Back to school

Back To School Experiences [Webinar]

With many centers reopening across North America and changes to recommendations and requirements for operation, the most valuable resource is the real-life experience from our community. In today’s webinar, we host two Directors on our panel to talk about their experience with COVID-19, how they reopened, the challenges faced, and how they have managed to work closely with their communities to reopen.

Watch Recording

Watch the recording here.
Download the recording here.
Access slides here.

Key Resources

Check out theses useful lists and templates to help with your reopening process:

Show Notes

Key Takeaways from the Q&A with Angela Rouse

Angela’s tips:

Keep open lines of communication with staff: In reality, everyone is a little bit nervous to be working and there are ups and downs. As a leader, creating a space with no judgement that your team can come to helps to reassure everyone that you’re in this together.

Tried masks for teachers and kids, decided against it: It was difficult to get accustomed to masks. Since her center is the same group of teachers and children, their leadership team has decided to opt out of wearing masks the whole time.

Organize classroom into pods for physical distancing:

Angela has been in the ECE field for over 30 years. She is currently the Executive Director at Roberta Webb Child Care Center in Harrisonburg, VA. Her number one goal is to serve families in her community with a high-quality early education experience, bridging the gap so that young children are socially and emotionally ready for school. 

Key Takeaways from the Q&A with Wanda Beaird

Wanda’s tips:

Include your community when implementing changes: Consider what your staff and parents are concerned about and use that information to inform changes at your center before reopening. This way, everyone is on board and reassured that their concerns are being taken seriously.

Stand firm on protocols: Wanda’s center closes early twice a week for the building to be defogged by an external organization to protect the health and safety for everyone. Although this means less programming time, it is an important

Get creative: Wanda has created some fun masks and tshirt designs that to fundraise for their PPE. This is an amazing way to make reopening fun and exciting for the kids, the families and your staff!

Wanda is the Director and Owner of Hart to Heart Daycare Learning Center Inc. in Nashville,TN. She is the second generation owner of her family business, which has been running for 51 years. On top of running her center, she also has a degree in Microbiology and Clinical Research and is an Active Board Member of Group Efforts Organization that supports compassionate care for elders with disabilities. Wanda has been married for 38 years and has 1 child.

Superstar comments from our audience

Ghazala Khan
You can spray the bottoms of the shoes with the bleach and water solution when disinfecting shoes.

Gina Dixon
At our center, we’re required to wear masks in any shared spaces– hallways, bathrooms, lobby, etc. We can lower them as long as we are not “up close” to a child.

Raylene Sedley
We are storing bedding in closed bags and washing every second day.

Lucinda Crawford
Our goal upon reopening will be for children and staff to spend a good part of the day in outdoor activity.

Want to connect with your ECE community?

Join the ECE Professionals Slack Group to share ideas, connect with like-minded people, and be part of a growing community. Join here.

The HiMama child care app helps to streamline your digital parent communications. Book a consultation with us today to learn how we can support your child care center during this time.  

Carmen Choi

Carmen is the Marketing Coordinator and Preschool Podcast Manager on the HiMama team. She's been working with childcare business owners and consultants for 3 years. She is passionate making connections that empower the ECE Community through knowledge-sharing to support better outcomes for children, their families, and society!

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