March 2, 2021
Dear First Nations Schools,
In consideration of updated public health guidance for K-12 schools, FNESC and FNSA are providing First Nations schools with a revised version of our First Nation Schools Reopening Considerations and Template. This revised version of the resource reflects key changes to the available guidance from the BC Centre for Disease Control and Ministry of Education. A summary table of substantive changes to our resource is provided at the start of the document and updates are indicated with yellow highlighting.
This resource is intended for First Nations and First Nation schools considering the reopening (or partial reopening) of their school facilities during the 2020/2021 school year. In providing this resource, our intention is to inform First Nations of the latest public health advice to facilitate and support planning at the local level. First Nations and First Nations schools are still advised to refer directly to the BCCDC and Ministry of Education guidelines as the authoritative sources of health and safety information when planning for in-class instruction:
- BC Centre for Disease Control COVID-19 Public Health Guidance for K-12 Schools (updated February 4, 2021). Important update: See the BCCDC Addendum (March 30, 2021) for significant changes to mask and face covering guidance.
- BC Ministry of Education updated Provincial COVID-19 Health & Safety Guidelines for K-12 Settings. (updated February 23, 2021).
FNESC and FNSA fully respect the authority of individual First Nations to make decisions about school operations in the best interests of their students, schools, and communities, and we further recognize that a number of schools will opt to remain fully or partially closed. First Nations are under no obligation to reopen their schools.
Wishing everyone good health.