COVID-19 Updates

Back-to-School Plan for Second Semester
(Updated March 4, 2021)

Detailed COVID Guidelines

Athletics Program Details

SCDHEC’s Reported COVID-19 Cases Among School-Aged Children and Employees

Effective Friday, March 5, protocols for face coverings (see below) and quarantining (see Detailed COVID Guidelines page) will change. The new quarantining protocols relate to students who have had contact with or live with someone who has tested positive.

New protocols for face coverings: Face coverings will continue to be required to enter and move around in all buildings, but at the teacher’s discretion may now be removed once the student is seated. Face coverings will still be required in all areas where adequate spacing is not possible or where the type of activity (i.e. singing) necessitates their use.

Here’s what that means at the different grade levels.

  • K3–Grade 5
    • Singing while using a face covering is permitted in chapel and in classes.
    • In chapel face coverings may be removed after congregational singing ends.
  • Grades 6–12
    • Singing while using a face covering is permitted in chapel and in classes.
    • In chapel* face coverings may be removed after congregational singing ends.
    • In classrooms not already sufficiently distanced, at the teacher’s discretion students may remove their face coverings once class begins.

*This applies to the middle school chapels as well as to those high school chapels held in Stratton Hall—our new venue for most high school chapels. Face coverings continue to be required for chapels held in the Academy Gym.

If conditions deteriorate, we may revert to the previous protocols. Please continue to adhere closely to these guidelines to help avoid that possibility. This includes continuing to use the Ascend app, to perform temperature checks each morning, to use our enhanced cleaning protocol, to carefully space/distance, and to encourage good hand hygiene.

We’re thankful to have completed three-quarters of our school year in person and hope to finish the full year this way.

The details below are based on recommendations from the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control, the South Carolina Department of Education, local health officials, and BJU’s administrative and health leadership.

As soon as possible, we want to return to the normalcy we greatly desire. We will do our best to keep you current with any updates to the plan.

Health Services

Nurse – Because health is a primary concern for BJA, we have an on-site nurse available to consult and support our students and activities.

Seclusion Room – a room has been designated for a student, faculty, or staff member to be temporarily and safely separated from others and cared for when COVID-19 symptoms are suspected

Faculty, Staff, and Student Safety

We will continue to integrate several proactive steps to minimize exposure and to minimize the spread of illness.

  • Use physical distancing, including, where appropriate
    • Maintaining reduced room capacities
    • Maintaining wide spacing of seating in classrooms and assemblies
      • Wide spacing of classroom desks. When appropriate distancing is not possible because of the number of students, face coverings will continue to be required.
      • Facing seats in one direction
    • Moving classes and assemblies to larger spaces when necessary
    • Modifying hallway traffic patterns, such as maintaining distanced single-file lines in elementary
    • In the secondary, most students using backpacks and roller bags rather than student lockers; lockers are available upon request
    • Modifying bus and lunch seating
  • Modify certain activities, where appropriate
    • Fine arts classes/groups
      • Spacing per recommendations
      • Temporarily suspending elementary choir since an adequately sized room is not available
    • Physical education classes
      • Assigning lockers—distanced apart
      • Minimizing changing into PE attire
    • Athletics program
    • Emergency Drills
  • Encourage good hygiene by
    • Reminding students to
      • Wear face coverings when physical distancing is not possible
      • Wash hands
      • Watch distances
  • Asking parents to
    • Provide a face covering for each child that adequately covers the child’s nose and mouth
    • Provide hand sanitizer for student use while at school. In the elementary division, the teachers will manage its use; in the secondary division, students will use it as needed.
  • Enhance our cleaning procedures with
    • A focus on high-touch areas
    • Increased cleaning protocols in classrooms, with specific plans dependent on how the classroom is used
  • Limit contact with parents and guests at school
    • School buildings and grounds
      • Parents and guests are welcome to visit school offices for assistance; office personnel and faculty will assist with individual needs related to the classroom.
      • Face coverings are required when entering the school building to visit the office.
      • Elementary students will need to arrive through car line or say goodbye to parents before entering the building.
    • Lunch and chapel: limited to BJA students and faculty/staff
    • School events: evaluated and modified on a case-by-case basis regarding attendees/fans/audiences
  • Limit exposure to other students or staff who may be ill by
    • Daily conducting the home health check for each student using the Ascend health screening portal to determine student attendance eligibility for the day. Once you have created a login, you can log in here or from the front page of our website.
    • Keep home a student who receives an ineligible indication from Ascend or is symptomatic or has a temperature 100 degrees F or above
    • Plan to arrive earlier than normal to accommodate the onsite temperature and health screening checks upon arriving at school.
    • Contacting parents if their student becomes symptomatic while at school
      • The student will be cared for in an isolation room.
      • Parents will be contacted to immediately pick up the student.
    • Asking parents to seek medical advice and take appropriate action if their student shows signs of symptoms or has been in close contact with a person diagnosed with COVID-19. Read detailed guidelines here.
    • Communicating appropriately to parents if their student is believed to have been exposed to illness at school
    • Asking staff to daily check their own temperature and symptoms and to stay home if they are symptomatic
    • Maintaining cohorts of students where possible (primarily at the elementary level), avoiding unnecessary exposure to larger groups
    • Advising parents on a case-by-case basis
  • Face coverings
    • Each student (K3-12), faculty, and staff member must have their own adequate face covering when they arrive at school and throughout each day.
    • Individuals should put on their face covering when entering a building or when requested to wear it by a faculty or staff member.
    • When appropriate distancing is not possible because of the number of students in a classroom, face coverings will continue to be required.
    • Efforts will be made to create distance and as much time as possible for students to not have to wear the face covering.
    • Students will be asked to wear face coverings when socializing in small groups, changing classes, or walking within 6 feet of one another.
    • We will support any parent who wants their student to wear a face covering at all times.


When a necessary precaution causes a significant difficulty for those affected, we will continue to provide alternate solutions where possible and suitable.

  • School events (evaluated on a case-by-case basis)
    • Potentially providing virtual opportunities when a face-to-face event is cancelled (e.g. parent-teacher conferences)
    • Changes will be communicated to parents and students in a timely manner
  • Student learning (if an extended absence is required)
    • BJA is unable to provide distance-learning lessons while conducting traditional in-class instruction. However, plans are in place to provide appropriate homework assignments and/or other learning materials for students (similar to the kind of support that was given in previous school years).
    • Should we find it necessary to suspend in-person classes, we will transition to a distance-learning model. We are committed to continuing to provide high-quality academic instruction regardless of the method of delivery.

Operational Procedures

Modifications of specific operational procedures for activities and buildings such as lunch, the Markham Center, chapel, changing classes, early/late stay, and after-school activities will be outlined with students the first week of school in January.

Please contact us if you have questions or concerns.

We look forward to seeing your student back at school in January!