It was wonderful to welcome the students back to class this past week (March 28-April 1) following the March Break.
Fern Hill School continues to be committed to providing a safe learning environment for all students and staff. It will be a goal to move toward an optional mask model, and towards a more normalized teaching and learning environment in the spring term, however, we continue to remain cautious at Fern Hill School given our mixed school environment of students, with younger students that are not yet eligible to receive the Covid vaccine and students ages 5-11, as well as those over 12 who are not vaccinated. In making decisions we have considered guidance from the Ministry of Education, Ottawa Public Health and Independent School Associations.
As we continue to monitor case counts and community transmission, the Board has decided to continue mask usage at Fern hill School for another week, April 4-8, and it will re-assess it on a weekly basis before moving to an optional mask model. Having that added layer of masking protection will allow the school to resume a more fulsome learning experience for the school community, including the reintroduction of after school activities beginning this week.
All students attending school will be required to wear a mask indoors. Masking outdoors will continue to be optional.
Note: As per current travel requirements if you have been travelling internationally, including the USA, then masks must also be worn at all times when in public spaces (including schools and childcare centres) when indoors and outdoors by those age 2 and over for 14 days.
For future reference: Even when the mask requirement will be removed, students should come to school with a mask that may be worn should the circumstances present themselves. When we do move to an optional mask model students may wish to continue to wear masks at any and all times and these choices will be respected.
We appreciate the continued support of all the parents. We know that personal opinions regarding the easing of restrictions may differ however this decision is a unanimous one made by the Board with the best interests of the students and staff in mind.
Jennifer Rowberry Deborah Gutierrez
FHS Board Chair Principal