Child Care During COVID- The New Normal

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The New Normal

In a world where the word normal now looks different than ever before, the Child Care Partnership of Fayette County keeps providing services and supporting families enrolled. With parents still needing care for their children while they work, daycare centers need to be open, but how do you keep the children safe in daycare? The daycares have implemented many new policies to keep children safe during the COVID pandemic. What do these new policies looks like:

The first policy is parent drop off and pick up. The parent can no longer enter the building with their child. The parent must sign their child in/ out outside the building. With the parent not entering the building helps with keeping the daycare environment safe from too many people entering & exiting in a day. The parent also needs to answer questions such as “Have you traveled outside the county or state?” or “Have you or your child had any symptoms of COIVD in the last 24 hours?” Also, before a child is left at the daycare, the parent and child both need to have their temperatures taken. If it is over 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit, the child is not allow to enter the daycare and have daycare services until the fever is gone without medication. Some centers require the child to be seen by a doctor and have an excuse to return to care.

The second policy is staff must take new measures to keep themselves and children safe. Staff is required to wear a mask before entering the building until they exiting the building.  Children are now encouraged to (not a requirement from DHS) wear a mask when they are unable to be 6 feet from another person. Children 2 and under are not require to wear a mask. The staff and children must wash their hands upon entering the building and throughout the day. Staff needs to make sure surfaces where the children touch are being disinfected throughout the day.

The third policy deals with meal times. In the past, children would be able to pass the plates of food around to a friend but now family style eating is not allowed. The plates are prepared for the children and then given to them. A Child must now remain socially distant during meals. This means children can’t sit at the same table. Some daycares have placed plastic dividers across the table so the children can eat across from each other but not next to each other. More space is now needed for meal times.

Although I have only mentioned a few policies, there are many new ones. The Child Care Partnership of Fayette County has supported daycares in making the changes and provided support to parents as they help their children making the new changes. We have also supported the families with food, diapers and any other services they need to get though the new normal.