States?

No. According to the CDC, fully vaccinated* travelers are less likely to get and spread COVID-19.  People who are fully vaccinated with an FDA-authorized vaccine can travel safely within the United States:

  • Fully vaccinated travelers do not need to get tested before or after travel unless their destination requires it
  • Fully vaccinated travelers do not need to self-quarantine
  • Fully vaccinated travelers should still follow CDC’s recommendations for traveling safely including:
    • Wear a mask over your nose and mouth
    • Stay 6 feet from others and avoid crowds
    • Wash your hands often or use hand sanitizer

*People are considered fully vaccinated:

  • 2 weeks after their second dose in a 2-dose series, like the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or
  • 2 weeks after a single-dose vaccine, like Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine.

Are there different requirements for people travelling by airplane outside the US?

Yes. All air passengers coming to the United States, including U.S. citizens, are required to have a negative COVID-19 test result or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 before they board a flight to the United States. These documents are presented to the airline before boarding the airplane. See the CDC’s Frequently Asked Questions for more information. Once these travelers arrive in Washington state, the quarantine guidance above applies.

Are there exceptions to the travel quarantine if people have to travel for what was previously considered ‘essential travel’?

No. The CDC does not currently have any exceptions for quarantining after travel for people who have to travel for ‘essential travel’ reasons.

What learning support will my child get during their quarantine period if they travel or are exposed to COVID-19? Will they have access to virtual learning or will they be able to broadcast into the classroom?

Students who are in hybrid, in-person classes who are quarantined but well enough to engage in learning will be given asynchronous, independent assignments to continue their learning. Students in need of academic support in addition to the asynchronous assignments may receive additional virtual support from an aide or another staff member as determined by the classroom teacher and school administrator. We don’t currently have the capacity to move students in quarantine into virtual classrooms or to provide broadcasting into their in-person classes.

Why is the quarantine expected for 14 days with or without a COVID test?

Student, staff and family health and safety is of utmost importance. Thus, we are taking every precaution to minimize risk of spreading COVID. The 14 day quarantine is the gold standard for minimizing the risk of COVID transmission. With a 14 day quarantine, there is a 0.1% chance a person will transmit COVID-19 to another person. If you include a COVID test to a 14 day quarantine, the risk decreases to 0%. If you decrease the quarantine to 10 days, you increase the risk of transmission to 1.4% (0.3% with a COVID test). If you decrease the quarantine to 7 days, you increase the risk of transmission to 10% (4% with a COVID test).

I’ve been vaccinated with the COVID-19 vaccine – do I still need to wear a mask, practice physical distancing, use Health Check to attest to symptoms daily, and follow all the other mitigating measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19?

Yes. Even if you are fully vaccinated, you must continue to wear a mask, practice physical distancing, wash your hands, attest daily to COVID-19 symptoms if you are coming in person to a school building, and follow all of the other measures we are using to slow the spread of COVID-19.

If a student has to quarantine independently, how will they receive instruction?

We will follow our regular absence process when students are gone for a short time.

If an entire class has to quarantine, will they receive instruction at home virtually?

Yes, the entire class would receive instruction virtually during a quarantine and prior to returning in-person. 

If a sibling has to quarantine while the other student is in person, should both siblings stay home? And if so, how will they receive instruction?

If there has been a confirmed, positive case of COVID in a family, the students in that family will need to quarantine. If a student is quarantined as a close contact but has not tested positive or exhibited symptoms, others in the family do not need to quarantine.

If a student on a bus has to quarantine, then does the entire bus need to quarantine? 

No, the entire bus would not need to quarantine. Only close contacts of the infected person would need to quarantine.  This would be determined through contract tracing by a trained district employee.


Special Education


Are more students with IEPs going to come back for in-person services?

Yes, the district continues to maintain our commitment to bringing back students with IEPs as quickly and safely as we are able.

In October we had 150 students that started in our first wave, then we brought back another 140 students for a total of 290 students in the next wave, and as of late January we had 340 total students in grades preschool through the Transition Program. In addition to the increases that we expect as Kindergarten and first grade return in person, we expect another expansion of in-person services around March 1st. The count of students attending in person do not tell the whole story though. We respect family choice and there are many families who are not comfortable sending their students to school right now even though they can.

One consideration that we take is balancing bringing students in for in-person as needed and as can be safely done but doing so in a way that doesn’t compromising students’ access to general education participation in instruction and non-academic times. As an example, we did have to adjust some plans to bring back some our elementary plans since their grade levels were returning to building and we wanted to minimize the transitions and have them come back with their peers.

My student can’t wear a mask for the full school session, will they be excluded from in-person services?

No. A student who cannot wear a mask should not be excluded from in-person services solely because they cannot wear a mask. State level guidance make it clear that some individuals are unable to wear masks due to health and/or disability reasons and that we will accommodate for them. We all should remember that mask wearing is an important part of many layers of health and safety practices being implemented to help keep everyone safe and healthy in our schools.


Student Assignments


When will schedules be announced?

AM/PM assignments have already been provided to kindergarten through second grade students. Daily instructional schedules will be determined soon and shared by schools with their families.

The remote schedule for 3-5 will continue as it is now. The hybrid schedule for 3-5 will initially be like the K-2 hybrid schedule (i.e. students assigned to an a.m. or p.m. group, 2.5 hours per day 4 days per week in-person, Wednesday remote for all, specialist/asynchronous during remote portion of day.). The goal is to move K-5 to full day in-person.

How and when are morning/afternoon cohorts being assigned?

The cohorts are initially assigned according to the alphabet by last name (every other letter). This was done to ensure students with siblings are on the same schedule.  Students with different last names in the same family will be adjusted so they will be on the same schedule.  Families should let the principal know if they have a request based on extenuating circumstances.  There is no guarantee that all requests can be accommodated.

Do families have the opportunity to request morning or afternoon based on family needs?

Families should let the principal know if they have a request based on extenuating circumstances.  There is no guarantee that all requests can be accommodated.

For families that selected hybrid, can families request that specific students from a class or pod be in the same time slots?

Yes, families can make this request.  However, there is no guarantee that we can accommodate requests as schools work to balance classes. As a reminder, this is a temporary, short-term assignment prior to the full return to in-person learning.

Will families be notified if their educator will be teaching virtually for the remainder of the year? When will we know if our current educator will return in January?

Families will be informed of any major changes in teaching assignment prior to that change being implemented. 

For the asynchronous learning and specialist session (in the afternoon for group A and in the morning for group B) for in-person students, is it remote or in-person? If it is remote, will students go home or stay at school? If they go home, will they have lunch at home or at school?

The AM/PM schedule is intended to be temporary and short-term in order to ease students back into school and allow staff time to practice safety protocols.  During this time, all asynchronous learning will take place virtually at home. Students will receive transportation to and from school. No meals (breakfast or lunch) will be served at school for either AM or PM students.

What will students be assigned during their asynchronous time? Will it only be specialists, Lexia and Freckle?

The asynchronous time includes an extension of what students learned during in-person instruction, as well as specialist times and adaptive software. 

Students will be in-person for two and a half hours. Will they have a break?

Educators will schedule breaks based on the needs of their students. Students will stay in their classroom cohorts during this time.

Why is the district splitting classrooms by AM/PM instead by weekday?

The half-day model is intended to be short-term and temporary, with the ultimate goal of returning elementary students to in-person learning full-time as soon as possible. Starting with half-days allows us to implement and practice safety protocols before we implement lunch and recess where students remove face coverings. We also learned from other in-person services implemented this year that students need some adjustment time to build stamina for a full day of in person. Further, students will be in very small groups, allowing educators to provide more targeted instruction during the temporary shorter school day.

Was it discussed to allow hybrid students to attend virtually, via camera in classroom, if parents/guardians are not comfortable sending our student back?

Yes, this was discussed. The preferred instructional model is to maintain separate virtual or in-person settings whenever possible.

If a student attends school from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., what instructional support can parents rely on if they are working for the entire day?

The asynchronous time includes an extension of what students learned during in-person instruction, as well as specialist times and adaptive software. Students needing additional support may get that through additional school staff. 

Will students be allowed to have a snack?

There will not be a snack time during the 2.5 hour time that students are in school.  If your child needs an individual accommodation please contact the school nurse or your child’s educator.  Our goal is to implement with fidelity as many mitigating measures as possible, including consistent face covering wearing. 

Will students get recess in the 2.5 hours they are at school?

There will be no formal recess during the 2.5 hours that students are in school. Educators will provide students with breaks during their instructional time. 

If the majority of students in a hybrid classroom decide to switch to virtual learning, what will happen to the educator and the remaining students?

We know how important maintaining consistency is during this time. Our intention and goal is to make as few shifts for students and educators as possible.  Therefore, we will try to maintain the classrooms, particularly if the majority of students make a shift. However, this will depend on the overall enrollment and space available. If an adjustment does become necessary your child’s school will contact you.

If families elect to stay in their current learning model, are they guaranteed the same educator?

We know how important maintaining consistency is during this time.  Therefore, our intention and goal is to make as few shifts for students and educators as possible.  Therefore, we will try to maintain the classrooms.  However, this will depend on the overall enrollment and space available. If an adjustment does become necessary your child’s school will contact you.

If a student changes from virtual to hybrid, will the educator definitely change and is it possible the school assignment changes, as well?

We know how important maintaining consistency is during this time. Therefore, our intention and goal is to make as few shifts for students and educators as possible. Therefore, we will try to maintain the classrooms. However, this will depend on the overall enrollment and space available. If an adjustment does become necessary your child’s school will contact you.

If a family selected virtual and wants to switch to hybrid and there is no space available at our neighborhood school, are they removed from their neighborhood school?

We know how important maintaining consistency is during this time. Therefore, our intention and goal is to make as few shifts for students and educators as possible. Therefore, we will try to maintain the classrooms. However, this will depend on the overall enrollment and space available. If an adjustment does become necessary your child’s school will contact you.

For families with multiple students with students who will return for in-person, while older siblings are still attending virtually, how can families manage attendance and engagement while coordinating school drop off?

Transportation will be provided for eligible students who return to school. Please work with your students’ educators and principals regarding specific situations of your students and challenges resulting from different schedules.


Technology


Will students need to bring their laptops or iPads with them to/from school and why or why not?

Students will need their laptop or iPad for their asynchronous instruction so they will need them at home during this time. Please contact your educator regarding the use of the technology during the synchronous, in-person instruction.

Will students need headphones and if so, who should provide them?

If headphones are needed, they will be provided for the students.


Transportation


If a student attends in-person in the morning and then attends BOOST in the afternoon, is there bus transportation back to their homes at the end of the day? Or, is the parent expected to pick-up their student from the BOOST site?

The parent would be expected to pick up their student at the childcare site.  Transportation will be provided to and from the temporary, half-day in-person schedule.

Do the foggers and cleaners used to disinfect the bus have a smell?

The chemical we use to fog the buses is odorless. Once sprayed on the bus, it takes 3 minutes to dry. 


Vaccinations


What has the district done regarding getting our educators and staff vaccinated?

We have formed a planning team to help our staff access the COVID vaccine. We are currently pursuing partnerships with local agencies, pharmacies and Public Health to hold vaccine clinics in our district for our staff, who will be able to sign up to be vaccinated. Our team is consulting and collaborating with our colleagues in the Issaquah School District regarding their model as an approved vaccine distributor.  They will be able to provide the vaccine aligned to the state’s phasing. As we pursue the option to become an approved vaccine distributor below are some key considerations:

  • A medical doctor able to write orders for nurses to administer medication
  • A freezer that can be temperature controlled with alarms and back-up generators
  • Nurses to administer vaccines and log paperwork in the state database
    • District nurses may require bargaining considerations
    • Volunteer nurses from the community depending on risk mitigations
  •  Full PPE for vaccine providers
  • Volunteers from local pharmacies to draw up vaccines to speed up the process
  • Local EMS available in the unlikely event there is an adverse reaction

Ventilation

Bellevue School District has developed ventilation standards for all buildings in the District, based on ASHRAE (American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Condition Engineers) Re-Opening Guide for Schools.

For ventilation and air circulation we are layering multiple protective strategies including:

  • Increased outside air (ventilation) to each zone to the maximum allowed by the system. Goal will be to exceed rates required by Washington State and ASHRAE. Air is changed over 6.6 – 8.8 times per hour with outside air.
  • Disabled energy saving control functions that would reduce outside air exchange.
  • Ventilation systems and controls that can be monitored and adjusted over the district network.
  • Monitor ventilation systems and controls remotely including carbon dioxide levels which are used as an indicator for fresh air circulation.
  • Operate ventilation systems in occupied mode for one week prior to occupancy.
  • Operate ventilation systems 2 hours before and 2 hours after occupancy.
  • Matching student cohorts to ventilation zones to minimize cross contamination.
  • Using MERV 13 filters that are efficient at capturing airborne viruses and changing them at least once every three months.

What is being done to increase ventilation in classrooms and school hallways?

Systems in all BSD schools have been set to pull in air from outside. District buildings have multiple layers of MERV 8-13 filters in place that are changed every three months. Our ventilation systems are fully commissioned and continuously monitor carbon dioxide levels with sensors as a measure of ventilation.

Do Bellevue schools have air filtration systems in place, such as HEPA or MERV-13?

The district does not have HEPA filters in our HVAC system. We use Tri-Dex 2 ply to 4 ply filters which range from MERV 8-13. Occupied spaces are filtered multiple times by different equipment, such as Heat Pumps, DOAS (Dedicated Outside Air Supply) and Heat Recovery Units. Our filters are changed every three months.