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COVID-19

Novel Coronavirus Updates

At the Abbotsford School District, the health and safety of our students and staff is always our top priority. We continue to work closely with the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Health, and Fraser Health to provide you with the very latest information on COVID-19. To learn more, review the district's Pandemic Plan.

Preparing for 2020-2021

Toti:ltcha – Future Learning Plan

Toti:ltcha is designed to guide us through the uncertainty of the coming months, and will serve as a framework for September 2020 and beyond. This document addresses the instructional, structural and health and safety issues that have manifested in our buildings since the onset of the pandemic, and is intended to establish path to fulfil our vision of providing a world-class, innovative, and individualized educational experience for every student. 

Your voice matters and we want to hear from you. As we work to finalize the document over the summer, we would like your feedback. Submissions will be collected until July 3, 2020.

Toti:ltcha – Future Learning Plan Survey: Provide your feedback

Frequently Asked Questions during COVID-19

In an effort to provide you with updated information, we have created the below FAQs as they relate to our school district, and as we receive confirmation and clarification from our Provincial Health Officials and the Ministry of Education. This is a working document and may be amended regularly. If you have a question that you do not see listed below, please let us know and we will do our best to find an answer in a timely manner. Ministry of Education FAQs are also available in multiple language formats.

Students + Instruction
  1. What will the schedule for partial in-class instruction in June 2020 look like?
    • Kindergarten to Grade 5: in-class learning 2 to 3 days per week, supplemented with remote instruction.
    • Grades 6 to 12: in-class learning 1 day a week, supplemented with remote instruction.
    • Children of essential service workers (aged 5-12), students with disabilities/diverse abilities, and students needing additional supports: option to attend school 5 days per week.
  2. Will families who decide not to send their children to school still be provided with online learning opportunities? 
    Yes. Continued remote instruction will remain until the end of the 2019/20 school year. 
  3. How will the days of the week for students to attend be decided upon?
    The Abbotsford School District circulated a parent survey at the end of May. Results from this survey have been provided to each school, who are developing site-specific schedules that adhere to the guidelines provided by the Provincial Health Office. Schedules will vary from site to site, and will be shared with families prior to the June 1st start date.
  4. How will the District ensure the health and safety of students?
    All schools will follow the direction of the Provincial Health Officer. These include limiting the number of children attending, staggered pick-up and drop-off times as well as recess, lunch and time outdoors. Upon arrival at school, everyone will wash and/or sanitize their hands. Opportunities for frequent handwashing will be provided. Classrooms with sinks will be stocked with soap and paper towels. Classrooms without sinks will be provided with hand sanitizer. Students will be reminded about the steps they can take to keep themselves and others healthy and staff will model these behaviours throughout the school day. 
  5. How will physical distancing be implemented in schools?
    Adolescent children should physically distance themselves where possible when outside the family unit or household. For younger children, maintaining physical distance is less practical and Provincial Health Office guidelines focus on minimizing physical contact instead. The following physical distancing strategies will be implemented where possible in the K-12 school setting:
    • Students will be reminded to avoid close greetings (e.g., hugs, high-fives, handshakes, etc.);
    • Students will be reminded about keeping their “hands to yourself”;
    • People will be spread out into different areas via different classroom and learning environment configurations to allow distance between students and adults (e.g., different desk and table formations);
    • Students will be organized into smaller groups so that they stay together throughout the day. Staffing assignments will minimize the number of different teachers and support staff that interact with groups of students throughout the day;
    • Pick-up and drop-off times may be staggered; 
    • Recess/snack, lunch and class transition times may be staggered to provide a greater amount of space for everyone; 
    • Students will have more outside time including learning activities, snack time and placebased learning;  
    • For younger students, group activities will be adapted to minimize physical contact and reduce shared items; 
    • For adolescent students, group activities will be minimized and avoid activities that require physical contact; 
    • Traffic flows will be managed to limit the number of people in common areas, including hallways; 
    • Parents, caregivers and other non-staff adults will be limited in entering school buildings without a pre-arranged appointment; 
    • Staff will remind children and each other to practice diligent hand hygiene; 
    • Assemblies and other school-wide events will be held virtually;
    • Students will be reminded about washing their hands frequently, about coughing and sneezing etiquette as well as keeping a physical distance from each other; and
    • Students will be reminded not to share food, drinks, utensils or belongings. 
  6. Will students go through screening measures when arriving at schools?
    Parents and caregivers must complete a daily health assessment for their child before sending them to school, checking for symptoms of common cold, influenza, COVID-19 or other infectious respiratory diseases. Staff and students who are ill will not be permitted to attend school. Provincial Health Office guidelines indicate schools do not have any role in screening students or staff for symptoms, checking temperatures or COVID-19 testing. Such activities are reserved for health care professionals. 
  7. Will students be required to wear a face mask?
    As per guidelines from the provincial health officer, students and staff will not be required to wear non-medical masks. However, wearing a mask is a personal choice, and anyone who chooses to do so should be treated respectfully. 
  8. Will my child's learning suffer if they do not attend in-person?
    Attending in-class instruction is voluntary and the decision will vary from family-to-family. Whether students attend in-person or continue learning remotely, their learning will continue to be supported.
  9. My child has special needs and a ministry designation. How will their learning be supported? 
    Children with diverse learning needs will continue to be supported in their learning. As such, they may have an opportunity to attend school each day, continue learning remotely or a combination of both. Planning is currently underway to determine schedules and supports for in-class learning. As details are worked out, school staff will be in contact with families of students with diverse learning needs who may benefit from additional in-class support.
  10. Will Grade 12 students be at risk of not graduating? 
    When Minister of Education Rob Fleming announced the suspension of all K-12 in-class instruction on March 17, he assured families about the movement to the next grade, graduation, and what’s being done to support the transition to post-secondary. Read Minister Fleming’s full letter to students and families.
  11. Will I have to redo my current grade?
    Every student will receive a final mark based on their current academic standing. Students in a positive academic standing will advance to the next grade.
  12. Will students receive a report card?
    All students will receive a report card based on where they were at prior to spring break plus the learning opportunities they’re engaging in at home.
  13. My current mark is low and I was looking to improve it before the end of the school year.
    Please discuss this with your teacher and school administration.
  14. How will students’ marks be impacted if they attend in-person vs. if they continue with remote learning?
    Students will receive marks based on their learning progress regardless of if they attend in-class instruction on a part-time basis or continue to learn remotely. All children who were on track to move to the next grade prior to the suspension of in-class instruction in March will do so. Students will also not receive a mark lower than they had prior to spring break.
  15. Will the school year schedule be extended to run through the summer?
    No. The school year calendar will not be extended, as indicated by the provincial government announcement about the resumption of in-class instruction on a part-time basis.
  16. Can students take summer school courses?
    Some summer school opportunities are available for students. Learn more on our Summer School website.
  17. I’m an essential services worker. What support is available for my child?
    The announcement to resume in-class instruction on a part-time basis by the government provides for up to 100% in-class support at school for Tier 1 and Tier 2 Essential Service Workers. The children of school staff would also be accommodated. Please contact us if you have additional questions about this.
Operations
  1. Can I still register a child for the 2020/21 school year?
    Yes. Learn more about our registration process and find your local school catchment.
  2. Are schools reopening in June?​ 
    • On May 15, Minister of Education Rob Fleming announced that all schools in BC will be moving to Stage 3 of BC’s Restart Plan. As a result, effective June 1, 2020, families will have the choice of voluntarily bringing their children back to class on a part-time basis. The goal is to return to full-time classes in September 2020, provided it is safe to do so.
    • Decisions to reopen schools are not made at the local level by individual schools or school districts; instead, this decision is made at the provincial level in close consultation with the provincial health officer. 
  3. Are Administrative and Operational district sites open?
    Our Administrative and Operational sites (School Board Office, CORE, ITC, Facilities) are closed to the public but open to staff. Appointments can be made by phone (604.859.4891). Parents, caregivers and other non-staff adults will be limited in entering school buildings without a pre-arranged appointment. 
  4. Have schools and sites been cleaned during the closure period?
    ​​All Abbotsford School District sites have received enhanced cleaning during the COVID-19 outbreak, which focuses on increased cleaning of high touch surfaces, doorknobs, desktops, washrooms, food prep areas, etc.
  5. What measures will be in place to ensure schools and sites are cleaned as we return on a partial basis in June?
    ​Regular cleaning and disinfection are essential to preventing the transmission of COVID-19 from contaminated objects and surfaces. Schools will be cleaned and disinfected in accordance with the BC Centre for Disease Control’s Cleaning and Disinfectants for Public Settings recommendations, which include:
    • Removing items that cannot be easily cleaned (e.g., newspapers, magazines, books, toys, etc.). 
    • Cleaning and disinfecting highly touched surfaces at least twice a day and when visibly dirty (e.g., doorknobs, light switches, cupboard handles, grab bars, handrails, tables, phones, bathrooms, keyboards, etc.); and
    • General cleaning and disinfecting of the premises at least once a day;
  6. Are there sufficient sinks, soap and hand sanitizer in schools and district sites?
    Yes. Children will be reminded to wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Where/when sinks are not available hand sanitizer will be provided. Sufficient hand sanitizer and dispensers are being distributed to schools. 
  7. Will school bus transportation be available to families who decide to return to school in June 2020?
    No, transportation will not be available to students in the month of June.
  8. Will those of us who use the school bus continue to be debited the monthly school bus fee during closures?
    We will not be processing the monthly bus fees following Spring Break. The monthly fee will not be assessed while schools are closed due to COVID-19.
  9. Will staff be required to wear face masks?
    Staff will not be required to wear non-medical masks. However, wearing a mask is a personal choice, and anyone who chooses to do so should be treated respectfully.  
  10. What can I do to prevent the spread of infection?
    As recommended by Provincial Health Officials: stay home and away from others, if sick or in isolation; wash hands often; cover coughs and sneezes with your elbows; avoid touching face with unwashed hands; avoid travel outside Canada; self-isolate for 14 days if returning from travel outside Canada or were exposed to COVID-19; and contact your primary health provider or Health Link 811 if you have questions about your health.