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Parents & Community
Return to School

The health, safety, and well-being of students and staff is the top priority as Bluewater District School Board plans to reopen schools for the 2020 – 2021 school year.   

As directed by the provincial command table, which includes Ministry of Education and public health representation, most schools across Ontario will begin the 2020 – 2021 school year following a conventional full return model.  

In Bluewater District School Board, elementary and secondary students and staff will be returning to school every weekday while following enhanced public health protocols.  Our processes and strategies are designed to maximize safety while supporting school operations and classroom learning.

Board staff have been working with Grey Bruce Public Health officials to ensure that we have the most current and relevant information to support a safe return to school.  The Ministry of Education will also be providing direction regarding a safe return.

Update on Screening Protocols - October 7, 2020

We recognize that there have been questions regarding the new protocols around daily student screening and illness.

Please be advised that with the support of Public Health, our student screening, absence, and return protocols have been revised as follows:

  • All Bluewater District School Board students, staff, and essential visitors must complete a COVID-19 screening questionnaire daily at home and before leaving for the school/worksite.

  • The student screening questionnaire is found at

  • Anyone with any COVID-19 symptoms as per the screening questionnaire is to remain at home until either:
  • They had only one symptom that has resolved within a 24-hour observation period AND they passed the online screening tool (or paper version) for students or the online self-assessment tool for staff; OR

  • They were tested for COVID-19 AND they had a negative COVID-19 test after starting to feel sick AND have been symptom-free or symptoms have improved for 24 hours AND have not been told by the Grey Bruce Health Unit or a healthcare provider to continue to self-isolate for a total of 14 days because they were a close contact of a person with COVID-19; OR

  • They did not have a COVID-19 test but completed 14 days of self-isolation from the date they started to feel sick AND they passed the online screening tool (or paper version) for students or the online self-assessment tool for staff; OR they saw a doctor or nurse practitioner during the time since they were sent home or denied entry to school/work.  The doctor or nurse practitioner has confirmed that another diagnosis (medical reason) other than COVID-19 explains their symptoms (why they were feeling sick).

  • When one of the above criteria has been met, the parent/guardian must complete the Attestation for Return to School Following Illness form.

  • If a student becomes ill during the school day, all siblings must self-monitor for 14 days, but may remain at school.

  • If a student is ill at home, all siblings must self-monitor for 14 days, but may attend school.

  • We hope that this clarifies the process for parents/guardians.  If you have any questions, please call the school for further information.

Daily COVID-19 Screening

All Bluewater District School Board students, staff, and essential visitors must complete a COVID-19 screening daily before going to school.  Please click on the buttons below for the screening tool:

Button that links to daily student screening tool Button that links to daily staff/essential visitor screening toolButton that links to daily emergency replacement staff screening tool

Protocols for Symptoms

Please click on the button below for the handout on what to do if parents/guardians are asked to pick their child(ren) up at school due to signs of COVID-19 related symptoms.

Button that links to parent/guardian handout on protocols for symptoms

Video Resources

To help students and families prepare for the many changes with our return to school, we are also happy to share the following video, "Welcome Back - A Guide to Return to School in Bluewater District School Board".  Thanks to the staff who collaborated to develop this visual overview of what to expect, and our elementary and secondary students who volunteered to support their fellow students.

On Tuesday, September 1, 2020, Bluewater District School Board staff were invited to attend a virtual session with special guest Dr. Ian Arra, Medical Officer of Health from Grey Bruce Public Health.  Dr. Arra answered several questions submitted by staff related to the safe reopening of our schools.  We are pleased to be able to share the video recording of the session with our families:

Return to School Q and A

The following questions and answers help to outline the details of our return to school plan, which has been approved by the Ministry of Education.  

PLEASE NOTE:  Effective August 24, 2020, the Return to School dedicated mailbox has been closed as staff return to their schools to prepare for the start-up in September.  As of this date, please direct any inquiries to your child’s school.  For school contact information, visit the following links:

Please click on the buttons below to view our Q and A, which has been separated into two sections for "School Operations" and "Program and Instruction".  Additional information will be posted here regularly as new details emerge in our planning:

Button that links to "School Operations" Q and A

Button that links to "Program and Instruction" Q and A

Grey Bruce Public Health has also developed the following resource:  Return to School FAQ for Parents and Guardians

Mental Health and Well-Being

The mental health and well-being of students during the return to school transition continues to be a priority in Bluewater District School Board.  Please click on the button below to view some recommended resources for parents/guardians and families in supporting their children at this critical time:

Button that links to mental health and well-being web page

Other Useful Links and Resources

Government of Ontario:

© 2013 - Bluewater District School Board