Feb. 9 COVID Update
As of Monday 14th February, schools will no longer be empowered by provincial health order or CMOH recommendations to require students from grades 1-12 to wear masks to attend school in person or to ride a school bus.
As you most likely know, the Premier announced yesterday that the Provincial Government is taking steps to begin relaxing COVID-19 protocols, including in schools. Although it may have come as a surprise to many of you, and to some a relief, as of Monday 14th February, schools will no longer be empowered by provincial health order or CMOH recommendations to require students from grades 1-12 to wear masks to attend school in person or to ride a school bus.
This sudden change in health protocols for schools will understandably be a cause of discomfort for many families, students, and staff. Even though students will not be required to mask, we will continue to maintain our highly effective health protocols as reasonably as possible, to ensure the ongoing safety of all of our students, staff and visitors.
Although things may change on March 1st if Alberta enters phase 2 of the opening plan, we will currently ensure to continue following protocols such as:
- All staff and adults entering the building or on the bus will still require to be masked
- Current cohorts of grades will remain in place
- Limit visitors into the building, and host most meetings online. However, visitors will no longer be required to show proof of vaccination status when attending a scheduled meeting in-person
- Maintain our enhanced cleaning and sanitization protocols
- Daily screening at home for symptoms is still required. Please note: the screening form has been updated as of February 2022.
- Isolation rules will remain in place for individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19 or who have symptoms (these individuals are required to isolate for 10 days)
While masks are no longer mandatory for students as of Monday, it remains each student’s choice to do so. Our culture at Foothills is inclusive and embraces diversity. As such, the staff will foster a culture of respect for student choice around mask use within the school.
As the government is signalling that we are moving into a phase of living with COVID-19, we remain committed to caring for the health and safety of all. We hope that all families are able to continue rapid testing twice per week with the kits provided, to help isolate the virus in our community. We anticipate the delivery of another batch of rapid tests for all students soon, to continue this practice. We also continue to encourage all eligible individuals to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, to help control the spread of the virus.
As we move through this pandemic, we thank you all so greatly for your continued support, which is something we truly value as we take the next steps towards overcoming the challenges we have all faced these past two years.