Masks urged for some students returning to Vernon schools

Phase two sees students return full-time Sept. 8

They aren’t mandatory, but masks are being recommended for some students returning to classes Sept. 8.

As part of the provincial back to school plan, the Vernon School District is returning to full-time, in-class instruction.

Along with organizing schools into learning groups/cohorts, the district says “older students should wear masks.”

Reusable masks for staff and older students will be available upon request.

READ MORE: B.C. prepares back to school plan for students in COVID-19

Meanwhile, some bells could be adjusted as well to accommodate the new learning groups/cohorts which will be formed.

“District staff are currently working with secondary school administration to determine if and how timetables will need to be adjusted,” district board chair Robert Lee and superintendent Joe Rogers said in a letter to families.

Elementary students will be in their regular division (class) for the majority of the day, while lunch time/activities will be organized to a maximum of 60 students in a cohort.

Secondary schools’ timetables will be organized into learning group cohorts of a maximum of 120.

Busing will be provided and additional funds have been provided by the ministry of education for more cleaning supplies, cleaning staff and reusable masks.

Further details are expected to be sent out to families Aug. 26, after the district meets with the Vernon Teachers’ Association, CUPE and DPAC to develop a local return to school plan, which will be submitted to the ministry by Aug. 21.

“We are looking forward to welcoming all of our students back to school in September,” the district said.

Site-based occupation health and safety committee training will also occur prior to school start-up.

READ MORE: Vernon library offers up Nintendo Switch Lite

READ MORE: Body of 21-year-old man found in Okanagan Lake


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