South Loop Montessori School has re-opened its campus, operating as a licensed Emergency Child Care Center for families with Essential Workers.
We are all affected by the coronavirus pandemic and extend our deepest gratitude and appreciation for everyone working on the front lines of the response to the COVID-19 outbreak. South Loop Montessori School is proud to support essential workers during this critical time of need, and we are grateful to have a community that is enthusiastically supporting our school, faculty and evolving operation that delivers the highest standard of Montessori education in the Chicagoland area.
South Loop Montessori School is open for families with Essential Workers, and we will welcome back students under our normal license when the Stay-at-Home Order is terminated.
To help control the spread of COVID-19, Governor Pritzker issued an Executive “Stay-at-Home” Order for all non-essential workers, but specifically mentioned that daycares were considered essential services. South Loop Montessori School has worked diligently with DCFS and our school is now a licensed Emergency Child Care Center (“ECCC”).
Read our announcement and click-through the tabs below include more detail on our updated school operations, procedures, and efforts to help prevent the spread of COVID-19:
Please click-through the tabs to learn more about our updated operating policies and procedures.
South Loop Montessori School will continue to provide programming and Montessori education for children 8 weeks to 9 years of age, operating as an ECCC in accordance with Governor Pritzker’s (and other local) Stay at Home Executive Order — which closed all Illinois child care programs but later allowed providers to re-license as essential services, permitted to serve families with Essential Workers only.
The requirements [set by the Governor’s Office of Early Childhood Development (GOECD), Illinois Department of Public Health (IDHS), and Department of Children and Family Services( DCFS)] place more restrictive guidelines for maximum student group sizes, student and staff interactions between groups, a dedicated COVID-19 Emergency Child Care Center Risk Management Plan, and further health and safety measures.
South Loop Montessori School is now a licensed Emergency Child Care Center, and we are proud to support families with essential workers with our Emergency Response Childcare program that operates from 7:30am to 3:30pm.
We will welcome back enrolled families, under its normal DCFS license, to start when the executive order is lifted. In the meantime, virtual learning will continue with expanded Montessori curriculum and other e-learning programming broadcast through Zoom, Seesaw and Google Classroom.
In addition to South Loop Montessori School’s COVID-19 Emergency Child Care Center Risk Management Plan, we have implemented strict health and safety measures to help control the spread of virus, including but not limited to:
- Temperature Checks for Fever (upon arrival and during school)
- Parent Limitations to Drop-off and Pick-up (see below), including one parent: to one child ratios at the door, accompanied by staff
- Regular Handwashing (with CDC-approved practices) and Extremity Sanitation
- Efforts to Limit Close Personal Contact
- Posted Signage to Restrict Entry, as well as Educational Materials throughout Campus
- Wellness Checks and Stringent Monitoring for Presence of Symptoms throughout the day
- Exclusion of Staff and Students who Display Symptoms
- Cohort Children and School Faculty (students will be kept in the same group with same staff every day including meal, snack, rest and play periods, limited to 10 or less).
- Proximity Limitations and Enforced Hand Hygiene
- Ongoing Hygiene Awareness and Wellness Lessons (to help children avoid touching eyes, nose, or mouth, etc.)
- Stocked Inventory of Advanced Cleaning and Disinfecting Materials (60% alcohol-based hand sanitizer solution and other FDA-approved / EPA-registered sanitation products, effective for virus-elimination)
- Intensified Cleaning and Disinfecting of Frequently Touched Items (including doorknobs, toys, communication and tech, and other items identified as frequently handled) and Areas After Child/Staff Leaves
- Increase Ventilation (by opening windows or adjusting air conditioning)
- Required Face Masks
Advanced Protocol for Students, Parents & Staff:
- Required Commuter Masks and Gloves
- Assigned Staff Entry Door and Designated Decontamination Arrival Procedure (dispose of gloves, shoe change, hand washing, etc.)
- Morning Disinfection of Surfaces within Classroom, Doorknobs, Observation Windows, Light Switches, Sinks, Tables / Chairs, Classroom Materials, etc.
- Administrator and Health and Safety Member (HSM) Conducts Morning Cleaning of Community Areas + Outdoor Handles and Locks, Playground Door Sensor and Keypad
- Morning Disinfection & Sanitation Checklist
Students & Parents Arrival:
- Staff Meets Student Outside (parents will call before arrival and stay outside the playground gate)
- Administrator / HSM Takes Temperatures, Checks for Other Symptoms of Illness
- Shoe Change and Hand Washing
Throughout the Day:
- Regular Handwashing and Ongoing Sanitization
- Mid-Day (AM) Disinfection & Sanitation Checklist
- Mid-Day (PM) Disinfection & Sanitation Checklist
- Mid-Day Temperature Check, Screening for Symptoms of Illness
- Staff Meets Parent Outside (parents will call before arrival and stay outside the playground gate)
- Teachers Dispose of Garbage, Clean Floors and Surfaces, Disinfect Materials, other end of day tasks
- Run Dishwasher, including appropriate materials for disinfection
- Administrator and Health and Safety Member Conduct Dismissal Cleaning of Community Areas (checklist at Front Desk)
We have adopted the Montessori Philosophy as our way of life — and believe with consistent, authentic methodology, we cultivate a meaningful and rewarding school experience for your child.
The Montessori Method of education is based on a deep respect for the individual child, recognizing that basic drivers of young children are to grow, learn, and develop a sense of order, a love of learning, self-confidence, inner discipline and concentration.
- Infant (8 weeks to 15 months)
- Toddler (15 to 24 months)
- Pre-Primary (24 to 47 months)
- Primary (3 to 6 years)
- Elementary (6 to 9 years)
Families will need to determine if they fall under the definition of an Essential Worker.
- Currently Enrolled Families that self-define as essential workers must contact us to confirm their child(ren)’s attendance.
- Enrollment for New Families — including Essential Workers who wish to attend now or those seeking enrolment at a later date — must take the necessary steps associate with our enrolment and admissions process. We are in the process of updating our application to include Essential/Emergency Care criteria. For the time being, please indicate your intention for immediate enrollment in the notes section and we will expedite your application and confirm needed details.
- South Loop Montessori School’s COVID-19 Emergency Child Care Center Risk Management Plan
- South Loop Montessori School’s Campus Re-Opening Announcement
- Governor Pritzker’s Executive Order in Response to COIVD-19 (EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 8)
- Definition of Essential Workers
- Emergency Child Care for Communities & Providers
- COVID-19 for Early Childhood
- CDC What to do if you are sick
- CDC When and How to Wash Your Hands
- CDC People At-risk for Serious Illness from COVID-19
- CDC Print Resources
- CDC K-12 Schools and Childcare Programs FAQs
- CDC Workplace and School Guidance