Masks to be mandatory for school staff, Grades 4-12 students

Masks to be mandatory for school staff, Grades 4-12 students

"Emerging evidence has made it clear that masks can play an important role in limiting the spread of COVID-19 in our schools", said LaGrange.

Exemptions will be designed for students and personnel who are unable to wear a mask thanks to medical or other demands.

The top doctor stated that there's been a "great deal" of focus recently on mask-wearing, but she stressed that they only make up "one part" of the public health approach to protect schools from COVID-19.

Those who do fall under the mandatory mask rules will need to have their mouths and noses covered whenever physical distancing can not be maintained, including in hallways, on buses, and in other shared common areas.

To assist cover the expense, the Alberta governing administration will provide two reusable masks to each college student, trainer, faculty team and bus driver in the province - 1.6 million reusable masks in whole.

The province will also be sending a plethora of health and safety equipment to schools in Alberta, including face shields, hand sanitizer, and contactless thermometers. The same number of reusable masks will also be provided to teachers, support staff, school staff and school bus drivers.

Alberta's Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, clarified that students in Grades 4-12 will have to wear masks outside of the classroom in shared and common areas, or in class when activities do not allow for proper physical distancing.

Alberta educational institutions ended up shut down in mid-March when the pandemic took keep in the province.

Additional safety measures include the frequent sanitization of high-touch areas and a recommendation to wear a non-medical mask or face covering. "With the addition of masks for students in grades 4 to 12, and all staff, we are optimistic that this will reduce the transmission of airborne particles".

LaGrange said the assistance to schools will cost the government about $10 million.

"And to make that happen, we need to make sure that this government is funding education properly to ensure we can hire the additional staff, teachers, custodians, educational assistants to make sure that our kids are safe and spread out, as well as space", she said.

Back-to-school will look a whole lot different for returning students in Alberta.

Jason Schilling, president of the Alberta Teachers' Association, said he would be monitoring Tuesday's school division announcement closely.

The Calgary Board of Education released its re-entry guidelines last Thursday, giving families a short-term online learning option. But the board cautioned on line understanding would not give students the exact same prospects or assist as in-person classes.



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