Reopening Guidance Fall 2020

What is the Alabama Department of Early Childhood Education (ADECE) plan for school reopening in Fall 2020?
• Our goal is to mitigate the impact to child development and student learning, to the extent possible, should closures become necessary in the future. We will continue to monitor the situation and provide specific guidance to ADECE-funded programs should closures become necessary during the
2020-2021 school year.

What guidance will ADECE-funded programs receive for site(s) reopening and/or closure?
• All ADECE-funded programs must follow guidance from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH).
• First Class Pre-K program-specific guidance will be outlined in the ADECE Reopening Guidance, in coordination and alignment with the ALSDE School Reopening Recommendations.
• Additional guidance will be provided for those First Class Pre-K programs not situated within public school systems.

How will ADECE-funded programs receive guidance for what to do in case of a teacher, student, and/or staff member testing positive for COVID-19?
• All ADECE-funded programs must follow guidance from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH).
• First Teacher Home Visiting programs will follow their national model-specific guidance from HIPPY, PAT and NFP and their program-specific policies.

How will ADECE-funded programs receive personal protective equipment (PPE) in accordance with following CDC guidance?
• All ADECE-funded programs are individually responsible for procuring personal protective equipment (PPE) to ensure compliance with guidance from the CDC and the Alabama Department of Public Health.

What is ADECE’s Academic Continuity Plan: Home Instruction for Early Learning?
• As we continue to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic’s implications on Alabama public schools, the ALSDE surveyed Local Education Agencies (LEA) superintendents, as well as researched other states’ plans of assistance to help districts navigate the upcoming 2020-2021 school year.
• In coordination with our K-12 partners, the ADECE developed an Academic Continuity Plan to assist the following in providing guidance to support home instruction/distance learning for the completion of this 2019-2020 school year: Public schools; Private child care and schools; Head Start programs; Community-based programs; Faith-based programs; and Military programs.

Click here for ADECE COVID-19 Guidance and the Academic Continuity Plan.

How will we support remote learning for First Class Pre-K, First Teacher Home Visiting, and other ADECE-funded programs?
• First Class Pre-K will coordinate and align with the remote learning guidelines and resources provided by the ALSDE School Reopening Recommendations.
• ADECE-funded First Teacher Home Visiting programs will be able to continue providing remote/virtual visits as long as that mode of service delivery is approved by the models they are using as well as their funders. First Teacher Home Visiting programs will continue to follow guidance issued
by both the national models and HRSA/MIECHV and ADECE.

Can the Teaching Strategies™ GOLD® assessment for First Class Pre-K be done virtually if needed?
• The GOLD® assessment tool can be adapted for at-home and distance learning. ADECE will provide further details in our Reopening Guidelines.
What materials are needed for remote learning?
• In coordination with ALSDE and DHR, we will provide and continue to support remote/virtual professional learning for all coaches and teachers, and we are exploring a singular state-wide virtual learning platform for all families.
• ADECE and partner organizations will explore providing materials and supplies for families to engage with while at home, utilizing the Teaching Strategies™ GOLD® Family Engagement Platform for traditional and virtual learning.
• First Teacher Home Visiting program staff and families will need access to a cellular phone or other 2-way electronic device. Ideally, visits should be completed utilizing 2-way, video communication but if that is not possible a phone call will suffice. For some models, families may need to
capability to download an application (APP) on their phone to access model curriculum. Programs may also choose to either use contactless delivery on-site pick-up procedures to provide families with resources and materials they may require to complete visits.

How will teachers and families be supported through virtual delivery and/or remote learning?
• First Class Pre-K and Pre-K – 3rd Grade Integrated Approach to Early Learning (P-3): In coordination with the ALSDE, we will be utilizing the statewide remote/virtual learning platform for teachers and families, and/or other learning devices may be provided by the program, as well as
required materials and supplies to continue home instruction for early learning.
• First Teacher Home Visiting: Programs will continue to receive support from ADECE, MIECHV, national models (HIPPY USA, Parents as Teachers and Nurse Family Partnership), as well as from multiple national outlets such as ASTHVI and HV ImpACT.

How will teachers receive required professional development hours?
• All ADECE-offered professional development/professional learning for new and current educators and ADECE staff will continue through online and virtual learning platforms.
• Professional development will be provided for teachers using both traditional and virtual/remote learning platforms. Teachers are expected to engage with families throughout any period of virtual/remote learning. Coaches, teachers, and parents will receive support with data collection for
GOLD® assessment tool.
• First Teacher Home Visiting staff can receive professional development by completing courses on the Institute for the Advancement of Family Support Professionals website.

What support can educators and families expect?
• Educators and families can expect mental health support from the School Based Mental Health (SBMH) program and is dependent on capacity of each LEA.
• Infant & Early Childhood Mental Health (IECMH) Consultants will be available for in-person visits as well as virtual consultations to school staff and families.
• Families will continue to receive home visiting services and enhanced referrals to agencies to assist in meeting whatever needs that arise.