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Safely Open: Learning philosophy during COVID-19

As a parent-founded and teacher-led independent, private Rhode Island school, Sea Rose Montessori is dedicated to supporting working families and their students both in the classroom and, if needed, at home.

We continue successful guidelines that have kept Sea Rose students learning safely in-person since the 2020-21 school year. Along with well-fitting masks inside, students have copious mask-optional outdoor time year-round, including outdoor lunches. With strategies to support in-person learning, and if needed, a child-led home learning program with full teacher support.

Sea Rose Montessori teachers become our parenting partners. This philosophy, coupled with Dr. Montessori’s century-old scientific approach to how children best learn, will withstand this pandemic — as it did 100 years ago — enriching our children and ourselves with resiliency and strength of a supportive environment.

Safety First

The Sea Rose Montessori Safety Team comprises medical and teaching professionals, a university lead administrator, and staff and board members. In addition to RIDOH and CDC guidelines, the Safety Team researches and guides the Sea Rose community in best practices as the COVID-19 pandemic evolves. Sea Rose will continue to take every step to exceed recommendations set forth by state and federal officials.

We understand that keeping our school community safe will take the participation of all of our families and staff, while at minimum meeting RIDOH, WHO, and CDC mandates and guidance.

Since safely returning to full-time in-person learning in July 2020, Sea Rose has experienced only 1 week of 1 classroom being closed. While Sea Rose teachers quickly readied home-learning kits to keep students engaged at home, widespread testing documented that there had been ZERO spread at school.

How has Sea Rose Montessori kept Students Safely at School?

Sea Rose Montessori, at minimum, follows CDC/RIDOH required mandates, PLUS: 

  • Mask-wearing indoors, HEPA filters, state-of-the-art CO2 monitoring, daily attestations/temperature checks,
  • Individualized materials and learning areas, separate building for elementary students,
  • Three outdoor fields with mature trees and an amphitheater to accommodate increased outdoor time for learning and exploration, and of course,
  • Our extensive Home Learning Program.

In addition, Sea Rose’s standing Safety Team of medical professionals and members of the community guide the implementation of safety measures and keep everyone informed with best practices to keep school safely open.

‘Feeling Unwell’ Policy Key to Healthy In-Person Learning

Note that Sea Rose has experienced zero in-school transmission of COVID-19, nor flu. Since its founding in 2016, Sea Rose’s “feeling unwell” policy encourages families to keep students home to rest and recover more quickly. COVID-19 has shown this policy helps keep classrooms open, teachers well, and students in-school safely learning.

In light of our young unvaccinated students, at this time of increased risk, Sea Rose families are embracing outdoor activities and masking when sharing indoor airspace.

We understand the enduring stress this pandemic has placed upon families whose children are vulnerable. Sea Rose Montessori brings families together as community dedicated to safe in-person learning.

In-Person Learning

Sea Rose Montessori has spacious classrooms and a vast outdoor area that facilitates distancing between students.

An important component to keeping the Sea Rose community safe — and doing our part as Rhode Islanders — is helping to prevent the spread of COVID outside of school. Sea Rose families are aligned in their commitment to keep school safely open for in-person learning.

Families’ Perspectives to Keep Students Safe

“Avoid crowds, wash hands, wear masks when out in public, and maintain distance from others.”

“We would implement after school/weekend activities with [my child’s classmates] so they have interaction outside of school but stay in their groups.”

Home Learning Program

While the safety team’s experts focused on the research and recommendations, Sea Rose’s experienced teachers have focused on plans and best practices to support home learning while parents are working, Sea Rose teachers are fully engaged with the vast Montessori global network that has curated the best practices for parents and students working from home.

What is especially helpful about the Montessori philosophy is the approach of learning is everywhere. How does this translate for balancing working parents and keeping students engaged?

  • Home learning kits customized for each student designed to meet individual interests
  • Personalized guidance on establishing a school home-learning area
  • Teachers guiding students to take ownership in maintaining and organizing their areas — just as they would at school.
  • Support to provide parents the techniques and strategies that help keep students engaged and motivated in their work — so parents can do theirs.
  • The perspective that learning doesn’t stop: math games and conversations over dinner that are engaging and fun for the whole family.