Ontario schools to resume in-person learning next week despite rising COVID-19 cases

Jan 4 2021, 7:16 am

Ontario schools are set to resume in-person learning next week despite COVID-19 case numbers rising in the province.

On Sunday, Education Minister Stephen Lecce wrote a letter to families saying that even though the province is in a lockdown to stop the transmission of the virus, “medical experts have been clear that schools are not a source of rising community transmission.”

Therefore, schools will be online for the first week back from the winter break but will have a staggered in-person start with elementary schools resuming classes starting January 11. Secondary students in northern Ontario will resume class on the same day.

However, in southern Ontario, secondary students will resume in-person learning on January 25.

Currently, the province-wide lockdown is in place in southern Ontario until at least January 23, with northern Ontario until January 14.

COVID-19 cases have been high in the province recently, with Sunday’s 2,964, which was a drop from the record-breaking 3,363 reported on Saturday.

Daily case counts have remained above 2,000 for weeks, with Friday’s 2,476, Thursday’s 3,328, Wednesday’s 2,923, and Tuesday’s 2,553.

To date, Ontario has seen 190,962 COVID-19 cases and 4,650 deaths.

In the province, there are currently 976 schools with COVID-19 cases out of the 4,828, with a total of 7,292 reported cases since schools began in September.