Our ongoing commitment to safety
December 03, 2020 – Don Bureaux
Good afternoon everyone,
We are one week into the added restrictions for Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM) introduced by the provincial government to control the spread of COVID-19 in our province. These restrictions will remain in place until midnight, December 9 with the possibility of extension.
Learning and working are, as noted, deemed essential activities and I want to thank everyone for their cooperation in making sure that any work or learning that must happen in-person, is happening within all Public Health and NSCC guidelines.
Over the past week, two individuals at different campuses informed us they had tested positive for COVID-19 and provided us with dates when they’d last been on campus. In both cases, we advised Public Health, we advised the campus community, and we posted advisories on our website. We deep cleaned the areas visited by the individuals per NSCC protocols. In both cases, no further action was required of NSCC through Public Health’s contact tracing process.
Adhering to Public Health directives
One common question did come up in response to our communication of these cases: Why did our campuses stay open when public schools with a case, closed and moved to remote learning for a defined period?
That is a fair question and I want to revisit some of the key differences in the College and P-12 environments:
- NSCC moved all of its programming to an online or blended delivery model for the full 2020-21 academic year. There is very limited onsite, in-person activity taking place at NSCC compared to fully in-person learning at P-12 schools. This blended model was reviewed and approved by Nova Scotia’s Chief Medical Officer of Health.
- Anyone attending a campus for essential work or learning activities must sign-in. Data tells us we have never exceeded 25% capacity on any given day since March 2020.
- For employees and students who must be onsite, there are College safety measures in place to guard against the spread of COVID-19. These include installation of barriers, controlled entry points with sign-in, added sanitation stations and, most recently, the requirement that masks be worn in all NSCC settings even when physical distancing is possible.
- If Public Health identified additional measures, we would work with them to swiftly introduce those changes and keep our community informed.
I want to thank those individuals who advised us of their positive tests. It allowed us to keep our community informed even though it was not a public health requirement – and make sure we could offer any supports they might need. It also served as a reminder that the practices we’ve put in place, along with our own continued vigilance, are the best tools we have to protect each other while we learn and work. If you have concerns about your personal safety, please raise them with your instructor or supervisor so that we can work together to address them.
As always, if you are feeling ill, do not come to an NSCC site or participate in any in-person learning or work. Public Health publishes a list of possible exposure sites. Please check this list every day. If there is a possibility you’ve been exposed, please follow Public Health advice before coming to learn or work with us or our partners in person.
Thank you, everyone, for your continued cooperation in keeping each other and our communities safe.
Last updated on: January 19, 2021 08:46 AM