The health and safety of our students, faculty and staff is paramount. Due to the need for ongoing COVID-19 precautions, we’ve implemented a Vaccination Policy and numerous safety measures in the school to help prevent the potential transmission of the virus.
In keeping with other centres of learning, DVSA’s Vaccination Policy will require proof of COVID-19 vaccination for students, staff, visitors, and contractors in order to have access to the school. DVSA’s COVID Committee’s decision to enact a vaccination policy follows extensive reviews of public health evidence and legal guidelines regarding vaccination requirements. The policy and procedures are in line with Hamilton Public Health Guidelines and direction from the Province’s Chief Medical Officer.
All staff, students and faculty 12 years of age or older must present proof of their two-dose COVID-19 vaccination status prior to entry of their first class. Proof of two doses of a Health Canada recognized COVID-19 vaccine can be emailed in advance to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Students 11 years of age and under are required to have their parent or guardian submit confirmation that the child has passed the self-screening questionnaire (no symptoms, contact or travel). This is required for each week/class and must be submitted prior to the child entering the building. We ask parents not to remain onsite while their child’s/children’s classes take place.
Partially vaccinated or unvaccinated students are strongly encouraged to consider online programs until such time as it is safe for them to return to the studios.
For those who do not submit proof of vaccination (because they are exempt), there is a requirement to participate in regular COVID testing in order to access the school:
- Unvaccinated students wishing to participate in-person classes require documentation of a negative COVID test, timed within 72 hours of the end of their class time slot
- This documentation must be presented on arrival for each class, e.g., each day they are taking a DVSA program
- Testing must be done at a medically recognized site with the subsequent report as proof of test results
- All COVID-19 testing will be undertaken at the student’s expense
- If you are looking to exercise this option, please contact the school at 905-628-6357 #1 to inform us this is your preference
Registered students will be contacted regarding the process for establishing full vaccination status, and this proof of vaccination will be a part of the registration process for the foreseeable future.
DVSA recognizes the need to monitor and adapt these policies as circumstances continue to change.
Numerous safety measures are in place in the school to help prevent the potential transmission of COVID-19.
- a vaccination mandate is in place for all on-site staff and faculty
- designated studio working areas to promote physical distancing
- all faculty and students must successfully pass a self-screening questionnaire prior to entering the school
- all students must have a DVSA COVID-19 waiver on file as a part of their registration
- the use of face masks when in the school is mandatory (face masks and shields for instructors when teaching)
- hand sanitizer is widely available
- increased cleaning and disinfecting procedures are in place throughout the school – all studios are disinfected between sessions
- the implementation of contact tracing protocols
- staff and faculty screening for symptoms
- students are encouraged to bring their own tools
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.).