Reopening Plan


Updated 10/15/20

Updated 8/26/21

Reviewed by CRCS School Board 9/13/2021

Amended 3/3/22

Updated for start of 22-23 School Year - 8/23/22

Reviewed by CRCS School Board 2/20/23

The Maine Center for Disease Control and the Maine Department of Education encourage all school districts to help all children get back to school, in-person full time 5 days per week this fallFrom “Students benefit from in-person learning, and safely returning to in-person instruction in the fall 2021 is a priority.”

** This plan is subject to change at any time based on Maine CDC and DOE guidance **

 In-Person Instruction Plan 

Symptom Self-Screening:

Physical Distancing and Facilities:




Masks/Face Coverings:  

Hand Hygiene:

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE):

Returning to School After COVID-19 Illness Protocol:

In the event of a positive COVID-19 incident among staff or learners, CRCS will follow all requirements of the Maine CDC and current Standard Operating Procedures (SOP).

Plan for Remote Learning 

Remote learning will not be used as a regular function of CRCS’s operating plan, and will only be used in cases of official quarantining and/or as determined by the Executive Director.  

Frequently Asked Questions

(updated 9/13/2021)

What type of model is your school planning on implementing for the start of school year SY 2021-2022?

(1) Remote learning for learners officially quarantining per Maine CDC and Maine Department of Education (MDOE) guidelines

(2) an in-person learning,

What type of model is CRCS planning to implement?

How and when will the school communicate the anticipated plan for the return to school (including health and safety protocols, scheduling and timing expectations, and instructional approach) to families?

CRCS will email blast each parent/guardian, post on our PRIVATE Facebook page, and we have assigned staff that is in frequent contact with each family.


How will the school communicate with families and guardians any changes to the announced schedule(s), instructional model or plans, individual learner academic and social emotional needs and other necessary information?

CRCS will email blast each parent/guardian, post on our PRIVATE Facebook page, and we have assigned staff that is in frequent contact with each family.

In the event a learner quarantines and they do not have their technology at home, the learner will have preassigned activities for  the first day of their quarantine that do not require technology.. Parents have been surveyed to find out their preference for acquiring their child’s technology in case this happens to their child. In the event an entire building or pod of learners need to quarantine, all learners will be able to access these activities that fit into our curriculum.


Has your school’s plan affected the previously approved school calendar? If so, how? Please attach the revised calendar as applicable.


Our plan has not affected our school calendar. We will be implementing an asynchronous model that allows all learners to either by physically in school or working independently from home during their quarantine period.. At Dimensions, we do have a facilitator assigned to work with remote learners live as needed and we will assess if needed in other buildings. 

How and when will learners be initially assessed to determine academic and social emotional needs?

Our plan is to assess all learners within the first month of school. This will include informal classroom assessments and observations as well as more formal assessments such as NWEA and the Fountas and Pinnell reading assessment.  

Ongoing feedback from families and constant communication between Learning Coaches, facilitators and families will be critical in making sure the social emotional well-being of every learner is monitored. 

Information on the availability of internet connectivity for learners working remotely (part time or full time).

CRCS has surveyed families and will provide hotspots provided by the MDOE as needed during quarantine periods. We have also sent home information on discount programs parents can take advantage of including the federal Emergency Broadband Benefit program  and are encouraging all families who can get their own internet access to do so.

3/3/22 Update:

Dear CRCS Families,

I wanted to give you an update on COVID and where we are as a school community. Unfortunately, the COVID Pandemic has been a very polarizing event and opinions and beliefs vary widely and every decision tends to make some people happy while the same decision angers others. I am a firm believer that we need to not base our decisions on emotions or what “others” are doing. It is important we make the decisions that protect our school community, and that may look similar or different than other school districts nearby.  It is also important to understand that we don’t make decisions based on pressure or influence and we greatly appreciate those that have raised questions respectfully without threats.

It is very confusing for parents right now because there are several organizations that impact our policies and they are not in alignment. Many parents are looking at the CDC Guidelines or guidelines in other states, however, the Maine CDC and Maine Department of Education have a greater impact over public schools in Maine. The current Standard Operating Procedures has not been updated, which means that lifting a Universal Mask Policy in School will have a significant impact on quarantine requirements. To put it into perspective, every email that a parent has received about their child being a close contact at school will now result in a mandatory quarantine, unless they meet one of the other exemptions below.

Every public school has the option to continue with Universal Masking and/or put in place measures to insure the health and safety of the learners, staff, and families. Therefore, while we are moving towards a Mask Optional Policy, we will base the exemptions on those outlined by the Maine Department of Education’s Standard Operating Procedures. Fully Vaccinated (see requirements below), having COVID in the last 90 Days, and/or Pool Testing are the only exemptions from having to quarantine.

CRCS has an obligation to look at the facts that we have and make the best decision that we can to protect learners, staff, and community.


September 20

October 9

November 30

December 30

January 29

February 11

Nearly all of those cases above were a result to a close contact in the household and not transmission at school. When you look at the above numbers, they do in fact mirror the community transmissions waves. We are confident that the downward trend will continue, but if there is an increase, then we will evaluate whether or not a Universal Mask Policy is needed. 

We waited for the most recent Pool Testing Results to help inform our decision. I am very pleased to share that the most recent results at Creative Children’s Academy, Dimensions Academy and Overman Academy have yielded 0 positive cases, which gives us valuable data about the lack of positive cases in the CRCS Community. This is the first time pool testing has had negative results in all three buildings! 

Universal Mask Policy has meant that learners haven’t needed to quarantine when there is a positive contact in the school. Pool Testing is the other layer of protection from having to quarantine. I cannot stress enough that a single positive case in each building will now impact potentially 66% learners at Overman and at least 40% of  learners at Dimensions and over 70% of learners at Creative Children’s Academy.

CRCS is also going to move towards masks being optional EFFECTIVE, FRIDAY, MARCH 4th, 2022 and here is why:

When transmission and risk start to rise or increase, we will have to look at reinstating a Universal Mask Policy.

I can’t stress enough the impact with quarantining, and by removing the universal mask policy we may have more learners needing to quarantine, but there are exceptions so please read the following regarding quarantining.


If a learner is positive, they will need to quarantine for 10 days. We know that people are still contagious the whole period of time and therefore we want to protect others. 

If a learner is living with someone who is positive, then they will need to quarantine for 10 days. That can be reduced to 5 days IF they meet the criteria below for 1, 2, 3, or 4. This is more strict than the Maine CDC Guidelines because we know that someone can be positive and spread the virus for up to 10 days from onset of symptoms or a positive test. Keeping learners home during this time and having them return on Day 6 (with a rapid test and wearing a mask until Day 10) or returning Day 11 (with a negative Rapid Test), helps keep others safe from exposure.

If a learner is a close contact at school with someone who is positive, they will need to quarantine for 5 days. However, that can be reduced to 0 days if they meet the following exemptions 1, 2, 3 or 4. We are seeking guidance from the Maine DOE and CDC on if masks will be required when a close contact takes place at school. At the moment we do not have an answer. 


Learners and staff who do not fall within exceptions 1, 2, 3, or 4 above must quarantine if they are a close contact, regardless of the location of exposure. 

If community transmission increases and/or cases rise, then we will need to reassess about adding universal masks as a layer of protection. As a reminder, learners need to be asymptomatic and not have symptoms when coming to school. 

We recognize that some may not agree with this change and/or the quarantine practice. We are a choice school, which means parents are free to find another educational program that is better aligned with their personal values and beliefs. Bullying type behavior towards individuals that choose not to wear a mask, wear a mask, and/or are required to wear a mask will not be tolerated.

I encourage parents to sign up their children for Pool Testing so that they can reduce quarantine time periods and minimize any disruption to the learning environment. Parents can sign up for Pool Testing by reaching out to Melony Hull or Ashlee Savage. If you have any questions and or concerns, please contact either Elizabeth Firnkes or Susan Muzzy and they will be addressed accordingly.  I appreciate your patience and understanding as we navigate things during this pandemic. 

In the Service of Learners,

Travis Works

Executive Director

8/23/22 Update

Hello Parents and Guardians. 

We have set our beginning of the year COVID protocols for all buildings at CRCS to reflect the most recent CDC guidelines. Mr. Works has been working closely with the CDC, and as of 8/19/22 they released new recommendations. Please note, that the CDC and Maine Department of Education are constantly revising their policies and procedures and we greatly appreciate your understanding when those do occur.

Here is a summary of these updates and recommendations that will be in place at CRCS starting on our first day of school - August 29, 2022: 

  * If a learner or staff tests positive for COVID, they will need to quarantine for 5 days and can return to school on day 6 as long as symptoms aren't present. If the learner or staff is testing positive still on day 6 they will need to mask until they test negative or until day 10 whichever comes first. 

  * If a learner or staff is a close contact, there is no need to quarantine. However, they will be required to mask for 10 full days with a test on day 6. The test may be done at doctor's office or using a rapid antigen test. If an at-home test is a burden for your family, please let us know and we can provide one at school. 

CRCS will also continue to offer weekly pool testing. Those families and learners who were enrolled last year will continue to be enrolled this year. However, if you wish to stop enrollment in pool testing for any reason, please let your building administrative assistant know and they will remove the learner(s) from the list. 

If you are a new family to CRCS or a returning family who wishes to enroll in pool testing, please contact your building administrative assistant to get signed up. 

       * Creative Children's Academy & Dimensions Academy - Ashlee Savage - or 207-431-6070 (call or text)

       * Overman Academy - Melony Hull - or 207-431-7657 (call or text)


Pool testing is a great way to catch if a learner is positive for COVID earlier. Pool testing is sensitive enough to trigger a positive up to 48 hours before symptoms begin and before a rapid antigen test will register a positive. It also gives peace of mind especially if a learner is showing some basic cold symptoms (slight cough, runny nose) that they are negative for COVID and are still able to attend school with these symptoms. 

I look forward to seeing everyone on the first day of school! 

In the Service of Learners,

Travis Works

Executive Director