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Ontario health officials assure in-person learning will be safe

Ontario's top doctor, Dr. Kieran Moore
Ontario's top doctor, Dr. Kieran Moore, on Tuesday assures the province that in-person learning will be safe.

Across Ontario, children are beginning to return to school. It's the third school year affected by COVID-19. Ontario’s top doctor said he’s confident in-person learning will be safe.

The numbers during the fourth wave continue to trend higher in Ontario, as well as other parts of the country. And many parents are concerned about their children heading off to classrooms and busy schoolyards.

Ontario’s education minister, Stephen Lecce, said the province has invested in school ventilation and safety protocols will be in place. He urged students to remain vigilant during this health crisis.

Ontario’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. Kieran Moore, said government officials are doing everything possible to ensure safe schools.

“That is why there are a range of public health measures in place to support healthy and safe school environments," Moore said. "In addition to the investment in ventilation and all those improvements, we’re maintaining masking, screening, hand hygiene, enhanced cleaning and distancing. It’s our duty to keep our schools safe also by getting immunized."

Vaccinations for COVID-19 are not mandatory for teachers or eligible students under the back to school plan. Moore said for children 5-11 who are not eligible for vaccines, there may be news on that front later in the fall.

Remote learning is still an option for students who don’t feel comfortable in classrooms.