Sunnybrook Montessori School

Montessori preschool & kindergarten in New Hampshire's North Country

COVID-19 Policies (subject to change)

Downloadable version for printing can be accessed here: COVID-19 POLICIES




Daily health screenings to ensure children and teachers with any symptoms remain at home are foundational to the prevention of the transmission of COVID-19 at Sunnybrook. Teachers will be educated about the symptoms of COVID-19 and will monitor themselves and students for any signs or symptoms.

We ask all families to examine their child prior to arriving at school using the checklist on page 18.

Health checks shall be conducted by a teacher as soon as the child arrives, before lunch, and whenever a change in the child’s behavior or appearance is noted while at Sunnybrook. Teachers will wear a mask to take each child’s temperature, do a visual check for symptoms, and may question the adult or child about symptoms and contact with any COVID positive person or travel to high risk areas. Contactless forehead thermometers will be used for temperature checks. If a fever is indicated, an ear thermometer may be used to verify temperature.

Any child or teacher with a temperature of 100⁰ or higher or any of the following symptoms will be excluded from school for at least 24 hours after all symptoms have passed. (Please note these symptoms are subject to change as recommended by the CDC).

  • Chills
  • Sweats
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or chest tightness
  • Body aches
  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Loss of taste and/or smell
  • Severe nasal congestion/runny nose
  • Severe sore throat
  • Severe headache

Any child or teacher exhibiting two symptoms from the list below, or one symptom from the list below and one from the list above, will be excluded from school until 24 hours after all symptoms have passed.

  • Mild Nasal congestion/runny nose
  • Mild sore throat
  • Mild headache

We understand that these symptoms, particularly congestion or runny nose, may simply be a cold or allergies, but we know that in most children and some adults, symptoms of COVID-19 may be especially mild.  Because runny noses occur often in childhood, we recognize the hardship this may place on families. If you suspect your child’s symptoms are due to allergies, please consult your child’s physician and get a note verifying that the child is affected by allergies and is safe to return to school.

Do NOT give your child a fever reducing medicine and send your child to school. This could potentially put all other children and teachers at risk and would be grounds for instant expulsion from Sunnybrook.

We ask that you work with your child when outside school to practice appropriate hand hygiene, social distancing, and keeping hands off faces and out of mouths while in public to prevent contracting illnesses.

A daily health screening checklist is attached for your reference on page 18.


Any child who develops a fever or other symptoms of illness or COVID-19 while at school will immediately be masked (if symptoms allow) and removed from the classroom to await a family member or emergency contact pick up. After the child is removed from the classroom, any materials or surfaces the child contacted will be cleaned and disinfected to the best of our ability.

A teacher will record the symptomatic person’s temperature and perform a brief assessment of the person’s complaints or symptoms (this is important for a public health investigation if the person is confirmed to have COVID-19).

When the pickup person arrives, we ask that you ring the doorbell and a teacher will bring your child to you.

We will minimize the child’s contact with teachers and items while waiting and exiting the building. After the sick child has left, any additional areas and surfaces that the child contacted will be cleaned and disinfected. 

The teacher will change clothes and wash hands and exposed skin before returning to the classroom.


All teachers will be tested for COVID-19 prior to the start of school, monthly thereafter, and whenever any signs or symptoms of COVID-19 manifest.

If a teacher is found positive for COVID-19, all families will be notified immediately, and all other teachers will be tested for COVID-19.  The teacher will self-quarantine at home for a minimum of 14 days or until all symptoms have stopped and the teacher tests negative for COVID-19.

If any teacher or student at Sunnybrook tests positive for COVID-19, Sunnybrook will close immediately for a two-week quarantine.


To minimize adults in the classroom and prevent drop off and pick up crowding, please follow the guidelines below.

For MORNING DROP OFF families are asked to remain in their vehicles and form a drop off line.  When it is your turn, please pull up horizontally at the driveway entrance. A teacher will meet the child in the vehicle and conduct the health screening. If there is no teacher outside, call 788-3884 to say you are waiting. If the child passes the health screening, the teacher will remove the child from the vehicle and escort them into the building, where they will wash hands and enter the classroom. If the child has a temperature of 100⁰ or higher, or COVID-19 symptoms as described in section 1, the child will return home.

For some families, this may be a smoother drop off.  For others, they may need/prefer to pull up to the parking area and escort their children.  After the health check, parents may depart or park and walk their child/children into the building and to the classroom door to say goodbye. Masks shall be worn when entering the building.  Only one family may enter the building at a time. Please be attentive to parked vehicles to determine if a family is inside before exiting your vehicle. Family members will remain outside the classroom while dropping off.

For EARLY CARE DROP OFF when there is only one teacher present, the adult bringing the child will wear a mask. The adult will ring the doorbell upon entering the building and escort the child to the classroom door where the teacher will conduct the health check.

For OUTSIDE PICK UP please wear a mask and stand 6 feet apart from others while you wait for your child to be released at the gate.

For INSIDE PICK UP please ring the doorbell and stand by the front window to the classroom so we can see who has arrived. Students will be released at the building entrance as they are ready. Teachers will have children begin to prepare for departure 10 minutes prior to scheduled pick up.  Please practice social distancing while waiting for your child

For INSIDE AFTER CARE PICK UP families shall arrive on time to collect their child. The teacher will have the child begin to prepare for departure 10 minutes prior to pick up so the child should be ready upon the adult’s arrival. The adult will ring the doorbell, enter the building, and wait outside the classroom door. The child will be released by the teacher at the classroom door.  If pick up time changes, please inform the teacher in the morning or call the school at 788-3884 to give an updated pick up time so the teacher can properly schedule the child’s preparations.

If you are PICKING UP AN ILL CHILD outside of the typical pick up time, please give the teacher an estimated arrival time. Upon arrival ring the doorbell and wait for a teacher to escort your child to the building entrance.


We will limit adults in the classroom by having families drop off from vehicles and pick up outside as much as possible. 

The open-door policy is suspended for the time being.

Unless otherwise scheduled/necessary, only the four classroom teachers, the sign language teacher, and the Spanish teacher will enter the classroom while children are present.


COVID-19 is broken down by properly washing hands with soap and water.  (This podcast helps explain the virus and how handwashing with soap works: Teachers will educate and regularly remind children about proper hand washing routines and shall supervise handwashing as it takes place.  Teachers will schedule hand washing supervision duties to ensure a designated teacher ensures proper handwashing takes place.

Children and teachers will wash hands daily:

Children and teachers should wash their hands using the following method:

  1. Check to be sure a clean, disposable paper towel is available.
  2. Turn on clean, running water to a comfortable temperature.
  3. Moisten hands with water and apply liquid soap to hands.
  4. Rub hands together vigorously until a soapy lather appears (hands are out of the water stream) and continue for at least 20 seconds (count slowly to 20 or sing “Happy Birthday to You” twice). Rub areas between fingers, around nail beds, under fingernails, and on back of hands.
  5. Rinse hands under clean, running water that is at a comfortable temperature until they are free of soap and dirt. Leave the water running while drying hands.
  6. Dry hands with the clean, disposable paper towel.
  7. Turn faucets off with knuckles or a disposable paper towel.
  8. Throw disposable paper towels into a lined trash container.

Use of antimicrobial soap is not recommended in early care and education settings. There is no data to support use of antibacterial soaps over other liquid soaps. Premoistened cleansing towelettes do not effectively clean hands and should not be used as a substitute for washing hands with soap and running water.

When running water is unavailable or impractical, the use of alcohol-based hand sanitizer is a suitable alternative. The use of alcohol-based hand sanitizers is an alternative to traditional handwashing (with soap and water) if

  1. Soap and water are not available, and hands are not visibly dirty.
  2. Hands are rubbed together, distributing sanitizer to all hand and finger surfaces, and allowed to air-dry.

Alcohol-based hand sanitizers will contain at least 60% alcohol and be kept out of reach of children. Active supervision of children is required to monitor effective use and to avoid potential ingestion or inadvertent contact with eyes and mucous membranes.


Commonly touched surfaces will be cleaned regularly.

To sanitize the eating surface, the ENTIRE table will be sprayed with bleach-water solution and left at least 2 minutes before wiping with a disposable towel or allowed to air dry to allow the solution to kill germs. 

  • Any toys that are mouthed will immediately be removed and placed in a bin for washing with soap and water, dunked in a sanitizing bleach solution, then left to air dry.
  • Any bodily fluids, including saliva, urine, blood, etc. will be promptly cleaned up and the area disinfected with a bleach solution or 70% ethyl alcohol.
  • Efforts to maintain humidity levels at 40-60% will be made using a dehumidifier or humidifier as research demonstrates that an environment of 50% relative humidity may contribute to lower viral transmission rates.


  • ¼ tsp bleach & 1 quart cool water for sanitizing food contact surfaces
  • 1 Tbsp & 1 quart cool water for sanitizing toileting surfaces and blood or bodily fluids
  • 1 tsp + 1 gallon cool water for sanitizing toys contacted by mouth


Due to the regulatory increases in cleaning measures, families will be responsible for cleaning the classroom 2x per year or paying $50 per cleaning for an outside cleaner ($100 for both).  Each family shall select two weekends from the cleaning calendar. Please indicate if you will pay for cleaning or do the cleaning yourself so we can arrange with a cleaner as needed. (see page 19 for sign-up sheet)

If a child or teacher tests positive for COVID-19, the following cleaning measures will be followed:

  • Close off areas used by the person who is sick.
  • Open outside doors and windows to increase air circulation.
  • Wait up to 24 hours before cleaning & disinfecting to allow respiratory droplets to settle.
  • Clean and disinfect all areas used by the person who is sick.
  • If more than 7 days have passed since the person who is sick visited or used the facility, additional cleaning and disinfection is not necessary.

There are significant limitations in instituting 6 feet of social distancing with young children. We know that it is not only almost impossible, but that proper child development depends on close engagement with other children and adults. It would be exceptionally stressful and unrealistic to ask young children to social distance, negating the benefits of attending school. Strict social distancing would undoubtedly put stress and strain on children in the school environment.  To prevent negative impact, social distancing will be built into the daily function of the environment, but not overtly enforced.

We will treat Sunnybrook as a family, as it has always been, but educate about social distancing. We will teach and discuss what it is and why we are practicing social distancing in our greater community and will teach and discuss personal space at school. We will discuss and encourage saving hugs for home but will not ban them. We will teach children to elbow bump, fist bump, and wave while greeting each other rather than hugging or shaking hands.

If children need physical comfort, as many young children may when separating from family members, feeling strong emotions, or having been injured, we will hold children and provide physical comfort as needed.  Many children struggle during group times and crave adult contact. We will continue to sit with children in our laps as they need.

We will limit the number of available chairs at the circle tables to no more than 4 and we will attempt to space children more widely at large group times as feasible. We will limit the number of children in each work area at a time. We will encourage personal space and keeping our hands and bodies to ourselves to the extent that this does not cause undue stress and negatively impact social and emotional wellbeing and development.


To minimize transmission potential, we will continue with staggered snack times. Lunch will be held at the same time, but children will be spread among tables throughout the room.

Children will sit one chair apart to create space while allowing for social interaction.

The table space and chairs will be cleaned and disinfected between each use.

Children will bring all their own food and eating supplies, including a napkin that functions as a placemat. This napkin provides a barrier between the child’s eating supplies and the table, and distinguishes which items belong to each child.

For birthday celebrations, rather than providing a group snack we will invite children to donate a book to Sunnybrook and bring a book or poster with photos, drawings, etc. about themselves to share and honor their special day. For other holiday parties we will eliminate the food portion of the celebration.


As research has demonstrated that coronavirus particles disperse more quickly in the open air than they do inside, reducing risk of COVID-19 transmission while outdoors, we will increase our outside time as much as possible and as weather permits. We will engage in more outdoor learning activities and adventures, including potentially holding group times outside, engaging in more nature learning, and bringing typical indoor work out.


To minimize the spread of germs we will temporarily remove play items that are not easily cleanable (such as puppets and dolls) and items that may be commonly mouthed, such as play food.  (Teachers may continue to use puppets during group times for teaching purposes, but they will not be touched by children.)

Water work and sensory table play will be removed from the classroom.

Children will have personalized play dough containers and art supply bins.  (This may require a $10 materials fee depending on COVID funding. If you pay, your child will keep materials at the end of the year).

The number of materials available will be reduced and efforts to regularly rotate materials in and out will be made as time allows.


As Sunnybrook is a designated Emergency Child Care Provider, we are considered an essential service. With this designation, we would remain open through state mandated COVID-19 shutdowns so we can continue to provide care for children of essential workers. There are three factors that would require us to close:

  1. If a Sunnybrook student or teacher tests positive for COVID-19 we would shut down for 2 weeks of quarantine (see sections 14 & 15 for further information)
  2. If teachers are ill and qualified substitutes are not available
  3. If enrollment gets too low to remain financially sustainable

If we shut down due to a case of COVID-19 in the program or teacher illness, tuition will continue to be charged.

If SAU 36 is operating remotely or using a hybrid model, we will consult local resources to make decisions about snow days if inclement weather makes travel unsafe.


On Emergency and Registration forms please list at least 4 people approved to pick-up your child when ill (including yourselves).  Ensure that all emergency contact information is accurate and includes all current phone numbers for contact, listing numbers in order of calling priority.

If contact information for anyone listed on the forms changes, please be sure to inform Lyn at [email protected] so information can be updated in a timely manner.


Sunnybrook is committed to open communication. We strive to be a place where families can feel safe asking questions, sharing information, and coming for resources.

As we may have limited opportunity for drop off communications, please email all morning communications to Lyn at [email protected], then give a brief verbal rundown of any emailed communications to the morning teacher after the daily health check.

If you have other questions, information to share, comments, schedule changes, pick up changes, etc. during the day, please call the classroom (between 8:45-10:15 AM & 12:15-1:15 PM are best) or send an email to Lyn, which will be read in the afternoon between 12:30-2:00PM, or in the evening.

We will also try to do brief check ins at pick up time to keep you informed about your child’s day.  If we have not connected recently, we may send home a quick informative email about your child and encourage you to do the same.


Any teacher or student showing symptoms of COVID-19, as described in section 1, or who have had close contact with a person with COVID-19, shall inform Lyn.  Anyone with COVID-19 symptoms and those who report close contact with someone suspected or confirmed with COVID-19, or those who have traveled to current high-risk areas, shall notbe allowed to enter the building.  (High risk areas change regularly, so please be mindful of where these areas are – red and orange zones: Person(s) with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 may not enter Sunnybrook until symptom-based criteria are met for discontinuation of isolation.

If any teacher or child at Sunnybrook tests positive for COVID-19, Sunnybrook will close for 2 full weeks from the date the positive test results are received. If we shut down due to a case of COVID-19 in the program, tuition will continue to be charged.

Quarantine is used to keep someone who might have been exposed to COVID-19 away from others. Quarantine helps prevent spread of disease that can occur before a person knows they are sick or if they are infected with the virus without feeling symptoms. People in quarantine should stay home, separate themselves from others, monitor their health, and follow directions from their state or local health department.

Isolation is used to separate people infected with the virus (those who are sick with COVID-19 and those with no symptoms) from people who are not infected. People who are in isolation should stay home until it is safe for them to be around others. In the home, anyone sick or infected should separate themselves from others by staying in a specific “sick room” or area and using a separate bathroom if available.

Symptomatic persons should contact their health care provider to be tested for COVID-19 and follow the CDC Guidelines below. Any person who develops symptoms of COVID-19 while at Sunnybrook shall be masked and removed from contact with others and be immediately sent home.

Asymptomatic persons who have had close contact with someone suspected or confirmed with COVID-19, or who report travel to high risk areas, should self-quarantine for 14 days from their last exposure or return from travel.

Persons who test positive for COVID-19 who have symptoms and were directed to care for themselves at home may discontinue isolation under the following conditions:

  • At least 24 hours have passed since recovery defined as resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and 
  • improvement in symptoms and,
  • At least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared

Persons Who have NOT had COVID-19 Symptoms but Tested Positive and were directed to care for themselves at home may discontinue isolation when:

  • At least 10 days have passed since the date of their first positive COVID-19 diagnostic test assuming they have not subsequently developed symptoms since their positive test. If they develop symptoms, then the symptom-based strategy outlined above should be used. Note, because symptoms cannot be used to gauge where these individuals are in the course of their illness, it is possible that the duration of viral shedding could be longer or shorter than 10 days after their first positive test.

For patients with severe illness, duration of isolation for up to 20 days after symptom onset may be warranted. Consider consultation with infection control experts.

Other Considerations

For all scenarios outlined above, the decision to discontinue isolation should be made in the context of local and individual circumstances. 

Note that recommendations for discontinuing isolation in persons known to be infected with COVID-19 could, in some circumstances, appear to conflict with recommendations on when to discontinue quarantine for persons known to have been exposed to COVID-19. CDC recommends 14 days of quarantine after exposure based on the time it takes to develop illness if infected. Thus, it is possible that a person known to be infected could leave isolation earlier than a person who is quarantined because of the possibility they are infected.

If there is a confirmed case of COVID-19 at Sunnybrook, we will contact:

  1. The Bureau of Infection Disease Control (BIDC) at 603-271-4496.
  2. The Bureau of Child Development and Head Start Collaboration at 603-271-4242; and
  3. The Child Care Licensing Unit at 603-271-9025, or [email protected].

We would provide at home learning during a two-week closure due to a case of COVID-19 in our program. Packets of materials will be prepared beforehand to go home, but the extent of teacher support during this time would depend on teacher health and wellness. To the best of our ability, we would offer daily story readings, small group zooms, and student check-ins to accompany the prepared materials.


NH Child Care Licensing recommends against children wearing masks and face coverings in child care, as children are more likely to touch both their own and others’ masks and faces if wearing them for long periods of time, which would increase transmission rather than decrease it.  Some children may be capable of wearing masks safely, but for the majority the transmission risk would increase, therefore children will not wear masks while at Sunnybrook.

Children will only be masked if showing symptoms of illness. Any person that develops symptoms of COVID-19 while at Sunnybrook shall be masked, removed from contact with others, and be immediately sent home. 

Any adults picking up or dropping off children shall wear a mask.

Teachers will wear masks while in the classroom.

Teachers may wear a clear face shield when the need to see the teacher’s face is necessary for proper instruction, particularly language and literacy work, or social and emotional work. 

If 6 feet of social distancing can be arranged during group times, the teacher leading group may remove the mask to better communicate vocally and visually with the children. 

Teachers will remove masks during outdoor time. They will put them back on for close conversation with a child or adult.

We continue to follow research on the benefits of face shields in preventing transmission, which would allow children to see teacher faces, but also dampen speech. Research on the use of face shields has demonstrated that it is effective in protecting the wearer from transmission, but no research has yet demonstrated that it protects those around the wearer. Though it seems likely that face shields would prevent exposure to direct spray, droplets may remain in the air.

Due to concerns about face coverings muffling speech and blocking facial expressions, potentially resulting in long term negative impacts on children’s speech, language, social, and emotional development, the board will constantly be evaluating the COVID-19 information and will reexamine the use of face coverings at monthly board meetings.  If deemed safe, the board may approve the suspension or elimination of the use of masks and face coverings. We will keep families informed about the research we find and the decisions we make, which will be subject to change. 


Children will be taught to cough or sneeze into their inner elbow/upper sleeve and to avoid covering the nose or mouth with bare hands. Hand hygiene, as described above, shall follow a cough or sneeze that could result in the spread of respiratory droplets to the skin.

Children who are coughing will be sent home immediately.


If a child travels to a high COVID-19 risk area, the child will be excluded from Sunnybrook for two weeks.

If a member of the child’s household travels to a high COVID-19 risk area, the family member will be excluded from Sunnybrook and asked to get tested for COVID-19 four days after returning from travel and have a negative test result before the child may return to Sunnybrook.

If a family has a visitor who has traveled from a high COVID-19 risk area the visitor will be excluded from Sunnybrook and asked to get tested for COVID-19 four days after returning from travel and have a negative test result before the child may return to Sunnybrook.

Any family whose child remains home for two weeks due to personal or family member travel may request materials for work at home during this period.

Please refer to the Harvard Global Health Institute COVID Risk Levels Dashboard to determine areas of high risk (orange and red counties):


We will do our best to keep your child safe at Sunnybrook, but your role is equally important! We ask that you work with your child while at home and out in public to practice proper hand hygiene, keeping hands off faces and out of mouths, catching coughs in the elbow, social distancing, and keeping hands off commonly touched surfaces when out and about. Providing children with hand wipes or hand sanitizer after leaving public buildings will aid in preventing illness.

Discussing COVID-19 in a matter of fact, child friendly manner, assuring them that the adults in their life are keeping them safe, allowing them to share their questions and concerns, and being honest while developmentally appropriate in your conversations will help to keep them feeling safe. Mr. Rogers, the man who wasn’t afraid to talk about difficult topics with young children, reminds us that “When we talk about our feelings, they become less overwhelming, less upsetting and less scary.”

As always, we welcome your voice! Our purpose is to provide a safe, nurturing, respectful and vibrant learning environment where children explore and create. Ensuring safety while balancing what is needed for proper child development is a struggle during these times!


My Teacher Wears a Mask Social Story:  or PDF:

How to Talk to Your Kids About Coronavirus – PBS KIDS:

The COVID BOOK for kids – PDF:

Explaining Coronavirus to Kids and the Science of Soap:

Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood – He Talked to us Honestly About Difficult Subjects:

COVID-19 in Babies and Children – The Mayo Clinic:

Interview with Pediatrician Dr. Chapman, Medical Director of the Boyle Community Pediatrics Program at DHMC, about COVID-19 in children:

List Comparing the Symptoms of COVID-19 to cold & flu from the Australian Government:

Emergencies and National Disasters: Helping Children and Families Cope:

Trauma in Children During the COVID-19 Pandemic:

Toxic Stress – Center on the Developing Child Harvard University:

National Association for the Education of Young Children:

Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning:

National Center for Pyramid Model Innovations (social emotional development):


CDC Coronavirus Page:

CDC COVID Data Tracker:

Harvard Global Health Institute COVID Risk Levels Dashboard:

Johns Hopkins University of Medicine CORONOVIRUS RESOURCE CENTER (shows worldwide numbers):

NH COVID-19 Information:


COVID-19 Lancaster Testing Locations:

            Weeks Medical Center Lancaster

(603) 788-5656

            NH Department of Health & Human Services Lancaster

Health care providers can order the test by completing a test requisition form and fax (603-271-3001) or e-mail: [email protected] OR

Patient can fill out an online testing request OR

Patient can call (603) 271-5980

COVID-19 PCR Testing Options:

Littleton Regional Healthcare Littleton

(603) 575-6000

ConvenientMD – Littleton

Patient: call (833) 263-0131 OR


ClearChoiceMD Littleton – Temporary COVID-19 Testing Site

Call: (603) 667-9075

LabCorp Pixel Self-Collection At-Home Kit Mailed to your home

Order kit online:


Family Resource Center:

            Lancaster Office

            113 Main Street (back of Episcopal Church)

            Gabrielle Flanders

            [email protected]

            1-603-466-5190 (ask for Lancaster office)

Child Care Aware of New Hampshire: