With COVID cases on the rise across the province, yesterday, Sun West School Division sent an amended Safe Schools Plan to all Sun West families. You can see it and the accompanying message at the following link, which is also accessible on the home page of their website:

https://www.sunwestsd.ca/blog/2021/08/31/revised-safe-schools-plan

 

Please note that Sun West has been clear that their plan will be adjusted if there is a change to the risk related to the virus or if there is new information. Since the start of school there has been both. The following are some of the factors that were considered prior to the changes effective today:

  1. In all of 2020-21 there were 12 instances where entire schools or classes moved to at home learning. There have been 6 similar situations in 5 different schools in the first 9 days.
  2. Provincial and national modelling for the 4th wave indicates it is predicted to be the worst yet, unless measures are taken to limit the spread of the Delta variant.
  3. Public health orders have been made to address the risk caused by the increased pressure on the health care system.
  4. Public health orders have also been made that puts school divisions in the awkward position of needing to know the vaccination status of students to determine who can stay in school and who needs to learn from home and who needs to wear a mask and who does not. Sun West has chosen to avoid this invasion of privacy with the masking requirement.
  5. COVID is causing risks to community members with changes to non-COVID patients’ treatment plans.
  6. The school year begun with many engaging opportunities for students to make the school experience better compared to last year. Masking helps deal with the risk to these opportunities by helping prevent outbreaks in our schools.
  7. September 13 was the worst day for new cases at the time the plan was endorsed by the Sun West School Division Board. The risk is continuing to increase as there have been over 500 new cases reported on September 14.

The requirement to wear a mask at this time is the most significant way the Division can increase their efforts to address the pandemic and maintain safety for students, staff and communities.

If you have any questions or comments please contact Randy Emmerson, Director of Education: randy.emmerson@sunwestsd.ca or by phone at: (306)882-2677 ext. 238

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