Hand and Respiratory Hygiene, Social Distancing and Face Coverings

Hand and Respiratory Hygiene, Social Distancing, and Face Coverings

KLSD believes we have a shared responsibility to minimize the spread of the coronavirus.

At the start of the school year, all staff and students will be instructed about the following protocols. Instruction will then be provided periodically throughout the school year. Additionally, signs posted visibly around the school, information on our websites, and emails and other messages home to families will continually remind families and staff of the importance of each of these protocols.

At this time, KLSD is minimizing the access of visitors, guests, contractors, and vendors to our schools to the greatest extent possible. Any person visiting the school should do so only by appointment and must first be seen by the school greeter prior to entering the building. The greeter, in consultation with school administration and/or designee, will determine if access to the building is appropriate. If access is deemed appropriate, the visitor will be provided information about the following protocols.

Hand Hygiene

Students and staff must practice good hand hygiene to help reduce the spread of COVID-19. Hand hygiene includes:

  • Traditional hand washing (with soap and warm water, lathering for a minimum of 20 seconds), which is the preferred method
  • Use of alcohol-based hand sanitizers (60% alcohol or greater) when soap and water are not available, and hands are not visibly dirty

Alcohol-based hand sanitizer will be provided in classrooms,  in common areas (e.g. entrances, cafeteria), and throughout the schools. 

Signs will be placed near hand sanitizer indicating visibly soiled hands should be washed with soap and water.

Students and/or staff who are unable to use alcohol-based hand sanitizers for health reasons will be permitted to wash their hands with soap and water.

All students and staff should engage in hand hygiene at the following times:

  • Arrival to school and after any outdoor breaks
  • Before and after preparing food or drinks
  • Before and after eating or handling food, or feeding children
  • Before and after administering medication or medical ointment
  • After using the toilet or helping a student use the bathroom
  • After coming in contact with bodily fluid
  • After handling garbage

CDC Handwashing Video


Respiratory Hygiene

The COVID-19 virus spreads from person to person in droplets produced by coughs and sneezes. Therefore, it is important that students and staff cover their mouths or noses with a tissue when coughing or sneezing and dispose of the tissue appropriately.

A supply of tissues and trash cans will be available in each room when feasible. If no tissue is available, using the inside of the elbow (or shirtsleeve) to cover the mouth or nose is preferable to using the hands. Always perform hand hygiene after sneezing, coughing and handling dirty tissues or other soiled material.

Mayo Clinic – Cough Etiquette

Respiratory Hygiene – World Health Organization

Social Density & Social Distancing

Prior to determining how best to reopen our schools and return to teaching and learning in-person, all of our schools were studied for their capacity in a socially distanced environment. Every available space has been studied for its student and staff capacity based on 6-foot distancing requirements. Understanding the capacity of our buildings was the first step towards building return to school models that would maintain an appropriate social density.

Social Distancing

According to NYS Department of Health, appropriate social distance means 6 feet in all directions. All individuals must maintain at least six feet of social distance while in our schools, to the extent possible.

School schedules, cohorts, classroom seating plans, use of entrances and exits, hallway movement patterns, and transportation plans are being designed to maintain distancing requirements to the greatest extent practicable. Students and staff will be required to wear masks throughout the school day (with breaks scheduled and allowance for documented exceptions) both because it is best practice and to be prepared for those instances where it is not possible to maintain social distance.

Layouts for desks, tables, chairs, and other items will be implemented to promote social distancing in classrooms and commons areas to maintain six feet of social distancing.

Teachers’ desks should be at least six feet from the nearest student desk, and all student desks should face forward.

In-person, non-instructional meetings are discouraged and should continue to take place in a virtual setting whenever possible.

The number of people permitted in a restroom will be determined by the size of space and layout of toilet partitions to ensure at least six feet of distance between individuals.

Students, staff, and families will be regularly reminded about the importance of social distancing. Educational and directional signs will be posted throughout our schools.

All students and staff are directed to respect social distancing guidelines. Any person who believes another is not respecting social distancing guidelines should, preferably, engage with the person. If the behavior does not resolve, the concerned party should report the concerning behavior to a member of the staff and/or the appropriate supervisor.  Any student or staff member who believes a school structure does not promote social distancing should alert a member of the staff or their immediate supervisor.

Face Coverings, PPE, and Mask Breaks

All students and staff are required to wear face coverings at all times while on our school buses and in our schools. During the school day, face covering breaks will be scheduled for students. Exceptions to the face covering requirement for students who are medically unable to tolerate such a covering will be made in consultation with the student’s family and will require medical notation.

Students and staff will be trained and regular reminded about the appropriate wearing and use of face coverings. Guidance from the CDC regarding face coverings can be found here.

Acceptable face coverings for students and most staff include but are not limited to cloth-based face coverings and surgical masks that cover both the mouth and face. Our schools will provide all staff with appropriate face coverings, though staff are allowed to provide and wear their own protective coverings, so long as they meet appropriate standards.

Students will be expected to provide their own face coverings (along with a daily back-up). Our schools will have face coverings available for students in the event they are unable to provide their own from home or lose their covering during the school day.

A video on appropriate use and wear can be found here.

Staff working in conditions that require additional PPE (additional face coverings, face shields, disposable gowns, gloves) will be provided those materials by the school district.