545 Zor Shrine place, Madison, WI 53719
Call Us(608) 622-1771

Covid-19 Response

12 Months of Experience 

The Well and their amazing teachers never closed all throughout the pandemic. We have been able to keep all of our teachers on staff and have even hired more valued caretakers. During these last 12 months we were able to experiment with new strategies that for the most part kept us a week or two ahead of guidelines provided by Public Health Dane County, the CDC or State of Wisconsin.

Year End Review, 2020:

Back in May, we dropped down to 10 kiddos from our essential workers who were the only ones with us there for a few weeks. Those lucky little ones were cared for by 15 teachers and staff!!!

It was a different year where all of our families and team members had to make a great number of sacrifices.

As we begin 2021, we are now up to 19 teachers and staff (a new high for our school) and are again closing in on our ideal capacity of 60 students. We are so excited to start a new year with strong safety practices and routines in place and the experience that comes from having “been there and done that” for 12 months.

Please find the first 3 phases of our response to the pandemic below. While this list is not all-inclusive of the changes we’ve made, it is the same as the communication we shared with our families. Phase 4 will be implemented as we continue to receive guidance from state and local officials. This will likely be a step back in the right direction with the roll-out of the vaccine this year.

Stay Well: Phase 1, May 1st 2020

  1. Our float teacher’s role was redefined to include the daily cleanliness of the highly touched areas around the facility, as well as daily cleaning tasks
  2. Hand free soap dispensers were installed in the Saplings/Blossoms restroom as well as the adult/Willows restrooms. We will be replacing all of soap dispensers by June 1st.
  3. As mentioned above, the water bottles will need to be picked up daily, washed and returned the following day
  4. No shoes beyond the cubbies, kids must wear socks
  5. Professional cleaning company contract is in the works and will be in place by June.  This will be a twice weekly sanitizing.
  6. Check in/out – teachers will do the check in/out, so we can minimize the use of the ipad (highly touched surface).
  7. There will be a sanitizer at the entrance and exit, parents are asked to use it prior to coming in and when going out.
  8. Drop off/pick up – only one parent can come in to the facility at a time, parents won’t be allowed to go beyond the cubby area. A teacher will welcome your child at the half door and take him/her to the room.  Teachers are always available and happy to talk to our parents in this location.
  9. Temperature checks will be taken daily on our staff
  10. Please avoid coming into the facility if you are not feeling well

Stay Well: Phase 2, May 15th 2020

  1. Our float teacher’s role was redefined to include the daily cleanliness of the highly touched areas around the facility, as well as daily cleaning tasks
  2. Hand free soap dispensers were installed in the Saplings/Blossoms restroom as well as the adult/Willows restrooms. We will be replacing all of soap dispensers ASAP.  Update: They are currently backordered until July 15th.  
  3. As mentioned above, the water bottles will need to be picked up daily, washed and returned the following day
  4. No shoes beyond the cubbies, kids must wear socks
  5. Professional cleaning company contract is in the works and will be in place by June. Update: This will be a daily cleaning and sanitizing of the entire facility.
  6. Check in/out – teachers will do the check in/out, so we can minimize the use of the ipad (highly touched surface).
  7. Starting on 05/18, we ask all parents to wait at the main door to drop off or pick up their child.  We will keep the exterior door open.  
  8. We will be adding X’s on the ground to mark where the next parent should wait. A staff member will unlock the second door for you. We will try to be as efficient as possible, but please note that we may need to ask you to wait few minutes while we help other families.
  9. There will be situations in which kids will require further assistance to come in (for example, infants or children that may need a friendly hand as they say bye to mom and dad), in which cases we will consciously make an exception to the 6 feet guideline.  
  10. Unfortunately, this will limit the daily handover and we will rely on Brightwheel to be our main source of communication. Our teachers will still be available to talk to parents about any concerns that you may have, we will just ask you to let us know in advance, so we can setup a meeting outdoors, via zoom, or when possible have your teacher be the one to do the handover at the door.
  11. We ask you to please bring only the items that your child needs for the day, so we can keep track of everyone’s belongings, as well as keeping the cubbies cleaned
  12. During this period, we will ask you to keep car seats outside, unless you have an exceptional situation where you need to leave it in the facility
  13. Our staff will start wearing masks starting on 05/18. We ask parents to wear masks at drop off and pick up time too.
  14. Parent teacher conferences are being set-up to use Zoom or a telephone call depending on the wishes of the families.
  15. Temperature checks will be taken daily on our staff and children.  We will start taking the children’s temperature when our touch free thermometer arrives.  Schedule to arrive May 20th -26th.
  16. Please avoid bringing your child, if he/she has any signs of illness. Any child or staff with a temperature of 100.4F or higher will be asked to stay home until their temperature returns to normal.
  17. We will be adding X’s on the ground to mark where the next parent should wait. A staff member will unlock the second door for you. We will try to be as efficient as possible, but please note that we may need to ask you to wait few minutes while we help other families.
  18. There will be situations in which kids will require further assistance to come in (for example, infants or children that may need a friendly hand as they say bye to mom and dad), in which cases we will consciously make an exception to the 6 feet guideline.  
  19. Unfortunately, this will limit the daily handover and we will rely on Brightwheel to be our main source of communication. Our teachers will still be available to talk to parents about any concerns that you may have, we will just ask you to let us know in advance, so we can setup a meeting outdoors, via zoom, or when possible have your teacher be the one to do the handover at the door.
  20. We ask you to please bring only the items that your child needs for the day, so we can keep track of everyone’s belongings, as well as keeping the cubbies cleaned
  21. During this period, we will ask you to keep car seats outside, unless you have an exceptional situation where you need to leave it in the facility.
  22.  
  23. Stay Well: Phase 3, September 28th, 2020

We will ask families to pick up and drop off using the exterior door attached to their child’s room.  Seedlings will continue to use the front door.  The Willows door faces the street and the Blossoms, Saplings and Sprouts doors face REI.  All of them can be accessed by walking around the school to the left as you look at our front door. The positive side with this change is that parents will be able to touch base with the teachers in their kid’s classrooms directly. Please note that we need all of our community to wear masks during pick up and keep the 6 feet distance. 

  • We will move the Willows into the grass room in a full-time capacity.  The room will be outfitted with tables, chairs, toys and educational tools while still trying to keep some room to move. 
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  • Each classroom will only use their own room, the outdoor space, and an indoor space assigned to their class for the week.  The indoor space might be the playground castle, sand box, blue blocks, art station, drama or an empty space where we will create hard surface playground games. 
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  • We would like to move the whole school to 8am-5pm.  This would allow us to staff separately for each room and have the least interaction of multiple teachers or students in multiple rooms.  In essence, each room would be its own school.  Please let us know if you are unable to pick up and drop off on this schedule, so we can discuss alternatives. Obviously, you would still be able to drop off after 8am or pick up before 5pm. 
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  • We will continue following the Health Department guidelines, including when a child or staff member needs to stay home and when they can return.

The use of the staff’s break room is limited to 2 people and additional seating was made available to our teachers throughout the facility.