One City of Toronto employee working at Falstaff Early Learning & Child Care Centre has just tested positive for COVID-19. Following public health guidance and health and safety procedures, one of the programs at this City-operated child care centre will be temporarily closed while staff members and children in that program are isolated for 14 days and the room is thoroughly cleaned and sanitized.
Families with children at the centre were advised of the situation late yesterday. Following Toronto Public Health advice, the centre will resume its other programs today as Toronto Public Health has advised that there is minimal risk to other children and staff at the centre. The City is advising the public of this case in the interest of transparency.
Toronto Children’s Services has been carefully following Provincial and Toronto Public Health safety measures, which help to ensure that should there be an outbreak in one program, there is little risk to other programs at that centre. These include: smaller group sizes where the same group of children and caregivers remain together for the duration of care; daily screening of children and staff members; children do not share items, such as crayons and toys, but have their own while at the program; increased disinfection practices and limiting the number of people in the centres.
Falstaff Early Learning & Child Care Centre is currently running five programs with 31 children and 26 child care staff members. It served as an emergency child care centre for essential workers from March 31 to June 26, 2020.
Globally, COVID-19 outbreaks are continuing to occur in group settings, including in early learning programs, despite practices in place to reduce the spread of the virus. As such, self-isolation has become a normal operating practice in child care settings as these occurrences are likely to happen frequently for the duration of this pandemic. Currently, any incidences in the child care sector are reported to the Ministry, with containment practices in place to help stop the spread of COVID-19.
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