Health unit suggests Windsor area schools delay extracurriculars

Grade 7 students at Tecumseh Vista Academy practice yoga during gym class. (BlackburnNews.com file photo)

Windsor-Essex health officials are advising the local school boards to pump the brakes on allowing students to participate in extracurricular activities.

As the number of new COVID-19 cases in the region creeps back up, The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit (WECHU) has reportedly advised the local elementary and secondary schools to postpone sports, clubs and other extracurriculars for the time being.

The Windsor-Essex Catholic District School Board (WECDSB) confirmed Tuesday evening that the board plans to follow the recommendation which, as a result, will delay the release of the return-to-school plan that was expected to come out Tuesday.

WECDSB Communications Director Stephen Fields said schools need some extra time to incorporate the health unit’s advice into the document.

“We anticipate releasing the guidelines sometime [Wednesday] morning. They will be posted to our website and emailed to all parents then,” Fields said in an email to Blackburn News.

Students make their return to class in less than a week, whether it be in-person or virtually.

WECHU recorded 62 new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday and now 527 active cases in the community. Over 300 of those cases involve a variant of concern. All 15 current outbreaks in Windsor-Essex involve the highly transmissible Delta variant.

The Greater Essex County District School Board is expected to discuss the recommendations at a special board of trustees meeting on Wednesday night.

-With files from Maureen Revait