Dear Clearview Public School Families,
Another summer break has officially come to an end. I hope that you and your loved ones have had an enjoyable summer and that you found time to relax and rejuvenate despite these challenging times. We are excited to welcome our students back to class and look forward to another year of learning.
Clearview and School Plans Today begins the start of our 2020-21 school year. Our schools have communicated their individual school plans and information on specific guidelines about safety and learning. Clearview Public School Division has published its re-entry handbook which has been updated to reflect the changes to the provincial guidelines and can be found here. The Clearview Re-entry Handbook will continue to be updated as we receive additional guidelines and regulations from the Alberta Government and Alberta Health Services. Changes to this document will be indicated with the font colour ORANGE and the date change will appear at the bottom of each page.. Although we have a Clearview Plan, each school is unique and will be addressing the regulations and guidelines that are best suited to their situation. Please read the Clearview Handbook, and if you have any questions, please contact your school directly.
Wearing Masks Additionally, the Government of Alberta has updated its guidelines to include recently announced measures, namely around mask use in schools and on the bus. Mask use continues to be mandatory for students in Grades 4-12 when physical distancing can not be maintained and are mandatory on the bus. Masks are optional for preschool to Grade 3 students. If a parent chooses to have their child wear a mask in preschool to Grade 3, their wishes will be respected. The Government of Alberta has provided washable masks (two per student) being distributed to students the week of August 31 - September 4. In the interim, parents/guardians are advised to equip their children with a mask (washable or disposable) each day for the first week of school. We have had several questions regarding the appropriate masks that students should be wearing. We have added a resource for parents to our website. Please note, based on the information provided by Alberta Health Services, students and staff cannot wear balaclavas, bandanas, buffs or scarves, in place of non-medical face masks. Masks should be made of at least two layers to ensure maximum safety for students and staff.
Effective August 31, 2020 - Wearing Masks at School Dr. Deena Henshaw signed an Order (33-2020) updating mask use in schools. The Order is in effect August 31.
K-3 students are not required to wear masks while in school unless requested by parents.
Grade 4-12 students and staff are required to wear a mask (covering both their mouth and nose) on the bus and in all indoor locations in a school unless:
desks, tables, chairs are separated as much as possible (less than 2 m), and students face one direction, or
physical barriers are erected for every student or
a student has a medical condition that exempts them from wearing a mask
Teachers can remove masks for teaching purposes if they are at the front of the classroom or beside a student (and facing the same direction).
Visitors are required to wear masks at all times.
Masks are not required when individuals are eating/drinking in a designated area or are engaged in physical exercise.
Everyone shall sanitize hands when they enter/leave the school or classroom and when they place/remove a mask.
We encourage staff and students to wear masks as much as possible to protect, suppress, and prevent Covid-19 transmission.
Something to think about... Hand Sanitizer Hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol is recommended as there is evidence that it supports effectiveness against COVID-19. Hand sanitizer can help reduce the risk of infection by or the spread when hand washing is not possible. Students and staff will perform hand hygiene or hand sanitizer when entering and exiting busses, entering and exiting schools and classrooms, high contact surfaces, washrooms, auxiliary spaces and common rooms. We have received questions from families if home-provided sanitizer can take the place of the sanitizer provided by the Alberta Government. At this time, we will be using the Government-provided sanitizer to ensure all students are receiving the same protections when entering or exiting school buses, classrooms, or schools. Home-provided sanitizer can still be used as a supplement, and not for now as a replacement, to the Government-provided sanitizer, when wanted. Where there is medical accomodation needed we will consider this for the safety of the student.
The sanitizer provided by the Alberta Government is safe for students, and from the information available on the Triton website:
“Since June 8, 2020, Triton® has been using only FCC Monograph (food grade) ethanol in Canada and USP Monograph ethanol in the United States for its sanitizer production – both of which are safe for use by children. Please follow the directions on product packaging, and note that hand sanitizers should only be used in conjunction with adult supervision.” https://tritoncleaningproducts.com/collections/life-sciences
We will continue to consider this process as the year progresses and re-evaluate if home-provided sanitizer can replace the Government-provided sanitizer over the next few weeks. For home-provided sanitizer options, here is the list of hand sanitizer authorized by Health Canada. This list is updated regularly, so please check back often.
Parent Surveys and At-Home and Home School Programming We want to thank parents for completing the recent survey asking for your family's preference for learning options this year, be it in-person, At-Home or homeschool programming. Remember, this survey is not a substitution for registration. If you are choosing the At-Home Learning Program or Clearview's homeschool program, please contact your local Clearview School as they can assist in setting your child(ren) up in that program. The board has approved the hiring of 3 teachers and the development of the Clearview At-Home and Home school Programs. Both of these programs are NEW to the Clearview learning options. We will keep you updated on the progress of this new program. We look forward to serving our Clearview students and families differently this year.
To date, the majority of our students are returning to school in-person. We will confirm the final numbers for all programs by September 10 once all registrations have been completed. If you have made a learning choice for your child and change your mind, please contact your local school to discuss other options. Between August 31 and September 10, school principals will continue confirming online registrations and communicate directly with families who have registered their children for At-Home Learning.
As soon as our At-Home and Homeschooling teachers are hired, they will work with Division staff to prepare for the start-up and will share important details regarding schedules, routines and where and how to access materials.
Federal funding to support safe school re-entry On August 26, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced that Canada's Government would transfer up to $2 billion to provincial and territorial governments through the new federal Safe Return to Class Fund. The federal funding will be allocated based on the student population in each province and territory. Alberta will receive $262.8 million in two installments. This complementary funding will help our provincial government, as it works alongside local school boards, to reopen schools safely and implement measures that will help protect students and staff from COVID-19 throughout the school year. Examples of how the money may be used include adapting learning spaces, improving air ventilation if needed, increasing hand sanitation and hygiene and buying extra personal protective equipment (PPE) and cleaning supplies.
We are grateful to the federal government for this important measure it has taken to address the many significant challenges that both provincial governments and school divisions are facing due to COVID-19. We look forward to finding out what this means for Clearview. Any supplementary funding we receive will be used to address the increased cost to offer expanded At-Home and Homeschooling learning opportunities and cover additional or ongoing costs related to school re-entry and the COVID-19 pandemic.
Safety is our top priority Everyone's safety in our learning community continues to be our priority; it is at the forefront of all of our decisions, protocols, and actions. The Clearview Re-entry Plan, which was developed with our school community and health and government authorities, complies with the Alberta government's direction and guidelines and the province's Chief Medical Officer of Health.
Multiple measures have been put in place to reduce the risk of COVID-19 and help keep our students, staff and communities safe. These protocols are described in detail in Clearview Re-entry Plan and available on our website. This valuable resource provides essential information for parents/legal guardians about programming, health and safety, sports and recreation, transportation, communication and other important logistical matters to be ready for the new school year.
Preparing for School re-entry
Anyone entering a school must complete the prescribed COVID-19 Information Screening Questionnaire before arriving at school. (Other languages are available)
Parents/legal guardians are expected to conduct this checklist daily with their child(ren) to determine if the child(ren) should come to school or stay home.
If a child shows any signs of illness, he/she should not come to school unless the symptoms are related to a pre-existing health condition.
If a student becomes ill at school, he/she will be supervised in a designated area until he/she is picked up.
Your child's principal will share specific details about student drop-off and pick-up routines.
Signage and directional floor decals throughout the school will remind students and staff about physical distancing, hand-washing, hand-sanitizing, staying healthy, and other health and safety protocols and standards.
Updated provincial School Re-entry Plan The newly revised Alberta Government School Re-Entry Plan (Revised August 27, 2020) includes a COVID-19 Status Map that shows the level of risk in regions across the province and information about local health. It also shows the rate of COVID-19 cases and the number of active cases. The government will monitor confirmed cases in real-time to inform proactive responses in localized areas of the province. Municipalities, counties, and municipal districts with active cases over 50 per 100,000 population may have additional measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19. This resource will help inform school re-entry and subsequent school operations.
Communication Our goal is to answer any questions that you may have so that you are ready for school re-entry this fall. We will continue to keep you informed through Superintendent's updates.
Furthermore, detailed information about School Re-Entry is available on our website https://www.clearview.ab.ca/, which is updated regularly along with our official social media platforms (Facebook and Instagram) which is a great way to stay in-the-know. If you have any questions, please reach out to your child's school directly, or send us an email at email@example.com Stay informed Just as we continue to follow and implement the direction of Alberta Health Services, the Chief Medical Officer of Health, and all government levels, we encourage you to do the same. Credible information about COVID-19 is available at:
● Health Canada: https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/coronavirus-disease-covid-19.html ● Alberta Government: https://www.alberta.ca/coronavirus-info-for-albertans.aspx ● Alberta Health Services: https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/topics/Page16944.aspx ● World Health Organization (WHO): https://www.who.int/
I encourage you to visit these websites often and follow the suggestions to keep you and your family healthy.
Final Words I hope you are ready for the start of the new school year, as we across Clearview Public Schools are excited for students to return to classrooms and are committed to ensuring the safety and health of all students, staff, families and communities we serve. Clearview has led the way many times in the past. I am confident we have the people and the ability to do the same with reopening schools. I wish you a healthy happy school year. Our dedicated staff will help kids to learn, smile, and belong. They will ask hard and interesting questions. It begins now! We will do our best to be awesome! There is little we cannot do if we work together! We are, as we have always been here to provide the best in your first choice for education.
Brenda MacDonald Superintendent of Clearview Public Schools