RCIIS Reopening Plan

November 23, 2020 - 9:30 AM

Urgent

Due to the recent lockdown measures put in place by the Ontario government, RCIIS will return to online instruction on Nov. 23rd, 2020.

Check back often for updates regarding in-person and blended classes.

Stay safe and see you online!

RCIIS Reopening Plan

The information presented in this guide will also be given to students during orientation seminars and new staff members during training.

Students will be required to register in advance for any in-person classes, including agreeing to a student consent form.

As the COVID-19 situation evolves, this plan will be updated accordingly.

Class Structure

  • RCIIS courses will be delivered through a blended learning model consisting of both online and in-person classes for students to maintain small class sizes.
  • Higher risk activities such as group and pair work will be limited or removed from course curriculums to maintain adequate social distance.
  • Programs will open on a class by class basis providing they can be done so in accordance with the health protocols of the Ontario government.
  • Class and break times will be staggered where possible to ensure that physical distancing is maintained in all common areas.
  • Students currently abroad will be able to complete their studies online.
  • Students who have registered for online-only classes will be able to remain online for the foreseeable future.

Preventative Measures

  • All classrooms will be modified to accommodate physical distancing. Additionally, students will be arranged in such a way to not directly face one another.
  • Monthly orientation for new students will include training on required hand washing, COVID safety measures, and updated school policies.
  • Occupancy limit signage will be displayed at the entrance of each classroom to give a clear indication of room limits.
  • Students will be required to follow the entrance and exit rules which will be set in place to reduce the likelihood of physical contact.
  • Staff and students must wear face coverings (mouth and nose) at all times when in the school.
  • Regular hand washing signage will be put in place to ensure students follow safe hand-hygiene guidelines.
  • Some staff members may work on a rotating schedule to reduce the number of employees on site in a given day.
  • Hand sanitizer will be available at the school entrance and common areas (staff and students will be advised to wash their hand or use hand sanitizer upon arrival).
  • Access to the school café, water cooler, and microwaves will be removed, so students will be asked to eat their lunches outside of the school.
  • Regular cleaning of the building will be increased (twice daily) to include the disinfection of high-touch areas such as tables, stair railings, bathrooms, and doorknobs.
  • The building has made changes to the HVAC units to keep the air in the building healthy and clear.
  • All consultation sessions with members of the RCIIS team will be available virtually or on an appointment-only basis.
  • There will be no student activities, seminars, or academic presentations until further notice.
  • Outside visitors and school guests who do not have an appointment will be limited for the time being
  • Students who are concerned about their health or are hesitant to return to the school will be given the option to study online.

Monitoring

  • A daily attendance log will be taken of staff, students, and visitors which can be provided to clinical authorities for the purpose of contact tracing if necessary.
  • The RCIIS staff will monitor students daily based on the observable symptoms of COVID-19 (cough, fever, or difficulty breathing).
  • If a student exhibits any of the symptoms of COVID-19 they will be asked to leave the school and given the option to study online.
  • Any staff or students who have been sent home for this reason will not be allowed back into the school until a medical practitioner has confirmed they are fit to return to school or they have tested negative for COVID-19 and can produce evidence of such.
  • School counselors will maintain regular communication with students on mandatory self-isolation to ensure their mental stability and well-being.

Arriving Students

  • Newly arriving students will be asked to self-isolate for 14 days before being allowed to come to school.
  • During this self-isolation period, students will be able to join our classes remotely to ensure that they don’t miss any of their studies.
  • Before arriving in Canada, RCIIS will provide information on developing a self-isolation plan, transportation options, and provincial health documents to ensure students are ready for the challenges of coming to Canada during the pandemic.

School Infection

In the case that a student or staff member has a confirmed COVID-19 infection:

  • The school will be temporarily closed for a thorough deep cleaning of all areas.
  • All students currently studying at school will be asked to temporarily study online.
  • Relevant provincial health authorities will be notified in accordance with recommendations from the Public Health Agency of Canada.
  • All staff, students, and homestay families who might have been in contact with the infected individual will be notified immediately.

Specially designated members of the RCIIS staff will be given the authority to enforce all required policies to ensure the safety of both staff and students.

Despite all of our safety measures, by entering RCIIS students are potentially increasing the possibility of coming in contact with someone who has been exposed to the COVID-19 virus. Students should be aware of this risk.

Copyright 2021, Royal Canadian Institute of International Studies