The health and safety of our students, faculty and staff is paramount. Due to the ongoing situation with COVID-19, we’ve implemented numerous safety measures in the school to help prevent the potential transmission of the virus. These include:
- reduced class sizes and/or increased studio space to allow for physical distancing
- designated studio working areas to promote physical distancing
- the mandatory use of face masks when in the school
- the availability of hand sanitizer and the promotion of its use
- increased cleaning and disinfecting procedures throughout the school – all studios are disinfected between sessions
- contact tracing protocols
- staff and faculty screening for temperature and symptoms
- encouraging students to bring their own tools
For our Children & Teen Summer Art Camps, we will continue to strictly adhere to the Ontario Ministry of Health Day Camp guidelines for the prevention of potential COVID-19 transmission. We have further developed the guidelines in relation to DVSA in an effort to meet and/or exceed ministry standards.
If a staff member or program participant begins to experience symptoms of COVID-19 while attending a program at the school, DVSA staff will ensure:
- Symptomatic program participants are immediately asked to go home OR will be separated from others in a supervised area until they can go home.
- We will contact the Hamilton Public Health unit to notify them of a potential case and seek advice regarding the information that should be shared with other participants in the program.
- Environmental cleaning/disinfection of the space and any items used will be conducted once the participant has departed/been picked up. Items that cannot cleaned and disinfected (e.g., paper, books, etc.) will be removed from the area.
- Other participants and staff who were present while a program participant or staff member became ill will be identified as a close contact and grouped together until they leave or can be picked up by parents/guardians to self-isolate at home. The local public health unit will provide any further direction on testing and isolation of these close contacts.
Program participants who have been exposed to someone with a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19 in the last 14 days will not be allowed access to the school.
Testing for COVID-19:
- All symptomatic staff and program participants will be referred for testing.
- Those who test negative for COVID-19 will be excluded from the program until 24 hours after symptom resolution. If a symptomatic person receives a negative result, a repeat test within 24-48 hours can be considered if clinical suspicion is high.
- Those who test positive for COVID-19 must be excluded from the program for 14 days after the onset of symptoms and clearance has been received from the local public health unit.
- DVSA will consider a single, symptomatic, laboratory confirmed case of COVID- 19 in a staff member or program participant as a confirmed COVID-19 outbreak in consultation with the local public health unit.
- If there is a confirmed positive case of COVID-19 at the school, the facility will remain closed for 48 hours to facilitate a deep cleaning of the building. We will immediately contact Hamilton Public Health and let them guide the process of implementing next-step procedures and communications.
- Staff members and program participants awaiting test results will be excluded from DVSA programs of any nature (classes, workshops, fundraisers, etc.).