As COVID-19 numbers surge in the London region, so have cases among local schools.
As of Tuesday, there are 33 active COVID-19 cases reported at the Thames Valley District School Board (TVDSB) and nine at the London District Catholic School Board.
Here’s what TVDSB Director of Education Mark Fisher is warning parents, students and staff ahead of the winter break.
Fisher told CBC London there is some concern about whether or not rules will be followed during the two-week break.
“When school kids are in school, they are safe. My greater concern is sometimes the behaviours in the community and my plea to parents and families would be to make sure that we all follow those proper health and safety protocols over the next two weeks,” Fisher said.
He added that behaviour over the next few weeks will dictate what happens in schools in January.
Fisher said a recent survey of parents showed that more than 90 per cent of families felt that their children belong in school and more than 80 per cent of students surveyed felt safe and that they belonged in school.
“We have communicated regularly with our staff, our students and our broader community around the importance of following the advice of our public health experts and that is around continuing to be vigilant around hand washing, physically distancing and wearing masks when you can’t maintain that physical distancing,” Fisher said.
Almost 70,000 students are learning in-school but Fisher said the school board has seen a “trickle” of students opting to switch to remote learning at the end of November. He also noted that an equal number of students are choosing to switch to face-to-face learning.