The Kamloops-Thompson school district continues to work on a plan for remote teaching, which is scheduled to begin on March 30.
The district said principals and managers will be contacting staff on March 23 — which would have been the first day back at school following the one-week spring break — to give them a schedule for attendance to ensure social distancing measures are followed. The district has also scheduled a minimum of one custodian during the day for continuous cleaning and disinfecting at schools, with additional support staff reassigned exclusively for surface cleaning.
“We are asking parents to please reassure your children that their teacher will be in touch with them very soon with a plan to reconnect them to their learning,” school district Supt. Alison Sidow said in a release. “These are challenging times for us all, but I am confident that our amazing and dedicated staff will have many innovative ideas to ensure the children in our care continue to learn.”
The school district is also asking parents to ensure their children are practicing social distancing.
“We are taking tremendous steps to protect our students and staff at this time, yet many youth are gathering in large groups at beaches, in the outskirts of town and on the playgrounds, despite the advice from the provincial health officer,” Sidow said.
There have been numerous social media posts regarding teens gathering for parties in rural areas of the city and Kamloops firefighters have been called to douse a few campfires in recent days.
As of March 22, Sidow said she has been told by Interior Health’s medical health officer that there are no confirmed cases of the COVID-19 virus amongst staff or students.
The school district is also working on a plan to have most of its school-based staff work from home, while additional precautions are being taken for those who cannot toil from home, such as custodians, maintenance, IT, HR, communication and finance staff.
“I cannot emphasize enough how important it is for all of us to remain calm, to be safe and to be kind to each other during this these unsettling times,” Sidow said.
With in-classroom instruction suspended provincewide, schools will not be open to students or the public. Parents should wait to be contacted by their child’s teacher or principal with respect to collecting their student’s personal belongings.
A schedule will be prepared by each school to allow for the safe collection that follows the social distancing guidelines set out by the provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry.