The usual excitement and nerves of the beginning of a new school year are heightened this year by the return to in-class learning for the first time since April. The chairman of the largest school board in our region says he’s looking forward to tomorrow’s (Thurs.) return.
District School Board Ontario North East’s Bob Brush is confident that students will do fine. He’s referring parents to the board’s website to read the latest version of the COVID response plan. It has been built layer by layer over the past 18 months.
“We’re going to continue with cleaning and the protocols, face masks, the handwashing stations and everything that we’ve been doing,” he notes, adding that one critical element is upgraded ventilation systems in all the schools. The board will hear an update on them at next Tuesday’s meeting.
Brush notes that Premier Ford says all safety protocols will be reviewed in two weeks, with the aim of maybe loosening restrictions.
“I just hope this is the best year ever,” the chairman concludes. “I mean it’s been a terrible 18 months. And so I wish everyone the very best. We can control and fight this virus.”
Brush adds that any changes to the board’s COVID response plan will only be made in consultation with the medical officers of health of the Porcupine and Timiskaming Health Units.