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Cleaner schools, optional masks, no overnight summer camps for students

Last Updated May 26, 2020 at 7:28 pm PDT


As school re-open next week, the provincial health officer says schools will be cleaner than this time last year

Dr. Bonnie Henry also says non-medical masks are optional for students to wear to school

Henry also says no overnight camps for school-aged students this summer

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — As schools prepare to partially re-open next week, the provincial health officer shares a glimpse into what students will see this summer.

Dr. Bonnie Henry is confident schools re-opening next week will be much cleaner than they were this time last year.

“It is absolutely my expectation, and I know school districts and individual schools are working very hard to ensure that they do have those in place. So, I expect there will be a change from what people have seen in the past,” she says.

Henry adds the Ministry of Education is overseeing all the enhanced sanitation and several improvements have already been made before schools closed in March.

With students having the option of returning to schools part-time next week, Henry also says wearing non-medical masks or face coverings will not be required.

“We don’t see non-medical masks as being required on an ongoing basis in that setting. They are optional for people who feel that it’s an extra layer that they want to do to protect others from their droplets,” she explains.

Then, as students head into their summer break, Henry also announced there won’t be any overnight camps allowed for school-age children. Instead, she is encouraging day camps.

RELATED: B.C. summer camps: some a go, some a no as parents scramble

“There’s not a situation that we can see this summer where overnight camps for youth, for school-aged kids can be done in a way that would prevent transmission of this virus,” Henry says.

“The other issues that we’re seeing around many of these camps, they are in more remote areas where it can be a challenge to access health care, or there are concerns from some communities that it could be people, children, coming from many different areas and having effects.”