March 2, 2021

Dear Students, Parents & Guardians:

Please note the following changes, directly from the Department of Education’s most recent bulletin highlighting changes to close-contacts and self-isolation rules; as well as information regarding COVID-19 variants:  

Change to Self-Isolation Rules: 

In addition to self-isolating while a household member is awaiting COVID-19 test results, entire households now must isolate if a household member is deemed to be a close contact of a confirmed COVID-19 case.

The reason for this change is to prevent transmission from contacts who are asymptomatic cases and prevent VOC (Variants of Concern) from spreading in the community. 

Close Contact Definition Change: 

The definition of a close contact has also changed to identify more contacts. A close contact is anyone who has been in close physical proximity (less than two meters or six feet) for more than a cumulative total of ten minutes to a confirmed COVID-19 case over the course of a day. 

As well, a person would be considered a close contact if they had close face-to-face interactions with someone who has COVID-19 without the use of a mask, even if the interaction(s) were for less than a cumulative total of ten minutes. 

Positive COVID-19 Cases and Variants of Concern (VOC) in Schools:  

St. Paul’s continues to work closely with Public Health and will continue to follow their directive in the event of an in-school exposure. Please see this COVID-19 Bulletin from Manitoba Education regarding the process for notification of confirmed cases in schools. 

As per the Bulletin, if a VOC is identified in a case with school exposures, more aggressive measures for contacts will be implemented by public health officials. These officials will connect with the school and ensure all close contacts have been identified. In addition, the entire class or cohort(s) exposed to the case may be moved to remote learning for the duration of the quarantine and may be considered close contacts. Public health officials will advise on specific recommendations based on the school exposure. 

St. Paul’s continues to explore ways of enhancing safety within the school and will communicate any changes to accordingly. St. Paul’s is currently looking at changes to mask-use policies. 

We remind students, parents/guardians, and staff to follow the directives from Manitoba Public Health, including: 

  • Staying home if you are sick or when any member of your family is sick.
  • Reducing social contacts; social gatherings are discouraged.
  • Self-isolating pending COVID-19 test results, self-isolating if someone in your household is symptomatic, or self-isolating if you or a family member is a close contact of a confirmed COVID-19 case.  

St. Paul’s High School continues to put student safety and success at the forefront of what we do. We are committed to providing your son with the highest quality education and will continue to not only meet but exceed the provincial protocols for safety while maximizing in-class learning. 

Please reach out to Bob Lewin, if you have questions regarding the above information. 

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