Health & Wellness in School

Health & Wellness in School Scenario 1 - In-School Learning

Scenario 1 - In-School Learning

The CBE's 2020-21 re-entry plan is subject to change as more information becomes available from the province. We will continue to update this site during the school year​.


Scenario 1:  In-School classes resume (near normal with health measures outlined by Alberta Education)


While the CBE will begin the year in Scenario 1, it is possible that we may have to transition between scenarios during the school year. Health officials will work with school authorities to make the decision to transition to partial in-class learning or at-home learning based on multiple factors including the number of COVID-19 cases in a zone or a school and the risk of ongoing transmission. 


Any changes in the school re-entry scenario will be determined by Alberta Health and Alberta Education with information on local ​school-based and zone​ information. We will remain in communication with the Alberta government and will continue to follow its advice.​ 

Health Measures


  • Handwashing is the best practice when facilities are available. If unavailable, hand sanitizer will be provided.

  • All people entering the building are required to use hand sanitizer.

  • Proper hand washing reminders will be placed at all hand washing and sanitization stations. 

  • ​Hand sanitizer will be provided and available in entrances, exits, classroom entrances, near high-touch equipment such as microwave ovens and vending machines, and in other high traffic areas.

  • Student hand-washing requirements:

    • Before leaving home, on arrival at school, and before leaving school.

    • After using the toilet.

    • Before and after any transitions within the school setting (e.g. to another classroom, indoor-outdoor transitions, etc.).

    • After sneezing or coughing. 

    • Before and after breaks and sporting activities.  

    • Before and after eating any food, including snacks.

    • Before touching face (nose, eyes or mouth). 

    • Whenever hands are visibly dirty.

  • Staff hand-washing requirements

  • ​Washing with​ soap and water for 20 seconds is the preferred method for cleaning hands. Hands must be washed:

    • Before leaving home, on arrival at work and before leaving work.

    • After using the toilet.

    • Before and after any transitions within​ the school setting ( e.g. to another classroom, indoor-outdoor transitions, etc.)

    • After sneezing or coughing.

    • Before and after: 

      • breaks and sporting activities.

      • eating any food, including snacks.

      • touching the face (nose, eyes or mouth).

      • administering medications.

      • food preparation, handling or serving.

      • assisting students with eating.

      • cleaning tasks.​

    • After contact with body fluids (e.g. runny noses, spit, vomit, blood)

    • When donning and doffing gloves.

    • After handling garbage.

    • Whenever hands are visibily dirty, and regularly throughout the day.

Daily Screening

  • Parents and caregivers must assess their children daily for symptoms of common cold, influenza, COVID-19, or other infectious respiratory disease before sending them to school. Anyone showing symptoms listed on the self-screening form​must remain home.

  • All adults entering a school must assess themselves daily​.  They must not enter if they answer yes to any of the questions on the ​​​​self-screening form​.

Stay Home If Sick

  • If students or staff are ill with any common cold, influenza or COVID-19-like symptoms they must stay home and complete the AHS Self-Assessment to determine if self-isolation and testing are required.

  • Students should follow advice provided from AHS on Student Illness: If a Student Has COVID-19 Symptoms. ​

  • If you have been tested for COVID-19, visit the AHS page Advice for People Tested for COVID-19 for instructions on when you can return to school.

  • In the case of self-isolation: 
    ​If a child is self-isolating and is well-enough to engage in school work, the classroom teacher will continue to provide work and support.  

    If a child is not well enough to continue learning at home with teacher support, accommodations for the child’s learning will take place upon the child’s return to classes. The teacher will assess the expectations for learning for the child and provide the appropriate accommodations.

Illness at School

  • Students exhibiting signs of illness will be moved to a supervised, designated infirmary room or area in the school.

  • The area/room will have an “Infirmary, Do Not Enter” sign that will be posted when the room is in use.

  • The room should have the ability to house more than one student at a time while maintaining physical distancing.

  • After the room is used, a sign will be posted indicating the room must be cleaned. Custodial staff will then provide enhanced cleaning. If a confirmed case of COVID-19 results, then the AHS Zone Medical Officer will provide instructions for further cleaning and disinfecting.

  • Parents/caregivers will be notified and advised to pick up their child immediately, within one hour.

  • Parents/guardians must designate an emergency contact for student pick up if they are unable to pick up their child. All families must adhere to this.
  • All items the student touched/used that day will be cleaned and disinfected after the student has been picked up. Items that cannot be cleaned and disinfected (e.g. paper, books, cardboard puzzles) will be removed from the classroom and stored in a sealed container for a minimum of 72 hours.

Confirmed Cases of COVID-19

  • If there are cases of COVID-19 identified within school settings, the AHS Zone Medical Officer of Health will work directly with the school district and school administration to provide follow-up recommendations and messaging for staff, parents/guardians, and students.

  • The decision to send a cohort/class home or to close a school will be made by the local medical officer of health. If students are required to self-isolate, the school will support students to learn or work at home.


For the 2020-21 school year, the CBE will require all staff and students (kindergarten to Grade 12) to wear a mask at school. This includes classrooms and public spaces such as hallways, learning commons, bathrooms, etc. 

For more information see our Masks page.

Physical Set-up of Schools

Physical​ Distancing

Physical distancing (e.g. maintaining a distance of 2 metres between two or more people) is challenging in a K-12 school setting, particularly with younger students. As such, the CBE will establish different expectations for varying age levels and activities. For example, younger students should be supported to have minimized physical contact with one another, while older students and adults should seek to maintain a safe physical distance whenever possible.

  • Classroom / student:

    • Where possible, students will be organized into smaller groups (cohorts)​ that stay together throughout the day.  We will try to minimize the number of different teachers and educational assistants that interact with groups of students throughout the day.

    • Schools may stagger lunch/snack breaks/recess to maintain physical distancing among students.

    • Schools may utilize outdoor learning spaces more frequently.​

    • Ventilation may be increased and windows opened where appropriate.

  • Gathering areas:

    • Seating will be removed or rearranged in public areas to prevent gathering.

    • Barriers or partitions may be placed between students.​

  • Assemblies and other school-wide events must be held virtually to avoid large gatherings of people in one space.​​

  • Workspaces and desks will be separated from each other by 2 metres where and when possible. If 2 metres cannot be arranged between desks/tables, students should be arranged so they are not facing each other (e.g. arranged in rows rather than in small groups or a semi-circle).​​​

  • Bathroom occupancy may be limited. Urinals and sinks that are less than 2 metres apart will be closed.

Movement in ​Building

  • Signs and directional arrows on walls and/or floors will guide movement in common areas and hallways. This may include one-way hallways and designated entrance and exit doors. 

Cohorts or Groups of​​​​​​​​ Students

  • As the risk of transmission of COVID-19 is reduced by limiting exposure to others, cohorts are recommended where possible. A cohort is defined as a group of students and staff who remain together. The size of the cohort will depend on the physical space of the classroom or learning setting.

  • Where possible, schools will organize students into groups (cohorts) that stay together throughout the day.

  • As much as possible, the CBE will minimize the number of adults that interact with groups of students throughout the day.

  • Teachers will have seating plans for all classes.

Classroom Set-up

  • Classrooms will be decluttered of all non-essential items to allow for cleaning.

  • Area rugs and soft furnishings that cannot be easily cleaned and disinfected will be removed.

  • Teachers and students must not share personal items (e.g. electronic devices, writing instruments, school supplies, etc.).

  • Workspaces and desks will be separated from each other by 2 metres where and when possible. If 2 metres cannot be arranged between desks/tables, students will be arranged so they are not facing each other (e.g. arranged in rows rather than in small groups or a semi-circle).

  • Desks should be set up around the perimeter of the room leaving the central area open for adequate distancing during entry/exit of the classroom.

  • A variety of physical barriers may sometimes be used where desks cannot be separated.

  • Hand sanitizer will be provided and available in entrances, exits, classroom entrances and near high-touch equipment.​


  • Starting in November, schools are permitted to allow students to use lockers with very specific requirements. If the school cannot implement all the measures and requirements above, they must continue with excluding the use of lockers at their school. If locker use is not possible, then students must be provided with direction for alternate direction for storing personal items. ​(Updated Oct. 28, 2020)​​

Change Rooms

  • There will be limited access to change rooms. Capacity will be limited and physical distancing protocols followed when use is necessary.

Cleaning of Schools

Cleaning Schedules

  • Regular cleaning and disinfection are essential to preventing the transmission of COVID-19 from contaminated objects and surfaces. 

  • Schools will be cleaned thoroughly every evening after the school is closed. The following surfaces will be disinfected daily by facility staff:

  • Classrooms: Desks, chairs, pencil sharpeners, telephones, doorknobs, light switches, sink faucets and soap and hand sanitizer dispensers.

  • Washrooms: All surfaces.

  • Offices: Desks, chairs, telephones, light switches, and doorknobs

  • High-touch points will be cleaned multiple times during the day.

  • Desk and tables that are used during lunchtime will be sanitized before and after each use. 

  • Additional hands-free garbage bins with removable linings will be placed at all entrances and exit.​​

Shared Equipment

  • Phones, Chromebooks, computers, and other frequently touched electronics like tablets, remotes including keyboards, mice, earbuds, and other devices must be cleaned and disinfected regularly by the user, using supplied disinfectant wipes before and after each use.

  • Use of shared items or sports equipment is discouraged. Equipment that is shared must be cleaned and disinfected before and after each use, and users must perform hand hygiene before and after each use.  

  • Math manipulatives, and other non technological instructional materials will be organized per student.  Materials will be cleaned and/or quarantined for 10 days prior to redistribution.​​

  • Parents/guardians must not allow students to bring toys from home.

Water Fountains

  • ​It is highly recommended that parents send their child to school with a water bottle that can be refilled. However, as per ministry recommendations, water fountains can remain open as mouthpieces of drinking fountains are not a major source of virus transmission and require regular cleaning according to manufacturer recommendations.

  • Signage will be placed around water fountains to remind students to use water bottles, and to allow physical distance between users.

Daily Operation of Schools

Pick-up and Drop-off

  • Parents/Guardians and caregivers must remain outside the school to pick-up and drop off their children.

  • Schools will determine student entry and exit points and if the drop-off and pick-up schedule needs to be staggered based on factors such as transportation arrivals.

  • Physical distancing of 2 metres must be maintained regardless of the number of parents/guardians arriving.

  • If additional support is needed, please communicate with your teacher or school.  

Lunch and Recess Breaks

  • Physical distancing protocols will be observed during staggered entry and exit, as well as, transitioning between classes, lunch as recess to further mitigate congestion.

  • Seating plans will be established and students should practice physical distancing while eating.

  • A maximum of 100 students are allowed in a common area at a time.

  • A specific protocol has been developed to ensure eating areas are cleaned and sanitized.      

  • Desk and tables that are used during lunchtime will be sanitized before and after each use. ​


Food & Nutrition Services

  • No food or drink sharing between staff or students. Everyone will be required to pack in and pack out all unused or leftover food each day.

  • Parents/guardians will be asked to have student food provided in clean containers with their own utensils.

  • Students must not share utensils, dishes, or water bottles and drink containers.

  • School cafeterias will implement alternative processes to reduce the numbers of people dining together at one time. 

    • ​Tables will be removed/rearranged to maintain physical distancing. 

    • Markings will be placed on floors to maintain physical distancing.  

    • Meal service times will be staggered to reduce the number of people present at any one time.  

    • Other areas will be adapted to serve as additional lunch spaces to increase spacing among persons in the same room.   ​

  • Seating plans will be established and s​tudents should practice physical distancing while eating.

  • ​Vending machines and microwaves are not available to students at this time.
  • Food service establishments in schools must follow the Alberta Health - Guidance for Restaurants, Cafes, etc.

Programs and Classes

  • Practice, rehearsals, and instruction of dance, music, and theatre may proceed as long as the guidance for live music dance, and theatre and CBE fine and performing arts​ guidelines are followed.

  • Music, dance and theatrical performances are cancelled at this time.

  • Access to science classrooms is permitted, following established physical distancing requirements, for instruction. If physical distancing is not possible (i.e.: science experiments or dissection), a virtual option will be provided.

  • Gym equipment use will be limited to items that are easily cleaned. CBE will follow and implement Alberta Schools' Athletic Association (ASAA) recommendations

    • ​​When possible, physical education will be done outside instead of inside.

    • Administrators and teachers should choose activities or sports that support physical distancing (e.g. badminton over wrestling).

    • Consider using auxiliary space such as learning commons, etc. to deliver education programs to aid in physical distancing. 

    • Priority must be given to use gym space for physical education programming.

    • Use of shared items or sports equipment is discouraged. Equipment that is shared must be cleaned and disinfected before and after each use, and users must perform hand hygiene before and after each use.

    • In-person school assemblies or other large gatherings (e.g. concerts or dances) must be avoided

Extra-Curricular Activities

School Athletics

  • As directed by the Province all high school students will be moving to on-line classes until Jan.​ 11, 2021. This will continue the suspension of all high school team practice/training until that time. This decision will be re-evaluated during the week of Jan 11th.​

  • The gradual start-up of fall sport practice cohorts allows for the health and safety needs of teachers and students to be a focus. Each school has different implications with respect to how they are responding or will be responding to COVID-19.
  • When practice cohorts are developed, they must adhere to the guidelines set forth by the Government of Alberta as outlined in the document Guidance for Sport, Physical Activity and Recreation-Stage 2. In addition, the processes and procedures outlined in their respective District documents, must be followed.
  • The Alberta Schools' Athletic Association has resources available to help guide the resumption of Sport and they can be found at​​


  • We appreciate the valuable lessons that local service providers' programs bring to our students, however only programs and services that are critical to student learning or well-being will be permitted in schools at this time. We hope to ease restrictions once it is safe to do so. Schools are able to consider virtual learning opportunities, if available.​

Field Trips

  • Trips requiring transportation cannot occur in the fall of 2020.

  • Walking field trips can proceed as long as schools are able to ensure that guidelines for physical distancing, eating, equipment sharing, and hand washing can be adhered to.

  • In regards to overnight B, C and D trips: Tentative bookings can occur for activities to take place after April 1, 2021. Until further notice there can be no financial commitment made.

Work Experience

  • Work experience may proceed as long as the risk of infection is mitigated for all participants. If the work experience placement is in a workplace, the student is expected to follow health rules set out by the workplace which should comply with the Workplace Guidance for Business Owners

Internation​al Students

  • Once Canada lifts travel restrictions and non-essential international travel resumes, international education programs in Alberta can resume if quarantine requirements and public health orders are followed. 

Return to School After International Travel

  • Students and families who have travelled outside of Canada are legally required to follow all provincial and federal travel restrictions upon arrival.

Parent/Guardian Access

  • In-person visitors and volunteers will not be allowed in CBE schools at this time. This includes guest speakers, sports-team coaches and artists in residence. Individuals are encouraged to communicate with the school through email or by phone. ​

  • Parents/guardians must remain outside of the school to pick-up and drop off their children.​

  • Anyone entering a school must review the self-screening tool prior to entering the school and cannot be admitted if they are feeling unwell.All visitors in the school must sign in at the main office.

  • All parents/guardians are asked to practice diligent hand hygiene and maintain physical distancing throughout their time in the school. 

School Councils

  • We recommend that school councils and principals meet online.​ 

Before & After School Care (located in CBE schools)

  • Before and after school care programs in CBE schools are open. Program delivery specifics will depend on government re-entry guidelines specific to the child care sector.

  • Current permissions for child care allow for maximum cohort groups of 30, with dividers such as gym curtains permitted as separation of cohort groups.

  • Protocols for verifying student wellness, parent pick-up outside of the school building, as well as handwashing and sanitizing protocols are currently being implemented.

  • Contact your child care provider for more information.


Before Traveling on a Yellow School Bus

  • Parents and caregivers must assess their children daily for symptoms of common cold, influenza, COVID-I9, or other infectious respiratory disease before sending them to school. 
  • A bus cleaning log must be kept. Drivers will clean high touch surfaces in school buses before and after students are on the bus.
  • Only registered riders will be permitted to board the bus.

While Traveling on a Yellow School Bus

  • Buses will be capped at 48 riders

  • Students will be required to wear masks

  • Students will be assigned seats and members of the same household will sit together. Cohorting of siblings on buses will only occur where siblings are on the same route​.

  • Because seats are assigned, students must use their designated bus stop based on their home address.

  • Students will start loading from the back seats to the front of the bus.​​

  • If a student displays symptoms while on the school bus, the driver should attempt to isolate the student at the front of the bus and inform the school upon arrival. Parents/guardians will then be contacted to pick up their child.

While Traveling on Calgary Transit

  • As of Aug. 1, 2020, the City of Calgary has mandated that all passengers using Calgary Transit must wear a mask. This includes all students accessing Calgary Transit to travel to school.

After Traveling on a Yellow School Bus

  • Transportation providers will repeat a thorough cleaning of high-touch surfaces with appropriate disinfectants.      

  • Bus drivers must wash their hands often, including before and after completing trips.


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 Hub Online Learning

A short-term, online learning approach for Gr. 1-12 is being offered for the 2020-21 school year for families who are not comfortable returning to in-person classes. The hub online approach is a combination of online instruction and independent work and requires a significant commitment from students and parents. It will not offer the same opportunities as in-person learning.

Last modified: 2/17/2021 12:14 PM
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