AACS RESTART & COVID-19
Updated on October 6, 2021
NEW: How are parents being contacted if there is a positive case at school?
Alberta Health Services (AHS) is beginning contact tracing in mid-November. The focus will be on school-based exposures only. Until then, our schools will notify parents of students in a class that have voluntarily informed us that their child has a positive case of COVID-19.
NEW: When will Alberta Health Services report cases publicly?
By mid-November, AHS will report all schools that have at least two positive COVID-19 cases. These cases will be visible online at https://www.alberta.ca/covid-19-alberta-data.aspx.
NEW: When will an outbreak be declared?
Outbreaks will be reported when there are at least 10 positive COVID-19 cases that occur within a 14-day window.
NEW: I've heard about rapid-testing. What's that about?
By mid-November, schools that have 10 or more cases of COVID-19 will be supplied with rapid-testing kids that can be brought home and used on students. School staff will also have them available for use.
NEW: If a child hasn't been vaccinated, can you make him or her stay home?
No. Schools cannot deny students access to education due to vaccination status.
NEW: Are all of your staff members vaccinated?
We are currently looking at policies regarding mandatory vaccination for our staff.
What are you doing to socially distance children?
In the mornings, Elementary students are lined up in their classes, which are directed into the building one at a time. Middle School students are permitted in the building early to allow easier flow. These students walk immediately to class. There are no lockers being used at this time. Desks are moved as far apart as possible. There is increased staffing in hallways and during breaks to ensure students stay separated.
What safety practices are happening at lunchtime?
All students are spending lunch in their homeroom classes. They are only permitted to remove their masks when eating or drinking while sitting at their desks.
What is happening at recess?
Staff is stationed at the doors, and students are remaining in their cohorts. Students are led out by their teachers. In the Middle School, the bell system has been staggered to create separation, and administrators are supervising in the schoolyard.
How does the end of the day work?
At the end of the day, the staff is stationed at doors, and in the Middle School, the bell system is staggered to create separation. Middle School students are released before the Elementary students in order to create flow and separation when walking to buses and parent transportation.
Can my child use the bathroom during the day?
Absolutely. Bathroom use is restricted to two students per bathroom at a time. In the Elementary school, up to five students may use the hand washing station simultaneously.
In conjunction with Alberta Health Services protocols, we have continued the practice from last year of increased cleaning throughout the school. All surfaces are cleaned regularly, and bathrooms are inspected every hour. Deep, thorough cleaning is performed every evening.
Any students taking the bus are expected to wear masks. Students line up single file when boarding the buses. Cohorts on the bus are first made by grouping family members together, followed by class and grade groupings.
All students are expected to sanitize their hands upon entry to the building or when they reach their classes, as well as anything they leave and reenter.
Physical barriers, such as plastic screens, are on teacher desks and in reception areas.
Ventilation in every classroom is checked each week.
Are my kids safe while in physical education class? When will they be able to use the locker rooms?
Locker rooms will not be used until we move to STAGE 1 of the AACS Restart Lifting Restrictions Plan. All equipment is sanitized before and after use.
What about lockers in the Middle School?
Once STAGE 1 of the AACS Restart Lifting Restrictions Plan is reached, students will be permitted to use lockers again.
Are the science labs being used?
Yes, they are. Student group work will be restricted until STAGE 1 is reached.
How are you helping my child that is staying home?
Teachers will communicate regularly with parents and students to ensure that students can follow at home with parental support.
Are you offering online options like last year?
The health and safety of our students are our first priority. We are continuing with cohorting, extensive cleaning, the wearing of masks, and other strong health measures to ensure that our students are cared for. At this point, we will not be offering online learning.
Can my child receive a vaccine at school?
Alberta Health Services is visiting our school on Thursday, September 9, 2021, to provide either first or second vaccinations to students born in 2009 or earlier who have signed consent forms from their parents. School staff is also included in this program.
How are you calculating the number of positive COVID-19 cases?
Alberta Health Services is no longer informing the school of positive cases.
How are you deciding when to move to new stages in the Restart Plan?
Aurora Academic Charter School has excellent relationships and communication with Alberta Health Services and Alberta Education. We will be listening to their advice as well as to our parent body to inform our decisions.
When does my child have to wear a mask?
Masks must be worn until STAGE 2 of the AACS Restart Lifting Restrictions Plan.
What happens if someone in the school contracts COVID-19?
If a parent volunteers to the school that their child has COVID-19, all families from that child’s cohort will be informed. If the student also rides the bus, all families of students who ride the same bus will also be informed. If a parent or guardian chooses to keep their child(ren) at home for 1-2 weeks, the teacher will provide school work as they would in regular absence situations.
Where do students go if they need to be isolated?
Both the Elementary and Middle schools have designated locations for students to safely isolate until they can be picked up by a parent or guardian.