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COVID-19 Info and Resources for Families

The coronavirus pandemic has caused challenges for families across the world. To support  families and children in Buncombe county during this difficult time, Verner staff has put together the following list of helpful educational tools, health information, and food resources. We have also provided answers to a few frequently asked questions we’ve had from parents about COVID-19. 

COVID-19 Related Protocol Changes for Verner Families

Updated Drop-off Procedures

Families will go through the playgrounds and drop-off at the classroom doors. 

Classroom Pods


With higher numbers of children, we now have a pair of classrooms considered a “pod.” Each classroom has two dedicated faculty members plus a shared teacher who would support one pod. There are times when the support might be another Verner community member. 

​We are continuing to not allow in the building other grown-ups such as outside volunteers, outside therapists, etc. We will continue to monitor safety and make adjustments when needed. 

There are a few classrooms that may combine with their pod at the end of the day for short periods of time. This is to be sure that there are enough adults to maintain good classroom ratios. In the few cases where combining two classrooms is necessary for a period of time, no more than two classrooms will be combined. If we need to combine, we are trying to combine outside in the afternoons unless the weather does not permit.

New Meal-Time Protocol

We are taking special precautions at mealtimes to avoid sharing serving utensils and containers, so teachers will be serving all meal components for your child. Serving bowls will not be on the table, but students are encouraged to ask (or sign) for “more.” Be sure and ask what your child tried! 

Daily Health Screenings and Increased Hand Hygiene Protocol

The following enhanced cleanliness measures will be instituted: 

  • Daily health screenings
  • With parent consent, teachers will help children over the age of two in using hand sanitizer when needed while playing outside.
  • Intensified cleaning, sanitation, disinfection and ventilation

Outside Learning Environments

We will continue to maintain a schedule of times when classrooms or pods have their own time on the playground and other site-specific outside options such as the garden and hikes. The outside learning environments are cleaned following the recommendations of the CDC. ​

Precautions Taken By Verner Staff and Faculty

Staff and faculty have been fitted for N-95 masks. This will give us an additional precautionary measure to facilitate the safety of our community. Verner staff and administrators who do not support daily operations and classroom coverage will continue to work remotely.

Resources for Verner Families Returning to School:

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Where can families get reliable information about COVID-19?

Information about COVID-19 should be accessed from your doctor, the CDC , the NC Division of Public Health, and the Buncombe County Health Department

What is Coronavirus/COVID-19?

Human Coronaviruses are a family of viruses that usually cause illnesses like the common cold. Almost everyone gets one of these viruses at some point in their lives. Most of the time the illness only lasts for a short time.

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

Symptoms of COVID-19 can range from mild to severe and can include:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath

What should parents do if a child or family member shows symptoms of COVID-19? 

  • If you or your child have fever AND cough or difficulty breathing, call your healthcare provider or urgent care if you do not have a healthcare provider.
  • Do NOT show up at your healthcare provider’s office or the urgent care without calling first.
  • Do NOT go to the emergency room. Emergency rooms need to be able to serve the most critically ill.
  • If you are having a medical emergency, call 9-1-1 and tell them your symptoms.
  • If you do not have a healthcare provider and cannot afford to be seen at urgent care, call 828-250-5109 to speak with a Communicable Disease (CD) nurse at BCHHS. Leave a message and a CD nurse will return your call as quickly as possible.​

How should parents talk to kids about COVID-19?

What online resources are there for learning at home?In addition to activities from your child’s teacher you can also access online resources at: 

Where can families go for food in times of need? 

​Please click the COMPREHENSIVE FOOD RESOURCE link to find a map of places where you can pick up student meals and food in Asheville during the COVID-19 situation.

If You Have Other Questions or Need More Support

If you need any other type of support please reach out to your family’s Family Advocate or email your site’s Center Director. Please visit our Staff & Faculty page for contact information.