Following an announcement by Stephen Lecce, Minister of Education, elementary and secondary schools in the Eastern Ontario Health Unit have been allowed back to in person learning as of Monday, February 1. This includes students in these School Boards:
Catholic District School Board of Eastern Ontario
Conseil des écoles publiques de l’Est de l’Ontario
Conseil scolaire de district catholique du Centre-Est de l’Ontario
Upper Canada District School Board
In his statement, Minister Lecce noted that the province is adding “stronger masking protocols to include grades 1-3, expanding access to targeted asymptomatic testing, and implementing stricter screening protocols.”
It was also announced that, in the Health Unit areas affected, before and after school child care programs may also resume and emergency child care will end. In the Health Unit areas where schools are continuing with remote learning, before and after school programs continue to be closed and emergency child care remains available to support children of frontline workers.
All schools in the Upper Canada District School Board reopened on Tuesday, February 2.
UCDSB Director of Education, Stephen Silwa, issued a statement on behalf of the Board last Thursday, in which he stated:
“As you know, Grade 1-8 students attending UCDSB schools located within the Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit region returned to in-person learning on Monday, January 25, 2021 and will continue in this state going forward. Grade 9-12 students attending schools located within the Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit will continue with plans to return to in-person learning on Tuesday, February 2, 2021.”
Director Silwa also reiterated that all students in Grades 1-12 are required to wear non-medical or cloth masks indoors at school, including in hallways and during class times, on school transportation and outdoors during recess where students cannot maintain physical distancing. Masking in Kindergarten is optional but encouraged.
In Secondary Schools operated by the Catholic District School Board of Eastern Ontario, in the Eastern Ontario Health Unit region, Grades 9 to 12 and all Special Education Programs reopening was delayed until Wednesday, February 3, as Monday was a planned Professional Development Day, and Tuesday was a scheduled turnaround day in order to prepare for the new quadmester and therefore schools were closed to students.
Elementary Schools and all Grade 7 & 8 students in High Schools reopened on Tuesday, February 2.