Policy GBGBC - Safe Work & Learning Environment: Mandatory COVID-19 Vaccination of Staff & Visitors was adopted by the Louis Riel School Division (LRSD) Board of Trustees at the Sept. 7 regular board meeting.
The vaccination verification process of permanent and term staff is nearly complete. On Sept. 3, staff were sent a survey to self-declare their vaccination status before presenting their Manitoba Immunization Card (digital or physical) to their supervisor when they arrived at work this week. As outlined in the policy, employees who are not fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or who do not disclose their COVID-19 vaccination status by September 8, 2021:
- will be provided with educational materials on vaccination;
- will be required to provide proof of first dose no later than September 7, 2021;
- will be required to provide proof of second dose no later than October 17, 2021; and
- will be required to undergo COVID-19 testing three times a week until they have provided proof they are fully vaccinated.
We are working to procure rapid test kits in the near future, but, in the meantime, a COVID-19 test administered by the Province of Manitoba (either from a Fast Pass Testing Site or another COVID-19 Testing Site) within the previous forty-eight hours will be accepted.
As of Sept. 9, of the permanent and term staff, in all employee groups, who have been at work to verify their status:
- 95.97 per cent are fully vaccinated
- 2.12 per cent are on a journey to be fully vaccinated
- 1.91 per cent have opted for testing at this time
The above numbers simply capture a moment in time based on current staffing numbers. These numbers will continue to fluctuate throughout the year based on updated vaccination status, hiring, resignations, retirements, etc. All substitutes currently working in LRSD have provided proof of full vaccination. Casual employees and student teachers in our schools have either provided proof of full vaccination or provided proof of testing as per our policy.
For further context, this map shows the uptake for the COVID-19 vaccine in the areas containing LRSD schools. As of Sept. 7, St. Boniface has an 86.3 per cent uptake for one dose and a 82.2 per cent uptake for two doses for eligible individuals. St. Vital has an 86.1 per cent uptake for one dose and a 82.2 per cent uptake for two doses.
LRSD will continue working with Public Health to improve these steadily increasing numbers through promotion, outreach, and access. The division will be hosting a number of pop-up COVID-19 vaccination clinics in the coming weeks.
As I mentioned in my message about mandatory mask usage, I acknowledge that there are differing opinions within the LRSD community in opposition and in support of vaccination. This policy is meant to help us navigate those differences and remain consistent in our approach. I hope we can all continue to be kind and caring as we build a collective understanding around the importance of risk mitigation strategies during the fourth wave of the pandemic.
Christian Michalik, Superintendent