Lincoln preschools outline new COVID-19 guidelines

Lincoln preschools outline learning plans
Lincoln preschools outline learning plans(Jared Austin)
Published: Aug. 12, 2020 at 7:04 PM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - Some Lincoln preschools are requiring students ages five and older to wear facemasks, but those four and younger will not be required to do it. Both Inspiring Minds and Hamilton Heights Child Development in Lincoln are following these guidelines, which is similar to Lincoln’s mask mandate. Inspiring Minds assisting director Breanna Stohs said this gives classrooms a mix of kids with and without masks.

“Our pre-K room has four and five-year-olds so half of them do wear facemasks and half of them don’t,” Stohs said. Hamilton Height Child Development teacher Natasha Olsen said they do frequent cleaning and sanitation throughout the day. They’ve also hired a professional cleaning crew that cleans the building each night.

“If we have parents that don’t want to wear masks, we have them call and we’ll bring the kids out,” Olsen said. To help with spacing, Hamilton Heights is also reducing its class sizes and socially distancing kids when doing group activities. To help keep things clean and sanitized, Inspiring Minds is not letting parents into its building. A staff member will meet the parent and child outside, take the child’s temperature and bring the child inside to wash their hands.

While this is what these two facilities are doing, the director of Here We Go Preschool is going a different route in who can and can’t wear masks. Director Mandy Spohn said she’ll require all of her students to wear masks regardless of age.

“We make it fun and exciting. We talk about our masks,” Spohn said. “We talk about the design in that its special in caring for one another and kids are highly responsive to that.” Here We Go Preschool is limiting class sizes to 10 people. It also isn’t open until next week but has already been requiring all its students to wear masks. “We did practice mask-wearing in a June summer camp we had and the kids did beautifully and parents were highly supportive of that,” Spohn said.

Inspiring Minds is using an app that parents can use allowing them to see their child’s daily temperature and if they show any symptoms throughout the day. If a child shows symptoms, the assistant director said they will be required to stay at home for 72 hours to keep them safe.

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