ECACS October Newsletter
"Growing in Christ, making a difference."
Message from ECACS Senior Administration
2021-22 Return To School Plan
The Alberta Education 2021-2022 School Year Plan is found on the Alberta Education website. To support this Back-to-School-Plan has developed a Division 2021-22 Return To School Plan. The development of this plan was based on stakeholder feedback and the guidance provided by Alberta Education and Alberta Health Services.
Management of Outbreaks of Communicable Diseases in Schools
Guidance for Respiratory Illness Prevention and Management in Schools
Questions and Answers for School Administrators
NEW Alberta Health Daily Checklist (August 13, 2021)
Learning During COVID (Alberta Education)
Parent letter from the Chief Medical Officer of Health
Alberta Government COVID-19 - October 6th Updates
Beginning October 6, Alberta Health will be posting information publicly about school-level COVID-19 cases in schools. You will be able to access the information here.
COVID-19 ‘outbreak’ is changing. A school outbreak will now be reported as 10 or more COVID-19 cases within a 14 day period that were infectious while at school. The previous use of a 10% absenteeism rate will no longer be used for COVID-19 cases but will remain in place for other respiratory or gastrointestinal illnesses.
October 12th, contact notification within schools will begin. AHS will be sharing case-specific information with schools. School authorities and schools, using guidance being developed, will determine in school close contacts and will be required to notify parents/guardians of the identified contacts. Alberta Health Services will take over the lead on contact notification in schools once adequate staff have been hired to support this process.
As of October 12th, if three or more COVID-19 positive cases are identified within a five-day period in a Kindergarten to Grade 6 class, AHS will issue an exclusion notification, shifting students to at-home learning.
Exclusion letters will be issued on a class-by-class basis and any classes in receipt of an exclusion letter will be required to shift to at-home learning for 10 days. Because AHS does not collect class information, they will be relying on school authorities to notify them of classes that meet the exclusion criteria.
Starting in late October, rapid testing kits will be provided to school authorities for distribution for Kindergarten to Grade 6 schools, starting first with schools that are experiencing an outbreak status.
The rapid testing program will be voluntary. If they choose, children, students, and staff will be provided with rapid testing kits to test twice per week for four weeks.
These tests are for those individuals that are asymptomatic and are to be done at home.
Symptomatic children need to be tested at an AHS assessment centre and should not use the rapid tests. Rapid tests are a more effective way to slow the spread of COVID-19 in areas where there are more COVID-19 cases.
The rapid testing program will begin pending test kit availability and will continue until Health Canada completes its review of the submission for approval to use the COVID-19 vaccine for children under 12.
Ministers of Education and Health have sent boards a letter strongly encouraging all school authorities, as employers, and operators of school facilities, to develop policies that require proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test for teachers, staff and any adult who enters a school.
September 30th National Day of Truth and Reconciliation at ECACS
The staff and students of East Central Alberta Catholic School Division deeply understand today’s calling to recognize the significance and purpose of National Truth and Reconciliation. On September 30th our school communities hosted educational and faith-based events and activities to help communicate and educate our staff and youth about the atrocities carried out within Catholic residential schools. Events and activities within our schools’ focused on the social justice issues, cultural awareness, and appreciation of our FNMI peoples and empathetically tried to understand what it must have been like for those who suffered mental and physical hardships, who died, and faced pain and suffering back then and now. It is our children that will lead a new and just future where the mistakes and horrible actions of the past will direct efforts to ensure that injustices such as this do not happen again. It is now and in this time, that we guide and educate our youth so that they may see the truth and as a community seek forgiveness. There is much healing that is needed and as a Catholic School Division, we acknowledge the wrongs committed against our FNMI brothers and sisters. Today and for all days we are gathered in God’s love and mercy to ask for forgiveness and to grant all of us wisdom and knowledge to prevent injustices to happen. We are all created in the image and likeness of God and we, therefore, must love and serve one another with dignity and utmost respect.
ECCS Prayer for Forgiveness
Almighty and loving God, you who created all people in your image and likeness, lead us to seek your compassion and mercy. You gave your only Son, Jesus, who died and rose again so that our sins would be forgiven.
We place before you the pain and anguish of our Indigenous Peoples. We ask your forgiveness.
Touch the hearts of the broken, homeless, and inflicted and heal their spirits. In your mercy and compassion walk with us as we continue our journey of healing to create a future that is equitable and just.
Through Christ our Lord. AMEN.
Click Here for more images of the BSS Truth and Reconciliation Event Activities.
ECACS Launches The Assurance Framework and Four Year Faith Plan
We also value the fact that parents are their children's primary educators. We will review and apply strategies to engage and inform our parents as valued partners about their child's academic journey. With consistent data collection and analysis of results, we can shape and direct courses of action that assist all learners with achieving their levels of excellence. We are also launching a new four-year faith plan that encompasses our touchstone, "We teach; we share; we learn; we care. We grow in Christ, believing that together we can make a difference. In our first year of the four-year plan, the entire division's staff will be focused on the theme of "Called by God." To learn more about our four-year faith plan be sure to click on the provided link, "Called by God".
ECACS Construction Projects
The addition occurring at Blessed Sacrament School is also moving along nicely and the classrooms are receiving final completion details. The space will be a great addition to providing warm and welcoming classrooms. We continue to ask that you keep the construction workers and tradespeople in your prayers to bless them with safety.
Student Enrolment Information Through our ECACS Divisional Media Links
Christ-King in Stettler:
Little Steps Program - https://youtu.be/R8ZRIEIAtHg
Kindergarten - https://youtu.be/FQm5y_AVvuQ
Grades 1 - 9 - https://youtu.be/sGR2l5h1EqA
St. Jerome's in Vermilion:
PreSchool - Kindergarten - https://ecacs.yuja.com/V/Watch?v=299412&node=1114021&a=1350205298
St. Thomas Aquinas in Provost:
PreSchool - Kindergarten - https://ecacs.yuja.com/V/Video?v=281780&node=1076492&a=1283004266&autoplay=1
For more information or further questions feel free to reach out to speak with the administration of your school community.
School Cash Online
ECCS Junior High Golf Tournament
This year marked the 18th annual Junior High Golf Tournament for students in grades 7-9 from St. Thomas Aquinas School, St. Jerome's School and Blessed Sacrament School. This year there were 12 students in attendance. All golfers played 18 holes, competing and making new friends. Wainwright Golf Coursed hosted last minute and we're happy they did as we spend a beautiful day out on the course.