Ontario teachers' unions want government to establish specific benchmarks for school plan

Ontario extends school closures until January 25th

That is how I can describe.

"With the public health trends where they are across the province, our priority remains keeping students, teachers, school staff, and all Ontarians safe", said Ontario Premier Doug Ford.

"Today's numbers are, to be frank - they are scary", Yaffe said.

"The hospitals are starting to have to cut back on elective surgeries and other very important procedures that require ICU care".

Public Health continues to lead local planning while working closely with community partners, including Health Sciences North, local municipalities, long-term care homes, and primary care providers to prepare for the rollout of the vaccine. He blamed the increased positivity rates in children as the result of people getting together over the holidays. "We don't want to scare people but we don't want complacency".

The call to action comes one day after Premier Doug Ford extended virtual learning for all students in southern Ontario until January 25.

The province also announced that the shutdown measures in northern Ontario will be extended until the 25th, which aligns with the potential end of the shutdown for the rest of the province.

His news conference was set up to discuss the decision announced Thursday to keep students out of the classroom for two more weeks in most of the province, but while discussing that Ford said more measures will be coming next week. "I can't stress this enough".

The premier made the comments while saying that new COVID-19 modelling would be released on Monday or Tuesday of next week and that the data would be so shocking, residents will "fall off their chair" upon its release. "This is crunch time right now".

"If these basic measures continue to be ignored, the consequences will be more dire". But I will say as we look at the modelling through the Public Health Measures Team, with input from the Medical Officers of Health across the province, I think we do need to consider more serious measures.

Ford also mentioned he believes Canada should be approving the third and newer version of the COVID-19 vaccine, the AstraZeneca vaccine which has been approved in the United Kingdom.

He did add it's going to be a bumpy road until everyone gets vaccinated and he's hoping Ontario will see five-million vaccination doses a month in the spring.

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