Sunday, March 7, 2021

Schools now closed for three weeks, more school board details

The Directors of Education for both the St. Clair Catholic District School Board and the Lambton-Kent District School Board have released more information about the impact of COVID-19 on local schools.

“As you are likely aware, the Ontario Minister of Education has ordered that all Ontario schools remain closed from March 14 to April 5, 2020, in response to the emergence in Ontario of COVID-19,” John Howitt, Director of Education for the public school board, said in a letter.

“This closure extends from the recommendation from the Provincial Chief Medical Officer of Health and is made by Ministerial Order, which is permitted in the Education Act.”

Howitt added: “This decision is a proactive measure by the Government of Ontario to support the health and well-being of Ontarians. The health and safety of our students and staff is a top priority for the LKDSB.”

Deb Crawford, Director of Education for the Catholic school board, said the
health, wellbeing and safety of students and staff are their highest priority as well.

“There are many implications for secondary and elementary students and families,” Crawford said.

“I want to thank you for your support of these important measures, which will help to protect the health, safety and wellbeing of our students, families and staff. Wishing you God’s blessings for a safe and healthy March break.”

More details from the Lambton-Kent District School Board

– All publicly funded schools are closed from March 14 to April 5, 2020.

– The school board was not made aware of this decision before the public announcement.

– The intent of the Ministerial Order is to reduce gatherings, especially by those who have travelled or have been exposed to travelers over the March Break.

– It is recommended that those who have travelled or been exposed to those who have are encouraged to respect the 14-day period after March Break by not putting themselves in a position to contract or spread COVID-19.

– The LKDSB will take direction from the Ministry of Education and local and provincial Medical Officers of Health regarding reopening schools on April 6.

– All schools will receive a deep cleaning during the school closure and the LKDSB will continue to follow its regular practice of exercising high standards of cleanliness in its facilities.

– Some teaching staff may use their online learning tools to support student learning (Note: This would not be part of any student assessment).

– The OSSLT will not run as scheduled. Details have not been determined.

– There has been no decision about whether the school year would be extended.

– All field trips scheduled in March and April will be cancelled. Further communications will be provided by the individual schools.

– All LKSSAA activities, including games, tournaments and practices, have been postponed until further notice.

– School-based day cares will be closed March 14 to April 5, 2020. Further communication will be provided by individual childcare operators.

– The Ontario’s Support for Parents Program put in place during strike action days will not be available to parents/guardians during this closure.

– Community Use of Schools will be cancelled from March 14 to April 5. Please refer to CLASS for further information.

– Visit the LKDSB website for updates.

More details from the St. Clair Catholic District School Board

– The following programs and activities are cancelled until further notice: Co-op placements, Dual credit courses, School Within a College (SWAC), all secondary and elementary athletics, arts and/or extracurricular activities.

– EQAO (Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test) OSSLT is delayed until further notice

– Community Use of Schools – All schools are closed to third party users

– Childcare and Before and After programs in schools are closed

– Visit the Board website at for updates.

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