Here's what a Hamilton high school will look like during COVID-19
Desks are 2 metres apart with the teacher's desk tucked away in the corner of the class to add more space
Hamilton high schools are beginning to reopen next week as the COVID-19 pandemic persists.
Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board offered media a tour of Ancaster Secondary School.
The board showed reporters three classrooms, a hallway and a set of stairs.
Here's what HWDSB says high school classes in Hamilton will look like:
15 students per class
The three classrooms all had 15 desks for students spaced roughly two metres apart.
The desks take up almost the entirety of the room.
WATCH | HWDSB shows media high school class during COVID-19 pandemic
Manny Figueiredo, director of education, said it's a much different look to the standard approach.
"A history class could have had anywhere between 22 to 30 students depending on enrolment and you might have seen desks in groups of four to facilitate collaborative learning," he said.
"What you're seeing is two metres apart in cohorts of 15 and even intentionally moving the teacher's desk into the corner to try and create as much space as possible."
These classes had open windows, but those without windows or adequate airflow will get one of the board's 150 portable air filters.
There were fewer desks and more space in these classes compared to elementary schools.
Here's more back-to-school coverage:
- Help CBC Hamilton's back-to-school coverage
- 21 students will be class average in Hamilton's public school board during COVID-19
- Hamilton schools begin massive reorganization as thousands opt for online learning
- Hamilton's Catholic school board releases plan for staggered start to school year
- Six Nations elementary schools to do remote and virtual learning for September and Oct
Hallways and taped water fountains
Hallways have various COVID-19 posters about masking and physical distancing.
The floor also features stickers that help physically distance students.
Water fountains are bagged up, but water bottle filling stations can be used.
No guarantee COVID-19 won't hit schools
Despite the precautions school boards are taking, Hamilton Public Health says it will be impossible to stop the virus from infecting students or staff.
"We can't guarantee something that operationally, with 1,000 kids in school ... we have to commit to the protocol and follow it when there's a situation."
HWDSB is receiving 19 public health nurses to help carry out those procedures but the board may get four or five more due to additional funding from the Ford government.
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