Elementary School students and educators will be grouped into pods to allow for social distancing in classrooms and support contact tracing. The students grouped together in a pod will spend their entire school day together, primarily in a single classroom. Meals will most often be served in their classroom, but pods may eat meals together in the school’s cafeteria if they are able to social distance. If a space is used by multiple pods throughout the day, such as a cafeteria or gymnasium, that space will be thoroughly disinfected between uses.
Maintaining pods will be utilized in conjunction with other mitigation strategies including social distancing, wearing masks, and washing or sanitizing hands frequently and thoroughly with soap and water. If teachers are seeing multiple pods, they will adhere to social distancing guidelines to the greatest extent possible. Diverse learner teachers and clinicians will update their schedules to minimize the number of pods they encounter to the extent feasible. Specials teachers will be scheduled to interact with a maximum of ten pods.
If there is a positive case within a pod, it must be documented in a report available at cps.edu/covidresults. An investigation will be conducted to identify the infectious period of the individual, and next steps will be communicated to the school community. This may result in quarantining an entire pod depending on the results of the investigation.