The Study that Caught Dr. Bonnie Henry’s Attention

Provincial Health Officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry, recently cited a reassuring study out of the Netherlands that explains that the virus is mainly spread between adults, with the spread of COVID-19 among children or from children to adults being less common.

“For young children in particular, they don’t seem to be as affected by it. They don’t seem to have as severe illnesses, and they don’t seem to pass it on to adults as effectively,” said Dr. Henry.

To read the full report by the Dutch National Institute for Public Health and the Environment please see here.

View PDF.

The above information was sent to education stakeholders by the Ministry of Education.

SOURCE: Ministry of Education email sent to stakeholder groups.

 

 

 

K-12 Bulletin #14

Message from K-12 Presidents Council President Warren Williams

B.C. Education Minister Rob Fleming said on Wednesday that a detailed plan of the September restart will be released in the coming weeks, but that parents of kindergarten to Grade 7 students “should prepare for a full restart.”

As a stakeholder to the Restart Steering Committee initiated by government, we are meeting regularly throughout the summer months.

Could you let us know your experiences or concerns during COVID. Please encourage members to check their email and complete the COVID survey.

In solidarity and safety,

Warren Williams
K-12 Presidents Council President

View the bulletin.

Find more info about the plans for K-12 restart here.

THANK YOU

A big thank you to CUPE K-12 members for supporting children of essential services workers and vulnerable children in B.C. schools during these challenging times. Custodians, clerical, education assistants, bus drivers, IT, and many members who were redeployed provided supports to students and their families. Members collected, sorted, and distributed food to families in their communities. They delivered learning packages to students and helped where they were needed so that voluntary in-class instruction could be offered to families starting in June.

The hard work, attention to detail, and care for students that members bring to their jobs, is appreciated and valued.

On behalf of the K-12 Presidents Council I want to also thank the business agents, CUPE National reps, and specialist reps who support the work of our locals every day.

Don’t forget to check out the K-12 Presidents Council video thanking members for all their work during this COVID-19 pandemic.

Have a safe summer and enjoy your time with family and friends.

In solidarity and safety,

Warren Williams
K-12 Presidents Council President

View PDF.

K-12 Bulletin #12

Message from K-12 Presidents Council President Warren Williams

The last few months have been stressful and we all need a break. As we near the end of the school year in a few weeks, I hope everyone is able to pause and spend some time relaxing with family and friends. We will continue to share information as we find things out.

In solidarity and safety,

Warren Williams
K-12 Presidents Council President

View the bulletin.

K-12 Bulletin #11: Meet members at work during the COVID-19 pandemic

Message from K-12 Presidents Council President Warren Williams

I want to thank all members for their hard work and continued support for B.C. students. There are many questions about September and each district will function a little differently. We will continue to update you as we get more information.

In solidarity and safety,
Warren Williams
K-12 Presidents Council President

View the bulletin.

 

K-12 Bulletin #10

Message from K-12 Presidents Council President Warren Williams

I’d like to thank everyone for their role in B.C.’s K-12 restart this week. All schools were open on June 1 and 60,000 students attended.

For the most part, things went well with the re-opening of in-class instruction this week.

Some districts are still having issues around PPEs.

All sites should have their joint Health and Safety Committees up and running. This is our first line to address safety concerns if your district is not following the recommendations of the Provincial Health Officer.

Contact your local if you need help to address your issues. This is our opportunity to see how we are able to work together in the ‘new normal’ and be ready for September.

During this month all classes have limited capacity with alternating schedules. Children of essential service workers and students who need additional support will continue to be able to access full-time classroom instruction.

Thanks to everyone who sent in member pics. Stay tuned for the video coming soon.

In solidarity and safety,

Warren Williams
K-12 Presidents Council President

View the bulletin.

COVID-19: Going Forward

Age Structured Modelling (Self-isolation)

Age Structured Modelling (Susceptibility of children)

 

K-12 Bulletin #9

Message from K-12 Presidents Council President Warren Williams

As many K-12 CUPE members will be back in classrooms on June 1, it’s important to recognize the work we have all done to enable re-opening our province under the guidance of Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonny Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix.

B.C. had two of the first cases of COVID-19. During our peak at the end of April, B.C. had just over 700 cases of infection. Now we are well under 300 active cases. Not only have we flattened the curve, we’ve curved it downwards.

B.C. took a scientific approach and the science that produced these very good results is the same science that is guiding our restart.

The PHO has lifted restrictions that are not needed at this time. They will continue to keep us up-to-date. This is a new virus and we’re learning more every day. As we get more information we may need to adapt what we’re doing.

In the meantime let’s continue doing our part by washing our hands frequently and maintaining two metres of physical distancing where possible.

In solidarity and safety,

Warren Williams
K-12 Presidents Council President

View the bulletin

BC Surveillance Summary

CUPE 723 supports community during COVID

CAMPBELL RIVER—CUPE 723, representing K-12 support staff in Campbell River, recently donated $5,000 to their local food bank. Local President Andrea Craddock said that members felt “incredibly fortunate” to be working while many people faced layoffs or business closures.

CUPE 723 members have been tireless in their efforts to provide support during the pandemic crisis. While education assistants and youth care workers delivered food hampers to more than 200 families on a weekly basis and provided emergency childcare for health care workers, custodial staff deep cleaned all schools to provide a higher level of sanitation and monitored everyone entering and exiting school facilities, bus drivers were redeployed to do maintenance work, and maintenance workers put in 12 hour days to install safety barriers and provide structural modifications to keep up with school safety protocols. At the same time, clerical staff and EAs worked from home to make sure that students were provided with online education and check-ins.

“We recognized the increased need for families struggling throughout our SD 72 community and beyond,” said Craddock, noting there are a lot of worthy organizations that help people in times of need. They chose the food bank because food is such a basic need for everybody, and the Local knew demand on the food bank would increase “exponentially” during the COVID-19 crisis.

Money budgeted for local members to attend conferences and training was redirected to where it would best serve communities in their time of need, added Craddock. The executive, hoping to get everyone on board with the community spirit, put out a challenge to the Campbell River Teachers Association (CRDTA) and the Campbell River Principals and Vice Principals Association (CRPVPA) to meet their donation so there could be one big donation to the food bank.

The challenge was met, with teachers topping it up by an additional $1,000. Craddock, Laird Ruehlen from the CRPVPA and CRDTA President Dave Harper presented cheques totalling $16,000 to Deb Willis, manager of the Campbell River Food Bank on May 11.

“This initiative felt like a way for the SD 72 team to give back and reinforce the care and concern we have for all families during this difficult time,” Craddock said. “We are all in this together.”

CUPE 723 represents 340 members, who provide a wide variety of services that support students in Campbell River. They include instructional support staff (i.e. education assistants, Indigenous support workers and Strong Start), custodians, trades, maintenance, grounds, clerical, IT, administrative support, lunch-hour supervisors and child and youth care workers.

Read the story in the Campbell River Mirror.

K-12 Bulletin #8

Message from K-12 Presidents Council President Warren Williams

We are proud of the crucial role CUPE members play in supporting health care workers who are fighting COVID-19 on the front lines.

As more students return to in-class learning, we will continue to support our workers and the vulnerable students in our schools.

All school districts must follow the guidelines of the PHO and WorkSafe BC, as well as the provincial COVID-19 health and safety standards for K-12.

These times are challenging, but we will get through this together.

In solidarity and safety,

Warren Williams
K-12 Presidents Council President

View the bulletin here.

See the attached documents for more information on public health guidance for K-12, WorkSafeBC guidance, and provincial COVID-19 health and safety standards for K-12.

PDF – Ministry of Education Provincial COVID-19 Health and Safety guidelines for K-12 setting

PDF – Ministry of Health COVID-19 Public Health Guidance for K-12 School Settings