Casa Mañana Studios COVID Response Spring 2021

*­­As of 01/07/2021

In the event that COVID-19 is confirmed inside of the Studios environment, Casa Mañana Studios has protocols it plans to implement to keep other students and employees safe and reduce the potential for further spread. 


  • In some cases, a test to confirm a COVID-19 case through a lab may not be available. If a single family member tests positive through testing, for example, and other family members begin to exhibit symptoms, then those family members will be “probable cases” through clinical diagnosis. If a doctor clinically diagnoses any person with COVID-19, then the Studios approach will be similar. The strategy for clearance and return to in-person classes may differ depending on physician guidance and initial diagnosis; however, the protocols established in this plan with the goal of preventing the introduction of COVID-19 into the Studios environment must remain the same. The primary goals of response are the prevention of introduction entirely or rapid containment of the illness to break the transmission cycle.


  • When a student tests positive with COVID-19:
    • The student must remain home until completing the required isolation protocol.
      • The student may return to in-person classes after meeting the following conditions:
        • At least 10 days have passed since either symptom onset or from the date, a positive test was collected; and
        • At least 48 hours have passed since the resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications; and
        • Other symptoms have improved; and
        • The student did not have severe symptoms at any point during their illness.
      • For students who never develop symptoms, isolation and other precautions can be discontinued 10 days after the date of their first positive viral test.
      • If a student experiences severe illness with COVID-19, is immunocompromised, required hospitalization, or if any other complication was identified by a physician that might indicate a longer period of infectiousness, then isolation for up to 20 days after symptom onset is required.
    • If the student has any siblings in the home, they must also remain home to minimize the risk of transmission to others.
    • As soon as illness is reported to Casa Studios, internal contact tracing protocols will be conducted. Student contacts with employees will initiate the integration of the employee contact tracing protocol in conjunction with the student process.
    • Sanitation of all contacted areas will be conducted immediately.


  • Families have close contact, shared environments, and increased risk of transmission within a home environment as compared to many other settings. When a family member receives a positive COVID-19 test then:
    • The family member should follow the isolation protocol provided by their medical professional.
    • All members of the household should quarantine and remain away from in-person classes and other congregate settings until the patient is cleared.
    • The student or employee will remain away from in-person classes until the family member meets the same criteria for students outlined above, and will begin a 14-day “asymptomatic buffer” protocol starting from the end of the positive family member’s infectious period (when the patient is cleared).
      • The virus that causes COVID-19 is highly infectious and, despite best practices, the risk of contracting it is higher in the home due to prolonged familial proximity and the necessity for caring for those who are ill.
      • Most children demonstrate few, if any, symptoms of COVID-19, but they can carry and transmit the virus. This buffer period allows others in the home to monitor for any symptoms from contracting the virus in the home. When returning to in-person classes, if no symptoms were ever presented and the virus was contracted and unknown, the 14-day period significantly reduces the risk of transmission to others.


  • Individuals or families that have been exposed to a confirmed case but have not been on site for Casa Mañana Studios activities during the entire period of infectious risk as defined by the CDC will not be permitted to attend in-person classes until after their 14-day quarantine period.
    • The student may attend a virtual session of the same class if offered during the 14-day quarantine period.
    • “Based on current evidence, scientists believe that persons with mild to moderate COVID-19 may shed replication-competent SARS-CoV-2 for up to 10 days following symptom onset, while a small fraction of persons with severe COVID-19, including immunocompromised persons, may shed replication-competent virus for up to 20 days.”


  • Individuals or families that have tested positive for COVID-19 but have not been onsite for Casa Mañana Studios activity during the period of infectious risk as defined by the CDC will not be permitted to attend in-person classes until the criteria outlined above are met.
    • Provided there is not a risk of Casa Studios community spread, classes will continue to be held in person
    • The infected or exposed student may attend a virtual session of the same class if offered until meeting the criteria above to resume in-person attendance.


  • As of December 2, 2020, the CDC recommends a quarantine period of 14 days. However, they have determined the following acceptable alternatives:
    • The quarantine can end 10 days after the latest close contact without testing if no symptoms have been reported during the 10 days OR
    • The quarantine can end after Day 7 if the student tests negative on Day 5 or later and no symptoms were reported. The negative test must be collected within 48 hours before the time of planned quarantine discontinuation AND quarantine may not end earlier than Day 7.
    • People who have tested positive for COVID-19 within the past 3 months and recovered do not have to quarantine or get tested again as long as they do not develop new symptoms. People who develop symptoms again within 3 months of their first bout of COVID-19 may need to be tested again if there is no other cause identified for their symptoms.


  • Instructors will be provided a recognition training for signs and symptoms of COVID-19 for quick detection in the classroom. Instructors and staff are NOT meant to diagnose, but to be a reporter of concern for COVID-19-like symptoms as needed.

If a concern is present in the classroom after the initial symptom screening is performed at drop off, then:

  • The student will calmly be escorted to an isolated while the parent is contacted. All other students will remain in place.
  • The student’s parent will be contacted to pick them up.
  • Contact tracing and risk assessments will be conducted for each student.
  • Communication will be provided to the parents of students who came in contact with a COVID-19 positive student or staff member.
  • Thorough sanitation will be conducted of all surfaces and locations in exposed environments identified through contact tracking.

Should participants in any class be exposed to an actively infectious scenario, parents will be notified via email. Casa Mañana Studios will not share contact information without the permission of the participant or legal guardian. No personal information will be disclosed.


For the ill student:

  • Students’ identities and health information will always be protected.
  • The instructor or Casa Mañana staff member will work with the student to identify:
      • Who they talked with and sat near since arriving at Casa Mañana
      • The student’s adherence to mitigation protocols:
          • Whether they wore their mask and wore it properly;
          • Whether or not they maintained distance from others; and
          • If there was anything else they needed to share that was important related to themselves or others being sick.
  • Tracing for the previous two weeks will be obtained in a similar manner.

For the teacher: 

  • The teacher will verify any of the mask/distancing questions asked of the ill student, based on their own observations.
  • When the contacts are identified, the instructor and Education staff will collaborate to ask the identified students or the students based on the teacher’s observations in proximity to the ill student about their mask/distancing protocol

Risk of exposure:

  • If the ill student and other students were all maintaining full protocol, then the contact will be categorized as “low risk.”
    • In a typical low-risk situation, there will not be any automatic exclusions of others, unless other indicators of illness or exposure are presented
  • If any breach in protocol exists (removing masks, not physically distancing, etc.), then the contact will be categorized as “risk present.”
    • If risk is present, then anyone with a risk exposure will be required to quarantine for 14 days to monitor for symptoms. They may seek a doctor’s advice or testing at their own discretion. Return after 14 days does not require a doctor’s approval. Restrictions on this protocol would only apply if symptoms are presented, another COVID-19 close contact occurs, or someone in the home is diagnosed.

Switch to virtual

  • In a “risk present” scenario, classes the student attended during an actively infectious period will move online for a minimum of 14 days (two class sessions). Risk for other classes attended by students exposed to the infected student will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.
    • When the class resumes in-person, students must meet the previously listed requirements for returning to class and may return after the quarantine period as long as no symptoms have presented.
  • Classes will be structured with flexibility to move online at a moment’s notice if deemed necessary
  • Local and/or national government mandates may require classes to move online for any amount of time. Casa Mañana Studios staff will monitor these announcements regularly and notify parents of an online switch in a timely manner.
  • No refunds will be given for any classes that have to switch to online meetings for any reason.
  • Due to high demand and limited capacities for in-person classes, students may not transfer from an in-person class to an online session after the second week of class.