Update 4: Government Directives Update

16 March 2020

Dear Parents, 

As you no doubt have heard today, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced travel restrictions that will immediately affect some of our students. In his statement, the Prime Minister said that only Canadian Nationals, Permanent Residents, and US citizens will be allowed into Canada. For all other nationalities the borders will be closed. What this means for us is that students of other nationalities who have left Canada will not be able to re-enter the country at the end of Spring Break. 

At the same time the BC Provincial Health Authority has issued an order banning any gatherings of more than fifty people. 

Please also note that BC is the only province in Canada that has not closed its schools. We think that there is a high degree of probability that some form of closure is imminent. 

The impact of COVID-19 on our community and around the world is unprecedented. We are working hard to not only follow the guidance and directives of our government and of our Ministries of Health, but also to ensure that we keep our students, staff and community safe and well at this difficult time. 

What can we do at Brookes to help students who did not travel abroad? 

For international students who stayed in Canada and have not been in contact with anyone with the Corvid-19 virus, they can return to campus when the school reopens. Whether they can attend classes will depend on what the Ministry of Education dictates. However, they can still follow classes online from their rooms. 

As for grade 12 students taking their IB examinations, if we are closed, we are hoping that with social distancing, that is, seating students two meters apart in the gymnasium, the Ministry will allow our students to take their examinations in May. Please note that we will be seeking permission to provide the examinations to our students but cannot guarantee that the Ministry will allow to do so. 

What can we do for students who travelled abroad and cannot return to Victoria? 

First, we will be providing E-Learning which should help most students continue with their studies. 

Second, for these students, Brookes Westshore will be opening during the summer months and will provide additional academic support, free of charge, to complement their online learning. We will provide teachers to help students complete any instructional areas that were not fully covered through E-Learning and, in addition, to compensate for missed after school activities, we will provide our renowned leadership training programme to our students. 

My child is in Canada, but I would prefer he or she come home to avoid a prolonged school closure. 

We understand how difficult it must be to have your child away from home during this crisis. It makes perfect sense for you to have you child return home and be in your care. If you choose to bring your child home, as stated above, we will provide E-Learning and free Summer classes to make up the lost class time. 

These are challenging times, and we must appreciate that Health officials and government leaders are doing their best to get us safely through this crisis. At Brookes Westshore, we are doing our best to ensure every student finishes this academic year successfully. 

We are aware that the Ministry of Health and Ministry and Education will be making further announcements this evening or tomorrow. We will send out another message once this information is received. 

Jerry Salvador,
Head of School