Listen Live
HomeNewsCOVID-19Schools across Alberta to reopen in September

Schools across Alberta to reopen in September

Students will be returning to classes across Alberta at the beginning of the school year, come September. The province says schools will be ready to accept students again under what it’s calling a “Scenario 1,” which is near-normal daily operations with additional health measures.

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney says more than 750,000 students will be returning to classes, after what he refers to as “extensive” consultation with school boards, superintendents, parents and teachers.

“Our health and education officials have closely studied the experiences of other provinces and countries, and together they have developed state-of-the-art protocols for minimizing the risk of transmission at schools,” he says. “These protocols will be reviewed regularly, as new evidence emerges and any changes necessary for protecting students and staff will be incorporated.”

The Alberta government has developed a reentry tool kit to prepare parents and students for what to expect when they reenter the classroom. This kit includes preemptive screening measures for students, advice for those with medical conditions, and resources to help students stay safe and healthy.

- Advertisement -

Kenney says school-age children, particularly those of elementary age have a low risk of transmitting the virus.

“Only 14 per cent of all reported infections have been amongst youth under the age of 19 and over the past five months, only eight school-age children have been hospitalized with COVID-19, one in ICU, and most of those infected experience mild or negligible symptoms,” he notes.

In the instance of a case of COVID-19 appearing at a school, parents should pick up the student immediately. The student will be asked to wear a non-medical mask if able to do so safely and will be isolated in a separate room, or kept a minimum of two metres away from others.

Schools will be provided with updated health measures on hygiene and health requirements, student learning, transportation, diploma exams, and mental health supports for students and staff.

Education Minister Adriana LaGrange says though the return to in-school education will be mostly the same as it was prior to the pandemic, there will be noticeable modifications.

“Alberta Health has provided thorough guidance for Scenario 1. It covers a wide array of details, big and small, and offers suggested alternatives,” she says. “This includes placing hand sanitizers at the entrances of our schools and in our classrooms, the frequent cleaning of surfaces, grouping students in cohorts, and planning the school day to allow for physical distancing.”

According to LaGrange, plans for physical distancing will vary on a school-by-school basis. There won’t be class-size limits.

- Advertisment -
- Advertisment -
- Advertisement -

Continue Reading