Ontario Minister of Education and the Coalition of Child Health are responding to Toronto Public Health’s decision to issue Section 22 and personally close all schools learning starting Wednesday

Stephen Lecce’s office issued a second statement in as many days, accusing teachers unions of stirring up fear

“The data shows that schools have remained safe through this pandemic, as confirmed by the Ontario Chief Medical Officer of Health and local Medical Officers of Health,” said Caitlin Clark, spokeswoman for Minister Lecce

“While teacher unions continue to stir up fear, there are facts here that are not up for debate”

Clark says midway through the third wave, 987 percent of schools are open and 30 percent of schools that are currently closed are due to staff shortages and “not due to COVID outbreaks or transmissions”

“998 percent of students and staff do not have an active reported case of COVID-19 and Ontario has one of the lowest case rates for teenagers under the age of 19 in Canada,” Clark continued

“Dr [Lawrence] Loh and Dr [David] Williams has confirmed for the past 24 hours that schools have been safe places to learn and that the linchpin for virtual learning is due to increasing cases in the community ”

“We strongly believe that schools should be open to classroom learning as it is critical to the mental health and safety of students, as recognized by senior medical leaders in Ontario,” she added

Alex Munter, president of the Child Health Coalition in Toronto, says it harms them if children stay home and “won’t do much to end the third wave”

“We call on the Ford government to recognize the hardship faced by children and families and to do everything in their power to reopen schools that have closed as soon as possible and Save the school year, “the Child Health Coalition said in a statement

Statement on School Closures by # Ontario’s Children’s Hospitals, Mental Health Institutions, and Rehabilitation Centers If only children stay home, it will harm the children and they won’t do much to end the third wave # onpoli #ottnews picTwittercom / H2oK2w2yKW

Toronto Public Health has joined the Peel Region as the youngest public health department to issue Section 22 and shut schools for at least two weeks

Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph public health officials followed suit, ordering all schools to close starting Wednesday, with a return date no earlier than Jan. April

“We know that long-term school closings can seriously affect children’s learning, mental health and development,” it continues

“Children who are most harmed by loss of personal learning are often most at risk”

The Coalition of Health declares that they understand that schools and learning environments must be safe at all times, and urges the Ford government to continue improving classroom safety to better protect students and staff

Three teachers’ unions also called on the government to close schools for in-class learning at virus hotspots and to offer vaccines to education workers

Two Niagara area school authorities said staff would be eligible for COVID-19 footage starting next week

“Because of our strong infection prevention efforts, 99 percent of students and staff across Ontario have not reported any active cases of COVID-19 However, we need to stay vigilant and stay vigilant to keep schools safe and open Clark said

On Tuesday, the province announced that it was extending its vaccination schedule for key workers by about two weeks, as those unable to work from home can now be vaccinated through mid-May instead of early June

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Ontario School Closures

World News – CA – Stephen Lecce’s Office Says Teachers Unions Stirring Fears for School Safety – 680 NEWS

Source: https://www.680news.com/2021/04/06/health-coalition-disagrees-with-decision-to-close-toronto-schools-collectively-we-have-failed-our-children/