Island schools moving to elevated risk scenario
Today, the Chief Public Health Office has declared an outbreak of COVID-19 at West Royalty Elementary School in Charlottetown. The school will be closed for in-person learning next week. Learning activities for students will be available on the school’s website on Monday, September 13 and the school will move to remote learning effective Wednesday, September 15, 2021.
West Royalty Elementary will reach out to families who identified last year that they needed technology for remote learning. Families can also contact their child’s homeroom teacher if they require technology support.
Any child who attends this school or staff member that has not been tested in the last 24 to 36 hours should be tested on Monday, September 13 at a Health PEI testing clinic.
The Chief Public Health Office has also announced one positive case at Charlottetown Rural High School. Thus far, there have been no other cases identified at Charlottetown Rural High School. All close contacts of the individual are being called by public health to arrange for testing and self-isolation instructions.
Both West Royalty Elementary and Charlottetown Rural, as well as any school buses that have been identified, will be deep cleaned.
To allow the Chief Public Health Office time to learn more about the extent of transmission in PEI, schools in the Charlottetown area will be closed for 72 hours (resuming on Thursday, September 16). The impacted schools are:
- Birchwood Intermediate School
- Charlottetown Rural Senior High School
- Colonel Gray Senior High School
- Donagh Regional School
- École François-Buote
- Glen Stewart Primary School
- Grace Christian School
- Immanuel Christian School
- L.M. Montgomery Elementary School
- Parkdale Elementary School
- Prince Street Elementary School
- Queen Charlottetown Intermediate School
- Sherwood Elementary School
- Spring Park Elementary School
- St. Jean Elementary School
- Stonepark Intermediate School
- Stratford Elementary School
All before and after-school activities and community use of these schools will be suspended during this closure.
Students and staff at these schools should monitor themselves for symptoms and arrange for testing if any symptoms develop (even if they are mild), regardless of their vaccine status or a previous negative test.
Out of an abundance of caution for the health and safety of our Island school communities, all schools in the Public Schools Branch (PSB) and Commission scolaire de langue français (CSLF) will move to their elevated risk scenarios effective mid-week.
COVID-19 risk is determined by the Chief Public Health Office by assessing a number of indicators, including rates of vaccination among the eligible PEI population, COVID-19 transmission in the community, the impact of a fourth wave of COVID-19 locally and nationally, and the impact of new variants of concern.
The Department of Education and Lifelong Learning will work with the Chief Public Health Office, the English and French language school boards, Prince Edward Island Teachers’ Federation, Canadian Union of Public Employees and the PEI Home and School Federation to continue to assess the situation daily. Any necessary modification to these plans will be communicated in the coming days.
Families can reach out to their respective school board offices if they have further questions related to school:
- Public Schools Branch : 1-800-280-7965 (toll free)
- Commission scolaire de langue française: 1-902-854-2975.
The Department of Education and Lifelong Learning will work with the Department of Social Development and Housing to coordinate the delivery of the healthy school food program for families in need effective Tuesday, September 14, 2021.
Early Learning and Childcare Centres across the province will remain open as normal.
As always, all Islanders are urged to get tested if they experience any symptoms of COVID-19, even after a previous negative test, and to self-isolate until the results come back. Islanders are also encouraged to download the free national COVID Alert app, which will let them know if they have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.
Individuals should not go to the emergency department for testing. Individuals who were not tested today will be able to be tested tomorrow when the test clinic opens at 8:00 am.
Anyone age 12 and over can make an appointment to receive their COVID-19 vaccination at one of the public clinics online or by calling 1-844-975-3303; or anyone 18+ can contact one of the 28 partner pharmacies across the province. Every Islander in the target age range will have the opportunity to be vaccinated in 2021.
Department of Education and Lifelong Learning