Two Ontario school boards will notify parents and guardians of COVID cases

It appears some parents in Halton and Durham will be notified of positive COVID-19 cases in schools when pupils return to in-person learning.

Earlier this week, the Ford government released its back-to-school plan — the Department of Education only requires schools to report COVID-19 outbreaks to public health units when absenteeism rates among students and staff reach 30%.

Minister Lecce said guardians of Ontario public school students will be able to connect to a central website with information about positive cases for each school. Schools will not have to report cases to their communities.

RELATED: Teachers and School Boards Sound the Alarm on Ontario’s Back-to-School Plan

Although the province does not require schools to notify parents and guardians if there is a positive case detected in their child’s cohort, the Halton Catholic District School Board said there will be.

In an email to parents and guardians, the board wrote in part: “We have made the decision at HCDSB that when schools receive information about a positive Rapid Antigen or PCR test, families and classroom staff/ cohort will be informed.”

“Consistent with our past practice, no personal or identifying information will be shared. Families will only be informed that their child may have been exposed to COVID-19,” he added.

The Durham District School Board shared online Friday that it will begin reporting data on its COVID-19 online counseling page from January 19.

It will have four categories, including the number of positive COVID-19 tests disclosed.

The DDSB also said that when it learns of a positive case, it will notify the school community which class the positive test result is from.

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