The South Shore Regional Centre issued new protocols for travel on March 13, and addressed to students, staff and families of the schools under its jurisdiction.
Following the lead of the Province of Nova Scotia, the centre advised that public sector employees, including teachers, who travel outside Canada to stay at home and self-isolate away from the public for 14 days after returning to the country.
These travel protocols also apply to students of Nova Scotia public schools who have travelled outside the country with their families and all education and support staff.
As of March 13, the centre noted a number of suspensions as well, including all out-of-province work travel, including Article 60 travel out-of-country, is being suspended for teachers and administrators and Regional Centre for Education staff until the end of April; all professional development activities are suspended until the end of April; and all extra-curricular activities including sports are suspended until the end of April.
In addition, all attendance policies or initiatives (provincial, regional and school-based) that penalize students for staying home, or reward students for showing up to class, are suspended until the end of April, as well all external meetings, cooperative education placements, and assemblies or gatherings of students.
The centre also noted a decision about future student trips and the above activities planned for May and June will be made in mid-April.
Currently, there are no cases of coronavirus in Nova Scotia. However, more cases are expected in Canada.
Public health officials continue to advise Nova Scotians to stay at home and self-isolate if they feel unwell. Individuals who develop a fever, with a temperature 38°C or higher, and/or cough should call 811 for assessment.
Doctors also say the best advice for Nova Scotians continues to be to follow proper hygiene practices, which help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses like influenza and coronavirus. Information is available at: - https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/ , and - Government of Canada toll-free line: 1-833-784-4397.
"We are working closely with public health officials and the Province of Nova Scotia to keep our staff and our students as safe as possible. You will likely have more questions over the coming days, and we are committed to keeping you informed as new information becomes available.
"As we deal with this extremely rare world event, we as Nova Scotians must take care of each other," the advisory said.