The Windsor-Essex medical officer of health says indictors are pointing in the right direction for students to return to in-class learning in the region.
The Ontario government is expected to announce when classrooms will reopen to students in the province’s four hot spots, including Windsor-Essex, on Wednesday.
Dr. Wajid Ahmed said he will give an epidemiological presentation on Wednesday morning regarding the reopening of schools.
"Generally speaking the indictors and everything are pointing in the right direction, which would support the recommendation.. to reopen our schools for in-person learning," said Ahmed.
Ahmed said provincial and local health officials are looking at the COVID-19 data to guide the decision.
“There are a number of factors that we have to look into, obviously the rate of community transmission and how the cases are progressing in the community are a critical indicator,” said Ahmed. “When some of the decisions were made in December, we were seeing the indicators worsening day-by-day and now it’s the opposite. The indicators are getting better and better every day, which is reassuring for the most part.”
Windsor-Essex students have been online learning out of the classroom since Dec. 14. Ahmed issued an order to have schools closed in-person one week before the winter break. That order has expired, but the region is still under provincial orders.
Students in Windsor-Essex, Toronto, Peel Region, York Region and Hamilton are supposed to continue their remote learning until at least Feb. 10.
Ford also said on Monday that his goal is to have in-person learning resume on that date. He reiterated that his number one priority is making sure children are safe when they return to the classroom.
"I've said right from the beginning I won’t jeopardize our children for second. If it’s not safe, we aren't sending them back," Ford said. "Once we get the 'OK' from the chief medical officer of Ontario to send them back, we're going to send them back."
With files from CTVNewsToronto.ca.