COVID-19 Updates

To view Good Beginnings Enhanced COVID-19 Policies and Procedures

Click Here

To view the COVID-19 School Age Handbook

Click Here

To view Southwestern Public Health’s COVID-19 Decision Tool for Parents/Caregivers

Click Here

To view the Ministry’s COVID-19 Self-Screening Tool for Schools and Child Cares

Click Here

To view the School Age Summer Care Handbook

Click Here

To view the Ministry of Education Operational Guidance During COVID-19 Outbreak Document

Click Here

To view the Ministry of Education Before and After School Programs Kindergarten-Grade 6 Document

Click Here

October 30, 2020

As we get closer to the winter season, we wanted to share important information regarding the School Age Winter Break program.

Good Beginnings’ Enhanced Health and Safety COVID-19 Policies have been updated to reflect these most recent changes.

Given our current COVID-19 reality, the considerations are those of safety for children, families and staff. Current COVID-19 safety protocols restrict the mixing of cohort groups. The Winter Break program; however, would have school age children and Educators from multiple cohort groups mixing together.

At this time, neither the Ministry of Health nor Southwestern Public Health have provided any decisions as to whether these programs will be allowed to operate.

With that in mind, we would suggest that families make alternate care arrangements for their children during the Winter Break.

In the event we are permitted to offer “limited” care, we would like to be prepared and to understand individual family needs during this time. As such, we ask families that would be interested in registering their children for the Winter Break program, if it were to operate, to contact Assistant School Age Supervisor Julie Laginskie. Families will be placed on a ‘waitlist’ and notified if programs can be offered.

Dates of Winter Care will be December 21st, 22nd, 23rd, 28th, 29th, 30th.

Please contact Julie if you would like to be placed on the waitlist. Julie can be reached at: julie@goodbeginningsday.com or 519-290-0233 ext.230.

We ask that you please respond to Julie by Wednesday, November 11, 2020.

We again, thank you for your continued cooperation and we will continue to share information as we receive it.

October 7, 2020

Recently, the Ministry of Health updated their COVID-19 symptom list and language for school and child care screening. As a result, changes have been made to the Provincial online COVID-19 Screening Tool for Children in School and Child Care. COVID-19 School and Child Care Screening Tool 

Both the Ministry of Education and Southwestern Public Health have recommended that parents/guardians and child care centres use the revised provincial COVID-19 Screening Tool for their daily COVID-19 health self-assessment. The revised tool provides direction based on the results of the assessment.

The screening tool can be used by a student, parents/guardians on behalf of a student/child, employee or essential visitor. The person who is completing the screening selects the appropriate screening option and will be automatically directed to the suitable screening page. The following link will take you directly to the Ministry’s COVID-19 School and Child Care Screening tool. COVID-19 School and Child Care Screening Tool

The most notable changes to the screening tool are specifically related to the screening of students and children. For students and children, the screening tool will now have two sets of questions about symptoms that may yield different next steps depending on which symptoms are selected:

• The first set of questions asks about symptoms such as fever or persistent cough. Students and children with any of these symptoms will still be advised to stay home until they are able to consult with a medical provider and receive an alternative diagnosis or a negative COVID-19 test

• The second set of questions asks about other symptoms that are commonly associated with other illnesses, such as a runny nose or headache:

o Students and children with only one of these symptoms will be advised to stay home for at least 24 hours, after which they can return to school/child care if their symptoms are improving.

o Students and children with two or more of these symptoms will be advised to stay home until they are able to consult with a medical provider and receive an alternative diagnosis or a negative COVID-19 test.

In addition, the symptom list – for students and children only – no longer includes abdominal pain or conjunctivitis (pink eye).

This newly revised COVID-19 Screening Tool is to be used as a guide and is not meant to diagnose a medical condition. Please consult a health care provider or Southwestern Public Health for advice or if you have medical questions.

We will continue to review and update our Enhanced Policies to reflect the most current information from public health and will keep you informed of these changes.

September 10, 2020

As we move into fall, return to larger numbers at our child care centres and re-open our school age programs, we are pleased to share that we have revised our COVID-19 Health Screening Policies and Protocols. This new screening policy will help us to provide a more efficient drop off for families and their children.

Recent recommendations by the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Education supported moving to a revised COVID-19 self-screening model. We have been working on revisions these last couple of weeks and are pleased to share that we have received approval from Southwestern Public Health to move forward with them.

Beginning Monday, September 14, 2020, all Good Beginnings’ families and staff will be completing a Daily COVID-19 Health Self-Assessment prior to arriving to a child care centre and/or school age program.

This daily self-screening health assessment will be complemented by a reminder from our onsite screening/greeting Educators who will confirm with you that you have:

– Completed your daily COVID-19 self-screening prior to your arrival at the child care centre and/or school age program

– Answered ‘NO’ to all of the questions COVID-19 health screening questions

– Acknowledged that all children and/or persons in your child’s household are in good health

We will continue to keep you updated.

September 1, 2020

Recently, we forwarded to all families, the revised Ministry of Education ‘Operational Guidance During COVID-19 Outbreak Child Care Re-Opening’ document. Within this document were new guidelines that came into effect on September 1st. Today, all staff working within our child care centres were wearing medical masks and eye protection as per the new guidelines. The same requirements will also be in effect for Educators within our Before and After School Program when it begins.

Good Beginnings’ Enhanced Health and Safety COVID-19 Policies have been updated to reflect these most recent changes. Both documents contain detailed information and are on our website.

Also, for those families whose children will soon be attending Good Beginnings’ Before and/or After School programs, School Age Supervisors and Assistant School Age Supervisors are currently in conversations with Principals of all schools; discussing back to school protocols and details. As soon as we have more information, we will share it with families.

August 27, 2020

Today, we received information that the London District Catholic School Board has also revised their Return to School Plan. The first day of school will be Monday, September 14th, and it will include a staggered entry for all children. These changes will impact the start of Good Beginnings’ Before and After School programs.

As a result of the new date of September 14th and the staggered entry to school, families will need to make alternate child care arrangements during the weeks of September 8th and September 14th. Families will be notified by their schools in the coming days. Information is also available on the London District Catholic School Board website.

We are continuing to have conversations with the London District Catholic School Board regarding more details of the Return to School Plan. In the coming days, you will be receiving more information from our staff. Please contact your School Age Supervisor, if you have any questions.

We are looking forward to welcoming children back to our Before and After School Age programs.

August 26, 2020

Yesterday, the Thames Valley District School Board announced that they had revised their Return to School Plan. The first day of school will now be Monday, September 14th, and it will include a staggered entry for all children.

Families will be notified of their child’s ‘return to school’ details by their schools in the coming days.

We wanted to share this information with you now to ensure that you were aware of these recent changes, as these changes also impact the start of Good Beginnings’ Before and After School programs. Good Beginnings’ Before and After School programs will now also begin the week of September 14th.

Families are reminded that alternate child care will be necessary during the week of September 7 – 11, as well as, during the week of September 14 – 18, due to the staggered entry of children. Children will not be returning to school for the entire week.

We are continuing to have conversations with the Thames Valley District School Board regarding more details of the Return to School Plan. We will be working together to coordinate plans to ensure a welcoming return to school for all children.

In the coming days, you will be receiving more information from our staff, as well as your schools. You are welcome to contact your School Age Supervisor if you have any questions.

We look forward to welcoming your children back to our School Age programs.

Friday, August 14, 2020

Yesterday, we received further details and updated documentation from the Ministry of Education. Specifically, we received the revised ‘Operational Guidance During COVID-19 Outbreak – Child Care Re-Opening (version 3)’ and the ‘Before and After School Programs- Kindergarten – Grade 6 Policies and Guidelines for School Boards for the 2020-2021 School Year’ documents.

As we plan for our return to full capacity at our child care centres and the start of our Before and After School programs, we continue to have conversations with the Thames Valley District School Board, London District Catholic School Board and Southwestern Public Health. These critical discussions will assist in the building of coordinated and collaborative plans. We want our families and staff to feel confident knowing that protocols and policies are in place to ensure the health and safety of our children, families, Educators and community.

We will continue to update our policies and procedures as we receive new information and direction from the government and local public health. Our most recent updates will be shared with all families and staff shortly.

Supervisory staff are in the process of contacting families to discuss their individual child care needs. Please contact your Child Care Supervisor or School Age Supervisor to discuss your child care requirements or if you have any questions.

Thank you for your continued cooperation. We will continue to share information as we receive it.

Friday, July 31, 2020

During yesterday’s COVID-19 update, Premier Doug Ford announced that effective September 1, 2020 all child care and early years programs across the province, will be permitted to operate at full capacity.

Details of the reopening of child care centres to align with the reopening of schools can be found at: https://news.ontario.ca/edu/en/2020/07/ontario-continues-to-gradually-and-safely-reopen-child-care-for-working-parents.html

As we continue to plan for our return to full capacity, we continue to gather information from the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Education and Southwestern Public Health.

The Operational Guidance During COVID-19 Outbreak: Child Care Reopening document, the Before and After School Kindergarten to Grade 6 Policies and Guideline and further guidance from Southwestern Public Health will be available for us to review in the coming days. We will provide updates to families and staff once we have received and reviewed this information.

Supervisory staff will be contacting families in the coming weeks to discuss individual child care needs.

Thank you for your continued cooperation as we work to provide you with timely information as it is received.

Take care and stay healthy!

Friday, July 24, 2020

I would like to share with you that yesterday we received the ‘Updated Operational Guidance During COVID-19 Outbreak’ document from the Ministry of Education.

Within this updated document are seven(7) minor changes made to the the previous guidance document.

We are currently in the process of updating our Good Beginnings’ ‘Enhance Health & Safety COVID-19 Policies, Procedures and Protocols. Once completed, we will forward the updated document to you for review.

Thank you for your continued cooperation.

Friday, July 15, 2020

The Ontario government announced that nearly all businesses and public spaces will reopen in Stage 3 of the province’s reopening framework with the proper health protocols in place.

Ontario’s “Framework for Reopening our Province” is still ongoing, and details can be found at Reopening Ontario

Stage 1 – began on May 19, 2020

Stage 2 – began on June 12, 2020 – gave the go ahead for Child Care Centres & Summer Day Camps to prepare to reopen.

Stage 3 – will begin on July 27th

The return of children to our Child Care Centres

In following the guidance of the Local Medical Officer of Health, Good Beginnings has slowly and safely re-opened our classrooms on a gradual basis at each of our 4 Child Care Centres.  Classrooms that have reopened have been limited to 1 “cohort”, which is a group of maximum 10 individuals per room, including Educators.

We are happy to share that all licensed child care operators will have the opportunity to increase from the current cohort size of 10, to a cohort size of 15 children, plus Educators.

More specific details will be available once Good Beginnings has received and reviewed the updated “Operational Guidance During COVID-19 Outbreak” document from the Ministry of Education.

Minister Lecce announced these changes Monday at 1pm, and we wanted to inform you as soon as possible. The Ministry has updated the operational guidelines and they are in final approvals and will be released shortly.  We continue to put the health and safety of our children and families at the forefront and we are basing our decisions on advice from Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, Southwestern Public Health, and the County of Oxford.

Friday, June 26, 2020

The Ontario Government announced that the current State of Emergency would continue until July 15, 2020.  The affected businesses, as well as, the details of the extension can be found at June 24th Provincial Update.  Although this update no longer affects child care as we are in the process of reopening, we thought it may be informative for you.

Ontario’s “Framework for Reopening our Province” is still ongoing, and details can be found at Reopening Ontario

Stage 1 – began on May 19, 2020

Stage 2 – began on June 12, 2020 – Stage 2 gave the go ahead for Child Care Centres & Summer Day Camps to reopen.

At this time, we are planning for a tentative reopening date for both our Child Care Centres and our School Age Summer Care programs of Monday, July 13, 2020.  Please be aware that this is a tentative date, and may be delayed, dependent upon review and approvals of our updated protocols.

We have been working diligently to prepare Enhanced Health and Safety Policies & Protocols to ensure a safe and smooth return for our families and our employees.  These protocols have been thoughtfully prepared using the documents provided to us through the Ministry of Education, as well as guidance through the Local Medical Officer of Health.

The Return of Children to Our Child Care Centres

In following the guidance of the Local Medical Officer of Health, Good Beginnings will slowly and safely be opening our classrooms on a gradual basis at each of our 4 Child Care Centres.  Each classroom will be limited to 1 “cohort”, which is a group of maximum 10 individuals per room, including Educators.  We feel that this will provide the children and the employees with time to become comfortable with the new policies and procedures, and to ensure a smooth transition.  Round 1 will open with minimal classrooms at each centre, and additional rooms will be added with each Round. Round 1:  July 13thRound 2:  July 27thRound 3:  August 10th

Tuesday, June 9, 2020

The announcement today allowed for the reopening of Child Care Centres and School Age Summer Care programs effective June 12, 2020.

Please note that Good Beginnings will NOT BE OPENING on FRIDAY, JUNE 12, 2020.

We have been working diligently behind the scenes to prepare for our eventual reopening.  We are now awaiting to receive updated legislative requirements from; Local Officer of Health, Ministry of Education, County of Oxford, and the Southwest Public Health Unit.

All of these agencies are key in providing us the exact protocols and safety requirements for a successful reopening.

Our priority at this time is to ensure proper policies are in place, and that there is adequate time to extensively train all of our employees.  This will provide both employees and parents/guardians with the confidence that they are returning to a safe and comfortable environment.

In regards to School Age Summer Care, we will be under the same protocols, so once all is confirmed, we will be able to announce the status of those programs.  This again will ensure that all staff and locations are fully prepared and safe to welcome our children back to our programs.

Please stay tuned for further communications regarding the next steps, and reopening dates.

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Yesterday afternoon, the Ontario Government announced that schools would remain closed for the duration of this school year.  Although we feel for the children that will not be able to reunite with their friends, we appreciate that the safety of all children has been made a priority.

In yesterday’s address, Ontario’s “Framework for Reopening our Province” was discussed.  This is a 3 Stage process and the details of this Framework can be found at https://www.ontario.ca/page/reopening-ontario-after-covid-19

Stage 1 – began on May 19, 2020

Stage 2 – date undetermined

As mentioned in the above website, anything “Beyond Stage 1” will be:

“Based on the best practices and lessons learned from Stage 1, the next stages of reopening Ontario will focus on opening more businesses, public spaces and services and enabling more parents to return to work. Public health measures, workplace safety guidance, protections for vulnerable people and working remotely are expected to continue throughout each stage.

It was mentioned that included in Stage 2 would be the possible opening of Summer Day Camps and Child Care.

Due to the terms mentioned in the Framework, there is no specific date for Stage 2 to begin, as it is dependent upon many factors including the authorization from our local Medical Officer of Health, as well as the COVID-19 case statistics. 

We will not be able to provide exact dates or details at this time as to when we would be able to open any of our Child Care centres or Summer Camp programs.  When they are able to open, it would be under “strict health measures”.  We will keep you informed as soon as we have specific details on how and when we will proceed.