Introduction:

The following document outlines the control measures Drogheda Grammar School has put in place to mitigate the risk of infection and transmission of COVID-19.  It is important that staff, students, parents and the wider school community adopt these control measures to help mitigate the risk of infection from COVID-19.    This document has been created by Mr. Hugh Baker, Principal and Ms. Anita Harmon, Health and Safety Advisor in line with the following guidance documents and best practice.

The Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation and the Department of Health – Return to Work Safely Protocol, COVID-19 Specific National Protocol for Employers and Workers.The Department of Education and Skills – Reopening Of Our Schools – The Roadmap For The Full Return To School The Department of Education and Skills  -COVID-19 Response Plan for the safe and sustainable reopening of Post Primary Schools

The document has been ratified by Mr. Karl Allen, Chairperson of the Board of Management. The controls measures herein form part of a live working document. Updates to this document will be advised to staff and parents via email to staff and school website to parents and students.

Note:  This is a dynamic, live working document – It will be updated accordingly as per Department guidelines.  Parents and Staff will be notified of any changes to this document.   Queries should be directed to safetyandhealth@droghedagrammarschool.ie  Please be patient with us.  Your queries will be answered as soon as possible.

Responsibility

The Board of Management have a legal obligation under The Safety Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005 to assess the risks associated with COVID-19, implement control measures to eliminate/reduce the associated risks, design, provide and maintain a safe working environment, plan a safe systems of work and  provide suitable training and PPE measures.

Staff should note that they have a legal obligation under Section 13 of the Safety Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005 to comply with health and safety requirements and to take reasonable care for the health and safety of themselves, their colleagues and other parties within the workplace.

 The Board of Management, staff, students, parents and guardians have a collective responsibility to ensure the safety of themselves and others in the implementation of these measures.  The assistance and co-operation of all is critical to the success of this plan.

Every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of the information provided in this document. However, should errors or omissions be identified, please notify us so that appropriate measures can be taken to rectify same. – email safetyandhealth@droghedagrammarschool.ie

 

Ratified by the Board of Management :  August 2020  ______________________Secretary to the Board of Management

 

Drogheda Grammar School  COVID-19 Policy

This COVID-19 policy outlines our commitment as a school to implement the plan and help prevent the spread of the virus. The policy will be signed and dated by the Principal and Chairperson of the Board of Management and brought to the attention of staff, pupils, parents and others.

 

COVID 19 Policy Statement

Drogheda Grammar School  is committed to providing a safe and healthy workplace for all our staff and a safe learning environment for all our pupils. To ensure that, we have developed the following COVID19 Response Plan. The BOM and all school staff are responsible for the implementation of this plan and a combined effort will help contain the spread of the virus. We will:

Continue to monitor our COVID-19 response and amend this plan in consultation with our staff.

Provide up to date information to our staff and pupils on the Public Health advice issued by the HSE and Gov.ie.

Display information on the signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and correct hand-washing techniques.

Agree with staff, a worker representative who is easily identifiable to carry out the role outlined in this plan .

Inform all staff and pupils of essential hygiene and respiratory etiquette and physical distancing requirements.

Adapt the school to facilitate physical distancing as appropriate in line with the guidance and direction of the Department of Education and Skills.

Keep a contact log to help with contact tracing.

Ensure staff and pupils engage with the induction / familiarisation briefing provided by the Department of Education and Skills.

Implement the agreed procedures to be followed in the event of someone showing symptoms of COVID-19 while at school.

Provide instructions for staff and pupils to follow if they develop signs and symptoms of COVID-19 during school time

Implement cleaning in line with Department of Education and Skills advice.

All school staff will be consulted on an ongoing basis and feedback is encouraged on any concerns, issues or suggestions.

This can be done through the Lead Worker Representative(s) ______________

Signed: _________________________________ Date: __________________

 

Our Aim

The Board of Management aims to facilitate the resumption of school- based teaching and learning and the return to the workplace of staff. The return to the work must be done safely and in strict adherence to the advice and instructions of public health authorities and the Government.

Details for the reopening of the school facility and the applicable controls are outlined in this document.

Building Organisation

 

  • Before re-opening the school will ensure the following
  • Water systems in the main school have been flushed by maintenance following the maintenance water flushing programme to prevent Legionella disease.
  • Water systems that have not been is use (low usage buildings) – SES water has serviced water tanks and systems in line with cleaning/sanitising processes.
  • All machinery has been serviced.
  • Waste has been managed and waste management system put in place.

 

Hallways and Circulation Areas

To ease congestion and ensure safe circulation in the hallways the school has implemented a one- way system in the corridors with directional signage on the hallway floors.

Maximum Occupancy Rooms

Some rooms have maximum occupancy signage indicating the total number of people that should be in the room at any given time.  All classrooms have set occupancy limits therefore requests to change subjects /classes may be refused as we will not exceed any safe limit. Our decision will be final.

Perspex

Perspex screens in the following areas:

  1. Main office hatch.
  2. All office areas and meeting rooms
  3. All specialised classrooms with PC seating areas have sneeze guards separating them.
  4. Perspex screen in the dining hall in food service areas.

Lunch Seating

There is the availability of outdoor seating that can be used for lunches (Packed Lunch only in this area or take out containers from the dining hall. There is sheltered seating under the Droichead building also.

The dining room will have capacity for 86 people – it will be monitored an operate on a seated only and one in one out system.

During little break the canteen will operate a system with mobile units. The canteen will be open for Forms 1, 2,3. An outdoor mobile unit will be available for Senior students in the main courtyard. .

 

Access to the school building /contact log

Access to the school facility will be in line with agreed school procedures.

Arrangement for necessary visitors such as contractors and parents/guardians with be restricted to essential purposes and limited to those who have obtained prior approval from the Principal.

The prompt identification and isolation of potentially infectious individuals is a crucial step in restricting the spread of the virus and protecting the health and safety of the individuals themselves and other staff, contractors and visitors at the workplace.

A detailed sign in/sign out log of those entering the school facilities should be maintained.

The school should maintain a log of staff and students contacts.

 

Student  Information

Reducing weight of schoolbags and managing books.

In an effort to reduce the weight of school bags we are requesting that students bring a folder with an A4 refill pad and dividers into school instead of assorted copies and hardback notebooks.

Lockers will not be available during this term and we will assess the situation for the following term.

Staff will be asked to utilise online textbooks as often as possible in class. They will also indicate what books/resources will be needed for the week ahead via Google Classroom.

Students are responsible for their own schoolbag and must keep it on their person at all times. Any items left by a student at the end of a school day will be removed. Label everything and bring it home!  We are not in a position to store or find lost property.

Circulation

Year Group Zones

To assist in the safe circulation of students our students have been assigned Year Group Zones.  Every effort has been made to assign base classrooms for year groups in zones.  Each year group will have an assigned entrance and exit point.  In additions each year group will have an assigned outdoor area for access during breaks.

 

 

 

The zones are as follows –

FORM BASE CLASS LOCATIONS  OUTDOOR ZONE BREAKS DROP OFF AND COLLECTION ACCESS / EGRESS
FORM 1 12 , 21, 24,25  SMALL UPPER COURTYARD /HOCKEY PITCH MILL ROAD ENTRANCE

 SMALL

COURTYARD ENTRANCE / FRONT DOOR

FORM 2 34, LECTURE ROOM, PF1, PF2 AREA AT LECTURE ROOM/ LOWER  COURTYARD AREA MARSH ROAD ENTRANCE FROM CLASSROOMS TO OUTSIDE
FORM 3 5,6,8 HOCKEY PITCH/ EAST AND FRONT OF SCHOOL MILL ROAD ENTRANCE EAST DOOR ON CORRIDOR
FORM 4 D1,D,2,D3,D4 MAIN LOWER COURTYARD MARSH ROAD ENTRANCE DROICHEAD BUILDING DOORS (D1 and D2- South Entrance, D3 and D4 North entrance)
FORM 5 NORTH CORRIDOR CLASSROOMS MAIN COURTYARD/ FRONT OF SCHOOL MILL ROAD NORTH DOOR (BACK DOOR)
FORM 6 NORTH CORRIDOR CLASSROOMS MAIN LOWER COURTYARD MARSH ROAD NORTH DOOR (BACK DOOR)
On day 1 orientation students will be shown these arrangements.

 

Please note: the pitches and astro-turf area are open to all and we actively encourage our students to get outside and avail of our grounds. The lower gates will be closed from 9:40 am to 13:45 to ensure it is a safe pedestrian area and encourage all to walk and enjoy.

If a student is to be picked up during the school day please use the Mill Road cark park and telephone the office.

Staggered Lunches/ little break

  • Staggered lunch times for students has been developed into the timetable. This will reduce cafeteria numbers which has a determined capacity.
  • Junior school- Forms 1,2 and 3- Lunch will take place from 13:05-13:40
  • Senior School- Forms 4,5,6 – Lunch will take place from 12:05-12:40
  • This allows for a full sanitation programme to take place in the dining hall between groups and for us to manage numbers correctly.
  • The old gym hall has been designated as a seated lunch area for students (Packed Lunch only in this area). Again this will have a strict seating capacity and will be seated only.
  • Eating is in designated areas only or outside. There will be no eating permitted in the corridors or classrooms.

 

Online teaching and homework

All classes will be set up on Google classroom. Teachers will post areas being covered in class etc and required equipment for upcoming classes. Most homework will also be submitted via Google classroom. Information on this will be given to students but their individual teachers. All students will have their own Drogheda Grammar school email address to access this system.

Under current national guidelines online teaching is only available to students in the high risk category as outlined in our COVID 19 response plan. Online teaching is not available to any other students at this time. However, our use of google classroom will ensure they will be able to check up and submit work in the case of absence from school.

If the school is closed, either due to national guidelines or local restrictions further details will be issued then about how our teaching and learning will continue.

Extra-curricular Activities and evening study

Extra-curricular activities have been subject to risk assessments and a number of activities are available from the end of September (21st).  These will be closely monitored and measures reviewed if necessary.

Students will be required to sign up to an activity and adhere to control measures for that particular activity.

We however do not expect to play matches against opposing teams for the foreseeable future. We hope this may change but only once we are happy as a school community to move to that step.

Students who are not partaking in an activity must vacate the premises at the end of lessons. There are no exceptions to this.

Signage

 

The following Signage is in place outlining

  • Sanitising station locations in all rooms/hallways.
  • Correct usage of hand sanitiser
  • No visitor access signs on doorways.
  • Main door sign indicating protocols for visitors/parents
  • The signs and symptoms of COVID-19
  • Promoting good hand hygiene and respiratory hygiene.
  • One way directional signage in hallways.
  • Maximum room occupancy signs for all meeting rooms/office areas displayed on doors.
  • Appropriate signage is located in all classrooms, meeting rooms, staff rooms, offices, toilets, dining hall and circulation areas.
  • Circulation areas – face mask signage
  • Seating permitted signage.

Induction Training / Communication

Staff

The school will provide induction training to all staff in line with Department consultation to include

  • Latest up to-date advice and guidance on public health
  • Covid-19 symptoms
  • What to do if a staff member or pupil develops symptoms of Covid-19 while at school
  • Outline of the Covid-19 response plan
  • Staff will have viewed the induction videos provided by the Department of Education and Skills prior to return to work.

 

Staff will be kept fully informed of the control measures in place in the school and their duties and responsibilities in preventing the spread of Covid-19 and with any changes to the control measures or guidance available from the public health authorities. If a staff member is unsure about any aspect of the Covid-19 Response Plan, the associated control measures, or his/her duties, he/she should immediately seek guidance from the Principal

 

A Lead worker representative will be appointed to assist in the implementation of this Response Plan.

Responsibility for the development and implementation of the Covid-19 Response Plan and the associated control measures lies primarily with the Board of Management and the School Leadership.

The Return to Work Safely protocol provides for an agreed procedure between management and staff to appoint a Lead Worker Representative to carry out a specific role.

The role of the worker representative) is to ensure that Covid-19 measures are adhered to in the workplace as follows:

Work collaboratively with the employer to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the safety, health and welfare of employees in relation to COVID-19.

Promote good hygiene practices such as washing hands regularly and maintaining good respiratory etiquette along with maintaining social distancing in accordance with public health advice.

 Assist with the implementation of measures to suppress COVID-19 in the workplace.

Monitor adherence to measures put in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

 Consult with colleagues on matters relating to COVID-19 in the workplace.

Make representations on behalf of their colleagues on matters relating to COVID-19 in the workplace.

 If a staff member has any concerns or observations in relation to the Covid-19 Response Plan and control measures or the adherence to such control measures by staff, parents/guardians, contractors or visitors, he/she should contact the lead worker(s) who will engage with the Principal/BOM.

 

Name(s) of Lead Worker Representative Contact Details

Anita Harmon

 

safetyandhealth@droghedagrammarschool.ie

 

All staff, parents/guardians, contractors and visitors have a responsibility both as individuals and collectively to have due regard for their own health and safety and that of others and to assist with the implementation of the Covid-19 Response Plan and associated control measures.

Students

Students will receive training on the new safety measures to include-

  • Hand hygiene and respiratory hygiene.
  • Use of masks (if required).
  • One way circulation system and safe movement between classes.
  • Lunch and break time procedures.
  • Care and respect for classmates and the wider school community.
  • What to do if they develop symptoms while at school.

 

Parents & Guardians

Response Plan and comprehensive control measures will be displayed on our school website.

Parents should familiarise themselves with the Response Plan and Control Measures prior to the start of the school year and the procedures in place should a student develop symptoms at school/at home.

Updates to any control measures will be communicated to parents.

A designated email address has been set up to address any concerns or queries from parents –

safetyandhealth@droghedagrammarschool.ie

 

Safety Statement and Risk Assessment

COVID-19 represents a hazard in the context of health and safety in the school environment. A risk assessment  has been conducted identifying the risk areas and activities.  Control measures have been put in place to mitigate the risk of COVID-19 in Drogheda Grammar School  – See Appendix 1.

 

General advice to prevent the spread of the virus

 

In order to prevent the spread of COVID-19 it is important to know and recognise the symptoms. They are:

  • High temperature
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or breathing difficulties
  • Loss of smell, of taste or distortion of taste

 

The best way to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in Drogheda Grammar School is to minimise the risk of introduction of the disease into the school setting in the first place.

This can be achieved through the following measures:

  • Promote awareness of COVID-19 and its symptoms amongst staff, pupils, parents and visitors.
  • Advise staff and parents of pupils who have symptoms of COVID-19 or other acute infectious diseases not to attend school, to phone their GP and follow the HSE guidance on self-isolation.
  • Advise staff and parents of pupils who have been identified by the HSE as contact of a person with COVID19 not to attend schools and to follow the HSE advice on restriction of movement.
  • Ensure that staff and pupils know what to do if they develop symptoms at school.
  • Everyone entering the school building should be required to perform hand hygiene with hand sanitiser.
  • Visitors to school during the day should be by prior arrangement and should be received at a specific contact point.

 

 Staff, pupils and visitors should at all times adhere to the up to date advice and instructions of the public health authorities in relation to protecting oneself and others against the risk posed by the Covid-19 virus.

Updated advice from the HSE is available on its website – https://www2.hse.ie/coronavirus/

The Department of Education and Skills will ensure all updated advice is circulated to schools. Drogheda Grammar School will arrange for this advice to be circulated to staff, pupils and visitors in a timely manner.

The Department has been working closely with the HSE and the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) to develop health advice which has been tailored to the needs of schools in order to support schools in planning for reopening in autumn.

The advice will continue to be updated in line with public health advice generally and will inform the development of more detailed guidance for schools by the Department of Education. https://www.education.ie/en/covid-19/interim-recommendations-for-the-reopening-of-schools-and-educationalfacilities.pdf

 

Managing the risk of spread of COVID-19

 

Wash your hands frequently

Regular hand washing with soap and water is effective for the removal of COVID-19.  Follow the HSE guidelines on handwashing:

For advice from HSE on how to wash your hands the following link will be helpful: https://www2.hse.ie/wellbeing/how-to-wash-your-hands.html

The school will ensure that all toilets are stocked with anti-bacterial soap, paper towel and a foot-operated, self-closing bin to dispose of paper towels.  All toilets will be cleaned and checked as per the school toilet maintenance protocols.

 

Hand Hygiene and Hand Sanitisers

Hand hygiene can also be achieved by the use of a hand sanitisers (when hands are clean).

 

Hand sanitisers are available in the following areas 

  • All access/egress points.
  • All classrooms – inside the doors.
  • All office/workroom areas
  • PE Hall
  • Dining Hall

 

Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth

Why? Hands touch many surfaces and can pick up viruses. Once contaminated, hands can transfer the virus to your eyes, nose or mouth.

Physical distancing

  • Physical distancing is recommended to reduce the spread of infection in the workplace.
  • In line with Department recommendations there will be at least 1m distance between students in class.
  • 1m distance will be maintained between students in the dining hall area.
  • When circulating/moving between class students will be required to wear a face mask.
  • During group work where social distancing is difficult students will be required to wear a mask.

 

Practice respiratory hygiene

Make sure you, and the people around you, follow good respiratory hygiene. This means covering your mouth and nose with a tissue or your bent elbow when you cough or sneeze. Then dispose of the used tissue immediately in one of the assigned bins.

By following good respiratory hygiene, you protect the people around you from viruses such as cold, flu and Covid19.

Good hygiene practices and washing your hands properly and regularly can help stop the spread of the virus. It is, therefore, crucial that all staff adhere to this advice and adopt the following practices as strictly as possible.

 

 Do

  • Wash your hands properly and often
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve when you cough and sneeze
  • Put used tissues into one of the designated bins and wash your hands
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

 Do Not

  • Touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean
  • Share objects that touch your mouth – for example, Pens, pencils, bottles, cups, cutlery, etc.

 

 

People at very high risk (extremely vulnerable)

Current public health guidelines have identified groups who are defined as being at very high risk. The list of people in very high risk groups include people who:  

  • are over 70 years of age – even if you’re fit and well
  • have had an organ transplant
  • are undergoing active chemotherapy for cancer
  • are having radical radiotherapy for lung cancer
  • have cancers of the blood or bone marrow such as leukaemia, lymphoma or myeloma who are at any stage of treatment
  • are having immunotherapy or other continuing antibody treatments for cancer
  • are having other targeted cancer treatments which can affect the immune system, such as protein kinase inhibitors or PARP inhibitors
  • have had bone marrow or stem cell transplants in the last 6 months, or who are still taking immunosuppression drugs
  • severe respiratory conditions including cystic fibrosis, severe asthma, pulmonary fibrosis, lung fibrosis, interstitial lung disease and severe COPD
  • have a condition that means you have a very high risk of getting infections (such as SCID, homozygous sickle cell)
  • are taking medicine that makes you much more likely to get infections (such as high doses of steroids or immunosuppression therapies)
  • have a serious heart condition and you are pregnant.
  •  

The advice for this group is available from the HSE.

Staff  –who are in this group should self-declare on the Return to Work form if they believe that they are at very high risk. Details of the leave arrangements that will apply will be updated by the Department of Education and Skills. If the Board/Principal is unsure whether or not staff fall into the very high-risk category, advice will be sought from the Occupational Health Service.

Studentsin this group – parents should contact the school office via email before student returns to school.

Procedure for Returning to Work (RTW)  – Staff

 

Return to Work Form Staff will be required to complete a RTW form at least 3 days prior to any return to the school facility (see section 2 above). The purpose of the RTW form is to get confirmation from staff that, to the best of his/her knowledge, he/she has no symptoms of Covid-19 and is not self-isolating or cocooning or awaiting the results of a Covid-19 test.

A RTW form should only be completed at least 3 days prior to any proposed date of return to the workplace.

On receipt of the completed form the Principal will provide: details of the Induction Training for completion by staff prior to the return to the workplace and details of any additional health and safety measures in place in the school to facilitate the staff member’s return to the school facility.

This form is available in the Teacher section of the school website and once completed will be transmitted to a designated email address.

Use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

 

Masks and Face Shields

All staff will be provided with a face shield  and mask for use in class and in areas with limited social distancing capabilities such as corridors, stairways.

Students are required to wear a mask in class and where a 2m social distance cannot be maintained.

Staff are required to wear a mask where 2m social distance cannot be maintained and a face shield in 2m teaching radius (class).

Intimate Care PPE

Staff whose role may include performing intimate care or where a suspected case of COVID-19 is identified while the school is in operation will be provided with PPE kit to include, face shield, mask, glove, apron, hazardous  waste bag.

Wearing of Gloves:

The use of disposable gloves in the school setting by pupils or staff is not appropriate. It does not protect the wearer and may expose others to risk from contaminated gloves. Routine use of disposable gloves is not a substitute for hand hygiene.

Cleaning

Drogheda Grammar School has in place a daily cleaning team during the school day.

The school also has a cleaning company employed to clean/sanitise at the end of each school day.

A comprehensive cleaning /sanitising programme has been devised and will be in operation from the start of the school year.

Regular and thorough cleaning of communal areas and frequently touched surfaces shall be conducted, in particular, toilets, lifts, door handles and kitchens.

Cleaning will be performed regularly and whenever facilities or surfaces are visibly dirty.

All staff will have access to cleaning products and will be required to maintain cleanliness of their own work area.

Under no circumstances should these cleaning materials be removed from the building.

Staff should thoroughly clean and disinfect their work area before and after use each day.

There will be regular collection of used waste disposal bags from offices and other areas within the school facility.

Shower facilities shall not be available for use by staff or pupils due to the increased risk associated with communal shower facilities and areas. This shall be reviewed in line with government guidance.

Staff must use and clean their own equipment and utensils (cup, cutlery, plate etc.).

Students must ensure they bring their own personal water bottle to school – generic supermarket bottles such as ballygowan are not permitted.  Students must be able to identify their own water bottles and lunch boxes.

Any bottles /lunch boxes remaining in the school at the end of the day will be disposed of.

 

The cleaning bell

A cleaning bell has been implemented.  Five minutes at the end of each class period a bell indicates it is time for students to clear their desks and clean down with sanitising wipes dispensed by the class teacher.

Clean desk policy

We have introduced a clean desk policy in all work areas and classrooms with desks.  Desks should be cleared after personal use allowing thorough cleaning by cleaning staff after school.

 Policy updates in line with COVID-19 Measures

 

Mobile Phones

As per our mobile phone policy we strongly request students not to bring mobile phones to school.  If they are required for students that use public transport we insist phones are kept in school bags.  The school is not responsible for phones lost or damaged during the duration of the school day. Any students found with their phone on their person (i.e not in bag) or using it during the school day will be sanctioned according to the school’s current mobile phone policy.

Uniform and PE Gear:

School uniform is still to be worn.

However, on days where students have PE they should wear the PE uniform (Drogheda Grammar hoodie, jersey, black shorts, tracksuit etc) for the day. This will reduce the need for changing and help with general washing of clothes etc.

We would advise on those days students bring a spare t-shirt, socks etc in their bag should it rain. PE classes will be outside as much as possible.

Please also note all year groups except 3rd year will now have PE twice per week (we are going to be even fitter and healthier!). Therefore 3 days uniform, 2 days PE gear. Check your student’s timetable the night before to prepare.

There are some necessary changes to some school policy documents, namely the Code of Behaviour Policy and Attendance Policy in line with our new COVID-19 control measures. These changes are as outlined below:

Changes to the School Code of Behaviour

The following changes have been ratified by the Board of Management, August 2020.

The health, safety, physical  and mental wellbeing of all school staff and students are of absolute importance to the school management. All staff and students must adhere to the strict hygiene guidelines and protocols as directed and issued by the HSE and the school. 

Please be advised if at any time it is perceived by school management that a student has deliberately ignored these hygiene protocols and placed the health and safety of another student or staff member at risk, the school management will respond swiftly and sanction in accordance with the severity of these actions.  The student will be removed from class/school until resolved. 

 Actions such as spitting or deliberately coughing in another person’s face will be treated as a physical assault and may result in serious sanction, including suspension. 

 

Changes to the Attendance Policy

Students will no longer sign in late at the office –  If a student is late they will give their name at the office window and admin staff will record the student’s name and time of arrival. 

Parents are requested to email the administration office to inform the school of a student’s absence or late arrival to school.  We will not be handling school journals therefore ask that notes are not written into these.

Photocopying/printing

Students are no longer permitted to retrieve photocopying material from the office/workroom or print material in school. 

 

First Aid/emergency procedure

The standard First Aid/Emergency procedure shall continue to apply in Drogheda Grammar School.

In an emergency or in case of a serious incident, call for an ambulance or the fire brigade on 112/999

Contact the principal or nearest first aider giving details of location and type of medical incident.

Dealing with a suspected case of Covid-19

Staff or pupils should not attend school if displaying any symptoms of Covid-19. The following outlines how Drogheda Grammar School will deal with a suspected case that may arise during the course of work.

Note: The school reserves the right to decline entry to a student displaying fever/ upper respiratory tract infection symptoms.

Sick Bay and Isolation Room

The designated isolation area is located at the Nurse Station in the annex of the Droichead Building.

If a staff member/pupil displays symptoms of Covid-19 while at work in Drogheda Grammar School the following are the procedures which will be implemented.

If the person with the suspected case is a pupil, the parents/guardians will be contacted immediately by the school office.The person will be accompanied to the isolation room by the school nurse via the isolation route, keeping at least 2 metres away from the symptomatic person and also making sure that others maintain a distance of at least 2 metres from the symptomatic person at all times

A mask will be provided for the person presenting with symptoms.  He/she should wear the mask if in a common area with other people or while exiting the premises .

The person accompanying the symptomatic person is required to wear a mask.

The symptomatic pupil must be collected within one hour from the school by a parent/guardian.

The individual should avoid touching people, surfaces and objects.

Advice will be given to the person presenting with symptoms to cover their mouth and nose with the disposable tissue provided when they cough or sneeze and put the tissue in the waste bin provided.

Public transport of any kind should not be used.

If they are too unwell to go home or advice is required, contact 999 or 112 and inform them that the sick person is a Covid-19 suspect.

 A risk assessment of the incident will be carried out by the Safety Officer which will form part of determining follow-up actions and recovery .

Arrange for appropriate cleaning of the isolation area and work areas involved.

The HSE will inform any staff/parents who have come into close contact with a diagnosed case via the contact tracing process.

The HSE will contact all relevant persons where a diagnosis of COVID-19 is made.

The instructions of the HSE should be followed and staff/student confidentiality is essential at all times.

 

 

 

 

Appendix

 

 

 

 

DROGHEDA GRAMMAR SCHOOL

COVID -19 CONTROL MEASURES FOR

GENERAL CLASROOMS, SPECIALISED CLASSROOMS

AND

ADDITIONAL HIGH RISK AREAS & ACTIVITIES

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CLASSROOM CONTROL MEASURES

 

General Classrooms & Base Classrooms

General classroom areas include base classes and core subject class groups (excluding Science).

  • Staff will be required to wear a face shield in class (2m teaching radius) and a mask where a 2m social distance cannot be maintained.
  • Students are required to wear a mask in class and in areas where a 2m social distance cannot be maintained.
  • Classroom is equipped with a hand sanitising unit, a foot operated self-closing bin for any hazardous material (tissues) and sanitising spray and cloth.
  • Students and Staff must use hand sanitiser when entering room.
  • Students and Staff must use the foot-operated, self –closing bin for all items other than recyclable paper.
  • Social distance measures must be adhered to at all times.
  • Students will be assigned to specific seating using seating plan.
  • Where possible allow for good ventilation in the room with open windows.
  • Sharing of books/pens between students must be avoided at all times.
  • Eating and drinking is discouraged in the classroom setting in a bid to prevent maintenance staff from handling any plastic recyclable items during waste management.
  • Desks to be cleaned between usage.
  • Unnecessary clutter should be removed from the room.

 

Specialised Rooms

Specialised rooms include rooms where students work with specialised equipment and instruments during teaching and learning.

Subjects where specialised rooms are used include:

  1. The Sciences
  2. Music
  3. Art
  4. Technology /Woodwork
  5. Design & Communication Graphics
  6. T.
  7. Home Economics
  8.  

 

 Note: Physical Education and Sporting Activities have additional controls – See Physical Education and Sporting Activities section.

 

  • Staff will be required to wear a face shield in class (2m teaching radius) and a mask where a 2m social distance cannot be maintained.
  • Students are required to wear a mask in class and in areas where a 2m social distance cannot be maintained.
  • Group work where social distancing is difficult – students will be required to wear a mask.
  • Classroom is equipped with a hand sanitising unit, a foot operated self-closing bin for any hazardous material (tissues) and sanitising spray and cloth.
  • Students and Staff must use hand sanitiser when entering room.
  • Students and Staff must use the foot-operated, self –closing bin for all items other than recyclable paper.
  • Social distance measures must be adhered to at all times (excluding groupwork).
  • Where possible allow for good ventilation in the room with open windows.
  • Shared use of equipment should be avoided.
  • Where shared use of equipment is unavoidable equipment should be sanitised between use.
  • Shared electronics keyboards/screens/mouse pads/mouse should be cleaned between use.
  • Shared use of wind instruments is to be avoided at all times. (Music)
  • All other instruments must be cleaned and disinfected between use. (Music)
  • Choir – will  be held in a large well-ventilated room maintaining social distance.
  • Sharing of books/pens between students must be avoided at all times.
  • The use of tea towels /cotton towels/ cleaning sponges should be avoided – paper towels only – (Home Economics).
  • Desks to be cleaned between usage.
  • Students should be instructed on the safe method of cleaning electronic equipment.
  • Students should not leave any items behind.
  • Follow manufactures instructions for cleaning.
  • Unnecessary clutter should be removed from the room.
  • Eating and drinking is discouraged in the classroom setting in a bid to prevent maintenance staff from handling any plastic recyclable items during waste management.
  • Shared use of books/pens between students must be avoided.
  • Group practical work – students shall be placed in pods for group practical work.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Learning Support

 

  • Staff will be required to wear a face shield in class (2m teaching radius) and a mask where a 2m social distance cannot be maintained.
  • Students are required to wear a mask in class and in areas where a 2m social distance cannot be maintained.
  • Students may be exempt from wearing a mask in Learning Support for specified reasons – contact learning support.
  • Classroom is equipped with a hand sanitising unit, a foot operated self-closing bin for any hazardous material (tissues) and sanitising spray and cloth.
  • Students and Staff must use hand sanitiser when entering room.
  • Students and Staff must use the foot-operated, self –closing bin for all items other than recyclable paper.
  • Social distance measures must be adhered to at all times.
  • Students should be assigned to specific seating using seating plan.
  • Where possible allow for good ventilation in the room with open windows.
  • Sharing of books/pens between students must be avoided at all times.
  • Shared equipment should be cleaned and sanitised between use.
  • Eating and drinking is discouraged in the classroom setting in a bid to prevent maintenance staff from handling any plastic recyclable items during waste management.
  • Desks to be cleaned between use.
  • Unnecessary clutter should be removed from the room.

Intimate Hygiene Care for students with special needs

 

  • Staff responsible for intimate hygiene care of students with specific care needs will be allocated PPE – Face shield/mask, gloves plastic apron, hazardous material waste bags.
  • All hazardous waste involved in intimate care must be bagged in haz bag and tied securely.
  • Maintenance staff must be informed and bag removed immediately.
  • Hazardous waste bags will be disposed of according to waste management protocols.
  • Removal of gloves will necessitate thorough washing of hands.
  • Hygiene products in wheelchair access bathrooms will be stored in a secure sealed manner.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gym Hall – Physical Education and After School Activities

 

A comprehensive risk assessment of after school activities will be conducted in the first few weeks of term.  Parents will be notified of any control measures in due course. In the case of PE –

 

  • Staff will be required to wear a face shield in class and a face mask where 2m social distance cannot be maintained.
  • Students should wear a face mask where practicable.- PE department will advise.
  • Classroom is equipped with a hand sanitising unit, a foot operated self-closing bin for any hazardous material (tissues) and sanitising spray and cloth.
  • Students and Staff must use hand sanitiser when entering room.
  • Students and Staff must use the foot-operated, self-closing bin for all items other than recyclable paper.
  • Social distance measures must be adhered to at all times.
  • Where possible allow for good ventilation in the room with open doorway.
  • Shared equipment must be cleaned / disinfected at the end of each session.
  • Students should not share PE uniform/towels etc.
  • Students must supply their own gum shield and place in container when not in use.
  • Students should not share their personal sports gear with other students (guards, boots etc).

Changing Rooms      

 

  • Shower facilities are not available for students or staff.
  • Changing rooms will not be required for PE
  • Students will wear PE uniform into school on days when PE is scheduled. Full uniform must be worn when PE is not scheduled.
  • Scheduled matches requiring a change of clothes – social distancing must be adhered to at all times.
  • Students should not share sports clothing.
  • All clothing not being used must be placed in students bag and closed.
  • Eating and drinking is not permitted in the changing room.
  • Students should change quickly for matches and after matches.
  • Hands should be washed prior to resuming class.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Offices and Work Rooms

These areas include –

  1. Headmaster’s Office
  2. Deputy Principal’s Office
  3. Administration Office
  4. Bursar’s Office
  5. Staff Workrooms / Offices
  6. Year Head Offices

 

  • Staff will be required to wear face shields (2m distance) and mask where 2m cannot be maintained.
  • Adhere to maximum occupancy for these rooms and maintain social distance according to guidelines.
  • Use sanitiser before entering room.
  • Avoid leaving personal items (laptops, books, pens) on tables as others will require the work space.
  • Avoid eating in this room.
  • Sanitise desks/phones PC and equipment at the end of the day.
  • Dispose of rubbish in foot operated, self-closing bin.
  • Strive to maintain good ventilation with open windows.
  • Avoid sharing of technology/hot-desking.
  • All frequently touched shared surfaces should be cleaned after use.
  • Any visitors to room should remain behind sneeze guards.
  • Administration office – staff and students should approach the service window for assistance/supplies etc.
  • Students – documents requiring attention, leave in box at service window.
  • Cash cannot be accepted at any time by the bursar or administration staff.

 

Staff Room

  • Staff will be required to wear face shields (2m distance) and mask where 2m cannot be maintained.
  • Adhere to social distancing guidelines whilst using this room.
  • Adhere to seating capacity at all times
  • Staff should have their own cup, plate for personal use and store in their personal pigeonhole when not in use.
  • Clear table after use and disinfect after use.
  • Avoid leaving personal items (laptops, books, pens on tables.
  • Wash your cup and food utensils and return them to your designated pigeon hole.
  • Do not bring any utensils/plates/cups etc. up from the dining hall.
  • Personal food containers must be brought home at the end of the day.
  • Personal food items for example herbal teas should be stored in your designated pigeon hole and not shared.
  • Disinfect kitchen appliances after use.
  • Dispose of rubbish in foot operated, self-closing bin
  • Where possible allow for good ventilation in the room with open windows.
  • Unnecessary clutter should be avoided
  • Poster displayed should be laminated to allow cleaners to wipe down if required.
  • Phones must be cleaned and sanitized after use by user.

 

Isolation Room

  • Any staff member attending to sick student/staff member suspected of having COVID-19 shall wear the following PPE when attending the isolation room
    • Face Shield
    • Gloves
    • Mask
    • Plastic Apron

 

  • All PPE should be disposed of in yellow hazardous waste bag provided and securely tied.
  • Bag should be removed immediately for disposal by maintenance staff.
  • If a student or member of staff is temporarily placed in the isolation room every effort should be made by staff not to enter this room.
  • Once student/staff member leaves the room must be sanitised by maintenance staff/ cleaners.
  • The isolation room should be used for purpose only and not used as a first aid/waiting room.
  • Only 1 student/staff member at a time should be placed in the isolation room.
  • When not in use the isolation room should be locked.

 

 

DINING HALL

 

The school dining hall has limited capacity which will be maintained by the catering company.  Students may if they wish opt to bring a packed lunch to school. Outdoor seating will also be provided and a designated indoor seating area will be provided in the old gym hall.

Eating and drinking in the school corridors and classrooms is PROHIBITED.

 

  • Dining Hall should be entered from designated access point only.
  • Dining Hall should be exited from designated egress point only.
  • Students must line up according to floor signage.
  • Students and Staff must use hand sanitiser when entering room.
  • Social distance measures must be adhered to at all times.
  • Students and staff should adhere to the queue management system.

 

  • Strict adherence to seating capacity at all times.
  • Allow for good ventilation in the room with open windows.
  • Students and Staff must adhere to seating arrangements and not move chairs closer to one another.
  • Students and Staff should ensure all food/rubbish is removed from table and placed in specified waste area before leaving canteen.
  • Students and Staff should leave dining hall once they have eaten to allow for cleaning/sanitising between seating schedules.
  • Dining Hall is cleaned and sanitised as per cleaning schedule.

 

Toilet Areas

 

  • All toilet areas are inspected and maintained at specific times by maintenance/cleaning staff.
  • Toilet paper is in sealed pull units for protection.
  • Congregating in the toilet area should be avoided.
  • Anti-bacterial hand soap in all bathrooms
  • Push taps in sinks to reduce touching frequency.
  • Warm water temperature maintained.
  • Where warm water feed not available (2 toilet only) – emulsifying anti-bacterial soap supplied
  • Paper hand towels (single pull to reduce touching frequency) in all toilet areas.
  • Foot operated self –closing bins in all toilets for paper towel waste.
  • Paper towel (eco-friendly recycled paper).
  • Students encouraged to inform maintenance staff/teachers if toilets need attention.

 

 

General Circulation Areas/ Stairways

 

  • Social distance measures must be adhered to at all times.
  • Face shields mandatory for staff.
  • Students may if they wish use face mask/shield.
  • All access points to school buildings have hand sanitising stations.
  • One way system in place in narrow corridor areas.
  • Students will be advised of one way system.
  • Directional signage illustrates one way system in place.
  • Seating areas spaced to required social distance measures.
  • Seating area sanitised regularly throughout the day as per DGS COVID-19 Cleaning Schedule.
  • Door handles/light switches sanitised regularly throughout the day as per DGS COVID-19 Cleaning Schedule.
  • Eating is not permitted in the corridors or stairways.

 

 

USE OF LIFTS       

 

  • Use of lift restricted to 2 persons at time.
  • Signage indicating max occupancy posted outside lift.
  • Touch areas of lift sanitised regularly throughout the day as per DGS COVID-19 Cleaning Schedule.

 

 

Lockers and Student Belongings

 

  • Lockers will be unavailable for students due to social distancing difficulties.
  • Students should bring textbooks for scheduled classes on any given day.
  • Timetables will be provided to all students and parents should familiarise themselves with same.
  • Students should not share their belongings with another student this includes pens/pencils etc.
  • Parents should ensure students have correct books/copies and pens for any given day.
  • If PE is scheduled for a student on a given day students should wear their PE uniform to school on that day.
  • If PE is not scheduled for a student on a given day student should wear school uniform.
  • Students should use one school bag only and have on their person – bags must not be left in corridors/ circulation areas.
  • A plastic bag should be provided by parents to place students coat into.
  • Plastic bag with coat should be placed in school bag during day.
  • Any lunch/drink holder must be brought home at the end of the day.
  • Drinks must be in personal drink holders – generic bottles are not acceptable.
  • Items left unattended in corridors will be disposed of at the end of the day.

 

 

Sports Equipment

 

If a student is required to bring in sports equipment for example a hockey stick please ensure the students name is written on the equipment.

 

Equipment will be stored in school and students will be required to wipe down equipment with sanitising wipes.

Equipment must be brought home at the end of the school day.

 

 

 

 

 

First Aid

 

  • Personal protective equipment will be provided to first aider – to include – mask/shield, gloves, apron and biohazard waste bag.
  • Injured/ill students (not COVID -19 related) will wait in front foyer for collection by parent/guardian.
  • Injured/ill student must be collected within one hour.
  • Student displaying COVID-19 symptoms will be placed in Isolation room and contact made with parent/guardian immediately. Student MUST be collected within one hour.
  • First aid bags – First aid bag will be assigned to sports staff – must not be interchangeable between staff. Teacher assigned bag will be responsible for bag and ensuring it is stocked.
  • Hazardous waste should not be stored in first aid bag.

 

 

Car Park Areas

 

Parents are requested to drop their student off in the car park and exit promptly to minimise traffic congestion.

Parents are requested to not block the yellow box at the entrance to the top car park to minimise traffic congestion.

 

 

General Housekeeping

 

  • Hand-sanitising stations checked and maintained daily as per cleaning schedule.
  • Hand-sanitising stations located in all classroom areas, circulation areas and dining hall.
  • Soap dispensers and paper towel dispensers checked and maintained in bathrooms and all areas with access to sinks daily as per cleaning schedule.
  • All classrooms/ offices /toilets equipped with foot operated bins with lids.
  • Bins emptied as per cleaning schedule.
  • Toilets checked as per cleaning schedule.
  • General circulation areas maintained as per cleaning schedule.
  • Frequently touched surfaces sanitised regularly as per cleaning schedule.

 

 

Signage

 

  • Signage in all classroom/office areas indicating sanitising stations.
  • Maximum occupancy signage on doors of all office / work room areas.
  • Instructional signage regarding visitors to school on all access doors.
  • Instructional signage on handwashing etiquette in all toilet areas.
  • One way system signage on floors throughout the main school.

 

 

PARENTAL RESPONSIBILITIES

In order for our school response plan be successful in mitigating the risk of infection from COVID-19 the school relies heavily on the support of our parent body.

Parents/Guardians MUST complete the Student Health Declaration Form for student(s) –This form is available from the school website droghedagrammarschool.ie/COVID-19/Student Health Declaration Form and must be completed by students three days prior to returning to school.

Students will not be permitted to return to school unless this form is completed.

In order reduce student stress we ask your help with the following –

  • Check you students timetable the night before to ensure that he/she has the correct books in their bag.
  • Check to make sure your student has a mask for the day prior to leaving the house.
  • Check to make sure your student has an adequate supply of pens and paper as he/she will not be permitted to share belongings.
  • Check – is it PE day? Is your student wearing his/her PE uniform.
  • Has your student their lunch if bringing a packed lunch and has he/she got a personalised bottle of water/drink.

Students who are ill – displaying COVID-19 symptoms during school day

If a student displays any of the symptoms of COVID-19 during school you will be contacted immediately.  Your student must be collected from school within one hour.

Please ensure that the school has your up-to-date mobile number on file.

 

Students who are ill (non-covid related)

If your student is unwell during the school day, he/she will be referred to the school nurse.  You will be contacted by the school office re pick up arrangements.

 

Parental Visits to the School:

  • Meetings with members of staff should be by prior arrangement only.
  • You will be required to complete a health declaration form prior to your meeting.
  • Parents are asked to attend at the appointed time and not arrive early.
  • Hand hygiene should be carried out on arrival.
  • A 2m social distance should be adhered to during meetings.
  • Parents attending a meeting must wear a face mask.
  • Outside of meetings, we would request that parents strictly limit their visits to the school to emergency purposes only. Items dropped in for students should be left on the shelf inside the front door in a sealed bag indicating the student’s full name and class.

 

Students attending appointments during school time:

If your student has an unavoidable appointment during the school day, we request the following:

  • Email the school office before 10am to advise of your time of arrival. (info@droghedagrammarschool.ie).
  • Telephone the school office when you have arrived.
  • Your student will be informed and meet you at your car.

 

Students in High Risk Groups

If your student has been identified as being in the high risk group (see response plan for list) we ask that you contact the school and advise the school of any additional measures that has been recommended by your students doctor or medical team prior to starting back to school.  Please email safetyandhealth@droghedagrammarschool.ie .

Uniform

Students will be required to wear their full uniform to school. If your student has PE on a given day – he/she should wear their PE uniform to school on that day including runners.  All uniform items should be taken home at the end of the day. The school is not in a position to retain items of clothing onsite.

 

STUDENT RESPONSIBILITIES

 

As a student at Drogheda Grammar School you have a responsibility to help keep yourself safe and reduce the risk of infection from COVID-19 whilst attending school. We ask that our students be mindful of one another and respect each other.

Students are requested to wash their hands –

 

  • Before eating
  • After using the bathroom
  • If their hands are visibly dirty.

 

Hand sanitisers are located at all entrances, classrooms, bathroom hallways and circulation areas and the dining hall. 

 

 

 

 

STUDENT USE OF MASKS

 

Students are required to wear a face mask in class, circulation areas, toilets and dining areas when not eating.

 

 

  • You should keep your mask in your pocket when not in use in a small plastic Ziploc bag.

 

  • There is no requirement to use a mask outdoors but you may wish to do so.

 

  • It is important that you do not leave your mask lying around.

 

  • Masks should not be worn around the chin when not in use.

 

  • Please make sure to bring your mask home at the end of the day.

 

STAFF RESPONSIBILITIES

All staff have a statutory obligation to take reasonable care for their own health and safety and that of their colleagues and other parties. In order to facilitate a safe return to work, these duties include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Adhere to the School Covid-19 Response Plan and the control measures outlined. The cooperation and assistance of all staff is essential to reduce the risk of spread of Covid-19 and to protect health and safety as far as possible within the school. All staff have a key role to play.
  • Coordinate and work with their colleagues to ensure that physical distancing is maintained.
  • Make themselves aware of the symptoms of Covid-19 and monitor their own wellbeing.
  • Self-isolate at home and contact their GP promptly for further advice if they display any symptoms of Covid-19.

Not return or attend school if they have symptoms of Covid-19 under any circumstances.

  • If they develop any symptoms of Covid-19 whilst within the school facility, they should adhere to the procedure outlined above.
  • Complete the RTW form before they return to work.
  • Must inform the Principal if there are any other circumstances relating to Covid-19, not included in the form, which may need to be disclosed to facilitate their safe return to the workplace.
  • Must complete Covid-19 Induction Training and any other training required prior to their return to school.
  • Must be aware of, and adhere to, good hygiene and respiratory etiquette practices.
  • Keep informed of the updated advice of the public health authorities and comply with same.

 

 

 

Covid related absence management

The management of a Covid-19 related absence will be managed in line with agreed procedures with DES.

 

All staff must complete a Staff Health Declaration Form prior to beginning work each day. This form will be available on the school website droghedagrammarschool.ie in a staff password protected area.  Once completed the form will automatically be submitted to a designated email address  accessed by the Deputy Principal only.  As sample of the form can be viewed in Appendix 2

 

Employee Assistance and Wellbeing Programme

The Board of Management aims to protect and support the health and wellbeing of all staff (physical, mental, spiritual etc.) both at work, whether in the school facility or at home and outside of work. The Board of Management is mindful that the support and promotion of staff health and wellbeing is particularly important in the current context where the Covid-19 pandemic has caused considerable challenges for, and disruption to, people’s personal, family and social lives as well as their work arrangements.

The Board of Management aims to foster a culture and work environment that support healthy behaviours and staff wellbeing and shall continue to make health and wellbeing tools and guidance available to staff as well as organising suitable support programmes, initiatives and events. These are challenging times for everyone. Should a staff member experience any stress or anxiety in respect of work or work arrangements, he/she should feel free to speak to the principal.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Appendix 2

Drogheda Grammar School

Pre-Return to Work Questionnaire COVID-19

This questionnaire must be completed by staff at least 3 days in advance of returning to work. If the answer is Yes to any of the below questions, you are advised to seek medical advice before returning to work.

 

Name

 

 

Date

 

 

 

  Question Yes No
1 Do you have symptoms of cough, fever, high temperature, sore throat, runny nose, breathlessness or flu like symptoms now or in  the past 14 days?    
2 Have you been diagnosed with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 infection in the past 14 days?    
3 Have you been advised by  the HSE that you are a close contact of a person who is a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19 in the past 14 days?    
4 Have you been advised by a doctor to self-isolate at this time?  

 

 

5 Have you been advised by a doctor to cocoon at this time?  

 

 

6

Have you been advised by your doctor that you are in the very high risk group?

If yes, please liaise with your doctor and Principal re – return to work.

   

 

I confirm, to the best of my knowledge that I have no symptoms of COVID-19, am not self-isolating or awaiting results of a COVID-19 test.

Please note: The organisation is collecting this sensitive personal data for the purposes of maintaining safety within the workplace in light of the Covid-19 pandemic. The legal basis for collecting this data is based on vital public health interests and maintaining occupational health and will be held securely in line with our retention policy.

 

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