COVID-19 Prevention & Response

Updated March 27, 2020

We all find ourselves navigating a new reality that may include everything from remote work with our kids, to searching for indoor projects to keep us busy, to trying to find time for a breath of fresh air on a walk. Some of us are managing more difficult new realities of reduced or lost work. All our realities are in flux.

The uncertainty of these times is calling on each of us to offer our friends, family, and community support in whatever way that is feasible for each of us. In that spirit, this update provides insight into our work at KSS to serve our local families through offering some programming in the coming months, retaining our culture and keeping some camp programs, maintaining our financial health as a nonprofit, and to staying connected as a KSS Family.

What We’re Doing and Upcoming Programs

The KSS offices remain closed and our programs are suspended through at least April 10th. During this time the KSS staff team is getting paid. I am working closely with The Vision Team, our Finance Committee, and Board of Directors to discern the best possible pathway forward for offering programs, retaining staff, and maintaining the safety of campers and staff in this everchanging landscape. Our progress is outlined below:

Spring Field Trips, Residential Programming.We are working with each school that has a scheduled program this spring to find a future date this fall to join us.

Summer Camp.For over 43 years, summer camp has been a foundational part of our culture and programming. While we would love to run a typical summer of programming, we understand that may not be feasible. We are currently evaluating a modified program schedule for this summer that will ensure the health and safety of our staff and students.

Camperships.The Campership application deadline for camp scholarships has been extended to May 1st to allow more families to apply. Find the application here, and please share it with anyone you know who can benefit from a camp scholarship.

Cancellation Policy.We continue to work on our policy so that it reflects the needs of our community while keeping KSS’s needs to manage enrollment and financial sustainability in mind. Please contact our Customer Experience Team for immediate questions, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Sustaining our Financial Well-being

Thanks to the guidance of our Board of Directors who prioritize planning for unforeseen financial challenges, KSS is grateful to have a long-term reserve that will help us through this unprecedented situation. We have been working closely with our Board of Directors to review the financial implications of this programming suspension and the potential impacts to revenue that may result. As a nonprofit, KSS obtains its income between fee-for-service revenue and generous contributions from funders, donors, and granting organizations. Our Finance Director is developing and analyzing financial models for various scenarios to help us plan and prepare. We’re watching this very closely and we are consulting with our Finance Committee, Board members, and each other daily.

Staying Connected

As I shared in last week’s update, the KSS culture thrives on closeness and shared experiences. While our new reality challenges these norms it is also creating space for new and creative ideas. We’ve been posting the creative projects and adventures that staff have been enjoying (while practicing social distancing, of course!) on our Facebook page and on Instagram.These moments lift our spirits and remind us that we’re still connected as a KSS Family.

We encourage you to share how you are staying connected with your family and friends during this time. We’re curious, too. Send us photos and stories. We’ll keep posting what we’re up to on our social media pages and hope to hear from you.

Be well,

Ellen Reid
Executive Director
Keystone Science School