Broward County Emergency Order 20-01 Questions and Answers
Where is the actual language of Broward County's Emergency Order?
What does the order mean by "to the extent possible"?
The phrase "to the extent possible" in general means that there may be circumstances where minor adjustments must be made. Teachers will have to go to the bathroom and take breaks. Children may be on site more hours than staff, etc. CCLE has been informed that some of the cities in Broward are completely closing child care facilities that they observe not complying with the 10-person rule. We are asking providers to govern themselves accordingly to protect themselves. The difficult decisions that are being made now by providers may have great impact on them in the long run.
When keeping children in separate rooms, what do we do about shared bathrooms or common areas?
Shared bathrooms are not prohibited. Providers should ensure that the bathroom facilities are sanitized between use. Common areas are prohibited by the guidelines if used by multiple groups. Each group is limited to a maximum of 10 people including the children and the teachers. A common area can be used for a group of 10 if it is a separate area that no one has to go through to access other rooms.
Does a "stable group" mean the class is the same group of children/ teachers each day?
The phrase "stable group" means that the same children and teachers are together for the day. If your enrollment is staggered and different children are in care on different days, each group should always comply with the 10-person rule.
Does a large outdoor playground count as a common area and need to be sanitized? How should we do that?
If a playground has fences/walls separating it into distinct separate areas, then they can be used for different groups at the same time. Teachers should work closely with children to ensure that they are not playing near the fence to limit their exposure to children on the adjacent playground. If here is no wall or fence then the whole playground regardless of size, is one space and only one group of 10 can be on it at the same time. Surface areas that children touch should be sanitized between groups. While there is no specific limitation to the use of water fountains, during this crisis, providers are strongly encouraged to use coolers and paper cups rather than water fountains indoors and outdoors.
If we have 12 children and 1 teacher is this ok, or should we tell 2 of the children not to come in? What if they have to go to work?
Twelve children with one teacher is not compliant with the temporary guidelines. Providers have reported a variety of strategies for limiting the groups of children. Some providers have staggered enrollment. Some have had alternate days. Some have limited their enrollment to prioritize children of first responders and other essential personnel. As independent business owners/operators, you are in the best position to determine what is best for your clientele and your community.
Can we open our doors to everyone, or just to "essential workers"?
There is no guideline that limits you to providing care to essentials workers only. There is also no rule that limits you from enrolling new children during this crisis. CCLE is not requiring that you be inspected prior to adding drop-in children or school age children to your program at this time.
Does the regulation take into account that Directors and Asst Directors will need to move in between classrooms to maintain oversight during the day?
During this crisis it is especially important that directors maintain a presence in the classrooms. Teachers are under a lot of stress and need reassurance, support and breaks. Directors should do their best to model good infection control practices by washing their hands before entering each room each time.
Can we have mixed age groups in one classroom?
There is no guideline prohibiting providers from mixing multiple ages in one group provided that the group complies with minimum ratio requirements. Some providers mix children in the beginning and the end of the day. In this scenario, children are not in stable groups and therefore the facility is not in compliance with the guideline.
Besides taking temperature of children before entering, washing hands, cleaning and disinfecting, are there any other precautions we should take?
Providers need to use their best judgement regarding any additional measures to take to safely serve their children and staff. They should stay informed as the landscape changes daily and try and be supportive and reassuring to their teachers, children, family members and each other. This is a time for providers to work closely together whenever possible.
Will anyone from licensing come out to make changes to our capacity?
Increasing capacity does require an on-site inspection as a measurement of the area is required as well as confirmation that any other standards impacted by the increase are in compliance (e.g. number of sinks, toilets, playground space, etc.). At this time, CCLE is not conducting inspections to increase capacity. If you feel that you have a special circumstance that might warrant a waiver to this, please contact me directly at email@example.com