COVID Protocols and FAQs
As we navigate through the waters of new programs and experiences for our kids, we know many questions will arise about summer camp and procedures. We want to give you as much information as possible in order to make the best decision for your campers. First and foremost, please remember that we are educators in the community, hands-on with students year-round, and have a great amount of experience in both the reopening phases of schools and effective strategies to reduce the spread of COVID amongst children and staff. We have learned, been guided by, and continue to consult the Solana Beach School District and School Board, San Diego County Health Services, and the American Camping Association in order to put health and safety at the forefront of all of our decision making. The information below may further assist you in making the best choice for your camper this summer.
Keystone South Summer Camp has always believed in maintaining small, consistent groups in a program that is 100% outdoors. This foundation aligns with strategies and procedures that will be set in place to operate safely during the times of the COVID-19 virus.
We have received information on best practices with regards to preventing, identifying, and managing the spread of COVID-19 virus, and plan to follow the guidance of the following agencies in full:
- San Diego Department of Environmental Health
- American Camping Association
- Centers for Disease Control
- California Department of Health
- City of San Diego
CDC Suggested Guidance for Youth and Summer Camps provides a summary of key guiding principles related to potential risk of COVID-19 in camp settings. According to CDC, the more people a camper or staff member interacts with, and the longer that interaction, the higher the risk of COVID-19 spread. It is important for all Camps to consider these guiding principles as part of their planning and operations. The risk levels provided by CDC that we will follow is described as:
Lowest Risk: Small groups of campers stay together all day, each day. Campers remain at least 6 feet apart. Outdoor activities are prioritized. All campers are from the local geographic area (e.g., city, town, county, community).
Our on-site Reopening Procedures include the following:
- Daily on-site health screenings of all campers and staff, including temperature checks, symptomatic reporting, and hand disinfection.
- Campers will be kept in stable and consistent cohorts.
- Campers will be required to wear masks at all times, except when eating or drinking.
- Campers will remain at a six-foot distance when possible.
- Lunch time will be distanced at six feet between each camper.
- Frequently touched areas will be disinfected throughout the day.
- Camp materials and shared supplies will be disinfected after each use.
- Restrooms will be cleaned twice daily, and campers will have a specific restroom for their group’s use.
- Sanitization stations will be setup throughout the park, and campers will have a scheduled sanitization break their hands during our hydration and sunscreen sessions. Campers will sanitize their hands before and after eating, using playground equipment, and shared sports equipment.
While we recognize that COVID-19 information and regulations are changing frequently, Keystone South believes strongly in operating with health and safety at the forefront of all decision making. We have all experienced success during the school year with the above mitigation strategies, and we know that these are all components that our campers are used to, and have adapted to in these unprecedented times.
As always, please contact us at 858-207-6161 with any specific questions you may have. Our team is always available to provide more information to our camp families.
Please do not send your child to camp if they show any signs of illness. These may include, but are not limited to cough, fever, shortness of breath, runny nose, sore throat, vomiting, headache, loss of taste/smell, diarrhea, body aches, and fatigue.
If your child has allergies or other chronic conditions which cause any of the above symptoms, please obtain and provide a doctor’s note prior to sending them to camp.
If your child stays home from camp due to experiencing any of these symptoms, they may return to camp:
- With a doctor’s note stating that the symptoms are not COVID-related or symptoms of other contagious conditions
- Following a negative COVID test AND either a doctor’s note or 72 hours after symptoms resolve
- 10 days following 1st onset of symptoms AND 24 hours with no fever (without medication) AND symptoms are improving.
Campers will be individually health screened when arriving at camp, including temperature checks and a quick interview to assess current health and recent exposure to COVID. Groups will have their own “meeting spot” where they will have a morning greeting and opening with their counselors before beginning activities. Group identities will be at an all-time high this summer, and connections will be quick and powerful. Distance requirements will be in place during all meeting times (including lunch), but campers will still be playing together, creating those incredible summer camp memories together, and will be connected to a larger camp community.
In order to guarantee the consistent groupings mentioned above, we can’t have campers coming and going on different camp days. We have strict group and camp maximum enrollment numbers this summer, and in order to minimize additional exposures to campers, we must require attendance for the full session. We absolutely plan on going back to 2-3 day/week options when the time is right in future summers.
We hear you. Five days a week might be a lot for some of our younger campers. While we would love to be able to offer more options for 2-3 day/week schedules, we believe that the consistency is necessary to be able to ensure the health of all of our campers. During our staff training, much of our time together will be spent on how to effectively “take the pulse” of the group – thinking about times when the group needs to slow down, cool down, grab a quick (or not so quick) water break, or even times when it needs to run more. We will be practicing making decisions together as a group, making compromises about activity schedules and choices, and how to care for each other. Our staff is known to be nurturing, kind, and attentive to all children, and this summer we will be showing this more than ever. We know that each group will be different, and each session will be different, and we will empower our counselors to make schedule changes, take breaks when necessary, and be in tune with the individual and collective needs of their group members. Camp administrators and directors are on grounds, in-sight at all times, and our hands-on approach to constant mentoring and coaching of our staff will lead this to be a positive program for all of our campers.
More questions? Please don’t hesitate to contact Mike directly at: email@example.com
At this time, yes. While we would love to envision an environment where campers did not have to wear masks, we are pretty confident that it will still be a necessity this summer. We have all been surprised how quickly kids have adapted to wearing masks, even during outdoor play, and it really hasn’t stopped those smiles (even if we can’t always see them). Campers will not be required to wear masks when eating lunch, afternoon snack, when needing a distanced “break”, and during swimming (TBD).
Health breaks have always been a part of our camp program, with both water and sunscreen offered and supported every 75 minutes. Building in hand sanitization processes during this is both easy and effective in working against the spread of COVID.
In order to keep camper exposures to a minimum, we are unable to offer transportation this summer. If we are permitted to move forward with our planned swimming program, campers will be transported in a professionally driven and sanitized bus, with one camper/seat and cracked windows to ensure proper airflow.
While we are all making modifications and changes during these times, we believe that the Keystone experience you have grown to love and count on will remain the same. Our counselors and staff absolutely creates THE camp experience for all of our campers, and this same care, individualized attention, and personal recognition will lead us into new levels of success as our campers and counselors navigate this new adventure side-by-side.
Unfortunately, in order to protect the health of all of our campers, we will not be allowing adult visitations this summer. Remember, we are always just a phone call away, and we will still continue to have the kind of individualized attention you’ve received from Keystone South – including camper “wellness checks”, phone conversations with individual counselors, and an administrative staff always available via email or phone for concerns or feedback.
Like most school settings Keystone South will be requiring a daily and individual health screening. Temperature checks will be given upon arrival, and campers will be asked a series of questions about their current health and recent exposure to COVID. More information about both home and on-grounds health screening will be a part of our PARENT HEALTH AND SAFETY AGREEMENT sent out in May.
While we have nothing but positive indicators that we will be able to open with our current plan, we absolutely will not open if not permitted by county health officials or the Solana Beach School District.
What if I have a question that still isn’t answered? Don’t worry – we’re here to help! Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org , give us a call at 858-207-6161, OR fill out a form on our contact page here. We love hearing from returning AND prospective camp families, and are ALWAYS here for you!!