Troops should meet virtually when possible based on Wisconsin
Executive Order #94 (11-11-2020), especially in school districts where
schools are only educating students virtually at that time. Meeting
options should be flexible and communicated clearly to parents.
Troop-sized groups can meet virtually or outside, or take extra
special care to practice safe social distancing and wear masks at all
times when inside or in confined spaces outside as described in the
troop meeting spaces below. Multiple troops or larger Girl Scouts
groups should only meet in person if outside where social distancing
can be practiced. Troop meetings are always "by invitation
only." Those who are not troop members should not come in contact
with girls during the meeting unless invited to do so. (10-7-2020)
Virtual meetings Girl
Scouts at Home and The
Troop Leader Blueprints on our website have fabulous resources,
meeting plans, tips and other helps to make your virtual meetings
successful and fun. Free Zoom licenses allow for meetings of 40
minutes and less. Low
cost ZOOM Licenses are available for Girl Scout troops to purchase
to enable unlimited time of use and all the "bells and
whistles" of Zoom. (8-20-2020) Troops that are able to run
online meetings as needed (or wanted) should do so. Even when it is
safe to meet face-to-face, Girl Scouts of the USA recommends
maintaining a virtual to in-person ratio of at least 20/80, which
means to maintain virtual troop meetings at least 20% of the time to
keep tech skills and virtual meeting habits fresh.
Individual Girl Scout troops and
groups can meet while following the guidance and limitations
provided here. (8-31-2020)
Face Coverings. Girl Scouts must wear face coverings (masks)
in enclosed places, indoors and in public places where social
distancing cannot be achieved, not only to protect themselves but to
protect others. Face coverings are a civic responsibility and a sign
of caring for the community. Girls can bring their own face coverings.
Troops should have disposable masks on hand for those who do not bring
their own mask. Volunteers can teach girls how to handle their face
coverings so that the coverings are effective. Some girls or
volunteers may not be able to wear masks, due to medical conditions
such as asthma. In these cases, social distancing must be strictly
Troop Meeting Spaces
Outdoor spaces where social distancing can be maintained are
strongly recommended for meetings and activities. Get advance
permission from the property owner, manager or the jurisdiction that
provides the location.
Indoor Spaces - Masks must be worn in all indoor/enclosed
spaces or outside when social distancing cannot occur. (8-1-2020)
Schools or churches may not permit outside groups on premises, so
always check and confirm ahead of time. Buildings open to the public
are currently restricted to 25% capacity, so if you want to meet in a
public build, check with the owner or operator to determine capacity.
(10-7-2020) Once you know you can use the site, ask:
- Is the space cleaned, and touch surfaces (i.e., tabletops,
light switches, chairs, etc.) sanitized, at least daily?
- Who else uses the space (how often, what size is the group)? Is
the space cleaned between groups?
- What type of faucets/soap
dispensers are available in the restroom (sensory or manual)?
Then, consider whether you can supplement any practices that are
less ideal. For example, if you will arrive after another user group,
plan to bring sanitizing wipes to get the space ready for your troop.
Another example: if faucets are manual, take some time to show girls
how to shut them off with a paper towel. Use paper towels for
doorknobs whenever possible.
Girl Scouts of Manitou Council Sites - If your Manitou Girl
Scout troop is suddenly in need of a troop meeting site due to the
intepretations of COVID-19 restrictions on public buildings and are in
the area around Camp Manitou, Camp Evelyn or the Girl Scout Center,
the Girl Scouts of Manitou Council is offering our troops the
opportunity to use council buildings for troop meetings free of
charge. Camp buildings are not open to the public and attendance at
your troop meeting is by invitation only (8-20-2020 &10-7-2020.)
Camp buildings will be available for troop meeting use Sunday 4:30
p.m.-8:30 p.m., and all through the week daily 8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.,
to Friday at 3 p.m.
The Girl Scout Center will be available for troop meeting use from
8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. daily. During the week day, when the Girl Scout
Center is open to the public, the capacity for meeting at the Girl
Scout Center is limited to 25 people. During the evening and weekend,
attendance in the building is by invitation only. No one should enter
except those invited by your troop or by council staff or volunteers. (10-7-2020)
It is our hope to schedule troops for 1.5 hours per meeting, leaving
a half hour between meetings to allow for social distancing and
sanitizing. All safety and COVID-19-related guidelines must be
followed in council buildings. We will be asking troop leaders to do
basic sanitizing of buildings after each meeting to prepare for the
Click here to
request a Manitou Council site for your troop meeting.
Homes - If meeting in the home is
the only option due to restrictions on public meeting spaces:
- The home must be the home of registered, background checked,
council approved Volunteer.
- There must be at least two
registered, unrelated, approved volunteers present at all
- Girls may not meet in a home where a registered sex
- The troop needs to be able to focus without
disruptions from other household members.
- Masks must be
worn at all times indoors by all those in the residence when girls
are present. (8-1-2020)
- Animals should be kept in a place
that is separate from the meeting space.
- The Homeowner
should ask their Homeowner’s insurance carrier if there are any
insurance exclusions regarding holding troop meetings at the home,
in the event an accident or injury occurs.
- Weapons must be
completely out of view and stored in a locked space.
- Medication, dangerous cleaning products, or any poisonous
substance must be stored in a secure space out of sight, preferably
- Meetings should ideally be held outdoors, perhaps in
the back or front yard of the home.
- While Girl Scout
activities are taking place, entrance to the home must be by
invitation only. No public gatherings exceeding 10 people can be
taking place. (10-7-2020)
- All guidance provided here is
Meetings may not be held in fitness centers or gyms, where a greater
risk for contracting the virus may exist.
Restrooms If there is no regulation about the number of persons
in the restroom, have volunteers ensure girls take appropriate turns
to maintain social distancing and that they wear their masks in the
restrooms. After hand-washing, use tissue or paper towel to open
doors and latches, touching as little as possible. (7-27-2020)
Hygiene and COVID-19 Risk Mitigation. Follow the resources
developed by credible public health sources such as the CDC or your local public health department. Share
these with girls and volunteers and ensure that they are practiced
during meetings and activities. Place signs in the meeting or activity space to remind
girls and volunteers to engage in everyday preventive actions to help
prevent the spread of COVID-19. Signs are available on the CDC
website. Signs should include:
- Stay home if you are sick.
- Cough and sneeze into a
tissue, throw the tissue in the trash, and wash or sanitize your
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least
20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating;
and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and
water are not available, use an FDA approved hand sanitizer that
contains at least 60% alcohol.
- Avoid touching your eyes,
nose, and mouth. Wash hands if you do touch.
Make sure temperatures are taken prior to group interaction to
confirm the individual is not running a fever and temperature is a
normal 98.6 degrees Members with fever or temperature higher than 98.6
should skip the in-person gathering until their temperature is normal.
Personal contact. Hugs, handshakes, “high-fives,” and even
activities like the friendship circle or squeeze can transmit COVID-19
from person to person. Refrain from these gestures for the time being.
Create a safe way for girls and volunteers to greet and end meetings
instead (like tapping elbows).
First Aid Supplies. Troop first aid supplies should include
COVID-19 prevention items including FDA approved hand sanitizer (at
least 60% alcohol), tissues, disposable facemasks, and disinfectants.
Trash baskets or bags should be supplied for meeting and activity
spaces, if not already available. Make sure that the trash baskets (or
bags) are easily accessible for girls. Disposable or no-contact
thermometers may be added to supplies if available and not
cost-prohibitive, however, parents should be checking temperatures and
allowing their girl(s) to join group activities only when temperatures
Disinfectants and Disinfecting. Routinely clean and disinfect
surfaces and objects that are frequently touched in your meeting site
(i.e., table tops, markers, scissors, etc.). Use a household cleaner,
or see the EPA’s list of effective cleaners approved for use against
COVID-19. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for all cleaning and
disinfection products (e.g., concentration, application method and
contact time, etc.).
Household bleach is effective against COVID-19 for up to 24 hours
when properly diluted. Check that the bleach is not expired and
determine if it can be used on a given surface. Follow the
manufacturer’s instructions for application and proper ventilation.
Never mix household bleach with ammonia or any other cleanser.
To prepare a bleach solution, mix:
- 5 tablespoons (1/3rd cup) bleach per gallon of water or
- 4 teaspoons bleach per quart of water