NDP Safe School Strategy Includes Improved Reporting Of Positive COVID-19 Cases

Opposition Education Critic, Carla Beck, says, “We need a concrete plan, not a flowchart for what to do once you’re a close contact or already sick. Everyone wants to keep schools open, but we must take decisive action. The provincial NDP has released a safe schools strategy which has three main priorities in light of the highly transmissible COVID-19 Omicron variant – keeping schools open, protecting staff and students and supporting school families. She notes that the Provincial Response Planning Team which was disbanded in July, used to coordinate the efforts of the Education Ministry, school divisions, the Saskatchewan Teachers’ Federation, and other education organizations. The NDP is calling on the government to reconvene the team to coordinate the safe schools strategy, which includes publicly reporting school outbreaks and absenteeism of students and staff related to COVID-19.

NDP Leader Ryan Meili adds that he is frustrated with the decision for people not to have a positive rapid test confirmed with a PCR test, because it means we are not getting an accurate number of cases. He believes it minimizes the seriousness and risk of the fifth wave, while other provinces are taking action.


To keep Saskatchewan schools open, we must keep schools safe and families healthy. Along with implementing community-wide measures to decrease viral transmission, we must take the
following steps in our schools.

Keeping schools open:

Publicly report school outbreaks and absenteeism of students and staff

Hire retired, substitute, and casual school staff full-time through fifth wave

Implement evidence-based isolation policies to prevent outbreaks

Outline clear metrics that would trigger remote learning

Protecting staff and students:

Bring back school-based vaccination programs

Roll out robust public and school-based vaccine promotion campaign

Immediately distribute N95 masks for students and school staff

Ensure proper ventilation in every classroom – immediate temporary measures and permanent changes.

Supporting school families:

Provide resources to support school-based contact tracing and case management.

Communicate clearly with families

Develop a provincial online rapid test tracker for self-reporting.

Ensure parents can stay home and stay healthy with guaranteed paid sick days.


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