COVID-19 Challenges: Fever Checks, Self-Certification, and Social Distancing
As our customers prepare to open school in the fall, they are faced with new challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic. They need to certify that employees and students are fever- and symptom-free, schedules should support social distancing in the classroom, and attendance must be taken for both online and in-person instruction.
We are currently working to add this functionality to SchoolInsight. We wanted to update our customers so they can plan appropriately for the upcoming academic year. All of these changes will be included in the SchoolInsight Core subscription without a new module and increase in costs.
Fever Check Certification
For employees, students, and visitors to enter the building, they must be certified fever- and symptom-free. Individuals with fever or symptoms pose a higher risk of infection transmission to others. They shouldn’t enter the building and interact with the community.
The most efficient way to do this is with self-certification. At the beginning of each day, employees and parents/guardians complete a questionnaire about body temperature and symptoms. Based on their responses, they will be alerted to whether they can attend school, or should isolate (and presumably seek medical care). This will be implemented in both web and mobile pages for user convenience.
When arriving at school, everyone will need to check-in. Anyone who self-certified fever free can proceed directly into the building. Individuals without a fever check can interact with a staff member, complete the questionnaire, and get certified fever-free. Mobile apps, ID card scanners, and printed self-certifications keep the check-in line moving (similar to our lunch module).
This same process could be applied to students boarding the school bus. Using a mobile device, the bus driver could access students on their route and see their fever check status. Self-certified fever-free students could directly board the bus, and enter the building without further interaction with staff. Uncertified students could be screened, isolated on the bus, or turned away, as decided by policy.
Schedule Modifications for Social Distancing
To provide more social distance within schools, many districts are planning blended schedules this fall. Each day some students will be scheduled for e-learning, reducing the population in the school building at any one time.
This past spring we added the ability to designate e-learning days on the academic calendar. This indicates when students should come to the physical school building, or participate in e-learning. With this mechanism, customers can set up two calendars, each with half the student population, and alternating days of instruction in the physical building.
We’re writing KnowledgeBase articles with best practices to help our customers implement these schedules in SchoolInsight. As they become available, we’ll be sending them out.
Attendance can be taken every day for students, regardless of their location. When students come to school, “regular” attendance will be taken. If they participate in e-learning, they’ll check-in for e-learning. We’re updating our attendance pages to be flexible based upon whether students are at home or in the building, driven by their calendar.
At Common Goal Systems, we view ourselves as a partner with our customers. We strive to understand the latest challenges, especially in this rapidly changing environment. We attempt to build the right products and meet our community’s needs. We try to listen, be nimble, and apply our resources to benefit the most users. Feel free to share your thoughts with us.
The Common Goal Team