Provincial Back-to-School Plan Includes Substantial Investments in PPE Along with More Teachers, Nurses, and Custodians
TORONTO — As students, teachers and staff return to school, the Ontario government is providing up to $1.3 billion in critical supports and has delivered more than 37 million pieces of personal protective equipment (PPE) to safely reopen classrooms across the province. These investments are part of Ontario’s comprehensive back to school plan which was developed in consultation with medical experts, school boards, and educators.
“Our entire team has been working around the clock over the last few weeks to make sure all of the public health measures are in place to safely welcome back our students and staff,” said Premier Ford. “This school year will be unlike any we have ever seen, but by working together, we can all play a part to keep our children, teachers and education workers safe and ensure our students continue to thrive and be inspired to learn during these extraordinary times.”
The government has taken the following steps to make schools as safe as possible:
“Our plan is the most cautious, safe and comprehensive in the country, fully funded and fully informed by leading medical leaders to ensure we reduce the risk, support positive mental health, and improve the safety of all students and staff,” said Stephen Lecce, Minister of Education. “I remain inspired by our students, and we owe it to them to continue to do our part to stop the spread in our communities to ensure schools can remain safe and positive learning spaces.”
The following public health protocols and procedures will be implemented to help protect students, teachers, staff and visitors:
“With the new school year beginning, the health and safety of students, teachers, and staff is our government’s top priority,” said Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health. “We have been working closely with our public health experts and making the necessary investments to ensure safety measures and protocols are in place for returning to the classroom.”
“Our government’s top priority is to ensure students, teachers, and staff have what they need to stay safe when they return to school,” said Lisa Thompson, Minister of Government and Consumer Services. “By leveraging our government’s collective buying power and introducing new domestic sources of supply, we were able to successfully secure sufficient supplies to support the safe reopening of over 4,800 schools and over 5,000 child care facilities this fall.”