School-planned trips abroad cancelled
With the safety of students and staff in mind, school-planned travel abroad during the month of March is being cancelled.
As the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is evolving daily, the Department of Education and Lifelong Learning has been reviewing the situation with education authorities and considering impacts to student travel.
A decision was made this morning to cancel all Public Schools Branch sanctioned school trips to Europe for the March Break period, as well as all school-planned travel abroad for the rest of March. There are currently no international trips planned for the French Language School Board.
“We appreciate that Islanders are concerned, including our students, their families and staff. Our school boards have been working closely with the Chief Public Health Office to keep our staff, students and their families informed about COVID-19. The decision to cancel school trips by the Public Schools Branch was not made easily. We know that students were looking forward to the experience; however, their safety always comes first.”
- Education and Lifelong Learning Minister Brad Trivers
The Public Schools Branch will continue to review future student travel opportunities at an appropriate time, including rescheduling trips planned for this month that have been cancelled, and will communicate with impacted students and parents. Approximately 100 students and staff have been impacted by the cancellation of school-planned trips this month.
Island families and students planning personal trips over March break encouraged to visit the province’s website for up-to-date important information about COVID-19, including updates and instructions for those traveling.
“Many staff and students may have personal trips planned over March break, and I strongly encourage everyone to be aware of travel advice being shared our Chief Public Health Office and take the appropriate precautions,” added Minister Trivers.
Island students and school staff returning from trips abroad who are feeling well can return to school. Those who may not be feeling well and are experiencing symptoms such as fever, cough, or difficulty breathing are asked to stay home and contact 8-1-1 for instructions.
Department of Education and Lifelong Learning
The Chief Public Health Office continues to work closely with the federal government, provincial and territorial counterparts, government departments to continue to monitor the situation globally, nationally and locally.
There are no cases of COVID-19 in Prince Edward Island, and the overall risk to Islanders remains low at this time. The public health risk of COVID-19 is continually reassessed and Islanders will be updated as new information becomes available.
Islanders are encouraged to follow routine prevention measures (listed below) to stay healthy, as respiratory viruses that cause the common cold or other illness, like the flu, are currently circulating in communities.
Prevention measures include:
- Washing hands frequently with soap and water
- Cough and sneeze into your elbow or a tissue
- If ill with acute respiratory symptoms, stay home if possible
- Limit touching your eyes, nose and mouth
- Don’t share items like drinking glasses and water bottles
- Frequently clean surfaces like taps, doorknobs and countertops