Changes to COVID-19 protocols effective March 14 and 21, 2022

Posted March 10, 2022

On March 9, 2022, the province announced several changes to COVID-19 restrictions and protocols that will take effect in March. Please see below for a summary of the changes that affect schools.

Effective March 14, 2022:

  • School boards are no longer required to have a COVID-19 vaccination disclosure policy in place or collect proof of COVID-19 vaccinations or medical exemptions.
  • Visitors will no longer be required to show proof of vaccination.
  • Unvaccinated individuals, including staff and student athletes, will no longer have to participate in rapid antigen testing three times per week.

Effective March 21, 2022:

  • Masks will no longer be mandatory in schools, as the school board does not have the authority to enforce this beyond March 21.
    • Staff, students and visitors may continue to choose to wear masks. This is a personal decision and everyone should be treated with respect and kindness.
    • The UGDSB will continue to provide PPE (including masks and goggles) to staff who choose to wear them.
  • Schools will no longer do daily confirmation of COVID screening, however self-screening must continue before attending school each day. The province’s COVID-19 Screening Tool has been updated.
  • Rapid Antigen Tests will continue to be shipped to schools to support symptomatic testing of staff and students in schools.
  • Cohorting and distancing are no longer required in schools. Elementary students will no longer need to cohort during recess outdoors..
  • Assigned seats and cohorting on school transportation vehicles is no longer required.
  • In-person events, such as graduations, proms and assemblies can take place.
  • Upon return from international travel, individuals must wear a mask at all times when in public spaces (including schools), maintain a list of all close contacts for the first 14 days in Canada, and monitor for signs and symptoms of COVID-19.

Protective measures to continue:

  • Hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette
  • Enhanced cleaning and disinfecting
  • Ventilation measures, including use of HEPA filters – a reminder that the UGDSB has installed a HEPA filter in every classroom in the UGDSB and additional working and learning spaces, and is continuing to monitor air quality
  • Absentee reporting to the Ministry of Education and Public Health – absence reporting information for schools will continue to be available on the UGDSB website
  • Protocols to manage individuals who are ill at school

Thank you to everyone for their continued support and understanding.

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