Vancouver Island teachers are calling for more transparency about contact tracing and reporting of Covid 19 cases in schools.
There are currently 12 schools with reported cases of Covid 19, on the list published by Island Health.
Nanaimo has half of those schools. And some of those schools have as many as 7 reported cases.
Jeremy Inscho with Nanaimo Teachers Association says teachers are worried about how contact tracing is being handled. “We don’t know what the process is for contact tracing, exactly. And we don’t know … don’t have the specific details. I’m not asking to know who is sick. I’m asking to know how many cases, at locations.”
Inscho is concerned that young people may not remember all of their contacts, or there may be other issues that make contract training unreliable for determining the real risks to school communities.
In addition, there is much more that could be done to keep teachers and students safer from Covid 19. The new provincial guidelines for mask-wearing does not require elementary school children to wear masks in the classroom. Inscho says schools need to strengthen the mask-wearing culture, and encourages parents to do the same.
He’s also calling for better physical distancing, using currently closed classrooms and schools if necessary, like Woodlands school in Nanaimo which was recently closed. A more robust distance learning strategy could also improve the risk of transmission.