Today, Education Minister Stephen Lecce announced that students in almost all of the province’s public health units, including Simcoe Muskoka, would return to in-person learning on Feb. 8.
Before- and after-school child care programs are permitted to resume on that day, making Feb. 5 the last day for emergency child care, noted a media release from the province.
“Following the best medical advice, with the clear support of both Ontario’s and the local Medical Officers of Health, we are reopening schools across the province knowing that we have taken additional steps and made additional investments to better protect our students and staff,” said Lecce. “Nothing is more important than returning kids to school safely because it is crucial for their development, mental health, and future success.”
In a notice today, Trillium Lakelands District School Board shared a reminder for parents about health and safety measures:
- Parents/guardians must screen their child for symptoms every day before they come to school. Please use the Ministry of Health’s Ontario COVID-19 self-assessment tool for this purpose.
- All TLDSB students, Kindergarten to Grade 12 are required to wear a non-medical cloth face covering/mask while at school and on the school bus.
- NEW: elementary students should wear masks outside during recess and breaks. Students that need a mask break will be given a designated space that maintains a minimum 6 ft distance from others.
- NEW: secondary students outside on school property or leaving the property for breaks must wear a mask, and are not to congregate in groups larger than five and outside of their cohort.
- NEW: we are still in a stay at home order. Therefore, please do not congregate before and after school.
“Reducing the transmission of COVID-19 is fundamental to keeping our communities and schools safe,” said Dr. David Williams, Ontario’s chief medical officer of health. “Our collective efforts, like strictly adhering to all public health measures, in addition to the enhanced safety measures in schools, will help keep communities healthy and students learning alongside their peers in their classrooms.”
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