With government shipments of medical grade masks and rapid tests on the way, schools in Alberta will have initial stock by the end of next week when schools are scheduled to re-open.

The measures were announced alongside the decision to open K-12 schools after January 10, said Chief Medical Officer Dr. Deena Hinshaw and

Alberta’s Education Minister

Adriana LaGrange during a Wednesday afternoon announcement.

Bringing students back as soon as possible and using interventions in areas of concern is the “best balance,” especially considering children’s mental health and development, said Hinshaw.

LaGrange outlined how school authorities looked at health data, other provinces and schools around the world to make the decision.

“There are no zero risk options” when compared to other provinces that are delaying in-person learning, she said.

“Most children feel more connected, they learn better and generally thrive when they are at school in person. This is why Alberta’s government has placed such a high priority on safe in-classroom instruction and on making sure our schools have the tools they need,” said LaGrange.

A free online tutoring program will be available for Grades 4-9 with live and recorded lessons.

Classes are being prepared in case the need for quick switches to online learning are needed.

Ewa Sudyk is a reporter with the Western Standard.

Reporter (Alberta)

Ewa Sudyk is an Alberta Reporter for the Western Standard and Alberta Report based in the Calgary Headquarters, and the Finance & Administration Manager for Western Standard New Media Corp.

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