COVID-19 Response » Temporary Face Covering Requirements at Oak Grove

Temporary Face Covering Requirements at Oak Grove

PLEASE CLICK BELOW FOR A VIDEO ANNOUNCEMENT FROM THE BOARD PRESIDENT:

Dear Oak Grove families,


I mentioned in my July 2 and July 13 forum posts that we were unsure how the Knox County Board of Health face covering order would affect our reopening plans. Obviously, this is an important question for many families so we have been working on it daily since the beginning of the month. Yesterday, we received instructions from Cokesbury Church regarding what is allowable in United Methodist Church facilities. This was the final piece of information necessary to publish our plan. 


Please see the plan below. I encourage you to reach out to me with any questions or concerns.


Thanks for supporting Oak Grove during this challenging time,


Stephen


Face Covering Requirement at Oak Grove

Oak Grove will require face coverings (masks or shields) for all students, teachers, staff, and visitors in spaces where social distancing cannot be maintained. This temporary requirement will be lifted as soon as circumstances allow. 


The co-op administration is looking at every part of the school day to try and minimize the amount of time that face coverings will have to be worn by students. This will be a work in progress over the next two weeks. Please know that we are committed to having the best social interactions among our staff and students. Please share your good ideas with us about how to do this and if you have any special skills or materials you think could help, please let us know (stephenstjohn@oakgrovecoop.com). 


One leading idea is to purchase plexiglass barriers for the tables in our classrooms, so we are prioritizing that as a possibility. We will also encourage the use of breakout spaces in the building and procure equipment to support teachers taking advantage of outdoor space whenever possible. The co-op will provide the option of clear face shields for teachers and staff so students can see their faces.


Oak Grove remains focused on our mission to provide the best classroom and homeschool instruction. As part of this mission, our goal is to safely open our classrooms on August 10. In order to open on time we must wear face coverings for three reasons:

 
1. Cokesbury Church and the Holston United Methodist Conference require people aged two and older to wear face coverings inside their facilities when social distancing is not possible. We are grateful for our partnership with Cokesbury Church and want to support them in their initiative.
 
2. The Knox County Board of Health’s July 1st order requires face coverings for everyone 12 years of age and older. This does apply to private educational facilities like ours. 
 
3. While there are many differing opinions, both expert and otherwise, wearing face coverings allows us to proceed with an abundance of caution for student safety.