COVID-19 and Children

Posted on March 18th, 2020

Wash your hands, stay home if you are sick and abide by physical distancing are all good advice but how do you really do that with children at home especially if you need to work?

This page has information on the health, childcare, supporting children, food and financial assistance.

The ECCS has also published a list of educational resources and activities to do with your children at http://www.southingtonearlychildhood.org/free-educational-resources-and-activities-during-covid-19/

We will continue to update this list and share information on our social media pages.

Health

Center for Disease Control (CDC) information on COVID-19 for households: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/home/index.html

Connecticut Department of Public Health page: https://portal.ct.gov/Coronavirus

Have questions about COVID-19, email the Plainville Southington Health District at covid19@southington.org or visit their site at www.pshd.org.

Call the Bristol Health COVID-19 Hotline at (860) 261-6855 or the Hartford Healthcare hotline at (860) 972-8100 or 1-833-621-0600 (toll-free)

 

Childcare

Options in Southington

UPDATED 3/25. This list will be updated as the situation changes.

With Southington Schools closing at least through the end of March, working parents need to find other options.
The ECCS has asked childcare providers in town about who can help.

These centers plan to remain open, subject to government restrictions

  • My Little Rascals – space available
  • My Little Rascals Too – space available
  • Bright Beginnings – space available
  • St. Dominics Childcare Center – checking on available space.
  • Jack & Jill II
  • Southington Community YMCA has reopened as of 3/25 for emergency care for children age 3 to 12 per request from OEC. This is only for Hospital Workers and first responders.

Contact information for these centers is in the ECCS Resource Directory.

You can also visit https://www.211childcare.org or call 2 – 1 – 1 for openings State-wide.

There are some family childcare providers in town who have openings, contact us if you want info.

The following programs are temporarily closed:

  • The Nurturing Nest and Early Learning Center – closed for two weeks starting on 3/23, tentatively reopening for Monday April 6th.
  • Giggles & Grins – closed on 3/19
  • Town and Country Early Learning Center Southington – closed on 3/18 at least until 4/6. They have waived their “no baby sitting” rule for staff and were able to connect staff with families who needed care.
  • Southington Community YMCA’s child care facilities closed 3/16 (reopened on 3/25 only for hospital workers and first responders)
  • Southington Catholic – Follows SPS schedule
  • Village Green Nursery School – Follows SPS schedule
  • Zion Christian Nursery School – Follows SPS schedule
  • Margaret C. Griffin Child Development Center – Follows SPS schedule
  • Circle of Friends Music offering Music Together – at least until 3/28

 

CT Office of Early Childhood

Governor Lamont has include childcare providers on the list of essential businesses and will be keeping them open.

3/17/2020: “The Office of Early Childhood is in close talks with the Governor, the Department of Public Health (DPH) and the state’s Emergency Operation Center. We are monitoring closely and will continue to communicate with you. These are unprecedented times. Child Care is a critical part of our infrastructure.”

The CT Office of Early Childhood has issued several Memos with regulation waivers and advice to childcare providers and parents. You can find the full list on their home page under Latest News: https://www.ct.gov/oec/site/default.asp.

Supporting Children

You will find some consistent advice in these articles. Children need to feel safe, thrive on routine and learn through play.  Don’t forget to get outside.

How to Prepare for School Closings and Not Lose Your Mind
https://www.upworthy.com/tips-for-parents-coronavirus

Talking with Children: Tips for Caregivers, Parents, Teachers During Infectious Disease Outbreaks 
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
When children and youth watch news on TV about an infectious disease outbreak, read about it in the news, or overhear others discussing it, they can feel scared, confused, or anxious—as much as adults. This tip sheet will help parents, caregivers, and teachers learn some common reactions, respond in a helpful way, and know when to seek support.
https://store.samhsa.gov/system/files/sma14-4886.pdf

Talking to Kids About the Coronavirus
Child Mind Institute – Kids worry more when they’re kept in the dark
https://childmind.org/article/talking-to-kids-about-the-coronavirus

Playing Teacher
Peg Oliveira, PhD, Executive Director of the Gesell Institute of Child Development at the Yale Child Study Center.
“In this reset, my intention is to first accept that this is a trying time for them and for us. As always, until we attend to our social and emotional needs, learning cannot happen. Let’s take time to help kids feel safe and connected, first and foremost. And then if we do have time and energy to commit to home schooling, let’s put it into building active, engaged, meaningful and social experiences for our kids, rather than strapping them to a desk, yet again, to do worksheets and math programs.”
https://gesellinstitute.org/blogs/sparking-wonder/playing-teacher

 

Food and Financial Assistance

Southington Public Schools

Updated 3/24:

The Southington Public Schools has expanded its free “grab-and-go” breakfast and lunch program.

“The meals are free to any student of a closed school age 18 and under in addition to younger siblings in the household. We will be offering meals on Monday, Wednesday and Friday and we will provide 2 breakfasts and 2 lunches for each child each day.”

“This program is available to all families and we know many may be experiencing reduced income with so many businesses shutting down. We want everyone to know they can participate regardless of income level.”

These meals will meet the federal meal pattern guidelines and will be bagged or boxed to be picked up and consumed off-site.

Beginning Wednesday, March 25th all elementary and middle schools will be offering meals and the hours for pick up will be 11:30-12:30pm.
A parent, guardian, or student can drive up and someone will come to the car to greet you and bring meals outside. Specific curbside locations are listed below:
DePaolo Cafeteria side
Kennedy Cafeteria side
Derynoski Cafeteria side
Oshana Cafeteria side
Flanders Front Entrance
Kelley Front Entrance
South End Front Entrance
Thalberg Front Entrance
Hatton Preschool Entrance
Strong Back of School

Bread for Life

Located at 31 Vermont Avenue in Southington, provides meals to those in need. Lunch is served at noon Monday-Saturday and dinner is served at 6:00 pm on Wednesday. You are welcome to drop by for a meal to-go during these times.

Southington Community Family Services

Located at 91 Norton Street in Plantsville, can assist in providing food and other resources to residents in need. They are also in need of donations which can be dropped off at their location between the hours of 8:30 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Unemployment

Have you lost your job as a result of the CoronaVirus crisis? Connecticut’s Department of Labor encourages all residents who lose their job due to the ongoing coronavirus outbreak to file for unemployment benefits. Click HERE to access the site.

Other

Check out the ECCS list of places that provide assistance in our Resources directory.