COVID Exposure at Pathways for Children Identified and Communicated

When Pathways for Children moved to total remote operations per the Governor’s mandate, staff quickly sprang into action beginning the intensive planning involved in assuring the safest possible environment for the return of staff and the children entrusted to our care.  On July 20, Pathways Emerson Avenue site safely reopened with strict health and safety protocols that are rigidly adhered to.  In spite of months of preparation and adherence to protocols, the Board of Health notified us yesterday, October 12th, that an individual that was on site on Friday, October 9th, has tested positive for the virus.    Pathways leadership convened a zoom meeting that same evening with a Public Health Nurse from Gloucester’s Board of Health to discuss next steps and confirm that all who may have been exposed had been contacted and directed to self-quarantine for 14 days.  Pathways immediately implemented the following actions for the safety of all.

  • Pathways notified all staff and parents of our Emerson location of the positive test on the evening of October 12.
  • Deep cleaning was implemented on October 12.
  • Agency leadership maintained contact with staff from the Gloucester Board of Health throughout.

Eric Mitchell, Pathways Vice President and Public Information Officer, shared that extreme measures are in place to guard against cross-contamination possibilities in the agency.  For example:

  • Admittance to our facilities is strictly limited to only Pathways staff and children, with the infrequent exception of necessary contractors who follow our protocols.
  • Children and front line staff have temperatures taken daily and all staff and families submit a self-attestation form confirming they are symptom free and are not aware of any possible exposure.
  • Children arrive on a staggered schedule by classroom and are met by staff from their classroom at the door and escorted to their room where co-teachers await them. The classroom is self-contained for the day, with only the staff assigned specifically to that room able to be present in the room for more than ten minutes at a time.
  • Staff wear masks AT ALL TIMES unless alone in an office with door closed, practice strict hand-washing guidelines and assist children with the same, and physically distance from other staff even when wearing masks.

Please direct any questions on this matter to Eric Mitchell at emitchell@pw4c.org.

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