NEWSTALK 1010 EXCLUSIVE: A change of policy to make schools safer
It was a concerned parent who brought the story to our attention originally.
She'd learned that a student had tested positive for COVID-19 at her daughter's North York elementary school on Wednesday. That wasn't the part that shovked her.
What did, was the fact that the students who were in that class, were allowed to attend school as normal on Thursday.
As a matter of fact, it wasn't until after 3 o'clock on Thursday, that parents were told to keep their students home, self-isolate, and get a COVID-19 test.
"All of those kids were sent to school on Thursday, while the school knew that they had all been in contact with this child who had COVID-19," says Jessica.
What needed to happen in the past, is the call to self-isolate needed to come from Toronto Public Health.
That's no longer the case.
"A COVID-19 Interim Decision Guide for Principals to Dismiss Cohorts to Self-Isolate was created so if a principal is aware of a confirmed case of COVID-19 in a student or staff, the principal can dismiss the cases cohort(s) for self-isolation including classroom, bus and before/after school programs attended by the case immediately upon learning this information," says Dr. Vinita Dubey, Associate Medical Officer of Health in a statement. "The principal will send communication to the cohort(s) that they are to be self-isolating for now, and why, and that this is pending TPH's investigation of the case and their contacts."
What that means, is the potentially affected students will be kept home earlier, lowering the risk of spreading the virus further through the school.