Wildfires and Safe Return to Schools

23 August 2017

Dear Parents and Guardians:

Re: Wildfires and Safe Return to Schools

This summer has been extremely difficult on our families and communities. The School District is now considering the safe opening of schools in September.

Given that evacuation orders and alerts are continuously being reviewed and updated, District Staff will provide regular updates as to when school will open for students. In considering the opening of schools for student attendance, the following parameters will be considered:

  1. The safety of students and staff is paramount;
  2. Schools will remain closed to students if the school is under evacuation order or alert; and
  3. School busses will not operate in, or through, areas that are under evacuation order or alert. Parents who choose to transport their child(ren) through evacuation alert areas to attend their school (that is not under alert) will be required to have a School Principal approved safety plan in place for each child, prior to the child being allowed to attend classes. If this affects you, please contact your school for details.

The list (2017 Wildfire List of School Openings) is a snapshot of when schools are anticipated to open to students in September. As we progress through the next few weeks the District will continue monitoring the wildfire situation paying close attention to areas of the District that are under evacuation orders and alerts.

Updates will be provided as evacuation orders and alerts are changed regarding school opening dates and school bus routes. Bus routes are currently being reviewed and information will be provided at a later date regarding affected routes.

Parents and Guardians are directed to the School District’s website (www.sd27.bc.ca) for current and up to date information regarding all schools. If your child(ren)’s school status is currently under alert or evacuation, the District will also strive to provide information through this e-mail address to you.

The School District is also cognizant that students may be affected by the trauma of evacuation, loss of homes and the heightened anxiety in their families.   Upon return to school, School Staff will be available to assist any students affected through these emotions. To support BC residents who have been affected by the wildfires, Morneau Shepell has opened a 24/7 crisis line for anyone impacted to speak with a counsellor. This complementary offering is available province wide outside of your individual Employee/Family Assistance Plan program (1-844-751-2133).

Thank you for your patience in dealing with the wildfire crisis, we will get through this together.

Yours truly

 

Kevin Futcher                                                                                                  Mark Wintjes
Secretary Treasurer                                                                  Superintendent of Schools