Board Message to Families – April 7, 2022

Limestone Learning Foundation
Board Message to Families
Posted on 04/08/2022
Image of message graphic

As we have entered the spring season and some warmer weather, we would like to share some important information and updates related to the current status within our school communities, COVID-19 Public Health Protocols, as well as plans for spring extracurriculars and graduation ceremonies in Limestone.

Student and Staff Absences
Limestone District School Board continues to work closely with KFL&A Public Health to monitor COVID-19 activity in schools and surrounding communities. Schools are a direct reflection of what is happening within the community. With an increase in COVID-19 activity within our surrounding community, there has been an increase in staff and student absences in schools over the past couple of weeks, putting pressure on school staffing, and reducing the number of students in some classes. Staff absence activity may occasionally cause schools to combine classes, or as a last resort, ‘pivot’ or ‘close’ classes for a day or two due to a lack of staff in a building. Since returning in January, we have not had to implement this measure, but it may become necessary if staff absences continue to increase.  Where we can, we will have students join classes to allow learning to continue. Sufficient supervision is particularly critical at elementary schools and requires a baseline of human power to allow schools to operate.

Similar to inclement weather cancellations or closures, the decision to pivot or close classes, or schools, may have to be made first thing in the morning. Like in December, when we have an early indication of a problem, we will notify families as soon as possible.  If we have to close classes, we will use our Communicate Broadcast System to deliver messages quickly to affected families.  We recognize the pivot or closure of a class is extremely disruptive for families.  Know that we are doing the best we can to staff schools and avoid this measure. 

Student safety is always our priority. The Board and school administrators (principals and vice-principals) are working to ensure the safety, supervision, and in-person learning continues during the pandemic. Certain routines may have been modified at your school(s), and these will continue to be directed by administrators on a school-by-school basis.

LDSB is not the only organization experiencing staffing pressures. Tri-Board Student Transportation Services has been experiencing driver shortages as well, which has impacted the transportation schedules with delays or cancellations of routes. Tri-Board is continuously working to minimize the impact on daily transportation, but it is not always avoidable, and may cause delays or cancellations in the future. You can download Tri-Board’s App to receive notifications about your student’s transportation delays or cancellations.  Like other sectors, staffing shortages due to a range of factors, and particularly related to the pandemic, are creating challenges for regular services. 

We appreciate your understanding and efforts made by staff, students, and families to accommodate these ongoing challenges and changes as we navigate this together.

Daily Screening for COVID-19 and Adhering to Public Health Measures

  • Daily screening for students, staff, and visitors before leaving for school or work remains in place. Students and staff must self-screen every day before attending school or work. You can access the Ontario COVID-19 School and Child Care Screening here.
  • We continue to strongly encourage masking to minimize the spread of COVID-19
  • All household members and students should continue to self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms and stay home if they are experiencing any symptoms.
  • Continue to consistently practice good hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette.
  • Get your COVID-19 vaccine if you are eligible. There are still clinics and appointments available in our community. Visit to find a vaccine clinic near you.


Although masks are no longer required for students, staff, and visitors in schools and on school transportation, masking continues to be strongly encouraged. It should be noted that when schools have crossed the threshold of 30% absences due to COVID-related reasons, KFL&A Public Health has issued a letter indicating that masking is recommended due to the presence of COVID in the school and community.  Masks continue to be available daily for all students, as well as PPE for all staff.

Many students and staff are choosing to continue to wear masks at times, or consistently, and we support every student’s (and family’s) decision around masking.  

  When masking is required (as of March 21, 2022):

  • Under federal travel requirements, upon return from international travel, individuals must always wear a mask when in public spaces (including schools and childcare) for 14 days.
  • Individuals who are age 11 or younger or fully vaccinated, who tested positive or had symptoms of COVID-19, can return to school or work after their 5 days of isolation if symptoms are improving. They must, however, wear a well-fitted mask in all public settings (including schools and childcare) and avoid activities where they would need to take off their mask (for example, playing a wind instrument or removing their mask for sports) until 10 days after their symptoms started or from their positive test date.
  • Individuals who are a close contact of a case of COVID-19 or a symptomatic individual who are not required to isolate, must wear a well-fitted mask in all public settings (including schools and childcare) for 10 days from their last exposure to the person with COVID-19 symptoms or positive test result (or from when the symptomatic or positive person finishes their isolation).
  • Please note that exposures within the school setting are no longer included in the definition of a close contact.

Rapid Antigen Tests (RATs)

Rapid Antigen Tests will continue to be available for students and staff for symptomatic testing or returning from an unplanned absence.

Extra Curriculars and Graduation Ceremonies

With the recent changes in the COVID-19 protocols, spectators are now permitted for school activities and extra curriculars.  Spectators and school visitors must screen prior to attending any extracurriculars or school activities.  Masking is strongly encouraged for all spectators and visitors when indoors.

Planning is underway for graduation ceremonies at schools. Graduation ceremonies and celebrations might look slightly different from school to school and may not resemble graduations prior to the pandemic, but everyone is equally as excited to be able to honour this year’s graduating students and recognize their hard work in an in-person format.

The Limestone District School Board is situated on traditional territories of the Anishinaabe & Haudenosaunee.