A warm welcome to our new and returning ABECC Bulldogs! We look forward to working with all of our incoming preschool and kindergarten students and their families this school year. We are here to help keep all of our students healthy and to take care of them when they get those bumps and bruises along the way. Please take a few minutes to review the information listed on our webpage. You can reach us via phone or email if you have any questions or concerns about your child. Thank you!
- COVID Symptoms & Guidelines
- If Your Child has COVID-like Symptoms...
- Important Covid Mitigation Factors
- When to Call the School Nurse
- Head Lice
- Kindergarten/Preschool Requirements for School Entry
We are all connected and we rely on one another to stay well. If you are experiencing any illness or symptoms, you must stay at home.
Below is the full list of symptoms for which caregivers should monitor their children, and staff should monitor themselves.
- Fever (100.0° Fahrenheit or higher), chills or shaking chills
- Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
- New loss of taste or smell
- Muscle aches or body aches
- Cough (not due to other known causes, such as a chronic cough)
- Sore throat, when in combination with other symptoms
- Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea when in combination with other symptoms
- Headache when in combination with other symptoms
- Fatigue, when in combination with other symptoms
- Nasal congestion or runny nose (not due to other known causes, such as allergies) when in combination with other symptoms
If you have any questions, an on-call nurse will be available between 6:00-8:00 am at 978-794-4842, or you can call your school nurse during school hours
Unvaccinated individuals and any close contacts presenting these symptoms should follow testing and quarantine response protocols as outlined in Section 2 of the August 13, 2021, DESE/DPH Protocols for Responding to COVID19 Scenarios SY21-22.
Vaccinated individuals who are not close contacts should follow the testing and quarantine response protocols if they are experiencing symptoms in bold. These individuals may also seek clinical guidance to assess the need for PCR testing if they have other symptoms on this list.
If your child has traveled outside of Massachusetts please follow the Commonwealth's COVID-19 Travel Advisory.
A list of test sites is available here, and Massachusetts also has an interactive testing map. If they are tested and receive positive results please notify your school nurse ASAP. You should also contact your child’s primary care provider for further instruction.
What to do if your child has COVID-like symptoms?
Symptoms include: fever (100* or higher), cough, sore throat, new loss of taste or smell, new onset severe headache, muscle aches/body aches, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
Fatigue (in combination with other symptoms)
Nasal congestion not due to other known causes (in combination with other symptoms)
If your child has Covid-like symptoms, we recommend that your child get tested for COVID-19 as soon as possible. If your child does not get tested, they must remain at home for a minimum of 10 days from the onset of symptoms.
Local testing sites available:
- LGH Mobile Testing Unit
- Lawrence Community COVID-19 Testing Center
70 General Street, Lawrence, MA
Monday - Friday. 9 am – 4:30 pm
Free, drive-thru, no appointment needed
- AFC Urgent Care North Andover
129 Turnpike St, North Andover, MA
Rapid and Molecular Testing
Book your COVID-19 test online (Check with your insurance carrier for associated costs)
- Or call your pediatrician for referral to another local testing site. Some pediatrician offices are doing rapid testing in the office.
Many of our families have reported having a good experience at the drive through site at Lawrence General. Wait times vary and general estimates are posted on their website. There is no appointment necessary and the testing is free. However, it is important to read the instructions about setting up a Patient Portal for your student if they don’t already have one. You will not be given access to the Patient Portal for your minor children without filling out a "proxy" form. Without access to the patient portal, you may have to wait 3-5 days for results. If you sign up for the portal, results are generally available within 24 hours. Please visit the Lawrence General Hospital Medical Records website for more information on this process: https://www.lawrencegeneral.org/your-visit/before-you-arrive/patient-medical-records
Once you receive the results from the COVID test:
You must provide a copy of your child’s negative results to the school nurse prior to returning to school. You can email the results to DoodyK@northandoverpublicschools.com or DonovanB@northandoverpublicschools.com.
Your child must stay home until their symptoms improve and they must be fever-free for 24 hours without medication.
There will be a required minimum 10-day isolation period
If your student receives a positive test, please notify the school nurse so the district can begin contact tracing
The public health department will contact you to begin tracking and monitoring your symptoms.
If you have any questions, please contact us during school hours (978-794-1577)
The on-call nurse is available for questions between 6am and 8am at 978-794-4842.
We all have an important role to play in order to keep our students in school this year. In addition to the daily symptom check, masks, physicaldistancing, frequent hand washing, and frequent cleaning/disinfecting are all key measures to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. We are asking each family to familiarize themselves with the new guidelines our district has put into place for the health and safety of the entire school community.
- All students and staff over the age of 5 will be required to wear a face covering that fits snuggly, but comfortably and covers the mouth and nose. Exceptions will be made for physician documented medical/behavioral reasons. Your student should arrive to school wearing a mask and we ask that you send in at least one extra in case they need to change their mask at some point during the school day.
- For the safety of all, we strongly encourage masks for preschool students under the age of 5. Please start practicing with them at home and send them to school with a mask. We will work with them to increase their mask tolerance.
- Mask breaks will occur throughout the day and students will have the option to take their masks off when they are outside for recess and physical education. Staff will work with students in a developmentally appropriate way to increase their mask tolerance if it is something that they are struggling with in the classroom.
- Students and staff will be required to wash or sanitize their hands upon arrival to the school, before eating, before putting on and taking off masks, and prior to dismissal.
- Hand washing is the preferred method for removing germs, however, soap and water are not always readily available. When hand washing is not possible, students will be asked to use hand sanitizer at school. Hand sanitizers are considered to be over the counter (OTC) medications. If you do NOT want your student to use hand sanitizer while at school please sign and return the Hand Sanitizer Opt Out Letter.
- Our goal is to maintain a physical distance of 3 feet between individuals when possible.
- Students will be seated 3 feet apart in classrooms.
If you have questions about whether or not you should send your student to school, a nurse will be available by phone before the start of school for any questions.
The nurse on call will be available from 6 am-8 am and can be reached at: 978-794-4842 (please call us directly at ABECC if it’s after 8)
We feel strongly that you as parents/caregivers will play a significant role in helping us to make this year a smooth and successful experience for every member of our school community. It is critical that you screen your student for Covid-19 symptoms each and every day before school, and that we are provided with at least three phone numbers for contact persons who are available to pick your child up immediately if they become ill at school.
As you discuss starting school with your children, please encourage them to practice wearing a facial covering, good hand hygiene, and demonstrating proper social distancing of 3 feet before the school year begins. We look forward to getting to know your children and watching them grow and learn and thrive in this new normal.
Please reach out with any questions or concerns.
In addition to communicating any Covid symptoms, please contact the school nurse if your child
- has a contagious disease, such as strep throat, flu, or chicken pox. This information will help us take necessary steps to protect the health of other students.
- is hospitalized
- is excused from physical education.
- has an injury or illness that may require accommodations during the school day. Examples:
- An injury that restricts mobility (e.g., casts, crutches, wheelchairs)
- An illness that affects a child's ability to function in school for a full day such as a concussion, infectious mononucleosis (mono), Lyme disease, or recent surgery
Medications (both prescription and over-the-counter drugs) should not be taken during school hours if it is possible to administer them at home. If your child requires a medication to be given during the school day, it must be brought in by an adult. Please do NOT send medications in via backpack! We have standing orders for some medications (acetaminophen and ibuprofen) which we may administer as needed in school after consulting with a parent/guardian. For all other medications we need to have signed parent permission and an MD order. These forms can be found on the district website under Health Services.
Our goal is to have our students outside for recess whenever possible. If it is raining, snowing, or extreme cold the students will stay in for recess. Otherwise, please prepare for the students to go out. They should be dressed appropriately for the weather. Proper footwear is also very important for this age group. Closed toe sneakers/shoes are much better for moving around on the playground. Jackets, hats, gloves and even snow pants and boots should be worn when needed.
Healthy eyes and vision are very important to a child’s early development and education. Growing children constantly use their eyes, both at play and in the classroom. Often vision problems in children are not obvious. Poor vision can cause headaches, fatigue, and may cause children to be more distracted in class. Vision screening is the best way to catch problems early. In accordance with Massachusetts Department of Health policies, we screen children annually in grades K-5, then again in grade 7 and grade 10. We also screen all of our preschool students.
The American Academy of Pediatrics has approved the use of instrument based screening for children up to age 5. This year, all kindergarten and preschool students will be tested using the Spot Vision Screener. This is a hand held device that takes a series of photos of the child’s eyes. By analyzing those images, the machine determines if the eye measurements are "in range" or "out of range."
Kindergarten students will also have their hearing screened.
These screenings are not diagnostic. If your child does not pass the school vision or hearing screening, you will be notified that your child needs to be referred to a specialist for further evaluation. It is important to make an appointment and return the referral form to the nurse's office when completed so that we can keep your child's health record up to date and make any recommended educational accommodations.
If you would like to exclude your child from any of these screenings, please send a note to the school nurse.
Children must be treated and checked by the school nurse before returning to school. Prevention is the key to controlling this pesky problem. Please inspect your child's hair frequently and call the school nurse if you have any questions.
Click on the Head Lice article below for more info.
The following are requirements from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health for school entry:
Documentation of a current physical exam (dated within one year).
Current preschool families: If you submitted a physical when your child started our preschool program, we need an updated physical for kindergarten (please submit a copy from their 5 year old well visit).
Massachusetts State Law requires that all immunizations must be up to date for children to attend school. Physician offices are open and pediatricians want to see their patients. Please schedule an appointment if your child is due for their well visit or if they need to catch up on any immunizations. If you have any barriers to getting your student's vaccinations on time, please contact us. We can help connect you to local health centers.
Preschool Entry Requirements:
Hib: 1-4 doses; the number of doses is determined by vaccine product and age the series began
DTaP: 4 doses
Polio: 3 doses
Hepatitis B: 3 doses; laboratory evidence of immunity acceptable
MMR: 1 dose; laboratory evidence of immunity acceptable
Varicella: 1 dose; a physician documented case of chickenpox or laboratory evidence of immunity acceptable
Kindergarten Entry Requirements:
DTaP: 5 doses; 4 doses acceptable if the 4th dose is given on or after the 4th birthday.
Polio: 4 doses
Hepatitis B: 3 doses; laboratory evidence of immunity acceptable
MMR: 2 doses; laboratory evidence of immunity accepted.
Varicella: 2 doses; a physician documented case of chickenpox or laboratory evidence of immunity acceptable
LAB TEST REQUIREMENTS
Every child entering kindergarten and preschool must have documentation of a lead test.
Lead tests are typically done between the ages of 9-12 months, and 2-3 years.
If your child has not had a lead test, ask your healthcare provider to test your child or you can contact your local health clinic for a lead test.
Each school-aged child in a Massachusetts public or private school should have a TB Risk Assessment completed and documented on the school health form.
Anne Bradstreet Early Childhood Center
115 Phillips Brooks Road
North Andover, MA 01845
978-794-1577 - Main Number
978-738-1324 - Main Office Fax
When should you keep your child home from school?
Please see the Reasons for Dismissal/Exclusion