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Vernon schools transitioning all students to wearing masks by end of week

All students, including kindergarten to Grade 3, required to wear masks as of today, Oct. 4

School-wide mask mandates across the province are being rolled out gradually in the Vernon School District.

The provincial government announced that beginning today, Monday, Oct. 4, all students in B.C. schools are required to wear a mask when inside a school building, including while at their desks and on buses.

And the local district is following suit, but giving the young kids time to adjust to the change.

“We recognize that some students in grades K-3 may not be accustomed to wearing masks, as a result, school staff will spend Oct. 4 helping children adjust to this change, with the goal of building mask-wearing into student routines by the end of the week,” superintendent Dr. Christine Perkins said. “We suggest you send your K-3 child to school with a clean mask and a spare mask that they are used to wearing. Schools will continue to have disposable masks available.”

The district has three potential COVID-19 exposures, reported by Interior Health.

An exposure took place at Ellison Elementary Sept. 23 and 24.

Cherryville Elementary experienced exposures Sept, 21-24 and 27.

St. James had exposures on Sept. 21-24.

Secondary students were potentially exposed at W.L. Seaton Sept. 21.

In the nearby North Okanagan Shuswap School District there are seven exposures listed, including Grindrod Elementary (Sept. 27, 28), Enderby’s M.V. Beattie Elementary (Sept. 21-25, 27) and Armstrong’s Len Wood Middle School (Sept, 21-23) and Pleasant Valley Secondary (Sept. 21).

READ MORE: Seven schools on potential COVID-19 exposures list in North Okanagan-Shuswap

There are 16 exposures listed for the Central Okanagan, including Lake Country’s H.S. Grenda Middle Sept. 21-24, 27 and 29.

A family member has also informed Black Press of an exposure at Oyama Traditional School, which has not yet been reported by Interior Health.

READ MORE: Vernon School District staff, students urged to get COVID-19 vaccination

Vaccination clinics are in Enderby today, Oct. 4 until 3 p.m. and then again on Oct. 18 and 25 from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. (closed from, 12-1). They also take place every Thursday at the Pleasant Valley Health Centre from 9:30 a.m. to 3:50 p.m. (closed from 12-1), every second Wednesday at the Lumby Health Centre from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and daily at the Vernon Recreation Centre from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.


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Jennifer Smith

About the Author: Jennifer Smith

Vernon has always been my home, and I've been working at The Morning Star since 2004.
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