The School House (TSH) COVID-19 Response Plan (CRP) 2020-2021


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COVID-19 presents a number of challenges for schools.  But remember, school is simply a place.  It’s a collection of children that reside in homes and with their parents the majority of the time.  


In order to keep our school open and safe, families should be reminded to take assertive measures to protect their children and TSH.  This includes wearing a mask when appropriate, limiting travel during the school year, understanding and practicing hand washing, as well as keeping socially distant.  


As for measures at The School House, temperature checks, cleaning procedures, hygiene instruction in school, social distancing, mask wearing for Educators and other protocols are rigorously in place.  Here is how we’ll operate our Environments and our Cleaning Protocols as well as some frequently asked questions regarding how TSH will approach a Learner or Educator with COVID-19.


TSH Mission and Transition


The School House is a non-profit school 501(c)(3) and is limited to just 125 children in grades Pre-K through 6th Grade.  The School House has a very defined mission: to build the best Pre-K through 6th grade school in the world.  TSH, located in East Northport, Long Island, uses the American Emergent Curriculum (AEC) and has created the very best academic, sports, design, performing arts, language immersion, PBL and nature/science programs.  Families, Educators and the Children themselves are the lifeblood of this mission.  


The School House opened its doors in September of 2019.  We proudly offer a screen-limited environment for all of our Learners which allowed for an easy transition to Home Learning in March of 2020 due to Covid-19.  Our Educators provided weekly individualized lesson plans for every Learner, worked one-on-one with parents and encouraged a number of hands-on remote community building activities like each family growing a piece of our garden at home.  This continuity as well as our safe and well-managed TSH Summer Camp currently in operation allows for a fluid academic transition in September 2020 when we reopen our doors. 


Our Educators – after attending 40 hours of PD on these topics scheduled for late August 2020 -   will focus on our Learner’s emotional and social needs, assessing where our children are academically and implementing our comprehensive CRP.  Our small class sizes and one-to-one teaching will help Learners have a positive transition back to in-class Learning.

We are also fortunate to have large amounts of space both indoors and outdoors.

A Certified RN is on Staff Each Day at The School House
  1. All Educators and Learners will have their temperatures taken when they arrive each day.  If their temperature is 100.0 or higher, they will need to go home.

  2. Handwashing will occur before and after each activity (every 30 minutes).  It will also occur before and after snack/lunch.  Hand sanitizers will be installed and provided throughout the day.

  3. Educators will wear masks when they are inside and cannot social distance.  Learners will not need to wear a mask, whether they are inside or outside.  We are able to safely social distance in our large learning environments.  Teachers will provide visual aids for spacing.

  4. Educators will wipe down all materials after a Learner uses them.

  5. Our daily cleaning crew will be vigorously cleaning and wiping down classrooms, bathrooms, outdoor play areas, etc.

  6. Educators will be working with all Learners on understanding social distancing.  We will ensure that children have spacing between them during activities but will of course, also make sure the focus is on their well-being and happiness of being together.

  7. All food will be brought from home and eaten in their classrooms 6 feet apart.

  8. Learners will bring their own personal water bottles to TSH so that water fountains are not used.  Bottles will be labeled with Learner names.

  9. If a Learner or Educator should become ill during the school day, they will be sent home immediately

  10. Should an Educator or Learner become infected with Covid-19, they will remain home before being tested and receive a clean bill of health.  All Families will be notified and TSH will be disinfected or may require a temporary closure to reassess infection.

Building / Grounds: TSH is Located at 106 Vernon Valley Rd in East Northport NY

  1. Our 2-story building contains 6 large classrooms that house our 125 Learners.  We also provide them with a Library, Music Studio, Innovation Lab and Dining Room.  We have a vast amount of space outside where our Learners spend large amounts of time playing, learning and enjoying nature.

  2. We have a separate annex to the building that contains an indoor gym space used for inclement weather.

  3. Our building remains locked each morning at 8:30 am.  In order for a visitor to come inside they need to ring the doorbell and be allowed in by a TSH employee.  All staff keeps door keys on them at all times to be able to come in and out of the building.

  4. Security cameras monitor the inside and outside of the buildings.

  5. We have continuous communication with the Suffolk County Police Department and work with them closely on all safety drills. 

  6. TSH is pleased to have many windows in each classroom which will be opened to maintain air flow.  Doors will also be kept open.

  7. Hand-sanitizer stations will be implanted in all hallways.

  8. Every classroom and shared space has a sink, soap and paper towels for hand-washing.

  9. No congestion is expected at TSH.  We have eliminated our large assemblies this year, staggered times when Learners are in our hallways including arrivals and departures and moved key specialist instruction to the classrooms themselves (cohorts).

  10. The TSH School Nurse has a closed-door recovery room where those suspected of illness can be quarantined.

Environment Expectations:

Below are requirements for each Classroom.  


Welcome to the Classroom:

  • Children will be escorted to the classroom after a temperature check.

  • Your child will go to the sink and wash their hands before beginning their day.

  • Educators will review sneezing into arms, washing hands, using tissues and other protocols each week as part of Monday Morning Gathering.

Classroom Routine:

  • Learners will be assigned a spot in circle that will be their spot each day.

  • Learners will be assigned their own work rug.

  • Additional work rugs or cloth materials will be laundered.  

  • Approximately very 30 minutes children will be reminded of Fun with Foam (hand-washing)

  • Each child will eat snack and lunch in their classroom.  This area will be sprayed with Seventh Generation natural disinfectant (approved by the EPA for COVID) at the end of lunchtime.

  • Art and Science will take place in the classroom.

  • School Care will take place per five children from the same classroom each day.

  • Ambassadors of Kindness will be replaced with Lead Educator Kindness Programs.

  • Materials will be sprayed down with Seventh Generation natural disinfectant (approved by the EPA for COVID) at the end of the morning work cycle.  

  • Learners will wash hands after recess in addition to times within the classroom.

  • Large gatherings for Provocation and Mindfulness will take place in classrooms and not school-wide


Additional Safety Measures:

  • Classrooms will have a bucket/box for shared items to be cleaned.

  • Once in classrooms, Learners will stay in the room for the day except to go outside to the playground, to use the bathroom or to attend Music (large area), Socratic (small groups), Library (small groups) or PE (outside) 

  • The classroom and the School at large will be sanitized by our Cleaning Professionals at the end of each day (see Cleaning Protocols for more information).

  • If a child presents any symptoms at school, they will be held in the Nurse’s Office until a Parent can pick them up.

Arrival & Dismissal Procedures / Visitor Rules
  1. 8:30am drop-off and 3:30pm pickup.  Drop-off will happen on the front steps and pickup will happen in our second parking lot.  We ask that parents and caregivers stay in their vehicles. Educators will receive your child in the morning and bring your child to you in the afternoon.

  2. Bus drop-off and pickup will occur on front steps. Learners will remain in their classrooms for bus dismissal and brought outside when called.  Miss Sandy, our School Nurse, and a Specialist will be on our front steps to monitor their safety while getting on the bus.

  3. Learners will be in their class groups with Lead Educators in designated spots on lawn for car pickup.

  4. As Learners enter the buildings in the mornings, they will bring their bags directly to their lockers and then go straight to their classrooms. Educators and Specialists will be placed within their path to ensure speedy movement that is socially distant.

  5. Prospective parent tours will be done via phone until it is safe to have visitors in our TSH building.

  6. Parents will not be allowed to visit during the day.  If they need to bring something for their child, they can call and someone from TSH will get it for them.

  7. Our TSH building remains locked during day.  Access is with a key only given to TSH employees.

  8. Districts provide bussing to our school.  We will adhere to the protocols set forth by each district.  However, we have requested that Parents drive their children to and from school if possible.


  • Principal

  • Assistant Principal

  • Director of HQ

  • School Nurse

  • 3 Lead Primary Educators

  • 6 Primary Assistants/Specialists

  • 3 Lead Elementary Educators

  • 4 Elementary Specialists

  • TSH Librarian

  • Groundskeeper


All TSH staff will receive consistent communication on safety reopening protocols.   This Professional Development and Training is scheduled for the last week of August 2020.  All PPE equipment will be provided at that time and all staff will be familiar with safety guidelines by September 1, 2020.

Personal Protective Equipment/Cleaning Protocols

The following items will be provided for all Educators and Learners


  • Soap and sinks are available in every classroom as well as in the Innovation Lab, Music Room and Socratic Lab.

  • Hand sanitizer is available in all other areas, hallways and our gym via wall-mounted stations.

  • Face masks for Educators.  Educators will wear face-masks when social-distancing cannot be maintained. 

  • A temperature check will be taken each morning.  Educators and Learners upon arrival will have their temperature taken and recorded.  If a temperature is 100.0 or more the Learner and/or Educator will be sent home.

  • Materials used by students will be disinfected after use.

  • Meals will be taken in the classroom 6 feet apart with cleaning and disinfecting of all surfaces following.

  • Upon dismissal each day a cleaning crew will come into the building for a daily deep cleaning.

  • Soap and water will be used on all surface areas.  Disinfectant then used.

  • Any towels or table coverings will be laundered daily.

  • Professional Cleaning Crew will wash/vacuums all floors.

Below please find our checklist for how TSH cleans and disinfects our property each day.


  • A Team of 5 Professional Cleaners disinfect TSH each day after 3:30 pm.  


  • All Cleaning Professionals wear uniforms and are temperature checked.  Per the CDC they are not required to wear masks.


  • All tables and chairs are wiped down with Seventh Generation wipes.


  • All sinks and doorknobs are disinfected with Lysol spray.


  • All glass is wiped down with Windex


  • All handrails are cleaned with Clorox and soap and hot water.


  • The Kitchen (used by Educators) and Bathrooms are cleaned with Lysol and Clorox


  • All floors are vacuumed and then mopped with Clorox or Seventh Generation.

Daily Schedule Options

1. Current Plan September 2020:  All TSH Learners are on campus. 

  • All above safety procedures will be adhered to by Learners, Families and Educators. 

2. Future Potential of COVID-19 “Restricted School” Mandated by NYS:  Scattered Schedule.


  • Primary Learners will be in the building from 8 am to 11:30 am each day.  Some will dismiss at 11:30 am, while those that stay will be in our annex building until their 3 pm dismissal.

  • Primary Learners will spend their day with the same Lead Educator and Specialist.

  • Elementary Learners will arrive at 11:45am each day and will dismiss at 3pm. 

  • Elementary Learners will spend their days with the same Elementary Lead and Specialist.

  • Each classroom (Primary and Elementary) will have approximately 10 Learners in a room and will stay with same Lead Educator each day.

  • Elementary Learners will have morning time with their Educators via digital learning.  They will engage with them 2 mornings a week to work on their independent learning plans.  These plans continue to be added to throughout the week when they are at school in the afternoons. 

  • Elementary Learners will also have the ability to connect with their Lead Educators throughout morning times in small groups, should they have a question or need help with something.

  • TSH will offer “Elementary Educator Mornings” that will serve as a space, with Educators, for Elementary Learners that cannot arrive at 11:30am.  Those that have working parents and need a place to go for the mornings will be able to be in our annex building space.

3. Future Potential of COVID-19 Full Closure Mandated by NYS:  Home Learning.

  • Saturday Trainings for Parents will commence immediately and our published curriculum sent to parents for review/training/questions.

  • All Learners will begin their day at 8:30 am with their Educator/Class for a 30-minute online gathering and warm up to the day.  Educators will give an overall lesson at this time.

  • All Learners will then receive one-on-one time three days per week in the morning with their Educator.  On their alternative fourth and fifth day, Learners will have small group sessions with Specialists (Art, Music, etc.) in the morning.

  • In the afternoon, all students will be able to join small groups for another lesson or to ask questions about their morning.    Learner can log on if they need to ask their Educator something as they follow their individualized home learning plan or to join the afternoon lesson.

  • Hand-on Home Learning Assignments will encourage Families and Learners to use their home environment, field trips, exploration and local resources to continue Learning through the American Emergent Curriculum.

  • Resources will be provided through Educators, Dropbox, Google Classroom and the TSH Website.

  • Learners will not be expected nor encouraged to spend more than 1.5 hours per day Learning via online mediums.  We are raising independent Learners and supporting hands-on participation of families. 

  • Educators will send individual workplans to Learners over the weekend, so they have them to begin each Monday.

  • The Farm, Field and Outdoor Classroom will be used on a rotating basis by Families and Educators so children can still interact with their Learning Environment on a limited basis.

Resource Services for Learners with Special Needs
  • TSH has Learners with various learning needs, some receiving services from their local districts.

  • TSH provides space for their Learners to receive the resource/service time that they receive through their district plan.

  • Space will be provided in the downstairs of our building for Learners to work with their learning specialists.  This learning will either be one-to-one or within small groups of no more than 5 Learners.

  • Learners that receive push-in services will be allowed to continue this in their classroom setting.

  • All learning specialists coming into TSH will have their temperature taken upon entering.  If it reads 100.0 or higher, they will be sent home.  Any materials/space they use will be wiped down and disinfected by them before their departure.

Communication with Community

1. This CRP will be communicated to Educators and Families via our frequently visited and active website starting August 7th 2020.  An Educator Training is scheduled for late-August to review these protocols in-person.  This plan prior to release and submission has been crafted and coordinated in consultation with our community.


2. A Family Orientation is scheduled for the first week of September for both Learners and Parents (separately) to cover our CRP highlighting the items below: 


Importance of social distancing

Hand hygiene

Mask use

School re-entry protocols (temperature check, etc.)

Reporting Illness



3. Weekly emails will be sent to families reminding them of our safety protocols, as well as addressing any updates.  All safety protocols can also be found on our school website.


4. Should an Educator or Learner become infected with Covid-19, they will remain home before being tested and receiving  a clean bill of health by their health care provider via written notice to the school.  All Families will be notified and TSH will be disinfected or may require a temporary closure to reassess the extent of infection.


5. Hand-washing, mask-wearing, social distancing, temperature checks and other protocols will be demonstrated at all orientations and trainings both at the onset of the year and as part of our continued Professional Development.

Additional Items
  • All food will be brought from home for Learners.  This includes their snack and lunch. 

  • Each Learner will bring a labeled water bottle with them each day.

  • Lunch will be eaten in classrooms.  Educators will sanitize tables after children have eaten.

  • Specialists will come to the classrooms to cut down on Learners moving throughout the day.  This will allow the majority of their time to be in one room.

  • We have beautiful outdoor space that we will utilize as much as possible.  This will allow Learners fresh air and the chance to be outside with their friends and Educators.

  • We will not be allowing visitors into TSH.  If parents need to drop something off, they will ring the doorbell and someone will receive the item.  All packages will be left on the doorstep.  Items will be opened outside and wiped down before being brought into TSH.

  • TSH has a small staff which allows for staggered lunch breaks.

  • If a Learner or Educator becomes sick during the day, they will be assessed by the School Nurse.  Upon assessing it will be determined if the individual needs to go home. ​

  • All communication with regard to COVID-19 will be delivered through the TSH School Nurse.



Q.  If there is a case and I decided to keep my child home, will I receive Home Learning?


A.  No.  Home Learning will occur only if TSH is mandated to close.


Q.  What if an Educator tests positive for COVID-19?


A.  If an Educator tests positive for COVID-19, TSH will inform NYS and our Parent Community immediately and the school will be cleaned and disinfected.  The Educator must provide a negative test in order to return to school.


Q.  What should l do if my Learner is symptomatic?


A.  Keep your Learner home and get tested immediately.  


Q.  What if my Learner travels internationally via air?


A.  All Learners who travel internationally via air must inform TSH.  They must also remain home for a 14-day quarantine upon return to New York. 


Q.  What if my Learner travels domestically via air?


A.  All Learners who travel domestically via air must inform TSH.  They must also remain home for a 14-day quarantine upon return to New York if they travelled to a high-risk area.


Q.  Under what circumstances would The School House close due to COVID-19?


A.  TSH will only close under 2 circumstances.  The first is if NYS mandates a closure as they did in early 2019.  The second is if we experience cases within in the school that cannot be contained or mitigated.  If we do close, our intention is that the closure be temporary.  In the event of any closure, our Home Learning instruction will commence immediately.  Please see this link to how we will operate Home Learning aligned with the TSH mission: https://www.theschoolhouse.org/covid19-reopening-plan

Conclusion & Our Social and Emotional Well-Being

The School House, our Families and our Learners believe deeply in the idea that instruction of children ages 0-12 should be in-person and hands-on.  In order to maintain that commitment during the COVID-19 pandemic, we are rigorously committed to health and safety protections as outlined by the NYS Department of Health and SORIS.

We have also had experience now having operated our TSH Summer Camp as to how flow, protocols, emotional well-being and our outside environment will assist us in providing our community with the best possible re-entry into our academic year.

During the month of September as we re-open our school, our Educators will take great care in re-acclimating Learners to their environment.  Meeting children where they are academically, providing mental health resources, communicating weekly with Parents about their child, prioritizing team building and support for Educators and Administrators and taking our time to reorient ourselves is vital to our success.

TSH has and will always be a place of Learning for all colors, creeds, races, differentiating opinions, religious beliefs and practices, for those who practice and revere kindness and believe that children are the key to all positive change in the world and in our nation.


All questions regarding this document can be submitted to TSH at info@theschoolhouse.org or by calling us at 631-261-9000.



Mimosa Jones Tunney, Founder & Principal

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The School House is a non-profit school 501(c)(3) and is limited to just 125 children in elementary grades Pre-K through 8th Grade. 

The School House admits students of any race, color, national origin and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school.

It does not discriminate on the basis of color, national origin and ethnic origin in administration of its education policies, admission policies, scholarship and loan programs and other school administered programs.


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