Outdoor instruction when possible and an expansion of asymptomatic testing are among the new measures the provincial government is implementing at Ontario's schools in an effort to curb the spread of COVID-19.
In a press release issued this morning, Ontario's Chief Medical Officer Dr. David Williams said schools will remain safe for in-person learning with appropriate health and safety measures in place.
Other measures that will be introduced include on-site confirmation of self screening, refresher training upon return from April break, enhanced cleaning during the break, curriculum-linked activities for students, and letters to parents promoting best practices for a safe break.
Under the Ontario government's plan, expanded access to asymptomatic testing is available for students and staff at pharmacies that offer testing and in 180 assessment centres across the province for the week of April 12-18.
This news comes on the tail of a provincewide stay-at-home order that came into effect at 12:01 a.m. today, as well as a state of emergency that was declared yesterday.
Ford announced yesterday that education workers who provide direct support to students with special education needs across the province, and education workers in select hot spot areas will soon be eligible to register for their vaccinations.
The Ontario government said in yesterday's press conference that vaccinations will start for education workers in Toronto and Peel over the April break (April 12-19).
It will then roll out to 'priority neighbourhoods' in other hot spot regions, including York, Ottawa, Hamilton, Halton, and Durham, before a provincewide rollout, which Ford's government has not yet provided further detail on.