Back to School 2021 – Living with COVID-19
Today, Dr. Robert Strang and Premier Designate, Tim Houston, released the details of the 2021-22 Back to School plan.
Based on the announcement, our educational routine for this school year will look more familiar. We will welcome back a full return to music, band, field trips, and clubs. All school sports will resume. Schools will be open to community groups in the evenings and on weekends. Students and staff will once again be able to use cafeterias and participate in food programs as per previous years. Parents and guardians who follow public health measures will be allowed to visit schools, including on the first day of school for our youngest learners
To ensure schools are as safe as possible, there will be core public health measures in place in all schools. These include frequent hand washing and sanitizing; cleaning of high-touch surfaces; and, staying home if you are feeling sick. As an additional layer of safety, we are requiring all students, staff, and visitors to wear masks inside schools to start the year. We will transition away from mandatory masks once the province reaches Phase 5 of its re-opening plan. And, as Dr. Strang reminds us, vaccinations work, so we ask all eligible staff and students to get vaccinated.
You can find more information about Back to School and the related Public Health Measures for Schools online, at https://novascotia.ca/backtoschool.
Please know, we will continue to take the advice from Public Health, which means we will need to be flexible and adapt our safety measures as they monitor the number of COVID cases in our communities. It is possible that we will need to adopt stricter public health measures on a temporary basis in response to changing epidemiology in individual schools, families of schools and/or communities. And, while it is unexpected, if we are required to move to at-home learning, we will follow an approach very similar to last year.