Province must provide direction, support for students and staff working in schools during COVID shutdown
Even in the current emergency shutdown in Ontario, thousands of students continue to go to school and continue to be supported by education workers. To protect everyone’s health and safety, the union that represents 55,000 education workers is calling on the provincial government to implement some straightforward measures that will lower the risks of spreading COVID-19.
The Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) has drawn up a list of simple, low-cost ways to reduce hazards for everyone who spends their days in brick-and-mortar schools. Laura Walton, president of CUPE’s Ontario School Board Council of Unions (OSBCU), outlined the measures that the union wants in place in schools that have students attending class: Mandatory screening: Active and enhanced screening should be applied to everyone entering schools. Screening should include temperature checks for anyone coming through school doors and written attestation should be required from parents to confirm that their children don’t have symptoms of COVID- 19 and haven’t been exposed to it.