I am writing today to provide you with an update about the novel coronavirus – COVID-19. Although the number of positive cases in the province continues to increase, the risk of contracting the virus in Ontario remains low, according to public health officials. As is the case with all health-related matters, we will continue to follow the advice of our public health partners, with regard to COVID-19.
There are measures that each of us can take – at school, at work and in our homes – to help prevent the spread of all communicable illness. At St. Clair Catholic, we are putting the following measures in place in our schools and offices:
- Good hand hygiene is important. Washing hands with plain soap and water is recommended as the best action; however, in classrooms where there are no sinks, we are supplying alcohol-based hand sanitizers. Please review the attached resource regarding hand-washing with your children;
- Respiratory etiquette, which includes covering the mouth and nose during coughing, or sneezing into a tissue or flexed elbow, is also important in preventing the spread of communicable illness. Additional tissue supplies and waste receptacles are being provided to schools;
- We are increasing the cleaning and disinfecting of high-touch surfaces in our schools (water fountains, door handles, etc.)
- Stay home when you are sick. We have shared with all parents and guardians in our March newsletters information from our public health partners (attached) about keeping children at home when they are not well enough to be at school. It is vital that we follow this important advice.
Beyond these additional measures, we continue to work closely with public health to monitor illness in our schools. All schools are required to report to public health whenever absence due to illness reaches 10 percent of the school’s enrollment, which is not unusual during the normal cold and flu season. These practices are in place and the protocols are being followed.
It is also important that you stay informed. For the most up-to-date information, including important information regarding travel, please visit our local public health unit websites at:
- CK Public Health – www.ckpublichealth.com/covid19
- Lambton Public Health – https://lambtonpublichealth.ca/2019-novel-coronavirus/
The Board website at http://www.st-clair.net/wuhan-novel-coronavirus.aspx also has several links to other public health websites and Government of Canada travel advisories.
I want to thank you for your cooperation and for speaking to your children about the important strategies outlined above to help prevent the spread of illness. By following these simple rules we can help to keep each other well.
If you have any questions, please speak to your principal.
Director of Education