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COVID-19 Updated Mar 16 2020

Dear Parents and Students

During these quickly changing times, I felt it appropriate to update you with the current situation regarding the possibility of returning to school next week. As I type, schools are not yet closed in British Columbia. However, things are rapidly evolving. Last Thursday night, I was waiting for my connecting flight from Calgary to Cancun when I heard about the updated travel advice, which caused me to change my plans, as I want to ensure I am healthy and avoid the prospects of self-quarantine for fourteen days upon my return. Unfortunately, Nadine has a separate itinerary from myself and was waiting for her connecting flight in San Francisco. As she was in the USA, she will not be anywhere on the campus with the exception of our house for a total of 14 days. I am pleased to say that neither of us has any flu-like symptoms at the moment.

In the last 24 hours, the Ministry of Education with the support of the Ministry of Health has established a Boarding School Emergency Response working group that is collaborating with one another in an attempt to make our schools as safe as possible. We are having discussions about the best way forward for our schools.

Should school remain open, please note the following:

A declaration will be sent out requiring community members (staff and students) to identify if they have been outside of Canada in the past fourteen days by Friday. Should this be the case, community members will not be allowed to attend school for a minimum of fourteen days without exhibiting any flu-like symptoms. We have four members of staff that will not be allowed on campus. Thank you to those parents that have already contacted us to let us know that you were travelling and that you will stay away from the school campus for fourteen days from when you returned to Canada.

Families will have complete discretion as to whether or not to send their children to school. Students will be considered ‘educated off-site’ and marked present should a family decide to have their child work from home. Further details will be sent on how to access work with a template that will be created. Please note there is no need to feel pressured to come to school even if the doors remain open. We will do everything we can to provide meaningful learning opportunities online for our students.

2371 Shawnigan Lake Road, V0R 2W5, Shawnigan Lake, BC

Tel: 250-220-4888. Email: info@stjohnsacademy.ca

As ever, staff and students that display any signs of illness should remain away from school. Please rest assured that we are closely monitoring the situation and will keep you abreast of any developments to our procedures, which may include school closure even if it is not mandated by the Ministry of Education.

Please do not hesitate to contact me at dave.pontich@stjohnsacademy.ca should you have any questions or concerns.

Yours faithfully

Dave Pontich