School Reopening Plan

Forest Hills Montessori School follows the curriculum that is aligned with the New York State Standards.  However, being a Montessori school the principals of Montessori are followed such as individual instruction, students working at their own pace and level.  Teachers are encouraged to work as a team with other teachers to develop lessons that fosters independence and critical thinking.   Peer tutoring is highly encouraged to develop self confidence in the students.  We encourage children to become inner-directed learners.  Our classes have mixed grades with small class size.

The elementary curriculum includes language development, communication skills, comprehension and word attach skills through language games, group discussion and special projects.  The Mathematics program expands the students mathematical knowledge with advanced addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, fractions, decimals, metric systems, measurement, prime numbers, graphs, percent, square root, algebraic fractions etc.  The emphasis is on working from concrete to abstract computation.  Science is an integral part of our elementary program. The children are taught to explore scientific concepts through the skills of observation, forming hypotheses, trial and error, measuring and interpretation of results.

Music, French and Yoga are part of our curriculum taught by specialists in those fields.

Montessori is a way of learning.  Dr. Montessori described her teaching as a ‘Help to Life”.  We at Forest Hills Montessori consider it to be a “Way of Life.”

Reopening for School in Person Instruction

  • A communication plan for students, parents and staff will be provided through emails and text.It will include information on ensuring students are taught and trained on following COVID-19 protocols such as hand hygiene, proper face covering wearing, social distancing and respiratory hygiene.Signage will communicate to students and staff regarding PPE especially acceptable face coverings.
  • Coordinator for communication is Sunila Tejpaul and Iris Bass for answering questions from students, staff and parents regarding COVID-19 health emergency and plans implemented by our school. All written materials will provide the coordinators contact information.
  • Fire Drills will continue to be conducted according to NYS guidelines with social distancing when appropriate.
  • The school will comply with the NYC building code.
  • Stairs and corridor doors with automatic closures will remain unchanged.
  • The school arrival and dismissal time will be staggered by grade to facilitate social distancing.
  • The school has central air conditioning and windows and doors in every classroom to be opened for increased ventilation.
  • Lunch will be brought from home and eaten in their classroom with the same group of children.
  • Social distancing of 6 feet while consuming meals. All teachers are trained in CPR for food allergies.
  • Students will wash hands with soap and water before and after eating, and there will be no sharing of food or beverages.

The tables and chairs will be cleaned and disinfected before and after lunch and periodically during the day.

Hands will also be washed after returning from the playground or after a walk.

Social Emotional Well-Being

We will provide Social Emotional learning (SEL) in all aspects of our school program.

This will be a priority for students, staff and parents.

As students return to the classroom, some children may be feeling anxiety or depression which could have a long reaching impact on their health and educational outcomes.

We will develop protocols to identify and support students well being and emotional health and stability.  This will be provided through direct instruction, discussions, books and role playing.

The teachers will attend professional development opportunities to help students communicate and develop coping skills in a positive manner.  This will help staff develop a better understanding of their role in the emotional well being of their students.

The program will be developed to meet the needs of various age groups within the school from PK-6 grade.

The SEL program will facilitate school achievement and growth to help students reach their full potential.


School Schedule

Our school schedule will be in person learning for our PK through Grade 3.

Grade 4-6 will be a hybrid model due to the class size to accommodate social distancing.

This will entail students groups alternating days and weeks.

Teachers will take attendance each day regardless of instruction setting


Pre-Kindergarten-Kindergarten

We are licensed through NYC DOHMH Child Care


1-6 Grades

Students will receive instruction to facilitate grade level and beyond.  All students will have daily contact with their teachers regardless of the format of instruction to meet all academic needs.

At this time there will be no afterschool extracurricular activities.

Monitoring of Health Conditions

  • Any person returning form states where COVID-19 infections is high will need to quarantine for 14 days and complete a health screening questionnaire.
  • Health screening one-time attestation must be filled out and signed prior to school beginning. (OCFS-6040)
  • Parents will be required to complete a daily symptom check on line for each child prior to entering the school.
  • At arrival time students temperature will be taken contactless before being allowed to enter the building. Any students temperature above 100 degrees will be sent home.  Students will sanitize their hands before entering the building and wash their hands before entering their class.
  • All staff will be required to monitor temperature and symptoms prior to arriving for work.
  • Masks will be required for all students and staff and will be provided if anyone does not have one with them.
  • Log Book will keep track of health check and daily COVID-19 screening
  • Staff performing in person screening will use PPE including face covering, gloves, gown and face shield.
  • Shoes, backpacks and other belongings will be sanitized every morning.
  • Temperatures will be taken again at midday.
  • Dilutable disinfectants used against Covid-19 and approved by the CDC will be used by staff to clean surfaces and supplies within the classroom every two hours.
  • Cleaning crews will clean the school daily using disinfectants especially high risk areas including restrooms.
  • A signed log will be kept for daily cleaning schedule.
  • Hands free trash receptacles will be used with a separate trash bin for used PPE.
  • High risk areas will be frequently cleaned and disinfected between uses.
  • Restrooms will be frequently cleaned and disinfected.
  • Hand sanitizer stations will be located throughout the building including classrooms and hallways.
  • In PK-K classrooms without bathroom in classroom accompany each child to bathroom and ensure proper hand washing protocols are followed.
  • Cots for naps should be sanitized daily and assigned to a specific student.
  • Provide students with individual sets of materials.
  • Social Distancing of 6ft will be ensured and students will remain in their own classroom with the same group of students for the entire day.
  • Signage on the floor will direct any traffic in the hallways.
  • Restroom will be one person at a time to ensure social distancing.
  • Deliveries will be at the doorstep only to limit contact.
  • No one except staff and students will be allowed in the building.
  • All students will have their own supplies and no sharing of objects will be permitted including computers.
  • The student desks and teacher’s desks in the elementary classes will have plexiglass dividers.
  • Remote instruction will be available for any students identified as having a serious preexisting medical condition recognized by the school and making school attendance a possible danger to one’s health.
  • Remote instruction will be available for any students with primary caregivers having a serious preexisting medical condition making the child’s school attendance a possible danger to the caregiver’s health.

Containment of potential transmission of COVID-19

  • Close off areas used by the person who is suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19.
  • Open outside door to increase air circulation in the area.
  • Clean and disinfect all areas used by the person suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19.
  • Any individual who screens positive for exposure or symptoms must be immediately sent home with instructions to contact health care provider for testing.
  • Proof of negative results is required before student or staff can be permitted to return to school.
  • Students must be immediately separated from other students in a separate area until they are picked up by parents. Staff will have visual supervision of student (socially distanced)
  • We will cooperate with the New York State Contact Tracing program.
  • School will immediately notify the state and local health department if it is confirmed positive.

Closure of School Facilities and In-Person Instruction

  • If schools are required to close due to an increase in widespread transmission, the classes will be converted to remote learning including Google classroom and zoom and video instruction.
  • The remote learning will be  in place during in person instruction so there will not be any lapse in instruction.
  • The students will also be sent work via email for homework and class work.
  • The administration and staff will be in constant communication with the parents.

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