Province delays March Break

746

Renfrew County students will still get a spring break – it will just be a month later than normal.

Ontario Education Minister Stephen Lecce announced Thursday that the province will delay March Break this year until the week of April 12-16.

Lecce said it is “critical” that the province continues to follow public health advice to “protect schools and avoid a repeat of the concerning spike in youth-related cases over the winter break, when students and staff were out of schools for a prolonged period of time.”

“We are taking this precaution based on advice from health experts, including the province’s Science Table and the Chief Medical Officer of Health, to help protect against the emerging COVID-19 variants of concern.”

“We appreciate the hard work of students and staff in the education sector and I want to be clear: March break is being postponed, not cancelled,” Lecce added.

“To keep schools open, we must keep them free of COVID-19. The actions announced today serve to limit opportunities for congregation – while reaffirming the evidence that schools are safe for students.

“By continuing to follow public health advice, and by introducing additional safety measures and more testing, we are supporting our collective efforts to keep COVID-19 from entering our schools.”

Lecce said that with respect to travel, “our government’s position on this is unchanged.”

“Ontarians should refrain from travelling, particularly given the increase in new variants that pose a direct risk to our country.

“Please stay at home as much as possible and continue following the direction of public health officials so that we can keep schools open and protect our seniors, frontline health workers and all families.”

“These decisions – based on the advice of medical experts – are never easy,” Lecce said, “but they are necessary to keep Ontario families safe.”

In December, the province announced that students would stay home after the Christmas holidays as COVID case numbers began to rise.

After three weeks of remote learning, Renfrew County students returned to the classroom on January 25.

The Renfrew County District School Board has announced that March 12, the Friday before the planned March Break, will remain a school holiday.

  • For more local coverage, pick up a copy of this week’s NRT. To get the NRT delivered directly to your mail box or inbox each week, subscribe here.