The Saskatchewan Teachers Federation would like to see a return to online learning in the province, as COVID-19 and variants of concern continue to be an issue.
STF President Patrick Maze, says this echo’s concerns raised by Saskatoon Mayor Charlie Clark, and Epidemiologist Dr. Cory Neudorf.
Maze says they are asking all Saskatoon schools to switch to online learning, and are asking all Regina schools to reconsider the decision to return to in person learning on Monday.
According to Maze, despite being eligible, teachers are having a difficult time securing a vaccination appointment.
“It’s one thing to be eligible, it’s another to have the shot and give it a chance to do it’s job,” Maze said in a release. “There are worrying signs the system is overloaded and not able to handle the influx,” Maze added.
Both Regina Public and Catholic schools have been in Level 4 online learning mode since the middle of March.
On Monday grades 9-12 will begin an alternating day schedule, students from kindergarten to grade 8 will attend class Monday to Friday.
However Maze says all available data made public shows a worsening situation, and points to Saskatoon now having a single-day increase in cases greater than Regina. In a little more than a week the cumulative count of variants rose from 560 to 765.
Maze reiterates that remote learning is not preferred by anyone, but says until COVID-19 is under control it’s the safest and only option available.
On Friday 264 new cases of COVID-19 were announced across Saskatchewan, the majority of declared outbreaks continue to be in workplace settings.