OPSBA in the Media – September 2021

2021 9/2 | Connects Page, OPSBA in the Media

What to know about our first National Day for Truth and Reconciliation
The London Free Press – Sep. 29, 2021
Thursday marks Canada’s first National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, a day to remember the more than 150,000 First Nations, Inuit and Métis children who were stripped from their families and forced into residential schools. It also honours residential school survivors and serves as a commitment to reconciliation between Canada and Indigenous peoples. Though some provinces, like Ontario, won’t recognize the official holiday, some municipalities, businesses, and schools have chosen to observe the day. Our Calvi Leon spoke with Indigenous leaders in and beyond Southwestern Ontario about what reconciliation means to them.

‘It has a big impact’: Toronto students upset as extracurriculars suspended, while Peel, Durham, York go ahead
The Toronto Star – Sep. 9, 2021
Toronto students were left reeling at the last-minute news they won’t have extracurricular sports or clubs this month — unlike students nearby in Peel, York and Durham — with coaches warning that athletes in the city will be at a “severe, severe disadvantage” when it comes to post-secondary scholarships.

Parents ‘panicked’ as some GTA boards stick to learning model decisions made before latest COVID surge
The Toronto Star – Sep. 4, 2021
With the start of a new school year just days away, some parents across the Greater Toronto Area are feeling uneasy about being locked-in to their decision to send their children back into the classroom amid an escalating fourth wave.

Unvaccinated teachers in Ontario to be tested twice a week for COVID, some at pharmacies
The Toronto Star – Sep. 4, 2021
Unvaccinated school and child-care staff will have to take two rapid COVID-19 tests a week — with some having to trek to a local pharmacy for the next two weeks as the program rolls out across the province, the Star has learned.

TDSB chair asks Ontario government to add COVID-19 vaccine to list of required shots
CBC News Toronto – Sep. 3, 2021
The chair of the Toronto District School Board has asked the Ontario government to add the COVID-19 vaccine to the list of required vaccinations for eligible students at public schools.
Alexander Brown made the request in a letter Friday addressed to Education Minister Stephen Lecce, Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Kieran Moore and Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health Dr. Eileen de Villa.

Jonathan Bradley: The unnecessary rush to mandate vaccines in Canadian universities
National Post – Sep. 2, 2021
Western University, like other Ontario universities, is requiring proof of COVID-19 vaccination for students, staff, and faculty coming to campus this fall. Initially the school had proposed regular testing for unvaccinated people, but Last week it opted to be unreasonable and removed that option. Instead testing as a substitute for proof of vaccination will be permitted only in rare circumstances.

Ottawa students face uncertainty over fall sports as other boards mull safety
Canadian Press – Sep. 1, 2021
Oliver Waddington was looking forward to resuming cross-country running at school this month after the pandemic put athletics on hold for the last year and a half.
But the Grade 12 student with the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board was left disappointed when he learned extracurriculars were being paused as students return to classes in-person amid a fourth wave of COVID-19.

OPSBA President Cathy Abraham’s Open letter to Ford on school vaxx mandate 
The Voice of Pelham, Letters & Op-Ed – Sep. 1, 2021
With the looming presence of a fourth wave of the pandemic and beginning of the school year approaching, the issue of whether a policy making Covid-19 vaccinations mandatory for all eligible students, staff, and visitors who enter public schools is a topic of much discussion within our school communities.