On July 30, 2020, the Ministry of Education announced that all elementary schools will open for conventional in-person delivery of teaching and instruction, five days a week. This applies to all Kindergarten to grade 8 students.

  • Kindergarten students will attend school five days per week, with 300 minutes of instruction per day, remaining in one cohort for the full day.
  • Students will be assigned a classroom teacher as per usual; each individual class will be considered a “cohort”

Kindergarten Specific Considerations

  • Kindergarten students will enter classroom directly upon arrival in the morning.
  • Whenever possible, staff will remain 2m apart from one another
  • Where possible, staff will provide a structural set up to allow for as much physical distancing as possible, where not possible, staff will be provided with appropriate PPE and cleaning supplies
  • Whenever possible, students should have their own materials to use
  • Students will be discouraged from share porous materials that cannot be easily cleaned
  • If using play dough, or other sensory materials (e.g. slime), each child must have their own kept in a labeled plastic bag
  • Sand tables will not be used as they cannot be cleaned
  • Where water tables are used, liquid dishwater detergent will be added
  • Classroom libraries: after reading a book, a child will be instructed to put the book in the “quarantine bin” where the book remains “in quarantine” for 72 hours
  • Plastic paint brushes will be recommended over wooden brushes, as they are easier to clean
  • The entire class will not be gathered on the floor at one time.
  • When possible, Kindergarten educators will divide the class into two groups with one group inside and one group outside. The Outdoor Classroom will be used by one class/cohort at a time unless there is enough space to ensure that different cohorts do not integrate.
  • Materials will be rotated between students or groups of students and disinfected between usage.
  • Kindergarten interviews/virtual visits for both Year 1 and Year 2 students will take place during first week of school. As students have been out of school for 6 months they may need this reassurance, want to see the changes to the classroom, and see educators with masks on. Where possible, interviews will be conducted virtually, or outside, and with minimal time in the classroom if student won’t enter the class independently.
  • Regular cleaning of student washrooms in K classes will be part of the Custodian’s daily maintenance responsibilities
  • Consider Before and After-School Program (BASP) and scheduling to avoid mixing of cohorts between day school and BASP, where possible

Outdoor Equipment and Activities

  • Outdoor kindergarten play areas will be used only one class at a time. The use of the playground will be scheduled and logged. Outdoor play equipment will not be disinfected after use, so students must wash/sanitize their hands upon returning to the classroom.
  • Plastic or metal items in outdoor kindergarten play areas will be disinfected between cohorts or removed from use. This could include storage cabinets items, plastic slides, sand table sinks, chalkboards/mirrors and legacy play items.
  • Use of cubbies for the storage of items may be permitted in kindergarten classes, provided that physical distancing measures are practiced.

Masks for Students

At the Special Board Meeting held on August 19, 2020, the Board of Trustees passed a motion that all HCDSB students (K- 12) be required to wear non-medical masks/ face coverings at school. Reasonable exceptions to this requirement will be put in place. We are working with Halton Region Public Health to provide age-appropriate mask education/information for families.

Exemptions for Mask Wearing

Reasonable exceptions to mask wearing will be considered.

An exemption may be requested for a student in Grades K-12 for the following reasons:

  • A pre-existing medical condition that causes breathing difficulty.
  • A diagnosis or learning profile that would limit a student’s ability to tolerate or safely wear a mask, including whereby a mask would affect essential communication  for a person who is hearing impaired.
  • Other, as detailed by a healthcare practitioner.

A process for exemption approval will follow.

Creative Design OfficerKindergarten