Education & Childcare Health Guidelines
The Navigator’s Office and the Hawaiʻi Department of Human Services have released comprehensive guidance for child care facilities to reopen or continue care. This guidance is meant to support Hawaiʻi child care businesses to prepare and effectively manage the safety of employees and children as they resume operations during the continuing COVID-19 pandemic. The Navigator’s office participated in a collaborative effort between Hawaiʻi child care providers, the Department of Health and the Department of Human Services to ensure that these guidelines represent CDC and WHO recommendations and incorporate as much local input as possible. Our objective is to provide an understanding of how businesses can comply with Hawaiʻi state government guidelines, following the announcement of the Beyond Recovery reopening plan on May 18, 2020 by the Office of the Governor.
On pages 5-9, the Child Care Health Guidelines document includes the same measures as the Guidelines for Child Care Facilities as well as additional information, web links and resources to support implementation.
Both documents, originally released on May 26, 2020, have been updated as of June 9, 2020 with provisions to allow for child care group sizes and staff-child ratios that adhere to the Department of Human Services’ existing administrative rule chapters 17-891.1, 17-892.1, 17-896, and 17-895 in alignment with Governor Ige’s Supplementary Emergency Proclamations. The guidelines updated June 9, 2020 continue to include other existing public health measures to minimize risk to children, staff, and families when resuming or continuing operations. Child care facilities and homes statewide are to follow the Department of Human Services’ specific guidelines rather than the counties’ general guidelines.
These health guidelines are a work in progress and strictly meant to be recommendations for public health and safety.
Frequently Asked Questions
For organizations that are interested in operating emergency child care services for essential workers and are not already licensed by DHS to operate a group child care facility, they may submit an inquiry at [email protected] and provide information for DHS to determine whether the program will need to be licensed by DHS.
These issues are being discussed by state and complex leadership. More guidance will be provided at a future date as the state moves closer to recovery from the stay-at-home quarantine period. The needed extent of HIDOE actions cannot be fully realized until the length of the school closure period becomes clearer.
USDA intends to use all available program flexibilities and contingencies to serve our program participants across our 15 nutrition programs. We have already begun to issue waivers to ease program operations and protect the health of participants. See the FNS website for more information.
Yes, in place of traditional in-person classroom instruction, teachers are utilizing an instructional enrichment approach that will continue to engage students in a modified approach to learning until school buildings can reopen. This enrichment will involve a mixed methodology approach, such as independent projects, study packets, distance learning, and e-conferencing, with an increased utilization of technology to the extent possible. The Hawai’i Department of Education recognizes that some students will need opportunities beyond enrichment to meet graduation or promotion requirements, and guidance has been shared for providing such accommodations.
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