April 6, 2022: Update & friendly reminder from the Director of Education
March 16, 2022: Please see attached a letter from the Medical Officer of Health for our KFLA families
March 10, 2022: Letter from the Director of Education to all families and staff
On March 9, 2022, Dr. Kieran Moore, Chief Medical Officer of Health announced various updates that impact our Catholic school communities.
Below is a brief overview on how these changes will impact our schools. Please note this is an evolving situation and this is currently ALCDSB's plans for March 21, 2022. There are no changes to mandates for the days prior to March Break.
Dr. Moore announced that the province will no longer mandate mask use in schools as of Monday, March 21, 2022.
The Algonquin and Lakeshore Catholic District School Board recognizes that some students and staff will continue to wear masks and that mask wearing is a personal choice made by all students, staff and families. Regardless of an individual's decision, we encourage all members to be inclusive, respectful and empathetic.
Masks will be available to all students and staff at schools.
Schools will no longer have to verify that screening has occurred; however, we ask that students and staff continue to self-screen prior to attending school. A link to the most up-to-date screener can be found here: School Screening Tool.
In addition, a user friendly PDF version of the Screening Tool can be found here: COVID_screening_schools_child care
Schools will no longer be required to cohort. This means students will be able to participate in large group activities such as assemblies and school Masses. Students will have the ability to play and learn together across cohorts, classes and grades, both indoors and outdoors. Shared spaces, such as Learning Commons, technology labs, theatres and music rooms can be fully utilized.
Masks are no longer required on school transportation. Assigned seats and cohorting will no longer be required in student transportation.
Hand Hygiene and Respiratory Etiquette
Appropriate hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette will continue to be promoted and integrated throughout the school day.
Enhanced cleaning and disinfection will continue in our schools. Required critical supplies and equipment, for example, disinfectant, will continue to be provided to school boards through the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services and the government's pandemic supply chain.
Significant improvements have been made to ventilation and filtration through the implementation of various measures across all schools, including improvements to existing ventilation systems, deployment of standalone HEPA filter units and other ventilation devices, upgrades to school ventilation infrastructure, and increased transparency for students, parents/guardians and staff.
Schools will no longer communicate to families known COVID 19 cases reported to Administration through a positive PCR or RAT tests. Schools will continue to monitor daily absence rates that exceed the thirty percent threshold until April 14th, 2022. ALCDSB will continue to work with local Public Health units to monitor high absence rates and respond accordingly.
The following are important points to note in isolation requirements:
- Asymptomatic individuals who are close contacts of a case or a symptomatic individual in the community are no longer required to isolate but must self-monitor for 10 days following last exposure.
- Asymptomatic household contacts of a case or a symptomatic individual are also not required to isolate if they are 17 or younger and fully vaccinated; 18 and older and have already received their COVID-19 booster; or tested positive for COVID-19 in the last 90 days and have completed their isolation period. Asymptomatic household contacts who are not required to isolate are also required to self-monitor for 10 days following last exposure, as outlined above.
- Children under 5 who are asymptomatic household contacts are required to isolate for 5 days.
All sports and extracurriculars will resume after the March Break. Information about scheduling will be available at the school level. Spectators are permitted at all events.
International Travel & March Break
A reminder that under current federal travel requirements, upon return from international travel, individuals must, wear a mask at all times when in public spaces (including schools and child care), maintain a list of all close contacts for your first 14 days in Canada, and monitor yourself for signs and symptoms of COVID-19.
Mental Health Supports
We recognize that these changes can cause anxiety for students, staff and families. Staff will be provided with resources to best support students as they return from March Break in a new environment. Additionally, please see the attached link for supports from School Mental Health Ontario: School Mental Health Ontario
Our Board remains committed to the health and safety of all students and staff. As a publicly funded Catholic school board, we follow all ministry directives, including directives from the Chief Medical Officer of Health. In addition, we continue to work with our local public health partners, co-terminus school boards and community partners.
All updates will continue to be posted on the Board website and shared via SchoolMessenger. More updates will be shared as they become available.
“With God I always have light at the end of the tunnel and hope to lead me through"
Director of Education