COVID-19

As we transition back to face-to-face learning, our priority remains the health and safety of our students, staff and faculty.
The 2021-22 Return to School and Return to Boarding plans below outline the guidelines, structures and expectations we have put in place to help minimize the potential exposure of our students and staff to COVID-19. These plans also allow us to quickly transition to other learning models according to government regulations, changing health parameters, and our evolving understanding of teaching and learning practices. We will continue to work with our health partners to develop and evolve our planning. We are confident that we will be able to care, as we always have, for our students.

We will continue to follow all government health and safety regulations, including symptom screening, masking, ventilation, vaccination and rapid testing, and will update our guidelines responsively.

2021-22 Return to School Plans

See the 2102-22 Day School Health & Safety Plan on myBSS for more details on how we are keeping BSS safe this year.

COVID-19 Infection Control Procedures

Frequently Asked Questions

Academic Program

List of 8 frequently asked questions.

  • Who can come to campus after BSS reopens?

    All healthy students and employees who do not have symptoms of COVID-19 can come to school. employees who are not required to be in the building will continue to work from home. Visitors, including parents/guardians, are strictly limited and only permitted by prior appointment. Non-essential visitors are not allowed to enter the school.

    BSS requires that all students born in 2009 or earlier, all school employees and faculty, student placements, contract employees, visitors, and volunteers must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

    No person should attend school if:
    • they are unwell or any members of their household are unwell with symptoms consistent with COVID-19
    • they have been exposed to a confirmed case of COVID-19 (unless fully vaccinated and tested negative)
    • they are within 14 days of their return to Ontario from international travel (unless fully vaccinated)
  • How is the BSS Junior School facilitating classes?

    Junior School students will be learning on campus full-time and will continue to be in cohorts (i.e. students will be assigned to a single group and attend all classes only with that cohort). Most specialist subjects, such as physical education, visual arts, music and French will return, and athletics and fitness activities will be incorporated into the day.
  • How is the BSS Middle School facilitating classes?

    Middle School students will be learning on campus full-time, and will return to regular class sizes. We will cohorting by grade and encourage physical distancing protocols. Students will travel to specialist classrooms for subjects such as visual arts, drama and physical education.
  • How is the BSS Senior School facilitating classes?

    Senior School students are back on campus five days a week, with four periods a day and a return to regular class sizes. We will continue the semestered program (with the exception of AP Seminar, AP Research and some e-Learning Consortium Canada classes). Teacher Advisory Group (TAG) will be held in person.
  • Is there an option for students to learn remotely?

    Students in Grades 4 - 12 who are vulnerable due to health conditions, living with others who are vulnerable due to COVID-related health conditions, or are unable to attend school in person due to travel restrictions may request remote learning accommodation. The deadline to submit requests for Remote Learning Accommodation for the 2021-22 school year was June 30, 2021.  

    The following temporary absences will not be addressed as remote learning opportunities:
    • COVID or other health related issue(s)
    • Sports or arts commitments
    • Family choice
    In these circumstances, online synchronous access to the class will not be available. Students may, however, access the Learning Management System and contact their teachers for any support.


  • How does BSS support students?

    Junior School
    Students can access support at school from their teachers, including Learning Resource teachers. Students can also each out online to their teachers during designated office hours. Daily homeroom time allows students to connect with their peers and teachers. The Advisory program also continues for Grades 4 - 6.

    Middle School
    Supports for Middle School students include the Blastoff program, Homeroom, the Middle School Counsellor, wrap-around monitoring, technology training and skills development, and extra academic help.

    Senior School
    We continue to support student social and emotional wellness through the collaboration of counsellors, teachers, the School Psychologist and Learning Resource Centre teachers. Students can meet virtually with counsellors and the psychologist. To help our students succeed in a blended learning environment, we provide academic support including the creation of a Learner Profile for each student, extra help and community learning, and technical support and training.
  • Are co-curriculars offered during the 2021-22 academic year?

    Co-curriculars such as athletics teams and clubs, are a vital part of the BSS experience. To ensure we are doing everything we can to keep our community safe, we will introduce activities responsibly by establishing protocols such as masking, contact tracing and participation limits where needed. As the COVID-19 situation continues to change, we will be flexible and responsive, operating in accordance with provincial guidelines, while also seeking support from our two Wellness Centre nurses.

    For our Athletics program, we are committed to safe face-to-face programming, while following all public health guidelines and sport governing directives, and are collaborating with other CISAA member schools to ensure a safe return to sport and inter-school competition.
  • What will happen if BSS is required by government regulations to close again?

    Students would move to a distance learning model if conditions and regulations require a closure of the BSS campus. Our planning allows us to quickly transition to other learning models according to government regulations, changing health parameters and our evolving understanding of teaching and learning practices.

Visiting BSS

List of 2 frequently asked questions.

Health & Safety

List of 5 frequently asked questions.

  • Does The Bishop Strachan School have a vaccination policy?

    BSS requires that all persons at school who are born in 2009 and earlier receive two (2) doses of a World Health Organization-approved COVID-19 vaccine by October 5, 2021, unless they qualify for a vaccine exemption.  COVID-19 vaccines are proven to be safe and effective against the highly transmissible Delta variant, currently the dominant strain of the virus.
  • How is BSS reducing risk and the potential spread of COVID-19?

    Our infection control measures for all students and employees include:
    • mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations for everyone who is eligible
    • daily symptom and exposure survey
    • mandatory twice-weekly at-home screening for unvaccinated persons and those with vaccination exemptions
    • strongly recommended at-home screening for vaccinated employees and students
    • hand hygiene
    • respiratory etiquette
    • physical distancing
    • mask-wearing
    • enhanced cleaning and ventilation
    Physical Distancing
    As much as possible, physical distancing will be promoted between students, between students and employees, and between employees. 

    Enhanced Cleaning Protocols
    BSS is implementing enhanced cleaning protocols, including increasing the frequency of cleaning and disinfection of all indoor surfaces, especially high-touch surfaces.

    Health and Safety Training for Employees
    All new and returning BSS employees will be trained on:
    • BSS health and safety procedures
    • Completing the daily symptom survey 
    • Completing at-home twice-weekly screening
    • Hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette
    • Procedures for students and employees to access the Wellness Centre
    • Signs and symptoms of COVID-19 (adults and youth)
    • What to do if there is a suspected case of COVID-19 at BSS
    • What to do if there is a confirmed case of COVID-19 at BSS
    • Use of PPE (masks, gloves, face shields, disinfectant wipes, etc.)
    • Appropriate cleaning and/or disinfection of items
    • The risks associated with infectious diseases
    • The requirement of being fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and keeping immunizations up to date
  • Are students and staff required to wear personal protective equipment (PPE), such as masks, gloves, etc. while on campus?

    In keeping with current public health guidance, all employees, students, parents, contractors and visitors to BSS are required to wear medical masks when they enter and move around the school.
    Students in JK and SK are required to wear non-medical or cloth masks to enter the school, to move around the hallways and when in close contact with others. Students in Grades 1 – 12 are required to wear non-medical or cloth masks at all times within the school, even when physically distanced. Masks can be removed when outside and physically distanced.

    Employees can use a face shield in addition to their mask. Gloves can be worn if hands will be exposed to a risky situation.

    Wellness Centre employees are required to wear a medical-grade mask at all times. When interacting with students or employees in more serious or high risk situations, a face shield, eye protection, isolation gown and/or other applicable PPE is required.
  • What health and well-being supports are available for Boarders?

    The Wellness Nurses, School Psychologist and Boarding employees are available to discuss any issue. Each boarder’s circle of support extends to include TAG Advisors, Student Services Counsellors, teachers, Vice Principals, Principals and the School Chaplain. Our School Psychologist is available to run individual and group sessions with a focus on managing change and developing resilience. 

    Boarding will continue to implement an immersive and exciting on and off-campus program that adheres to health and safety guidelines. Boarders will continue to have access to fitness areas within the school.

    All Boarders must have emergency medical insurance. This year, Boarding is piloting a Student Assistance Program through Homewood Health (Equitable Life), which will provide wellness services with complete confidentiality. Parental permission is required for a student account to be created. 
  • What will BSS do in the event of a confirmed or probable case of COVID-19 in a staff member or student?

    In the event of a case of COVID-19 at school, the BSS COVID-19 Response Team will:
    • report the positive case to Toronto Public Health
    • follow Toronto Public Health guidelines for contact tracing, isolation and testing
    • inform the affected cohort(s) and BSS community
    • maintain the confidentiality of those affected

Boarding

List of 3 frequently asked questions.

  • Are international Boarders required to self-isolate upon returning to school in September 2020?

    For international students  who are not fully vaccinated, there are no changes to current 14-day quarantine measures (Government of Canada - COVID-19: Travel, testing, quarantine and borders). Boarders may:
    • Arrange to stay in their own accommodation, supervised by family or family-nominated guardians in Toronto, or
    • Access the BSS-arranged program (only available at the start of the year), for which there is a fee
    Boarders who are eligible for a quarantine  exemption (e.g. eligible fully vaccinated Canadian citizens, permanent residents, a person registered under the Indian Act, refugees, international students with a valid study permit for a Designated Learning Institution and foreign nationals who meet specific conditions for fully vaccinated travellers) will be permitted to move directly into Boarding, and must adhere to an entry protocol that includes testing and limiting interactions with others for 14 days.  
  • What measures is BSS taking to reduce risk and ensure physical distancing in Boarding spaces?

    BSS will use a layered approach with multiple measures to reduce the risk of COVID-19 spread in Boarding. Reducing out-of-facility visits (such as home and off-campus trips) will reduce the risk of introducing the virus into our facility , and each Boarder will be assigned to a cohort group to minimize the number of Boarders and Boarding employees an individual comes into contact with.

    Boarding has undergone enhanced cleaning procedures. Housekeeping  will continue to use hospital-grade cleaner, OXIVIR, in Boarding. Common areas and washrooms are cleaned four times daily with a focus on high-touch surfaces, such as door knobs, handrails, garbage cans, faucet handles and toilet levers. Housekeeping employees have received COVID cleaning training during summer break. Hand-wash stations and hand sanitizer are available in all hallways, common spaces and entrances. Our food services follow the regulations of the local health authority to ensure the implementation of best protocols for the preparation and serving of food in the dining areas.
  • How will BSS manage a COVID-19 outbreak within Boarding?

    Boarding will strictly follow the guidelines set out by Toronto Public Health and Public Health Ontario to manage an outbreak within Boarding, including safety protocols for non-outbreak areas, outbreak areas, possible exposure to COVID-19 and COVID-19 positive cases. 

    Boarding has dedicated isolation rooms on-site that are equipped with a private washroom. Boarding will also be flexible and plan contingencies, including the physical reopening and a potential closing of BSS for in-person classes.