The return to school after the holiday break has been delayed by one week due to the presence of the Omicron vaiant in B.C.’s Interior.
However, parents of children at Vernon School District schools who are essential workers will still be able to drop off their kids starting Jan. 4.
Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry has ordered that schools not fully open until Jan. 10, allowing time for the province and school districts to better assess the impacts of Omicron, the latest COVID-19 variant, which is currently sweeping across the province.
“School district busses will be running for those attending. There will be no formal instruction next week. All other students will be welcome to return on Monday, Jan. 10,” said Louise Alexander, BX Elementary School vice principal, in an email to parents.
Essential workers who require supervision of their child next week are required to fill out an online form, which will close Monday, Jan. 3, at 8 a.m.
All staff will return to work on Jan. 4, including district staff, teachers, education assistants, bus supervisors, drivers and enhanced cleaners.
“It is even more important at this time to complete your daily health check and to diligently wear masks at all times within the building. At this time parents are not able to come into the building, if you need to pick up a child early please call the office and we will happily bring them out to you,” said Alexander.
In the week before students make a full return, principals will meet with all staff to plan and implement new safety protocols.
Parents won’t be allowed to visit the schools. Visitors will be limited to those who are directly supporting student learning and well-being, such as teachers, immunizers and meal program volunteers.
Staff and students are reminded to stay home when they are sick.