Covid-19 Updates & Reminders for 2021
As anticipated, the situation related to Covid-19 is rapidly evolving in our community as well as many others across BC.
WWS is committed to keeping you informed. Below we have updated and included some reminders from Vancouver Coastal Health so you have a better understanding of how exposures in our community may or may not affect our school during this time.
Please review the following which addresses some of the questions that we have recently received.
Understanding Student Absence
There are a variety of reasons a student may be away from school. Please read WWS Absence Programs to understand which category your child’s absences fall into. Please note that all absences of three days or more require an absence form to be completed and sent to Reception. All absences should be reported to Reception daily ideally prior to 9am.
Infection Prevention & Exposure Control Measures
The Hierarchy for Infection Prevention and Exposure Control Measures for Communicable Disease describes measures that are taken to reduce the transmission of COVID-19 in schools. Control measures at the top are more effective and protective than those at the bottom. By implementing a combination of measures at each level, the risk of COVID-19 is substantially reduced.
Schools as “Controlled” Environments
Infection prevention and exposure control measures help create safe environments by reducing the spread of communicable diseases like COVID-19. These are more effective in “controlled” environments where multiple measures of various effectiveness can be routinely and consistently implemented. Schools are considered a “controlled” environment by public health because:
- Schools include a consistent grouping of people.
- Schools have robust illness policies for students and staff.
- Schools can implement effective personal practices that can be consistently reinforced and are followed by most people in the setting (e.g. diligent hand hygiene, respiratory etiquette, etc.).
- Schools can implement a variety of health and safety measures (e.g., enhanced cleaning and disinfecting practices, using outdoor space for learning activities, grouping students and staff in learning groups to limit in-person interactions, implementing staggered schedules, etc.)
When to come to school, self-monitor or self-isolate?
Anyone who is identified as a close contact of someone who has tested positive for Covid-19 will be notified directly by Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) and asked to isolate for 14 days from their last date of possible exposure. If you do not receive a call, your risk of exposure is considered to be low; VCH does not recommended that you self-isolate and you can continue with normal daily activities.
Continued daily self-monitoring for common cold, influenza, or Covid-19 related symptoms is requested of all WWS families during this time.