HWDSB working with Hamilton Public Health to ensure safety when schools reopen

Ontario Premier Doug Ford and Education Minister Stephen Lecce announced on Thursday a full reopening of elementary schools and a hybrid reopening of secondary schools. 

Elementary schools will run with full class sizes five days a week with students spending the majority of their time with one teacher. Students from grades 4 to 8 will be required to wear a mask.

Secondary schools will return with a hybrid model where students will complete a half day of classes in-person and half day of classes remotely. All secondary students will be required to wear a mask and organized into cohorts of about 15 people.

The Ontario government also announced additional funding for PPE and other equipment that will be provided to keep teachers and school staff safe. 

Lecce said that the province will be hiring 500 nurses that will be assigned to small groups of schools. They will be available to schools to administer screenings, testing, and guidance. 

Parents can still opt to keep their children home during the reopening and distance learning will be provided to any students completing classes online. 

Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board sent a memo to staff about their commitment to keeping them safe after the plans were announced on Thursday. The memo outlined how they are working with Hamilton Public Health to build a list of health and safety protocols that will be in place when the school year starts. 

As well, the memo provides information about how teachers who are worried for their health can notify the school board so they can make adequate plans for September. 

Teachers will also not be allowed to travel outside of Canada after August 18th allowing for two weeks at home before they return to school.

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