Inside a pandemic-era Piedmont elementary school

Julie Reichle

Painted markers on the ground indicate the flow of foot traffic and remind students to stay 6 feet apart

Now that COVID-19 case rates in Alameda County have started to drop, elementary schools are opening up again as Piedmont Unified School District starts phasing in kindergarten to sixth graders on a timeline that started Tuesday, Feb. 9 and will end on Feb. 23 when sixth graders have a chance to set foot on the middle school campus.

Havens Principal Anne Dolid took Exedra inside the school on Saturday, Feb. 6 to highlight a few of the changes that await students when they return to the classroom. (The district’s COVID safety plan is posted on the PUSD website and details the exact protocols that must be followed at all school sites.)

Families must fill out an online health screener every morning before class and all students and staff must wear masks. Classrooms are divided into morning and afternoon “stable cohorts” of no more than 15 students, and there’s a minimum distance of 6 feet required between desks. There’s no lunch on campus, and classrooms are cleaned routinely throughout the day.

As students showed up on Tuesday, they were introduced to the new layout and procedures (photos courtesy of Anne Dolid):

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