As students return to in-person learning and school bussing this week, we would like to take this opportunity to highlight COVID-19 safety measures in place on the bus, including some new or enhanced measures.
Daily School Screening
All parents/guardians must complete the Ontario School Screening online tool each day before sending your child(ren) to school or to the bus stop – https://covid-19.ontario.ca/school-screening/.
It is extremely important that any students who have symptoms of illness that could be COVID-19, or students who did not pass the school screening, do not attend school or ride the bus. Students/families may be required to provide confirmation of having completed the screen each day to your school. For further information please visit your school board’s website, and watch for communication from your child’s school this week.
All students in Grades 1 to 12 continue to be required to wear a mask while on the school bus (with the exception of those who have an exemption approved by your school board). Beginning January 18 all kindergarten students (JK and SK) will be required to wear a mask on the bus.
School bus drivers have been provided with non-fit tested N95 masks, and the Ontario government will be providing students with access to free high-quality three-ply cloth masks for use at school. Please contact your school about availability of masks for students.
Rapid Antigen Tests
The Ontario government has provided two rapid tests for every student and staff member (including school bus drivers) for use should staff or students become symptomatic/develop symptoms of illness.
All school buses will continue to be cleaned and disinfected at least twice daily (after morning/afternoon bus routes).
Bus Loading and Assigned Seating
School buses continue to operate at full capacity in accordance with the Ministry of Education’s COVID-19: Health, safety and operational guidance for schools (2021-22). Regular capacity for school bus seating is up to three students per seat for Kindergarten to Grade 6, and two students per seat for Grades 7 to 12. Capacity and loading will be reduced where possible.
Assigned seating is in place on all school buses. Students who live in the same household or are in the same classroom/school cohort will be seated together where possible.
Bus Status and Alerts
Please visit www.nwobus.ca for the most up to date information about the status of bus service. Families are also encouraged to sign up for text message alerts to stay informed about bus delays or cancellations https://www.nwobus.ca/register-for-bus-alerts/