September 3, 2021, the Government of Alberta (GoA) announced a series of temporary health measures being implemented province-wide to reduce transmission of COVID-19 and prevent the health care system from being overwhelmed. On September 8, 2021, the Board of Trustees held a Special Board Meeting to discuss COVID-19 protocols in schools and approved a new In-School Mask Protocol effective Friday, September 10, 2021.
To align with the new provincial health measures, Sturgeon Public School Division is strengthening masking requirements for all Division schools and sites.
Effective Friday, September 10th, a non-medical face mask will be required while inside Division schools and sites for:
- All students Kindergarten to Grade 12;
- All staff members; and
- All visitors/volunteers.
Masks for students and staff only can be removed indoors while:
- Engaging in instruction in a classroom;
- Consuming food or drink;
- Participating in physical exercise, music, band, or arts performances; and
- Providing or receiving care, assistance or instruction where a mask would hinder that care, assistance or instruction.
There will be circumstances in which individuals will be eligible for mask exemptions in schools. These include:
- persons who are unable to place, use, or remove a non-medical face mask (i.e. factors such as age, developmental or physical reasons)
- a medical condition or disability (i.e. mental or physical) or
- any other applicable grounds protected under the Alberta Human Rights Act
If you require an In-School Mask Exemption for your child, parents/guardians can complete the In-School Mask Exemption Request online through the PowerSchool SIS Parent Portal. Use this Guide to complete.
As outlined in the Division’s 2021-2022 School Year Plan (19 August 2021), masks are mandatory on school buses and publicly accessible transit, such as municipal buses, taxis, and ride-shares. CMOH Order 34-2021 is applied throughout the Province of Alberta and remains in effect until rescinded by the Chief Medical Officer of Health. The Division’s 2021-2022 School Year Plan has been amended to include the new In-School Mask Protocol.
Sturgeon Public Schools will reassess the In-School Mask Protocol when the current Provincial Masking Mandate is rescinded or amended.
We recognize that there will be a variety of opinions on these new measures. Sturgeon Public Schools continues to find a balanced and thoughtful approach as we support the social, emotional, physical, and learning needs of our students while addressing provincial efforts to protect our healthcare system and reduce transmission of COVID-19.