Health Plan

PCPS Health Plan 2020

In All Phases PCPS will:

  • Establish and continue communication with local and state authorities to determine current mitigation levels in your community.
  • Identify, protect, and support vulnerable students and staff who are at higher risk for severe illness, by providing options for telework and virtual learning.
  • Provide teachers and staff from higher transmission areas (earlier Phase areas). Telework and other options are feasible to eliminate travel to schools in lower transmission (later Phase) areas and vice versa.
  • Ensure that external community organizations that use the facilities also follow this guidance.

Division COVID-19 Team

Dr. Lynn Clayton-Prince, Director of Special Education
Harriette Jamerson, RN, Division Nurse

All school nurses
Pocahontas Elementary School - Arla Thompson, RN
Powhatan Elementary School - Ashley Sloan, RN
Flat Rock Elementary School - Jennifer Lawson, RN
Powhatan Middle School - Harriette Jamerson, RN
Powhatan High School - Cathy Vaden, RN

Dr. Meredith Parker, Director of Human Resources
Dr. Jason Tibbs, Director of Facilities

School-Based COVID-19 Contact
Pocahontas Elementary School - Ella Helms
Powhatan Elementary School - Isabella Worrell
Flat Rock Elementary School - Dr. Martha Powers
Powhatan Middle School - Kathy Connor
Powhatan High School - Mike Barack

Powhatan County Public Schools in partnership with Powhatan County Health Department have followed necessary steps in accordance with CDC guidelines to enter into all phases of the Governors order. This document will be used as our Health Plan for students and staff.

Powhatan County Public Schools has established a COVID Team to review policies and practices with students and staff members. PCPS will also have a COVID-19 point of contact at each school. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) update guidance as needed during this fluid COVID 19 situation. Research on COVID 19 constantly emerges which in turn, changes practice. Individuals should consult local and state health departments as well as the CDC to keep current on changes to guidance.

PCPS nurses have participated in training to equip them in working with students and staff members as it relates to Health Services and COVID.

Nurses will be responsible for communicating with our Head Nurse-when they suspect that there is a student or staff member that has symptoms of COVID19. They will follow the procedures as directed in the flow chart (See Appendix)

When nurses are made aware of any new information from the CDC or VDH this information will be shared with the division COVID team and that information will be shared with staff, and parents when appropriate.

PCPS will be sending information home to parents to provide guidance on speaking with students about COVID19, social distancing, and the importance of and purpose of wearing a mask when needed.

Students and Staff will need to be trained on using the COVID flow chart, procedures for social distancing, and procedures for reporting cases when brought to their attention.

  • Adequate supplies to promote healthy hygiene habits at each school facility will be provided as available.
  • Signs and posters promoting healthy hygiene habits as well as COVID-19 symptoms will be displayed prominently both inside and outside of school facilities.
  • Staff will use cloth face coverings when physical distancing cannot be maintained whenever possible. Face shields will be used as an alternative when necessary and only with a documented need (e.g. teachers for deaf children).
  • Staff will use face shields when working with students who have hearing impairments.
  • Students must use cloth face coverings during any phase of a stay at home order. Cloth face coverings as is medically and developmentally appropriate will be used, when physical distancing cannot be maintained whenever possible.

PCPS custodial staff will be trained on and creating a cleaning schedule for each of our buildings.

Promoting Behaviors That Reduce Spread of COVID-19
Preventative measure signs will be posted in high-traffic areas to help educate students and staff. This will also be used to serve as a reminder of ways to prevent the spread of COVID-19. (Include recommended links)

Healthy Hygiene Practices
PCPS will promote and train staff members in using optimal healthy hygiene practices, including handwashing or the use of alcohol-based hand sanitizers. Student, staff, and volunteers in a school setting will be encouraged to wash hands or/use and sanitizer often:

  1. After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  2. After using the restroom.
  3. Before eating or preparing food.
  4. Before and after touching your face.
  5. After contact with animals or pets and playing outside.
  6. Before and after providing routine care for another person who needs assistance (e.g., a child)
  7. Before putting on and after removing gloves.
  8. After touching frequently touched areas (e.g., doorknobs, handrails, shared computers)
  9. Individuals providing health care with potentially infectious material, and before putting on and after removing PPE, including gloves. Hand hygiene after removing PPE is particularly important to remove any pathogens that might have been transferred to bare hands during the removal process.

Education Training Plan Students

Teachers/Administrators will be teaching students preventative measures in the classroom and school environment (handwashing, staying home if ill, etc.) Education should be part of staff and student orientations and to be sent to all parties before reopening schools and include

  • Hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette,
  • Use of cloth face coverings,
  • Staying home when sick,
  • Encouraging physical distancing.

Each school will be required to:

  • Maintain adequate supplies to promote healthy hygiene.
  • Provide signs and messaging to promote healthy hygiene.
  • Promote physical distancing
    • Modify layouts of classrooms, communal areas, and buses to ensure social distancing is maintained.
    • Develop strategies for food/dining services; these should be consistent with plans to optimize physical distancing.
    • Limit the size of gatherings consistent with Executive Orders and impose strict physical distancing places during gatherings.
    • Follow relevant Virginia Phase Guidance[1] for Schools and CDC guidance linked here ( for recreational sports for school-related sports and other recreational activities.

Maintaining Healthy Environments

  • Students will be required to be self-screened by parents/guardians before coming to school.
  • Hygiene Practices:
    • Cleaning and disinfection protocols will include frequently touched surfaces; transport vehicles; schedules for increased cleaning, routine cleaning, and disinfection; ensuring adequate cleaning supplies and correct use/storage.
    • Additional hand sanitizer/handwashing stations will be made available throughout the buildings.
    • Adequate supplies to minimize sharing to the extent possible will be adhered to (e.g. dedicated student supplies, lab equipment, computers, etc.).
    • Ventilation systems will be checked and maintained to ensure the circulation of outdoor air as much as possible.
    • Water systems and features have been monitored and cleaned after having prolonged facility shutdown.

Maintaining Healthy Operations

  • Provisions will be made for staff and children at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19.
  • Each school will establish guidelines as it relates to plans for gatherings, field trips, and volunteer restrictions consistent with any Executive Order in place.
  • Students will not be penalized for remaining home while being sick. They will need to follow the appropriate guidelines while being out.
  • Staff who are at a greater risk for illness based upon medical documentation will be given the option of telework if their role allows and their skillset is needed virtually.
  • Students who are at greater risk for illness or who are not comfortable wearing a mask will have the option of online learning or homebound instruction as deemed necessary by a health care provider
  • In-person gatherings will be limited to the number of individuals based on the most current Executive Order in effect. Social distancing will be followed to the greatest extent possible. Facial coverings will be required. Those who are ill or in quarantine based on CDC guidelines will not be allowed to attend. Signage will be posted to reflect all requirements. Virtual events will be encouraged in lieu of in-person gatherings. (e.g., student assemblies, special performances, school-wide parent meetings, and spirit nights)
  • Students who test positive for COVID-19, have a suspected case, or are in quarantine due to exposure will have the option of remote learning from home.
  • In anticipation of staff absences due to illness or quarantine, directors/leaders will decide which staff can be cross-trained to fill in.
  • Students and staff that are at risk due to medical conditions will be given options for a return to school or return to work when feasible.
  • When students are out of school due to illness
    • they will be offered remote learning, if possible.
    • they will have extra time to make up work or have extra instruction when they return
  • Upon receiving medical documentation confirming that an employee is at a higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19, the division has considered the following options to support employees:
    • modified job duties, if feasible telework, if the job duties allow

Preparing for When Someone Gets Sick

  • When a student presents symptoms of COVID -19 while in school they will be isolated from all other students.
  • Each school will be responsible for facilitating safe transportation of those who are sick to home or healthcare facility.
  • Each school/building will be responsible for cleansing and disinfection procedures of areas used by sick individuals.
  • The local health department will be notified to initiate public health investigation, contact tracing and consultation on next steps.

Communication in an outbreak/Positive Case (Staff)

  • When a case is brought to the attention of the Division COVID team we will follow the PCPS protocol to notify the Powhatan Health Department. (See Flow Chart Appendix  PCPS Screening Flowchart  PCPS Confirmation Process)
  • A student or staff member who has been in contact with any student or staff member who tests positive or who is presumed positive by a health care provider will be notified.
  • Notification and contact tracing will be led by the Powhatan Health Department. PCPS will assist the Health Department with this activity to the extent possible.
  • Visitors to the school will be prohibited unless essential. Essential visitors will be by appointment only and will conduct the health screening upon entering the building.
  • Students or staff presenting with COVID-19 symptoms will be assessed in a triage area of the clinic and if needed moved to a separate isolation room and will be required to wear a face covering as medically and developmentally appropriate.
  • The area will be designated with markings to ensure social distancing
  • A non-contact thermometer will be used
  • Staff members conducting triage should wear a medical-grade mask and should wear gloves if there is contact with the ill student. N95 masks will be used when commercially available.
  • A parent/guardian or other family-designated adult will be required to pick up ill children. In some cases, students who have a vehicle at school may be permitted to transport themselves.
  • The area will be cleaned after each student
  • Parents/guardians of students who have been out of school due to illness or quarantine must communicate with the school nurse before returning to school. If a student has tested positive, a medical clearance will be required. A medical provider clearance may be requested for other suspected illnesses.
  • The Powhatan County COVID team, in partnership with the Powhatan/Chesterfield Health Department, will provide guidance to PCPS regarding responding to and managing all Powhatan County employees affected by COVID-19 as the employer.
  • Staff members who test positive for COVID-19 or who are quarantined due to COVID-19 must communicate this information to Human Resources. Any employee who tests positive for COVID-19 will be required to provide medical documentation of a negative test before he or she is permitted to return to work.

PPE Supplies
PCPS has partnered with our County to provide appropriate PPE supplies for our offices and clinics. Students and staff will be required to bring/use their own face masks when entering the buildings. Extra face masks will be provided for buses and classrooms in the event that students do not bring them to school.

Preparations for Health Services
School nurses and assistants will have professional development before the opening of school to discuss plans for re-opening during COVID-19. Specific guidance will be provided on the following:

  • Signs and symptoms of COVID-19
  • Signs and symptoms of Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C)
  • Guidelines for when to call 911-emergency for COVID-19 symptoms
  • Interim CPR guidelines
  • The school nurse will contact the Health Department for consultation, as needed.
  • PPE is being obtained from various vendors and stored for use in the fall, to include:
    • Surgical masks or KN95 masks
    • Isolation gowns
    • Face shields
    • Non-latex gloves
    • Hand sanitizer
    • Safety goggles
    • N95 masks if commercially available.
    • Isolation rooms will be designated at each building and will be separate from the clinic (well-visits only).
  • School nurses will ensure that information about COVID-19 and safety precautions to mitigate the spread of the virus is posted throughout the building.

First Aid/Nurse Procedures
First Aid situations, to the degree possible, should be handled by the student and in the classroom to prevent office congregation and possible cross exposure:

  • Teachers and staff will be provided with first aid training.
  • Classrooms will be provided a supply of gloves, Band-Aids, etc.
  • To the extent possible, students provide self-care with staff direction and physical distancing.
  • Teachers will provide a mask (if needed) to students in the classroom who report not feeling well before sending them to the office.

The goal is to keep otherwise healthy students out of the clinic where they can be exposed to illness.


  • To maximize the transportation of students, one student will be permitted per seat.
  • All students must wear a face covering, as medically and developmentally appropriate.
  • Siblings, or those who live in the same household, may share a seat.
  • Bus drivers, bus attendants, and drivers of other county vehicles will use cloth face coverings while transporting students.
  • Buses that can safely open windows are encouraged to allow fresh air to circulate.
  • Protocols for cleaning and disinfecting buses and county vehicles after each route will be established and monitored.
  • Student field trips will be suspended.

 Download a copy of the PCPS Health Plan for Parents Students 2020 (PDF format)