B.C. schools will return to near normal in September | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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B.C. schools will return to near normal in September

FILE PHOTO - Jennifer Whiteside, Minister of Education, speaks to reporters at a Feb. 4, 2021 news conference in Victoria as provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry looks on.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED / Province of B.C.
June 17, 2021 - 10:07 AM

With vaccination rates up and COVID case numbers down, schools in British Columbia will return to near normal this fall.

“Students will be back in the classrooms for full time in person instruction and a return to near normal start of school in September,” Minister of Education Jennifer Whiteside said during a press briefing today, June 17. "Pending further health guidance, it’s also expected that current restrictions on gatherings, extracurricular activities and sports will be relaxed for the new school year.”

Students will no longer be grouped in cohorts or learning groups.

Some COVID prevention efforts will continue, such as teachers being asked to do daily health checks, stay home when sick and practice safe hand washing, she said.

The province is providing $43.6 million to school districts to do things like continue enhanced cleaning protocols and to boost programs to help Indigenous students and provide rapid response and mental health supports.

“The reason we can do this is because we have safe and effective vaccines that are protecting people across British Columbia,” Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said during the same news briefing.

What isn’t yet clear is what mask requirements will be in place come September, Whiteside said. That will be determined later in the summer.

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