Children's Ministry Guidance Memo

08.05.20 | Homepage

    Episcopal Diocese of Dallas Children’s Ministry Committee

    Children’s Ministry Guidance Memo

    Committee Members: Stephanie Van Kirk, Jen Chapman, Katharine Bryan, Francina Anderson, Regan Wallace

    July 27, 2020

    Goal of Committee: Brainstorm and research the safest options for ministering to children once we are allowed to meet for services inside the church and during surge period of renewed constraint.

    Memo: Guidance Document for Children’s Ministry Programs in the Episcopal Diocese of Dallas during COVID-19

    A. Children’s Ministry group gatherings will not take place in person inside within the diocese where public schools are not meeting in person


    ● Maintain ministry virtually and/or at a 6 foot distance outdoors (with parent approval for all interactions).

    B. Children’s Ministry group gatherings may take place in person indoors within the diocese where public schools are meeting in person with prevention practices in place (following all local and state guidelines).


    ● Continue to provide non in-person children’s ministry options (virtual, mailings, home deliveries) for those children and families who are unable to attend in person services and events

    ● In-person indoor children’s ministry programming:

    ○ Follow the CDC, DHHS Childcare guidance, and Texas Education

    Agency public health guidance given to public schools whenever


    ○ Communicate Children’s Ministry plan for parents and general


    ○ Limit number of children to the number that can properly social

    distance in classrooms (utilizing reservation system for in person

    attendance if necessary)

    ○ Check in procedures: keep safe distance in between families at

    check-in, check temperature of students and teachers (follow ISD

    standard), parents must ensure church leader that their child(ren)

    have not had COVID-19 symptoms in the past 14 days, tested

    positive of COVID-19 in the past 14 days or been in close contact

    with someone who has it, provide hand sanitizing station at check


    ○ When feasible and appropriate, it is preferable for students to

    gather outside, rather than inside, because of likely reduced risk of

    virus spread outdoors

    ○ Seating inside classrooms: ensure proper social distancing of 6 feet

    apart at all times

    ○ Cleaning inside classrooms: clean all “high touch” surfaces (toys,

    doorknobs, tables and chairs) between use

    ○ Monitor transitions (though hallways, etc.) – reduce large group

    gatherings in close proximity

    ○ Masks: encourage children ages 4 and above to wear a mask.

    Anyone age 10 or older is required to wear a mask (unless there is

    a medical exception).

    ○ Teachers/Volunteers: age 65 and older are encouraged to consult

    with a doctor before volunteering or working with groups of children

    ○ Nursery care: child care providers must wear a mask, implement

    social distancing strategies between children where possible,

    intensify cleaning and disinfection efforts (cleaning products should

    not be used near children; toys that cannot be cleaned and

    sanitized should not be used), modify drop off and pick up

    procedures, implement screening procedures upon arrival

    ○ Outdoor Playgrounds: maintain routine cleaning

    ○ Singing: No singing indoors with children until congregational

    singing is allowed

    ○ Train all children’s ministry volunteers and staff in the above safety

    actions. Consider conducting the training virtually, or, if in-person,

    ensure that social distancing is maintained.

    Recommended Reading for Children’s Ministry leaders:

    Texas Education Agency Public Health Planning Guidance:

    Open Texas Checklist for Child Care Operations:

    Open Texas Checklist for Child Care Families:

    CDC recommendations for faith-based organizations: