Coronavirus, travel advisories & recommendations
With families travelling over March Break we wish to remind parents of precautions and best practices for good health, and avoiding contagious illness, including the Coronavirus (COVID-19).
What we’re doing as a school
As a school, we have an established set of policies and procedures to help prevent the spread of communicable illness. We always take a proactive approach to cleaning and disinfection, especially during cold and flu season.
We’ve reviewed the recommendations for schools from the Middlesex-London Health Unit and the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC); our established practices are in line with both PHAC and the Health Unit. We will continue to monitor updates recommendations from these organizations in the coming week.
What we ask of our parents
The school administration asks families to refer to and follow our Illness & Accidents policies noted in the second yellow tab of your printed Year at a Glance Calendar, including the Communicable Illnesses chart (PDF) that was updated and shared with families in November. This chart can be found through this link to a PDF of the chart or on the MA Portal in the MA Policies section under the Resources tab.
An update on COVID-19
Countries affected by COVID-19 (as of February 26): Hong Kong, Iran, Italy, Japan, Singapore, and South Korea. (Previously, only mainland China was considered an affected area.)
If you are travelling to these areas (or have had contact with travellers who have visited these areas), please monitor your family’s health after your return.
What to watch for…
A person with fever and/or onset of cough or difficulty breathing AND any of the following within 14 days prior to illness onset:
- Travel to an affected area
- Close contact with a confirmed or probable case of COVID-19
- Close contact with a person with acute respiratory illness who has been to an affected area.
Any individual who meets the above case definition should be tested for COVID-19. Contact the Health Unit at 519-663-5317 and ask to speak to the Infectious Disease Control team to facilitate assessment and testing.
Resources and best practices
As with most respiratory illnesses, the Health Unit recommends the following to stay healthy and to prevent the spread of viruses:
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Wash your hands with soap and warm water often, for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Cover coughs and sneezes with your sleeve; or cough or sneeze into your elbow or a tissue, then throw the tissue in the garbage.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Clean and disinfect high-touch objects and surfaces frequently.
For more details and resources, visit the Health Unit’s website: https://www.healthunit.com/news/novel-coronavirus
We hope everyone enjoys a safe and healthy March Break. School resumes on Monday, March 23.