Schools must reopen now
By Bruce Squires, President of McMaster Children’s Hospital and Chair of the Board of Directors of Children’s Healthcare Canada
Ontario schools must reopen for in-person learning now. It is essential for the health and wellbeing of all kids and families.
There is overwhelming consensus on this matter from all of Ontario’s pediatric health professional associations, as well as the Ontario Council of Medical Officers of Health, who feel it is imperative that children have immediate access to in-person instruction.
Additionally, vaccination rates are steadily on the rise across the province and there are no foreseeable delays in the vaccine supply chain. This, coupled with the decrease of infection rates of COVID-19, further reinforces that the time for action is now.
As I wrote in my Opinion Piece in the Hamilton Spectator from May 14, 2021, school is not out for summer and there is plenty of time for students to get back in the classroom for the rest of this school year. At McMaster Children’s Hospital we are seeing firsthand an increased number of kids in crisis. The negative health consequences for kids from any further delay is only compounding.