Guidance for Summer Camps and Youth Activities in the City of St. Louis

Guidance for Summer Camps and Youth Activities in the City of St. Louis for reopening safely.

The licensing rules set forth by the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services define summer camp as, “a program operated from May to September by a person or organization with the primary function of providing a summer recreational program for children no younger than five (5) years of age and providing no day care for children younger than five (5) years of age in the same building or in the same outdoor play area.”

  • Summer camp and youth activities are able to operate no earlier than Monday, June 1st, 2020. However, please know that this date may change if there is a resurgence in COVID-19 cases in the City of St. Louis.
    • The CDC has created a decision-making tool to assist directors and administrators in making (re)opening decisions. That document can be found here and is also attached for reference.
  • All activities must be designed and implemented for kids to observe social distancing and engage in activities independently.
  • The following are prohibited:
    • Overnight/residential camps
    • Field trips
    • Inter-group events
    • Aquatic activities
  • Due to social distancing requirements, preference should be given to children who do not have a caregiver available during camp hours.

Safety Actions

  • Promote healthy hygiene practices
    • Teach and reinforce the following for staff and children:
      • Proper use, removal, and maintenance of facial coverings
      • Washing hands and covering coughs and sneezes
      • Provide at least 3 opportunities for hand washing throughout the day
      • Ensure an adequate supply of soap, hand sanitizer (with at least 60 percent alcohol), and tissues.
    • Teach and reinforce use of cloth face coverings among all staff at all times except when alone in an enclosed space. Face coverings are most essential at times when social distancing is not possible. Staff should be frequently reminded not to touch the face covering and to wash their hands frequently. Information should be provided to all staff on proper use, removal, and washing of cloth face coverings
    • Post signs about how to stop the spread of COVID-19, properly wash hands, promote everyday protective measures,  and properly use a face covering in highly visible locations (for example, at deck entrances and at sinks).
  • Cleaning and disinfecting
    • Have adequate supplies to support healthy hygiene behaviors, including soap, hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol (for staff and older children who can safely use hand sanitizer), and tissues.
    • Clean, sanitize, and disinfect frequently touched surfaces (for example, shared objects, door handles, sink handles, drinking fountains) multiple times per day.
    • Do not use items that are not easily cleaned, sanitized, or disinfected.
    • Avoid use of items (for example, soft or plush toys) that are not easily cleaned, sanitized, or disinfected.
    • Ensure safe and correct application of disinfectants and keep products away from children.
  • Ensure social distancing
    • Ensure that classes/groups include the same group of children for the duration of the camp, and that the same staff remain with the same group for the duration of the camp.
      • Each group should have no more than 10 people (including staff and children).
    • To minimize mixing between groups, create a schedule that includes rotating restroom, outside activity, program, and meal times.
    • Must have a screening process in place to identify:
      • Children in high risk groups
      • Children with symptoms concerning for COVID-19
      • Children who may have recently been in contact with someone who tested positive or is suspected to test positive
    • Each establishment must create a pick-up and drop-off process that keeps caregivers out of camp space.
    • Nonessential visitors must be prohibited from camp space.
  • Limit sharing
    • Keep each child 's belongings separated and in individually labeled storage containers, cubbies, or areas and taken home each day and cleaned.
    • Ensure adequate supplies to minimize sharing of high touch materials (art supplies, equipment, etc. assigned to a single camper) or limit use of supplies and equipment by one group of children at a time and clean and disinfect between use.
    • Avoid the sharing of electronic devices, toys, books, other games, and learning aids.

Monitoring and Preparing

  • Check for signs and symptoms
    • Establish routine, daily health checks on arrival, such as temperature screening of both staff and children.
    • Encourage staff to stay home they are sick and encourage parents to keep sick children home.
  • Plan for when a staff member, child, or visitor becomes sick
    • Identify an area to separate anyone who exhibits COVID-like symptoms during hours of operation, and ensure that children are not left without adult supervision.
    • Establish procedures for safely transporting anyone sick to their home or to a healthcare facility, as appropriate.
    • Notify local health officials, staff, and families immediately of any possible case of COVID-19 while maintaining confidentiality.
    • Close off areas used by any sick person and do not use them until they have been cleaned. Ensure safe and correct application of disinfectants and keep disinfectant products away from children.
    • Advise sick staff members not to return until they are cleared by medical provider (MD, DO, NP, PA).
  • Maintain healthy operations
    • Designate a staff person to be responsible for responding to COVID - 19 concerns. Employees should know who this person is and how to contact them.
    • Create a communication system for staff and families for self-reporting of symptoms and notification of exposures and closure.

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