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Childcare & Schools

As of March 17, 2020, B.C. suspended K-12 classes.

Schools

As of March 17, 2020, B.C. suspended K-12 classes. Teachers and schools will be continuing instruction, outside of the classroom. Find the latest information about education and K-12 schools for parents, students and school administrators:

Information for post-secondary institutions can be found on this page. Students, faculty and staff should consult their institution's website for specific information. 

Childcare Settings

As child care owners and/or operators, you and your staff play a key role in protecting children from, and minimizing the impact of infection and illness. This is especially important at this time as we work to prevent and minimize the spread of the novel COVID-19 virus.

Here are some guidelines about hand washing, cleaning and ideas about physical distancing for you to consider in your childcare setting.

If you’re ill, stay at home

  • All children and staff who are ill with fever, have cold, influenza or infectious respiratory symptoms of any kind need to stay home.
  • If children and staff have symptoms, self-isolate for a minimum of 10 days from the onset of symptoms and until symptoms have completely resolved.
  • If you are at all unsure of your status, the online assessment tool can help you assess whether you should stay home or not.

Encourage hand hygiene

  • Hand washing with soap and water is still the single most effective way to reduce the spread of illness.
  • Hand hygiene for children includes washing their hands when they arrive at the centre and before they go home, before eating and drinking and after playing outside or handling pets.
  • Hand hygiene for child care staff includes washing their hands when they arrive at the centre, before they go home, before handling food, before preparing bottles or feeding children
  • For more information on hand hygiene, refer to the public health guidance fact sheet for childcare settings.

Fever or coughing

If a child or staff member starts showing symptoms of what could be influenza or COVID-19, it is important to:

  • Contact the child’s parent or caregiver to come and pick them up right away.
  • Have a separate and supervised area where you can promptly separate a child from others until their parent or caregiver can come and pick them up.
  • Ensure that staff who show symptoms go home right away.
  • For more information on what to do if a child or staff member starts showing symptoms, refer to the public health guidance fact sheet for childcare settings.

Maintain cleaning and disinfecting policies

We don’t yet know how long the virus causing COVID-19 lives on surfaces, but early evidence suggests it can live on objects and surfaces from a few hours to days. Regular cleaning and disinfecting of objects and high touch surfaces is very important to help to prevent the transmission of viruses from contaminated objects and surfaces.

Toys

Offer toys that encourage individual play and that can be easily cleaned (i.e. no dress-up clothes or stuffed animals) and limit the use of playdough to reduce hand-to-hand-contact and cross contamination.

Physical distancing

Understandably, physical distancing is challenging in a childcare setting. At the same time, it is important that we do what we can to try to assist children. Use ideas that work for your setting like taking children outside more often and staggering snack and lunch time so you can accommodate smaller groups with more space.

More information

SOURCE: Childcare & Schools ( )
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