Author Archives: John Tannous

Updated COVID-19 Policy

July 28 Update:

Per CDC and King County, SANCA recommends that all who enter wear masks, including vaccinated individuals. Thank you! J.T

SANCA’s COVID-19 Health & Safety Policy effective July 6, 2021 remains active. (see below for more details)

SANCA has announced a new COVID-19 Health and Safety Policy. It is updated and goes into effect as of July 6, 2021. The Policy is based on updated guidance and requirements from King County Public Health and the State of Washington.

The policy can be seen below, or you can view a PDF version.

School for Acrobatics and New Circus Arts
COVID-19 Health & Safety Policy

This policy goes into effect July 6, 2021

SUMMARY

To ensure the safety of our students, staff, and surrounding community, and in consideration of public health, SANCA will adhere to a new policy in regards to masks, vaccines, and social distancing to limit the spread of COVID-19. The State of Washington now allows businesses to lift restrictions on masks and social distancing as long as certain conditions are met.

SANCA’S ENVIRONMENT

It is important to consider and understand SANCA’s operating environment before setting a policy of this nature. State of Washington guidelines for K-12 schools are different than other businesses, but SANCA is not a K-12 school. While some of SANCA’s students are under the age of 12 and unable to be vaccinated, those students are a minority of SANCA’s total student population. Most students under the age of 12 are kept socially distant – far more than 6 feet apart – from students in other classes. The CDC defines exposure risk as spending 15 minutes or more in close proximity to another individual; this only applies to students and coaches who are in the same class together.

For this reason, it is not appropriate for SANCA to follow the state guidance for K-12 schools nor the state guidance for other businesses. SANCA will instead follow a hybrid policy that incorporates aspects of both.

MASK POLICY

  1. Students and guests who are fully vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus may attend classes and be present inside SANCA’s facilities without wearing a mask. See item 4 below for an exception to this policy.
  2. Students who are not vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus and students under the age of 12 must wear a mask when present inside SANCA’s facilities. These students may only remove their masks when drinking water or when going outside.
  3. SANCA employees and volunteers must wear masks while indoors during work hours. Exceptions include during breaks to drink and eat and when working in a room alone.
  4. When camps are occurring at SANCA 9am-3pm, everyone in the facility must wear masks. This includes fully vaccinated students who wish to train to take a private lesson during camp time. During 2021, camps are held Mondays-Fridays during the following dates:
    • June 21 – September 3
    • November 22-24
    • December 20-23
    • December 27-30
  5. SANCA employees who are not actively working often attend classes as students or spend time “off the clock” training in SANCA’s facilities. During these times, they are treated the same as students in items 1 and 2 above.

SOCIAL DISTANCING POLICY

  1. Students and guests who are fully vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus do not have to remain socially distant from others while in SANCA’s facilities. This allows students to participate in partner acrobatics, catching in the fly tent, and other contact activities.
  2. All others – unvaccinated students, students under the age of 12, and guests as well as SANCA employees – must remain socially distant from others according to public health guidelines.
  3. SANCA staff who wish to do catching in the fly tent may register their vaccination status with Human Resources in order to be approved for an exception to social distancing.

EXPOSURE AND REPORTING POLICY

  1. Our existing waivers still address COVID-19 so students are advised to read them again to understand exposure reporting and other responsibilities.
  2. According to the waiver, everyone who comes to SANCA represents they are in good health and have had no known exposure to COVID-19 and no symptoms of COVID-19 for 14 days prior to entering SANCA’s facility.
  3. Also according to the waiver, if an individual believes they have had any exposure to COVID-19, they shall immediately cease entering SANCA’s facility until they can again warrant that they have had no known exposure for the 14 day period, and shall alert SANCA’s Front Office if they have been on the premises since their exposure.

VACCINATION POLICY

  1. SANCA will not track or ask for the vaccination status of any student, parent, or guest who enters the facility. We ask patrons to be honest and please wear a mask and remain socially distant if they have not been vaccinated against COVID-19.
  2. SANCA will not track, ask for, or require reporting on the vaccination status of its employees. SANCA employees are permitted to voluntarily report their vaccination status if they so choose, and/or if they will to participate in catching in the fly tent.

VISITATION/VIEWING POLICY

  1. Due to the ongoing risks associated with COVID and the overall reduced facility size at SANCA, there will be no parent viewing room. In general, parents, family, and guests of students are asked to wait outside of SANCA’s facilities during their student’s class.
  2. Any parent who wishes to observe a class may do so by requesting access. Requests must be made through the SANCA Front Office at least 24 hours in advance of the class. To request access, please call (206) 652-4433 or email office@sancaseattle.org.

TERMINATED POLICIES

  1. Cleaning and disinfecting equipment: SANCA staff and students are no longer required to clean equipment immediately after each use. SANCA’s facility team will establish a new procedure for cleaning and disinfecting equipment that is in alignment with State of Washington and CDC recommendations. Coaches and students are permitted to clean equipment before and after use according to their level of comfort.
  2. Temperature and symptom checks: SANCA staff will no longer check the body temperature of individuals entering the building, nor will they ask individuals if they have symptoms or have been exposed to COVID-19.

MISCELLANEOUS

SANCA also recognizes that the science behind COVID-19 may change rapidly as has been evident over the past 16 months. SANCA reserves the right to alter these policies as needed based on new information, whether regarding COVID-19 or other factors, with or without advance notice.

QUESTIONS

If you have questions or concerns about this policy, please contact John Tannous.

Anti-Racism Work at SANCA

Tania Nambo-Escobar

In April 2020, SANCA formally created the IDEA (Inclusivity, Diversity, Equity, and Anti-Racism) Committee to establish and implement strategies to ensure that SANCA reflects its community and serves all people regardless of background, identity, and socioeconomic status.

This page, and the plan listed below, serves that effort by providing transparency about SANCA’s IDEA efforts with supporters, staff, and students, as well as with the larger Seattle and King County communities it represents. SANCA recognizes that we are just beginning this work. There is a considerable amount of work to do to unseat policies, practices, and systems that uphold white supremacy.

Manjit Golden

Further, this page is not meant to applaud SANCA for tackling this work or exist as a performative gesture. Instead, the effort is meant to point to the fact that SANCA is behind the curve in addressing systemic racism in its operations and needs to take appropriate action. That work cannot be taken on rapidly and needs careful consideration and planning. This page expresses our beginning effort so that SANCA is transparent and open with its constituents about the journey we are undertaking.

Check out the Anti-Racist Book Club! This (online) space is set up for education for white people by white people to relieve Black and Brown community members (often femmes) of the exhaustive labor of education. However, all are welcome to join! We will meet monthly to learn from readings, think critically about our actions in our own lives, and find ways to start or continue to support Black people in the circus community and in all aspects of life. This is a space for learning, come as you are and with a mindset of growth. Register here.

The IDEA Committee is co-Chaired by Manjit Golden and Tania Nambo-Escobar. Other Team members include Lily Baumgart, Alyssa Hellrung, Megan Strawn, Emma Cady, Octavia Graham, Trevor Asbury, Jasmine Manuel, John Tannous, Amber Parker, and Sam Vasquez.

If you would like to provide input on this plan or if you are interested in joining the IDEA Committee, please contact co-Chairs, Manjit Golden and Tania Nambo-Escobar.

This plan has been approved by the SANCA Board of Directors as of October 2020.

SANCA is Hiring

SANCA – the School of Acrobatics and New Circus Arts – is currently seeking to hire camp coaches to support its summer camps. Hours are five days per week, M-F, 4-5 hours per day between the times of 8:30am-3:30pm. The position is temporary for summer camps that run through September 4, 2020. Camp coaches hired during summer 2020 may be considered for coaching positions at SANCA beyond that date.

Coaches must commit to a minimum of 5 weeks out of the summer and must be able to attend orientation. All coaches will be trained to coach to SANCA’s standards of safety and skill progressions.

Please note: COVID Health and Safety Policy and detailed guidelines are in place to protect the health of students, coaches, and staff, and to reduce the spread of COVID-19. All camps are conducted according to King County Public Health and State of Washington guidelines. There is a required, paid, 90-minute training session to help orient coaches to the policy. Read the full policy on our website.

General Description:

SANCA’s Summer Camp Program provides a fun, engaging, and safe experience for youth between ages 6-17. Coaches will instruct campers in trampoline, tumbling, aerial rope, aerial silks, static trapeze, juggling, and other circus skills. Coaches will help to create a supportive and fun experience that includes teamwork, a positive atmosphere, and the joy of circus. We emphasize helping campers through the challenges of learning new things by breaking complex skills down into steps and helping students feel successful, whatever their rate of progression.

Job Duties:

  • Present a warm and welcoming demeanor towards campers and parents, and engage with their campers in a fun and constructive manner
  • Maintain a safe environment for the student, physically and emotionally, and according to COVID-19 guidelines
  • Supervise and instruct campers in a variety of circus skills and apparatuses, as assigned by SANCA’s camp manager
  • Work cooperatively alongside other coaches and communicate effectively with the camp manager
  • Provide motivational support and guidance to campers
  • Uphold SANCA’s mission at all times (SANCA is dedicated to improving the mental, emotional, and physical health of children of all ages, backgrounds, and abilities by engaging them in the joyous creativity of acrobatics and circus arts. SANCA provides quality instruction in unique physical arts in a safe, supportive, nurturing environment that provides both challenge and reward to the student.)
  • Be present and ready to greet campers before camp starts and work with other coaches to clean up camp areas after camp ends (this is paid time)
  • Help campers develop social skills during snack, lunch, and other ‘down’ time
  • Assist younger campers with art projects

Required Qualifications:

  • Working knowledge in movement based activities, especially circus or gymnastics, and willingness to learn additional movements and skills required
  • Experience working with children
  • Ability to lift equipment and to spot students where appropriate
  • Ability to motivate and effectively communicate with co-workers, parents and students
  • Exercises mature judgment and sound decision-making
  • Demonstrates enthusiastic attitude and positive demeanor

Preferred Qualifications:

  • CPR and/or First Aid certification
  • Experience working at or taking classes at SANCA

Compensation:

Depending on the applicant’s experience and expertise, pay generally for new staff ranges from $16.00-$18.00 per hour.

To Apply:

Send resume and a brief introduction email to: tomh@sancaseattle.org. SANCA is seeking coaches to begin July 27 and/or August 3, 2020, so it is recommended that interested candidates apply as early as possible.

Governor Inslee Orders Gyms to Close

Dear SANCA Community:

Last night, Governor Inslee announced that he will order all restaurants, bars and entertainment and recreational facilities to close until March 31, 2020. The order states: “Restaurants, bars, dance halls, clubs, theaters, health and fitness clubs, and other similar indoor social or recreational venues must cease operations until March 31, 2020.” Obviously, this includes SANCA.

The order will be signed Monday, March 16.

Unfortunately, SANCA will go dark for the remainder of the month. No private lessons or training will be allowed in the facility, beginning immediately. If you had plans to train this week or next, I’m sorry but you will not be able to train at SANCA until April.

We will have an update and announcement later this week in regards to Spring session. Check our Spring Session class schedule.

Obviously, this closure will impact SANCA’s ability to support itself and its staff and artists. If you wish to make a donation to support SANCA at this time, please visit our website to donate online. Thank you!

Amazon Smile is another great way to support SANCA! If you are ordering items for delivery during this outbreak, you can help SANCA by using this link: Amazon Smile

Thank you for your support of SANCA and please stay safe!

Cheers,
John Tannous
Executive Director