COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What are the plans for re-opening the K-8 school campus?
A: Zion Lutheran School's most up-to-date plans for the
upcoming school year can be found here: COVID Planning July 21, 2020.
At this time we are hopeful that we will obtain permission from OC Health to
open for full-time instruction in Fall 2020. However, we are simultaneously
planning for remote and blended learning opportunities so that we can serve all
students according to their needs. In the event that Orange County schools are
not able to open in Fall 2020, we will offer continuous child care services
through our ECEC and SAC programs.
Q: The CDC lists three risk levels for schools
("lowest", "more", and "highest" CDC Considerations for Schools).
What "risk level" will Zion take?
A: Zion plans to reopen in-person instruction on campus, with
modifications. By the CDC's definition, this is a "more risk"
environment. The only way to be "lowest risk" is to only offer remote
instruction. We know that we have students and families in our school community
that are medically vulnerable and need to be in a "lowest risk"
environment. We want to continue to serve you and we are working on solutions
for offering a "lowest risk" option for families that have a medical
Q: How will Zion achieve physical distancing in classrooms?
A: Zion has many options for achieving physical distancing, such
as removing unnecessary furniture from classrooms so that desks can be spread
out from each other, using partitions where physical distance cannot be
achieved, and the use of outdoor learning spaces when appropriate.
Q: Does Zion plan to use outdoor learning spaces in the Fall?
A: Zion has spacious outdoor areas that can be used for teaching
and learning spaces. It is already common to see students and educators working
and learning at the outdoor tables. Using outdoor learning spaces has already
been a part of our program because it provides flexibility, reduces noise in
the classroom, allows students to spread out, and optimizes our beautiful
climate for fresh air and sunshine! There are some specific lessons and
activities, such as singing or practicing phonics and diction, that may be more
safely practiced outdoors in open air with physical distance. It is quite
possible for Zion to continue using outdoor learning spaces in a way that feels
"normal" to students while complying with CDC guidance for physical
Q: Will parents be allowed to walk their children to class?
A: No, although this procedure will be continually reviewed based
on our local conditions. Everyone who enters campus will be required to be
screened. Screening our student population each morning will require several
staff members and will need to be as efficient as possible so that students can
get to class. The teachers and staff will plan alternate ways to make the first
day of school special for students and families and we will support students in
adjusting to new routines.
Q: Will volunteers be able to help on campus during the 2020-2021
A: As of May 29, 2020, the CDC recommends that schools, "Limit any nonessential visitors, volunteers, and
activities involving external groups or organizations as possible – especially
with individuals who are not from the local geographic area (e.g., community,
town, city, county)," (CDC Considerations for Schools).
We are likely to limit guests, volunteers, and all non-staff adults, although
it is something that may change throughout the upcoming school year depending
on the health of our surrounding community (Orange County, specifically).
Q: How can Zion address COVID-19 differently than other schools,
particularly public schools?
A: As a private school,
Zion is obligated to follow civil authority. In the case of COVID-19, we still
must comply with national, state, and local orders. However, we do have the opportunity
to apply for approval to open on campus even if the local school district is
Q: Will Zion require students to wear masks at school?
A: Zion will require students, staff, and all visitors to campus
to comply with civil authority. Current orders require students in grades 3-8
to wear masks whenever they are indoors. Students in grades TK/K-2 are
recommended, but not required, to wear masks. Faculty and staff will wear masks
or face shields at all times.
Q: Is Zion planning to offer different tuition rates if remote
instruction is required?
A: At this time Zion is planning to maintain our traditional
tuition structure for all students. Tuition Assistance is provided based on
financial need. Faithful tuition payments provide Zion with the financial
resources needed to invest in a safe and healthy school campus. Thank you for
your faithful tuition payments!