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Our goal has always been to welcome our students and faculty to campus when state and local mandates allow us to safely offer in-person learning.
Establishing class cohorts, practicing physical distancing, enhanced disinfection, monitoring the health of our students and faculty, as well as wearing personal protective equipment will all play a part in keeping our campus community safe and healthy. 
Most importantly, Gooden is and will continue to be, a small school environment by design. We have upgraded our technology to allow for more live and synchronous instruction both indoors and outdoors. We are modifying classrooms and other learning spaces to accommodate distancing and other safety measures as well as providing academic support. Our small classes, large classrooms, ample outdoor learning spaces, along with the ability to set our priorities based on the needs of our students, and a generous and supportive community, allow us to be agile as we move forward together. 
Since Gooden’s inception, the 3Rs, Respect for self, Respect for Others, and Respect for the World, have guided everything that we do. As we implement these strategies, we again turn to these guiding principles. 

Our goal is for every teacher to provide a safe and loving classroom environment, whether we are practicing distance or in-person learning. 
As the situation for school reopening in Los Angeles County is evolving, The Gooden School has put into place three modalities for our students to receive instruction. 
Distance Learning
In this model, instruction is delivered through our distance learning programs for all students. We continue to update our platforms, analyze feedback, and provide professional development to our faculty and staff. Synchronous and asynchronous schedules have been created for students by division that are developmentally appropriate and engaging. This model will continue to exist for students who cannot return to school, and if the community needs to transition back to distance learning if it is determined to be warranted by state and local authorities.
You may also view our distance learning schedules for our kindergarten through second grade, third through fifth grades, or Middle School students.  


The Gooden School campus and buildings are open to all faculty, staff, and students for in-person learning with universal health and safety measures in place. This scenario would happen when it is determined by our state and local jurisdictions that it is safe to reopen. Schedules may change, and outdoor classrooms will be used to better comply with required social distancing measures and health and safety monitoring. We would continue to provide developmentally appropriate distance learning and have instructional plans for any student unable to attend in person.  Social distancing measures would have instructional plans for any student unable to attend in person.


Hybrid Model 
The Gooden School campus and buildings are open to faculty, staff, and students with limitations on the number of people allowed on campus according to state and local guidelines. Schedules will be implemented where teachers rotate through classes rather than having students who are attending in person move between classrooms. New technology has been upgraded to allow for more live and synchronous instruction both indoors and outdoors. This model will also provide synchronous instruction for students who cannot attend or if the attendance is limited to specific grades or cohorts by state and local guidelines.
Our standard of care is high.
We continue to consult with medical and facilities experts about best practices as we prepare to reopen. We also continue to be vigilant and ready to adjust our approach as necessary and to model the calm and composed behaviors our students need to see.
Guiding Principles
We will be overly cautious so that we protect all of our students, faculty, and staff. The following will guide our decision-making and return to campus protocols.
  • The highest health and safety standards we can provide on our campus.
  • Social distancing structures in place.
  • Faculty and staff are able to safely deliver the curriculum.
  • Children in kindergarten through eighth-grade aged children learn best during in-person instruction (distance learning provided when needed and required).
  • Levels of community spread and transmission in Los Angeles County.
  • Percentage of test positivity in the local area.
  • Hospitalization rate.
  • Daily case rate (numbers per 100,000).
  • Centers for Disease Control (CDC), American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), local health authorities, as well as California state mandates or orders.
Face Coverings
All students and faculty/staff are required to wear face coverings (masks) at all times. We have purchased clear face coverings for each faculty member to help with instructional delivery. All students will be required to wear a mask and have one extra at school each day. Fabric masks work well and should be washed daily. We want to make sure all of our Gooden Knights know how to safely and properly wear a mask as it will be required in the school buildings when we return to campus.
Hand Hygiene  
Students and faculty will follow a regular schedule of handwashing throughout the day. Families are encouraged to practice and reinforce the importance of good hygiene and practice regular handwashing at home. Hand sanitizing stations have been added to all classroom spaces and at campus entry points.
Home Health Screen  
Each student, family, and faculty/staff member is required to complete a daily home health screen on the Magnus app prior to leaving for school. Students and staff must pass the health screen prior to coming to school.
Social Distancing  
Social distancing measures are in place. Where feasible, students will be separated from adults by six feet and in classrooms with shared desks that are five feet apart. Limiting close face-to-face contact with others is the best way to reduce the spread of COVID-19. 
We have taken extensive measures to ensure our students', staff, and faculty's health and safety. 
We have upgraded protocols to make this environment as possible with layers of protection for all. We continue to educate ourselves on best practices and consult with medical/facility experts to prepare.
Cleaning and Sanitizing 
Daily cleaning practices are in line with CDC recommendations, including the types of cleaning products and frequency of cleaning. Special attention will be paid to the cleaning of high-touch surfaces. We have engaged with an outside vendor to provide additional cleaning and sanitizing of the campus. 
Faucets and Fountains 
Touchless paper towel dispensers have been installed in all the student bathrooms throughout the buildings. Water fountains have been disabled. Students should bring his/her own bottle and only use the bottle filling stations.
Hand Sanitizing Stations 
Hand sanitizer dispensers are available in every classroom and will be available at building entrances to ensure regular access.
We have ensured that HVAC air filtration throughout the buildings is checked and changed more frequently, and in addition to this, we will install HEPA air purifiers in all spaces that use circulating air. Some additional fans will be used in classrooms with limited outside air for improved air circulation.
Visitor Access
The campus will be closed to all but necessary parent and vendor/contractor visits. All visitors, including parents, will be screened upon arrival. The front office staff will oversee visitor approval.
We anticipate modifications to some of our programs. 
GASP, After-School Activities, and Athletics 
We are still looking at ways to offer GASP, after-school study hall, and activities, and these include using all the classroom spaces and maintaining class cohorts. While Middle School students who participate in athletics cannot play games as teams, they may be permitted to condition together and practice skills as long as they follow safety protocols.
Lunch and Hot Lunch Service
Students will be asked to bring all snacks and lunch from home at the start of in-person instruction. No sharing of food or drinks will be permitted. All snacks and lunches will be eaten in the classroom or outdoors, and the snack and lunchtimes will be staggered. Our hot lunch provider, Chef Leslie, is looking into providing boxed lunches and family dinner options for pick up. We continue to reassess whether it will be possible to transition to this service.
Modified Calendar 
Many of our beloved events may be reimagined this year. Please continue to read The Gooden Weekly and note changes to the school calendar as events unfold.
Student Materials
A supply list has been created and shared, and depending on grade level, students will bring their own supplies to school that will not be shared or have supplied provided for their personal use by The Gooden School. We are asking that each student have at least one extra face mask at school at all times and that each student bring a beach towel and sun hat to use when participating in outdoor activities. 
Uniform Guidelines 
When we return to in-person learning on campus, events like all-school assemblies, chapels, and performances that typically require dress uniform, will likely not take place as usual. This means we will not require students to wear dress uniforms this school year. Students will still be required to wear the regular uniform as well as PE uniforms. For more information about uniforms, please visit the Community Guide for Distance Learning, and the Family-Student Handbook, for more information. 
We are ready to implement any of our learning scenarios or a combination of them for the 2020-2021 academic year.
Chapels, Eucharist Celebrations, and Student Recognition  
We are developing creative ways to facilitate larger communal gatherings, such as chapels and Eucharist services, by utilizing outdoor space and on-line options. All in-person gatherings will adhere to state and local guidelines regarding capacity, mask-wearing, and social distancing. We are also reimagining how we celebrate individual student birthdays and milestones.


Classrooms, Class Sizes, and Outdoor Spaces  
Classrooms are being reconfigured so students can be physically distanced from one another, and classes may be split into cohorts. Cohorts will have recess, PE, and lunchtimes together, and share outdoor activities together. 
Interested in learning more about The Gooden School?
We are happy to connect with families interested in exploring what The Gooden School has to offer.

We have streamlined our application process with modifications, and we will no longer require outside testing (such as KSP for kindergarten and ISEE for grades 6-8). If you would like to register for a visit, ask general questions, request a more detailed virtual tour, and/or to connect with our admissions office, please fill out the inquiry form and create an online account. 
We can't wait to show you what a Gooden education is all about!


  • Profile Photo

    Jo-Anne Woolner

    Head of School Jo-Anne Woolner is the head of school at Gooden. S ...
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    Brian Mathess

    Director of Finance and Operations Brian Mathess has been at The Gooden School since ...
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    Laurie Tortell

    Middle School Director/Dean of Students Laurie Tortell started teaching at Gooden in 2008 ...
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    Melanie Davis

    Fourth-Grade Teacher/Curriculum Director/Upper Elementary Division Director Melanie Davis has been at Gooden since 2001, where ...
  • Profile Photo

    Meredith Paz

    Kindergarten Teacher/Lower Elementary Division Director Meredith Paz has been at The Gooden School since 2 ...
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    Tricia Xavier

    Director of Admissions and Enrollment Management/Benefits and Compliance Tricia Xavier has been at The Gooden School since ...