Novel Coronavirus / COVID-19 Updates
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Student Mental Health and Well-being
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Novel Coronavirus / COVID-19 Update
Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

This section has been created to provide regular updates on the coronavirus – COVID-19 – and its impact on students, staff, families, schools and operations.

We encourage you to visit this site regularly.

Last Updated:

July 6 - School Closure Updates
July 6 - Ministry of Education Communications
July 6 - Self-Screening Assessment Tool - Contractors & Visitorsr
July 6 - Contractors/Sub-contractors
Apr 16 - Practice physical distancing
Apr 26 - Learning at home
Mar 23 - EQAO Assessments
May 11 - Student Mental Health and Well-being
Apr 16 - Protection, Assessment, Health and Safety
May 29 - Additional Resources
HWCDSB schools are closed for the remainder of the school year

HWCDSB schools are closed for the remainder of the school year

Last Updated: July 6, 2020

On June 19, 2020, Minister of Education Stephen Lecce announced the government’s plan for the safe reopening of schools. While Ontario is clearly on a positive trajectory in terms of its response to the COVID-19 outbreak, the education system is being asked to safely prepare for all potential scenarios come September. These scenarios were shared in a letter to parents and include:
• A return to conventional, regular classroom instruction, with health and safety requirements,
• A continuation of remote learning, including the use of live, synchronous online instruction, and;
• An adapted delivery model that enables students to return to class with blended virtual learning, that includes health and safety requirements that will limit the maximum number of students to 15 per class.

The HWCDSB will release its reopening plan later this summer.

We recognize that this is an unprecedented time in Ontario and across the world and we continue to join the world in prayer for the well-being of all who have been or will be infected by this virus.

See updates below:

Ministry of Education Communications

Last Updated: July 6, 2020

On June 19, the provincial government released its School Safety Plan for the 2020-21 School Year. The plan asks school boards to plan for the following three scenarios to be implemented in September, depending on the public health situation the time:
• Normal school day routine with enhanced public health protocols
• Modified school day routine
• At home learning

The government is instructing school boards to be prepared with a plan, should it be required, that includes an adapted delivery model, which could include alternate day or alternate week attendance, staggered bell times and recess, and different transportation arrangements, among a variety of other considerations to ensure the safety of students and staff.

See Ministry communications below:

COVID-19 Self-Screening Assessment Tool - Contractors & Visitors

COVID-19 Self-Screening Assessment Tool - Contractors & Visitors

All contractors/visitors wishing to come on site must complete this assessment tool. It is recommended that you complete this tool one hour before coming to a HWCDSB site.

At any point that the screening results indicate you cannot visit a HWCDSB site, please inform your HWCDSB contact or project manager.

Click Here to access the COVID-19 Self-Screening Assessment Tool


Update: July 6, 2020

Contractors/Sub-contractors, please click here

Contractors/Sub-contractors, please be aware of the procedures in place by the HWCDSB to protect you, our staff and our students from the potential transmission of COVID-19 as you do work in our schools over the next few weeks.

Since February 11, the HWCDSB has increased cleaning of high-touch point areas using an additional disinfectant spray after regular cleaning. This after-disinfectant spray cleaner kills germs within 5 minutes after it has been sprayed.

If you are doing work at our sites, we ask that you also consider:
• what steps your business has taken to identify and prevent the spread of COVID-19
• whether anyone at your home or work location has experienced symptoms such as fever, cough,
• if anyone at your home or business location is currently in self isolation.

Thank you for your support as together we work to contain the spread of this virus.

Ontario Stepping Up Measures to Limit the Spread of COVID-19 on Construction Sites ...

Practice physical distancing

Practice physical distancing

Last Updated: April 16, 2020

While much of COVID-19 is outside of our control, there are some things we can all do to help contain the spread of the virus. The first is frequent hand washing, but the other important action that will significantly reduce community spread is physical distancing.

Here are some important measures you can take:
• Maintain a distance of six feet (2 metres) between yourself and other people.
• Work from home if possible.
• Avoid social gathering places.
• Stay in virtual contact with family, friends and neighbours.

Together, we can help stop the spread.

Learn more:
Government of Canada
• 1-833-784-4397
Learning at home

Learning at home

See Online Learning Resources for a complete list of "in house" and Ministry student learning resources.

EQAO Assessments

EQAO Assessments

Last Updated: March 23, 2020

Given the school closure period and the uncertainty beyond that point, the Ministry of Education has advised that it will be cancelling EQAO assessments for the remainder of this school year.

For students who are graduating in the 2019-20 school year, the literacy graduation requirement as set out in Ontario Schools, Kindergarten to Grade 12: Policy and Program Requirements, 2016 will be waived. Students who are not graduating this school year will have the opportunity to write the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT) in the upcoming 2020-21 school year.
Protection, Assessment, Health and Safety

Protection, Assessment, Health and Safety

Last Updated: June 2, 2020

How to protect yourself
Coronaviruses are spread mainly from person to person through close contact, for example, in a household, workplace or health care centre. There is no vaccine available to protect against the 2019 novel coronavirus, but there are actions you can take to help prevent the spread of germs that cause respiratory illnesses. Learn what you can do to prevent coronavirus at Government of Canada.

Ontario’s Enhanced COVID-19 Testing
On May 29, 2020, the province released its testing plan, Protecting Ontarians Through Enhanced Testing. Ontario’s testing guidance now indicates that you should visit an assessment centre if you:
• have at least one of the symptoms of COVID-19
• do not have symptoms but are concerned you might have been exposed
• do not have symptoms but think you are at risk through your employment (for example, if you are an essential or health care worker)
• would like to be tested
To support Ontarians who have identified the need to get tested, as of May 24, 2020, people will no longer need a referral to go to any of the more than 130 assessment centres across Ontario for testing. No Ontarian will be declined a test.

Given this expanded guidance, if you do choose to get tested, here are a few important notes:
• Testing is voluntary.
• You do not need an OHIP card to be tested. It is a free service.
• Some assessment centres may require you to book an appointment first or have certain restrictions (for example, some are unable to test young children). find out more about an assessment centre near you.
• You can also take an online self-assessment to help determine if you should get tested.
• If you are free of symptoms and have not had contact with anyone confirmed to have COVID-19 when presenting for testing, you will not be required to self-isolate. However, you should self-monitor for symptoms for 14 days regardless of your test result. If you begin to develop symptoms, self-isolate and contact your local public health unit for further advice.

Stay informed and visit Ontario’s website to learn more about how the province continues to protect Ontarians from COVID-19. Local information is also available from your local public health unit.

Heightened Concern & Anxiety
We all want to be in control of our fear and cope with the stress of this pandemic in a healthy way. For things you can do, please visit Coping with Anxiety during COVID.

School & site cleaning
Board custodial staff has increased its cleaning and sterilization procedures with an increased focus on the cleaning of high touch-point areas and an additional disinfectant spray upon completion. In addition, soap dispensers and hand-dryers will be monitored closely to ensure safe handwashing practices.

Government of Canada Travel Health Notices

Always use reliable sources for information on COVID-19. These sources include:
Hamilton Public Health Services
Ministry of Health
Government of Canada

Student Mental Health and Well-being

Due to the expanding need for Mental Health resources, we have created a new website area that you can access here: ...