Return to Campus Guide
The Bolles School is confidently pursuing a safe return to school on August 13 unless authorities mandate for schools to remain closed. We are planning for four different operating scenarios which allow the community to transition between options given changes in virus prevalence and federal, state and local guidance:
Operating Scenario One
Traditional Operation – All students and employees will be on campus without modifications when the pandemic subsides and it is safe to do so.
Operating Scenario Two
Return to Campus with Modifications – Students and teachers will be on campus with health, safety and physical distancing modifications in place. Families who are not ready to return to campus may opt for full-time At-Home Learning.
Operating Scenario Three
Blended Learning – At the middle and upper school level, students will be split into cohorts who will rotate between on-campus and at-home learning to reduce the number of students on campus at one time. Families who are not ready to return to campus may opt for full-time At-Home Learning.
Operating Scenario Four
Distance Learning – All students and faculty will be learning from home. The decision to move to distance learning will be made in conjunction with our medical partners, as well as federal, state, and local officials.
- Health & Safety
- Physical Distancing
- On-Campus Learning
- At-Home Learning
- Residential Life
- Illness in Our Community
- Return to Campus Task Force
- COVID-19 Communications
- Paws and Effect: #BollesLife During a Pandemic
- All campuses will be sanitized and deep cleaned prior to start of school.
- Wearing masks will be mandatory in and outside all buildings.
- Use of shared materials will be limited.
- Bolles has superior HVAC systems that uses outside air units and UV light to provide fresh, clean air and keep it pure.
- Increased hygiene protocols have been added including additional hand washing stations, hand sanitizer dispensers, disinfectant wipes, disposable towels and disinfectant spray.
- All main touch points and restrooms are being cleaned multiple times a day with an industry recommended sanitizer.
- Isolation spaces have been created on each campus for suspected COVID patients.
- Boarders are returning to campus with a quarantine and testing plan in place prior to dorm access.
- Wellness checks are happening every day upon arrival for every student, faculty and staff member on every campus.
- Seating charts will be used in most classes in order to allow for more effective contact tracing should the need arise.
- A contact tracer has been assigned for each campus to determine high risk exposure within our community.
- Protocols are in place, following CDC guidelines, regarding notification and contact tracing should a confirmed positive for COVID-19 occur.
Partnership with Mayo
As part of our community’s focus on health and safety, we have formed a partnership with Mayo Clinic Jacksonville, one of the country’s leading medical authorities. They are working closely with us to provide medical guidance and feedback regarding our safe return to school including training for faculty and staff. These health care professionals are assisting us in ensuring the proper protocols and policies are in place to best protect our students, boarders, faculty and staff. In addition, they are also providing testing for our resident students and staff.
The Bolles School is committed to protecting the health and well-being of our students, faculty, and staff. The CDC has indicated wearing a face mask may inhibit the spread of COVID-19 from those who are infected but have yet to show symptoms. As such, effective immediately and until further notice, we will be implementing a face mask policy to allow faculty, staff, and students to return to campus safely.
Masks must be worn by adults and students on all campuses, inside and outside buildings (including parking lots and buses), with the following exceptions:
- When alone outside with proper physical distancing.
- When alone in a classroom or office.
- When eating.
- During recess while physically active with physical distancing.
- In P.E. classes while physically active with physical distancing.
- At athletic practices while physically active (coaches will wear them when in close proximity to athletes).
Types of masks to be worn (subject to change):
- Double-layered cotton (or other tight weave fabric) washable mask or medical grade mask (washable required for Lower School students) that covers the entire nose & mouth and fits snuggly is acceptable. Balaclava-style/buff masks/bandanas do not provide adequate protection and are not allowed.
- Masks can be any color or pattern but may not include any words, pictures, or logos, except for a Bolles School logo for middle and upper school students. Lower school students may have appropriate pictures and words on theirs.
- Bolles masks are available for purchase in the campus stores and online through our uniform supplier Land’s End (in both child and adult sizes).
If anyone arrives on campus without a mask (or with an inappropriate mask), one can be obtained from the main office at each campus. Failure to comply with this policy will first result in a warning. Continued noncompliance will result in appropriate disciplinary action.
If anyone has individual health problems that would prevent them from complying with this policy, please contact the Campus Head for students and the Human Resources Department for Bolles School employees to request an accommodation.
Being a part of the Bolles community means that each of us must take extraordinary steps to stay well and persistently protect each other, on campus and in the community. Accountable together, I pledge to take responsibility for my own health, the protection of others and help keep the Bolles community safe from the spread of COVID-19 and other infections.
I understand these steps are necessary to help keep everyone in our community safe and well.
- If I am sick, I will not come to school.
- I will get screened every day.
- I will wash my hands often and use hand sanitizer.
- I will be diligent with my personal hygiene.
- I will always maintain physical distancing.
- I will wear my mask outside and inside all facilities on campus.
- I will share with the School nurse immediately if I discover I had close contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19.
- I will be responsible through my actions and my reactions if there is a case of COVID-19 in our Bolles Community.
- I will live a “quiet life” through my activities with friends and family.
- Parents and visitors will not be allowed in school buildings, unless given special permission.
- Traffic flow protocols and/or added bells have been put in place on all campuses to maintain physical distancing.
- Desks have been positioned 3-6 feet apart and excess furniture has been removed from classrooms on all campuses to allow for greater physical distancing.
- Where necessary, classes have been relocated to larger spaces on campuses to allow for greater physical distancing.
- New protocols are in place for all transportation vehicles and bus passengers to maintain a healthy community.
- In some learning spaces, plexiglass dividers will be utilized as an extra barrier between students.
- Dining areas on all campuses have been adjusted to maintain touchless handling of food. In Lower School, lunch will occur in classrooms or outdoor spaces with food delivery. In Middle and Upper School, lunch will be staggered to decrease congestion and both indoor and outdoor spaces will be utilized to promote physical distancing.
- Programs and events have been modified or rescheduled to limit crowd sizes and comply with physical distancing guidelines.
- Virtual platforms will be used to reduce physical contact in the areas of group assemblies, student activities and volunteer meetings.
- Extended day program will be modified to promote health and safety protocols, and physical distancing requirements.
- Arrival and Screening
- Lower School Dismissal
- Lower School Extended Day/Advantage
- San Jose Campus Revised Dress Code
Bus Routes – Students who ride morning route buses will be screened prior to boarding; students with a temperature above 100.4 or who answer yes to the screening questions will not be permitted to board. While on buses, students will be required to wear a mask and sit in designated physically distanced seats.
Shuttles – Students who ride the morning shuttle buses between the San Jose and Bartram Campuses will be screened in their vehicles by the flagpole in front of Shultz Hall on the San Jose Campus before being allowed to board the bus. While on buses, students will be required to wear a mask and sit in designated physically distanced seats.
Ponte Vedra Beach Campus – Arrival will be staggered by grade level and families will drop off at the eldest child’s scheduled arrival time. Multiple screening stations will be located at both the upper and lower car line.
Whitehurst Campus – Arrival will be staggered by grade level and families will drop off at the eldest child’s scheduled arrival time. Multiple screening stations will be set up around the horseshoe to expedite the process.
Bartram Campus – Students arriving on campus by car will be screened in their vehicle in the normal drop-off location outside of Conroy Athletic Center on the Bartram Campus.
San Jose Campus – Students being dropped off will be screened in their vehicle in the designated area near the flagpole by Shultz Hall. Student drivers will be screened in their vehicle in the designated area near their parking space. Specific screening locations on the San Jose Campus will be made available before the start of school.
Students Arriving Late – Students on all campuses who arrive after the designated arrival time must remain in their vehicle and contact the main office for the Ponte Vedra Beach, Whitehurst and Bartram Campuses and the Deans' Office on the San Jose Campus. A member of the Bolles staff will come to your vehicle to screen the student.
Lower School – Students and faculty may bring their own lunch or order lunch at the beginning of the day. Lunches will be delivered to classrooms and students will utilize indoor and outdoor spaces when eating.
Middle and Upper School – Lunch periods will be staggered to decrease congestion and both indoor and outdoor spaces will be utilized to promote physical distancing. All self-serve areas will be replaced with Flik attendants, keypads will be removed, additional plexiglass partitions will be utilized and students in lines will be appropriately spaced.
Whitehurst Campus – Recess will be staggered by grade level classes. Each grade level will only have one class on the designated playground at a time.
Ponte Vedra Beach Campus – Recess will be staggered by grade level and each class will only use certain sections of the playground. Children will play and be allowed to use the equipment staying physically distant from other classrooms. All children will wash hands upon returning to the classroom.
Bartram Campus – Students at recess will be required to wear a mask indoors and outside unless they are physically active with physical distancing.
Ponte Vedra Beach Campus – Dismissal times will be staggered by grade level and parents will each have a car tag that has student name and grade clearly displayed. We will call students out in small groups of 6-9 to load them in vehicles.
Whitehurst Campus – Dismissal times will be staggered by grade level. Students will remain in their classrooms until called to loading stations along the horseshoe sidewalks.
Extended Day will be available for students on the Ponte Vedra Beach and Whitehurst Campuses with additional cohorting and physical distancing safety protocols in place. Students will be required to wear a mask indoors and outdoors, unless they are outdoors, physically active and practicing physical distancing. No drop-ins will be allowed until further notice. A determination about Advantage programming will be made in August after the opening of school.
All students, whether learning at home or on campus, must follow the dress guidelines outlined in the Student Handbook with the following exceptions:
- For bottoms, students can wear either what is currently stated in the US Handbook or cotton, zippered shorts with a minimum of a 5-inch in-seam.
- For tops, students are permitted to wear any polo shirt any day of the week and Bollest-shirts on Fridays. All students will be given a class shirt at the beginning of school and polo shirts can be purchased through Lands’ End, the Campus Store or other retail places if desired.
- Students may also wear button-up shirts. Ties are not required.
Learning from home when the teacher and some classmates are in physical class will be significantly different than the distance learning experienced in the spring. Bolles will provide a real-time (synchronous) experience for students who are at home. Each classroom on campus will be equipped with a camera and supplemental teacher monitor to allow students at home to virtually participate in the on-campus classroom experience using Schoology.
Teachers will publish times for synchronous learning on Schoology. Students will join live lessons at designated times and have periods of independent, off-line (asynchronous) work time. Live lessons will be streamed for reading, writing, math and social studies. Additional digital tools will be used to support the lower school curriculum and instruction. Consistent communication and feedback will be provided by teachers for assignments and grading of student work.
Middle and Upper School
Students will follow their regular schedule and class rotation and will be expected to join classes using the Schoology Conference application. While much of at-home learning time will be a synchronous experience, some lessons, activities and classes may be done off-line (asynchronously). Students who select At-Home Learning will be permitted to participate in co-curricular activities. The dress code for at home learning will follow the dress code for on campus learning.
Performances, plays and musicals will be adjusted or rescheduled in accordance with safety guidelines and requirements.
- ALL performances will be ticketed on all campuses, Pre-K-12. This will allow for us to ensure physical distancing by separating groups by at least a row behind and in front and two seats to either side.
- Lower school plays will be ticketed for families and simulcast into other grades' classrooms and for family and friends not able to attend.
- The Lower school holiday concerts will be prerecorded earlier in the semester to ensure that if we entered Operating Scenario 4, we could still broadcast it at that time of year.
- If we are in school for the holiday concert, we will split the program into four (possibly three) programs instead of two. PreK and K, Grades 1-2, Grades 3-4, and Grade 5 will have their own programs. This four-part program allows for families to attend (ticketed) and still allow for physical distancing. Instead of performing grade level songs the classes will perform by homeroom.
- Upper school and middle school concerts will be prerecorded earlier in the year so that if we are in Operating Scenario 4 we can still broadcast them. We are considering multiple performances so that we can allow for our normally large audiences to still see them while physically distancing (ticketed).
- Dance Concerts - We are considering adding an additional performance to allow for more audience attendance. We are also considering outdoor venues and prerecorded performances.
- Theatre Productions - One Acts, Revues, double cast shows are all on the table for the first half of the year. This will allow for smaller rehearsals but still enable us to cast many performers. We may add another performance to the Middle School musical and are also considering outside venues for performances.
In Operating Scenario 4, we would pivot to a cabaret style of online performances.
As the nature of art courses in PreK – 12 is heavily skill/lab based and there is very little lecture, attending these classes synchronously in most cases would have little value and would more than likely be frustrating and disheartening. Much of the work will be asynchronous, unless it is a group project. Teachers will conduct live check-ins with the students not in school by appointment and using video demonstrations for the entire class that are posted on our LMS. We will create an engaging online class space for our distance learners where they can continue to build their performing and visual arts skills through asynchronous assignments and synchronous critiques and class discussions.
- Athletic activities for Middle and Upper School students who attend classes on campus will continue with appropriate modifications in accordance with school, state, and FHSAA policies and protocols.
- Students who select At-Home Learning will be permitted to participate in co-curricular activities.
- Athletic competitions will be directed by the FHSAA and the School; communication with families will occur as information is made available.
- Athletes must have the required FHSAA forms (EL2 and EL3) completed and in Magnus.
- Temperature checks and screening questions will be required of all athletes (this screening is in addition to the screening done at arrival to school in the morning).
- Physical distancing will be maintained and masks will be required at the check-in stations.
- Athletes who are sent home with symptoms will be required to follow the Illness in our Community protocols.
- Athletes may use the locker room to change before practice, but must follow directional signage if posted and wear masks inside.
- Coaches will wear masks when in close proximity to athletes.
- Guests and parents are not permitted to attend practices and must stay in vehicles if on campus.
- Arrival to faculty parking lot. All must stay in car.
- Temperature reading
- Observation for overt symptoms
- Verbal/non-verbal confirmation of daily self-screening
- Temperature above 100.4—not permitted to move into dorm
- Overt symptoms observed—not permitted to move into dorm
- Cannot confirm daily self-screening—not permitted to move into dorm
- Hand washing or disinfecting done at drop off areas at North Hall and Lovett Hall
- Doors to hallways and rooms are propped open
- Areas are sanitized after move-in
- Student lounges will be closed, common spaces refer to dining rooms, laundry, hallways
- Hands sanitized before entering common spaces
- Disinfection wipes, masks, gloves available in all common areas
- Masks worn outside of dorm room by everyone
- Laundry and meals will initially be scheduled by cohorts
- Areas sanitized after each use
- Arrival to C-Lot location
- All must stay in car
- Temperature reading
- Observation for overt symptoms
- Verbal/non-verbal confirmation of daily self-screening
- If any of the following are present, family will not be permitted to move-into the dorm and must be tested for COVID-19. 14-day isolation off campus with parent/s will begin.
- Temperature above 100.4
- Overt symptoms
- Cannot confirm daily self-screening
- Hand washing or disinfecting done at entry to Bolles Hall
- Doors to hallways and rooms are propped open
- Entry—Bolles Hall stairway
- Exit—2nd or 3rd floor South Tower stairway
- Areas are sanitized after move-in
- Lounge areas will be closed. Common areas referenced will be the dorm office, dining areas and laundry.
- Hands sanitized before entering common spaces
- Sanitizing station outside each space
- Disinfecting wipes, masks, gloves available in all common areas
- Dining and laundry will be scheduled by cohorts
- Temperature Check: 100.4 or higher
- At morning check-in—student is sent to Campus Infirmary for COVID-19 testing and quarantined in isolation room on their campus until test results return
- At evening check-in—student is quarantined in isolation room on their campus immediately. COVID-19 testing done by Campus Nurse in
- No temperature, continue to these Screening Questions:
- Do you have a cough or shortness of breath?
- Have you been in contact with anyone diagnosed with COVID-19?
- Answer is no to both answers, continue with regular schedule
- If a student tests positive for COVID-19
- Appropriate medical care will be taken
- Student will isolate in Bolles House
- Follow protocols of sanitation measures
- Roommates and suite mates will be isolated on their Campus, will not attend school in person, will not go to community spaces and meals will be brought to them. Res Life staff will follow guidelines for care and use of Personal Protective Equipment. School will be attended through distance learning
- Inform all Res Life families and appropriate school personnel
- Domestic students, request that parents come to stay with them or take them home
- International students, request that parents come to stay with them, or we take care of them in Bolles house.
- Room, bathroom, suitemate rooms and hallways will be sanitized
- Begin contact tracing
In the case that a student becomes symptomatic while on campus, the health and safety team will work quickly to isolate the student in the designated space on each campus and immediately notify the parents. If a member of our community tests positive for COVID-19, a designated Bolles employee will begin contact tracing in conjunction with the county health department to determine if that individual had known, high-risk contact with other individuals in our school. Recommendations for quarantining will follow based on CDC and Mayo Clinic guidance.
Will my child be screened daily?
Yes, wellness checks will occur every day upon arrival on campus for every student, faculty and staff member.
My child rides the bus to school, are there changes to transportation protocols?
Yes, new protocols are in place for all transportation vehicles and bus passengers to maintain a healthy community. In addition to disinfecting all bus surfaces and maintaining daily self-health checks, each student will be screened before getting on the bus.
Will my student be required to wear a mask on campus?
Wearing masks will be mandatory in and outside of all buildings on all four Bolles campuses. Double-layered cotton (or other tight weave fabric) washable mask or medical grade mask (washable required for Lower School students) that covers the entire nose & mouth and fits snuggly is acceptable. Balaclava-style/buff masks/bandanas do not provide adequate protection and are not allowed.
Will there be distance learning next year or on-campus classes?
The level of distance learning will be determined by the level of physical distancing we have implemented in response to the status of COVID-19 spread in our area and state and local guidelines. Distance Learning is when we are in operating scenario 4 and everyone takes classes from home. At-Home Learning is for those students who select to remain at home and take their classes. Faculty now have cameras installed in their classrooms in order to provide a daily remote version of their class for students who wish to remain home.
What will their schedule look like next year?
Schedules will likely be the same as a “normal” school year but may change slightly in accordance to the level of physical distancing, the students’ grade level and type of academic resource being applied. Lunch, as noted below, will definitely be on a different schedule and class arrival and dismissal will be staggered to allow for safe physical distancing in the hallways.
How will the classroom experience change?
Classrooms will look and feel a little different this year. Desks have been positioned in classrooms on all campuses to keep a safe distance and have been marked with decals on the floor to maintain position. Excess furniture has been removed from classrooms on all campuses to allow for more distance between desks. If classrooms are too small to seat a class with appropriate physical distancing, the class has been relocated on campus to another space.
What if a student cannot attend class in-person. Are there virtual options available?
Yes. Depending on our level of reopening, at-home learning options will be available for students unable to attend class in-person.
Are there restrictions on campus visitors?
Yes. Parents and visitors will not be allowed in school buildings unless given special permission.
Will boarders live on campus this year?
Yes! And we are so excited to have them back on campus! All boarding students are screened prior to their move-in to the dormitories. All students are administered COVID-19 tests and only students who tested negative for the virus were allowed entry to campus. Anyone with positive test results is required to quarantine with their parents off-campus for a period of 14 days. Once the school year begins, boarding students will participate in the same health protocols as day students. For more specific answers on the Bolles boarding experience this year, please see the Residential Life tab.
What is the School doing to encourage physical distancing and best health practices?
We have been working through the summer to reconfigure spaces, traffic flow and community gatherings to provide safe spaces on campus. Traffic flow protocols have been put in place on all campuses to maintain physical distancing. New hand washing stations have been installed where possible and thought necessary, including on athletic fields. Hand sanitizer is provided on every desk and main room and hand sanitizer stations are at every building entrance. All main touch points and restrooms are being cleaned multiple times a day with an industry recommended sanitizer.
How will lunch work?
As you might imagine, lunch time will look a lot different this school year. Generally, lunch times have been shortened and staggered to roughly 20 minutes to accommodate smaller groups of student diners and to provide physical spacing and proper hygiene. Food service will be limited to 50 persons with 10 minute cleaning breaks in between. All self-serve areas have been replaced with an attendant and keypads for student ID charging have been removed in favor of no-touch billing. Plexiglass partitions have been installed at serving stations. Depending on the level of physical distance the school year must accommodate, some plans call for delivered box lunches to classrooms. Each campus has its own plan for lunch scheduling. Please see On-Campus School Day tab for more information about lunches.
Will there be any changes to fall athletics?
Bolles is waiting for direction from the Florida High School Athletic Association (FHSAA) to determine when or if fall sports will begin. We will keep the Bolles community updated as that information becomes available. In the meantime, some summer conditioning has begun with proper physical distancing and check-in stations, with temperature checks required for all athletes. Athletes in the weight room are limited and required to wear full fingered gloves, bring their own water bottle for personal use only and bring any other equipment requested by their coach.
Are team practices still scheduled?
Yes, at the discretion of each coach.
Will the School host fine and performing arts events?
Yes! But we have established new plans and protocols for hosting these safely. All performances will be ticketed on all campuses to allow for the School to ensure physical distancing by separating groups by at least a row behind and in front and two seats to either side. We also are considering use of outdoor venues and prerecorded performances. Some annual events historically held inside, such as receptions or parties, will not occur if safe physical distancing standards cannot be applied.
How will rehearsals be managed?
Directors and faculty will follow all proper physical distancing protocols. Some facilities, like Parker Auditorium, are large enough to stagger rehearsal groups or space out students. Other smaller facilities will necessitate shifting to outdoor venues or staggered scheduling. See the Arts tab for more information.
Will parents be able to watch student performances?
We are working diligently to come up with seating arrangements that will accommodate parents, friends and family in the audience. Some productions, however, might necessitate streaming, video or other distance technology.
If a student selects to begin the school year with At-Home Learning may they switch to On-Campus Learning?
Student who choose to study at home for the first quarter may elect to return to campus for the second quarter or continue At-Home Learning.
If a student selects to begin the school year with On-Campus Learning may they switch to At-Home Learning?
Yes, we want every student to feel comfortable in a safe learning environment and select which way works best for them.
- Tyler Hodges, President and Head of School
- Mike Drew, Associate Head of School
- Twyla Ashman, Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
- Chris Butler, Director of Safety, Security and Transportation
- Sandy Catanese, Director of Bolles Fund and Parent Association
- Katie Cussen, Director of Counseling
- Allison Denmark, Interim Director of Residential Life
- Katy Garcia, Upper School Learning Specialist
- Stacey Hendershot, Ponte Vedra Beach Campus Lower School Head
- Jonathan Keen, Middle School Head
- Christy Lusk, Whitehurst Campus Lower School Head
- Moya Marks, Upper School Head
- Paul Matthews, Director of Food Services
- Kila McCann, Dean of Admission and Financial Aid
- Melvin Morgan, Director of Facilities and Operations
- Matt Morris, Director of Athletics
- Piper Moyer-Shad, Director of Student Activities
- Carol Nimitz, Chief Advancement Officer
- Jan Olson, Senior Director of Communications and Marketing
- Laura Rippel, Director of Fine and Performing Arts
- Jeff Role, Chief Financial and Operations Officer
- Paul Sollee, Chief Technology Officer
- Linda Tyre, School Nurse
- Drew Upchurch, Director of Auxiliary Services
- Kim Wait, Assistant to the President
COVID-19 (NOVEL CORONAVIRUS) INFORMATION
Communications regarding COVID-19 will be posted here.
- A Message form the President and Head of School - July 22, 2020
- A Message from President and Head of School, 2020-21 School Year - July 17, 2020
- COVID-19 News from Mayo Clinic
- COVID-19 School and Community Resource Library - from Massachusetts General Hospital
- U.S. Pediatricians Call For In-Person School This Fall - from NPR.org
- A modelling framework to assess the likely effectiveness of facemasks in combination with ‘lock-down’ in managing the COVID-19 pandemic - from Royal Society Publishing
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention COVID-19 Information
- The World Health Organization (WHO) COVID-19 Information
- U.S. State Department COVID-19 Traveler Information
- Florida Health Department COVID-19 Information
- Florida Department of Education COVID-19 Response