Frequently Asked Questions during COVID-19

Frequently Asked Questions during COVID-19

​To provide our school communities with the latest information relating to our school district, we have created a list of frequently asked questions during COVID-19. This list also includes information from the Ministry of Education regarding September 2020 back-to-school plans, learning groups and health and safety guidelines. Additional information about BC’s Back to School Plan is available on the ministry website. The FAQs on this page will be updated regularly as we receive additional information and clarification.

You can browse our FAQs by category using the tabs below, or search for your specific question in the field below.

If your question is not on the list, you can submit it through the “Submit a Question” tab at the bottom of this list. We are listening. Your question(s) will be reviewed by staff and the FAQs will be updated within 24 to 48 hours. If your question is not answered yet, it is because details are still being worked out. We will be updating this FAQ regularly as more information becomes available. 

UPDATED: April 12, 2021

School District No. 42

Fraser Health updates its list of school exposures every morning with school exposures (general notifications) from the previous day.

On February 3, 2021, the Ministry of Education shared updated to the Provincial COVID-19 Health & Safety Guidelines for K-12 School Settings. These updates included the requirement for all K-12 staff (elementary and secondary) to wear a mask in schools, both within and outside of their learning group, except when:

  • sitting in (or standing at) their seat or desk/workstation in a classroom or learning space;
  • there is a barrier in place;
  • eating and drinking; and
  • outdoors

Exceptions are also to be made for staff who cannot wear a mask.

Concerns about potential violations of safety protocols in schools should be shared with the classroom teacher (if they occur at classroom level) or with the school administration (school principal or vice principal).

Key symptoms of illness on the Daily Health Assessment for children are fever, chills, cough or worsening of chronic cough, shortness of breath, loss of sense of smell or taste, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting.

For adults, the list of symptoms also includes a sore throat, headache, extreme fatigue or tiredness, loss of appetite, and body aches.

Although the Ministry of Health has limited the checklist for children to only the key indicators of COVID-19 illness, children who are ill should always stay home to rest and recover – even if their symptoms have a very low probability of indicating a COVID-19 infection.

The Ministry of Education has not provided direction yet about remote learning for the 2021/22 school year. Once we do receive this direction, we will share the information with families.

Masks are not required within cohorts but are mandatory for secondary staff and students when they are in high-traffic areas (e.g. buses, hallways, and classrooms) outside of their cohorts where physical distancing cannot be maintained.

If you are a contact of a confirmed case, a member of the public health team will contact you to let you know you may have been exposed.  If you have symptoms, you will be sent for testing. If you do not have symptoms, you will be asked to self-isolate so that if you develop COVID-19, you won’t spread it to others in the community. Contact public health to seek guidance on whether other members of your household must self-isolate.

The BC Centre for Disease Control website provides helpful guidance with respect to COVID-19 and schools. In this case, BC CDC provides the following advice:

Students and staff without symptoms can still go to school even if someone else in their household is sick. They cannot go to school if public health has told them not to. This is the same as for other settings like workplaces and public spaces.

Most people who are sick or have symptoms of illness in B.C. are not sick with COVID-19. So, it is very unlikely the person in their household has COVID-19. 

If someone has been diagnosed with COVID-19, public health will identify close contacts and ask them to stay home and self-isolate

The person who is sick or has symptoms should be assessed by 8-1-1 or a health care provider. Testing is recommended for anyone with cold, influenza or COVID-19-like symptoms, even mild ones.

School districts follow the protocols developed by the Ministry of Health and the BC Centre of Disease Control and captured in the COVID-19 Public Health Guidance for K-12 School Settings (Updated September 11, 2020) document. The public health actions protocols in cases where a student, staff or other person who has been in the school is a confirmed COVID-19 case are captured in the following graphic:

Confirmed close contacts are determined based on the length of time of exposure and nature of the interaction. Only public health can determine who is a close contact.

If you answer “yes” to the checklist questions and the symptoms are not related to a pre-existing condition (e.g. allergies) your child must not come to school. Instead, please contact a health-care provider for further assessment (e.g. a primary care provider like a physician or nurse practitioner, or the 8-1-1 resource)

Touchless taps have been installed in all washrooms where this was a possibility. Following the CDC guidelines, paper towels are provided for turning off faucets in washrooms without touchless taps.

Yes. Parents/guardians who would like to provide their children with their own masks are free to do so.

All families and staff must sign the Daily Health Assessment consent form at the beginning of the school year to acknowledge their responsibility to undertake a daily health check before coming to school.

Students/staff with any of the symptoms on the list MUST NOT attend school.

Students who arrive at the school ill or who develop symptoms of illness while at school will be separated and their parents or caregivers will be notified and asked to pick them up as soon as possible. The spaces they were in will be cleaned and disinfected.

If a staff member or student in a school is confirmed by public health as positive for COVID-19, public health will contact school administration to advise on next steps.

The response protocol, as outlined on the BC Centre for Disease Control website, is as follows:

Staff and families of students will be contacted if public health believes they may have been exposed to COVID-19 at school, and provided with recommended follow-up steps (noted below). 

Staff and students not exposed may or may not be notified if there is a positive COVID-19 case in a school. This is at the discretion of the school medical health officer.

Only public health can determine if a staff or student may have been exposed.    

Public health will: 

  • notify anyone who may have been exposed.
  • provide any follow-up steps like self-isolating or monitoring for symptoms. 
  • work with school administration to decide if communications to the school community are needed.

Please visit the BC Centre for Disease Control website to review all current BCCDC protocols concerning schools:

The district will provide online support for children who are self-isolating.

Schools will not be performing temperature checks. Instead, all parents and staff are required to do a daily health assessment following the district-provided Daily Health Assessment checklist.

Students/staff MUST NOT come to school if:

  • They have any of the symptoms identified on this list;
  • They live in a household in which someone has returned from travel outside of Canada in the last 14 days; or
  • Anyone in their household is (or they themselves are) a public health confirmed contact of a person confirmed to have COVID-19.

All families and staff must sign a consent form at the beginning of the school year indicating they are aware of and intend to undertake this daily responsibility.

Please contact your child’s school principal to discuss the accommodations and/or program options that may be a good fit for your child at both the school and district-level. 

Parents/guardians will be required to do a daily health assessment of their child(ren) using a district-provided checklist. If they answer yes to any of the questions on the list, the child must stay at home, self-isolate, and seek care from a health-care provider.

If a student has a confirmed case of COVID-19, Fraser Health will reach out to identify any potential cases, get in touch with close contacts, recommend 14-day isolation if necessary, and provide any follow-up recommendations. 

As recommended by Provincial Health Officials: promote and practise social/physical distancing; stay home and away from others if sick or in isolation; wash hands often; cover coughs and sneezes with the inside of your elbows; avoid touching face with unwashed hands; avoid travel outside Canada; self-isolate for 14 days if returning from travel outside Canada or were exposed to COVID-19; and contact your primary health provider or Health Link 811 if you have questions about your health.

School District No. 42

Homeschooling is available for both elementary-aged and secondary-aged students. Please note, however, that homeschoolers are not eligible to receive a BC Dogwood Graduation Certificate. Learn more about homeschooling at

At this time the school district hold on all international field trips is still in effect. However, walking field trips and field trips to surrounding communities may still occur as long as they follow all health and safety measures for COVID-19.

The district will provide online support for children who are self-isolating.

At the elementary level, the school district is offering a graduated return to school option for the month of September and beyond if required. This option may appeal to families who want a slower transition to full-time in-classroom learning for their child. For some students, this may mean in-person attendance for a shorter segment of a school day, while for others, it may mean starting with some remote work but building to in-person attendance. The specifics of the plan would be shaped by the needs of the individual student/family.

Please contact your child’s school principal if you think this option might be a good fit for your child.

Odyssey is a K-9 program in which learning is designed and developed by teaching staff and delivered at home by a parent. Odyssey staff ensure that all students in the program follow the BC curriculum while providing a unique partnership between the school, parent and student. This program, which runs out of Fairview Elementary, uses a “blended” approach where students attend school in small groups for specific instruction and support for a few hours per week and the teacher guides the home learning instruction of core curriculum through in-person and on-line support. We may expand the seats available for students at the Odyssey Program if needed and are exploring offering a French Immersion option for this year in this program as well if needed.

Learn more information about the Odyssey program

Fall registration information will be posted to on August 17, 2020.


Yes. Let your child’s teacher know that your child requires a device to support remote learning.

Please advise your teacher of any technology needs or limitations so that these can be addressed/accommodated.

The school district has developed a document for students, advising how to access Office 365 (including the Microsoft Teams feature). This document includes information on how to obtain usernames/passwords.

School District No. 42

All SD42 StrongStart centres plan to have a delayed opening schedule for the 2020/21 year. By September 14, further details regarding StrongStart programming and registration information will be available on the school district website at

School cafeterias will be open for limited operations. Your child’s school will provide information regarding school-specific protocols and operations.

Kindergarten registration takes place online through the school district parent portal. The Late Registration Phase runs from February 26 to June 21. Learn more about the kindergarten registration process on the district website at 

To register your child for kindergarten on the parent portal, go to

Our Maintenance Department and District Education Office (DEO) are both open to the public. The DEO will be closed daily during the following times: 

10:15am to 10:30am
12:30pm to 1:30pm
2:15pm to 2:30pm 

Riverside centre is closed to the public until further notice, but our staff will continue providing services.

For assistance, please call 604.463.4200 or email

SD42 school playgrounds opened on June 1. Playground users should continue to follow all public health guidelines, including maintaining two-metre (six feet) physical distancing and washing or sanitizing hands before and after play.

Ministry of Education

Students in B.C. will return to in-class learning September 2020. B.C.’s plan includes new health and safety measures, increased funding for protective equipment like masks and new learning groups to help keep everyone safe. Learn more.

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We are listening. Your question(s) will be reviewed by staff and the FAQs will be updated within 24 to 48 hours. If your question is not answered yet, it is because details are still being worked out. We will be updating this FAQ regularly as more information becomes available. Thank you for your patience.

Our vision
Our vision is for every individual to feel valued and for all learners to reach their potential.
Our mission
Our mission is to support all individuals in their development as successful learners, and as respectful, caring and responsible members of society.