Continued COVID-19 Extraordinary Measures in place for a safe environment

Updated: January 2022

The priority of all CEFA Early Learning school owners, operators and staff continues to be providing a safe and healthy learning environment for your children. It is important for all schools to continue to work closely with provincial centres for disease control and regional health authorities, as they collaborate with the provincial ministries of health to roll out regular new guidelines as part of the ongoing evolving health and safety strategy amid the current pandemic.

The latest update from BCCDC and Regional Health Authorities as of January 19, 2022 include the following:

Individuals with symptoms:
Staff and children that are exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms must stay home until they feel well enough to return to regular activity.

Confirmed Case(s) of Covid-19 in staff or children:
Staff who test positive for COVID-19 by PCR or Rapid Antigen Test and are fully vaccinated, must self-isolate at home for 5 days AND until their symptoms improve and they no longer have a fever.

Children under 18 years of age, test positive for COVID-19, and are not fully vaccinated, must self-isolate at home for 5 days AND until they no longer have a fever AND their symptoms improve.

Close contacts of symptomatic staff or children or confirmed case(s) of COVID-19: REVISED.
Students or staff who are close contacts in a household where someone tests positive for COVID-19 must self-isolate at home for 5 days and may only return if they are symptom-free.

http://www.bccdc.ca/health-info/diseases-conditions/covid-19/self-isolation/close-contacts

All other existing COVID-19 protocols in our schools remain unchanged.

All CEFA locations have been adhering to strict cleaning and disinfecting actions within the school to prevent communicable disease and will carry on doing so.

Masks on Staff:

Teachers are required to wear masks at all times when interacting with other teachers, staff and parents. This includes drop-off and pick-up times, whether indoors or outside, at the entrance to the school. They are also required to wear masks while they are outside of the classroom (but inside the school).

All adults (including staff, practicum students, volunteers and visitors) in our schools are required to wear a non-medical mask or face covering (a “mask”) at all times while indoors, subject to the following exceptions:

  • If the adult is unable to put on or remove a mask without the assistance of another person;
  • If the mask is removed temporarily for the purposes of identifying the adult wearing it;
  • If the adult is eating or drinking;
  • If the adult is behind a barrier (e.g., a divider or in a room by themselves); or
  • While providing a service to a person with a disability or diverse ability where visual cues, facial expressions and/or lip reading/movements are important.

We require our teachers to wear masks in their classrooms. Teachers have the opportunity to manage adequate social distance between a variety of areas within the classroom.

Chefs are required to wear a mask at all times while preparing, delivering and serving food. They are also required to wear a mask when interacting with teachers, staff, students or any other adult.

School Tours:
Schools will conduct virtual tours or after-hours tours. This is to minimize non-staff members in the schools when children and teachers are present. Masks are required during all school tours.

Hours:
All CEFA schools are open during regular operating hours.

Drop off and Pick up:
Out of an abundance of caution, each school is following COVID-19 drop off and pick up protocols. This includes the requirement for Parents/Guardians to wear masks during ANY interaction with CEFA staff, regardless of where it occurs in/on school property.

Parents/Guardians must also confirm the following at drop off:

  1. If a child attending a CEFA school has returned to Canada from International travel, for 14 days after they return, they must follow Government of Canada requirements for quarantine, isolation or any other condition that has been mandated.
  2. My child does not show any flu/cold-like symptoms today.
  3. No one in my child’s household, including my child, has been identified by Public Health as a close contact of a confirmed case of COVID-19.
  4. If my child develops flu/cold-like symptoms while attending CEFA, I will pick up my child promptly, and I will keep my child at home until he/she has been assessed by a health care provider to exclude COVID-19 or other infectious diseases, AND their symptoms have resolved.

Additional Information:
In keeping with the directions of the Public Health Authority and our additional CEFA COVID-19 protocols, we will continue to minimize the number of additional adults entering the school. We will continue to minimize the number of different staff that interact with the same children throughout the day. To accomplish this, where possible, teachers will no longer be changing classrooms for co-curriculars. Our co-curricular programming will be taught by your child’s current classroom teachers.

We thank you for your ongoing support and understanding as we continue to deal with COVID- 19. We also appreciate all our families for helping us to avoid infection and control exposure at the schools by staying home when ill, abiding physical distancing codes, minimizing physical contact with others, and complying with recommended hygiene practices, such as regular handwashing and not touching your face.

Parent Access:
It is fully understood that parents have the legal right to see and have access to their children. At CEFA, we fully support this. We would never impede this from happening. However, we still need to ensure this is conducted in the safest manner possible. Until further notice, there will be no parents allowed beyond the foyer doors (Gradual Entry excepted).

Gradual Entry:
Understanding and recognizing that this will be somewhat uncomfortable to parents, we require that all parents complete preliminary health screening checks and questionnaires prior to entry.

  • Masks will be mandatory as will the use of hand sanitizer upon entry.
  • Gradual entry would be permitted on the child’s first day.
  • There will be a 1-hour limit and only 1 parent (adult) will be allowed to be present.
  • For children under 36 months, Gradual Entry will be allowed inside the school.
  • For children over 36 months, Gradual Entry will occur on the playground.

As the pandemic continues to evolve, so must we all, along with our strategy for health and safety. We appreciate your patience and remain committed to providing you with regular communications as we consult with the Regional Health Authorities, the BCCDC, Alberta Communicable Disease Control, and the Provincial Ministries of Health.

Thank you for your continued support and patience as we navigate through the challenges brought about by the COVID-19 Omicron variant. Keeping your children safe while under our care remains our top priority. We know it has not been easy and do know that your efforts make a great difference.

You may also review and refresh the information on the BC Centre for Disease Control and Alberta Communicable Disease Control web pages. Please familiarize yourself with them as we continue to enforce a no-symptom policy at all schools.

BC Covid-19 Resources:
http://www.bccdc.ca/health-info/diseases-conditions/covid-19/childcare-schools/child-care

Alberta Covid-19 Resources:
https://open.alberta.ca/publications/covid-19-information-guidance-preschool-day-care-and-out-of-school-care-child-care