The Surrey Teachers’ Association’s ‘Car Caravan,’ aims to call on Surrey MLAs and school trustees to commit to improved safety in schools in COVID-19 hotspots. Being held today (April 30), the caravan plans to drive by the offices of Surrey MLAs, Jinny Sims, Harry Bains, Rachna Singh, Garry Begg, Bruce Ralston and Jagrup Brar. (Photo: Lauren Collins)

The Surrey Teachers’ Association’s ‘Car Caravan,’ aims to call on Surrey MLAs and school trustees to commit to improved safety in schools in COVID-19 hotspots. Being held today (April 30), the caravan plans to drive by the offices of Surrey MLAs, Jinny Sims, Harry Bains, Rachna Singh, Garry Begg, Bruce Ralston and Jagrup Brar. (Photo: Lauren Collins)

Pandemic

Surrey teachers hold ‘Car Caravan’ to push MLAs for action in COVID-19 hotspots

STA driving past offices of local politicians Friday afternoon

The Surrey Teachers’ Association is calling on Surrey MLAs and school trustees to commit to improved safety in schools in COVID-19 hotspots.

Happening this afternoon,(April 30), the STA is running a ‘Car Caravan,’ and plans to drive by the offices of Surrey MLAs, Jinny Sims, Harry Bains, Rachna Singh, Garry Begg, Bruce Ralston and Jagrup Brar.

“We want all Surrey MLAs and all School Trustees to take our concerns seriously. We urge the district to act soon to increase the safety of staff and students in hotspot zones,” said STA president Matt Westphal in a release prior to the event.

READ ALSO: ‘Solidarity march’ by teachers, staff at Surrey school hit by COVID-19 variants, Feb. 23, 2021

Given that five of the B.C. Centre for Disease Control’s COVID-19 hotspots fall within the Surrey school district, Westphal said the association is again asking for improved health and safety measures in schools.

According to the STA, there have been 217 exposure letters sent to schools in the East Newton hotspot. In addition, eight classes beginning isolation this week, fall within four of the five Surrey hotspots.

Westphal noted it’s “impossible to maintain physical distancing in overcrowded schools,” which is a “core concern” when several schools are over-capacity.

The STA is calling for the immediate implementation of reduced class sizes, with the provision of more remote learning options; a mask mandate for kindergarten to Grade 3 students; and improved ventilation in classrooms and other workspaces.

READ ALSO: Masks required ‘at all times’ indoors for grades 4-12 at Surrey school district, March 27, 2021

“Teachers tell me that every day students share concerns about taking the virus home to their families,” said Westphal. “Some students call their parents to pick them up early from school because they’re afraid of getting infected in overcrowded classrooms where their peers are not wearing masks. Many of our students live in multi-generational families and are well aware of how the virus has struck down older people.”

READ ALSO: Surrey music teacher at home after two-week hospital stay battling COVID-19, Nov. 28, 2020

READ ALSO: ‘We are not safe,’ Surrey Teachers’ Association says in letter to Dr. Henry, Dec. 15, 2020



lauren.collins@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Instagram and follow Lauren on Twitter

CoronavirusEducation

Just Posted

(Clockwise, from top-left) Brenda DeJong, Carol Jones, Marcia Strang, Cathy Collis and Mark East star in the upcoming Sidekick Players Zoom presentation of the Norm Foster play “Halfway There,” directed by Carroll Lefebvre, on May 22, 2021. (Submitted photos)
Delta’s Sidekick Players continue ‘Foster Zoom Fest’ with ‘Halfway There’

Tsawwassen-based theatre company hosting another online performance on Saturday, May 22

Sergeant Mike Sanchez of the Surrey Gang Enforcement Team speaking with students. (Photo: RCMP).
Surrey RCMP’s anti-gang program goes virtual amid COVID-19 pandemic

Presentations aimed at youth available to be booked

Surrey City Hall. (File photo)
Discussions about Surrey-owned land in Langley should be behind closed doors, councillors say

That’s what Councillors Brenda Locke, Jack Hundial and former Surrey mayor Bob Bose say

Little House Alcohol & Drug Addiction Recovery Society COO Debbi McKenzie stands in front of the society’s namesake facility with Phoenix Drug Alcohol Recovery and Education Society CEO Keir Macdonald. (Submitted photo)
Delta’s Little House Society merging with Surrey-based Phoenix Society

Merger ‘came together in a really organic way’ as societies have been working together for two years

Elsje Hannah stands in the old safe at the Healing Place Counselling Centre in the Dale Building. Hannah converted the old safe into a chapel-area for quiet reflection for clients at her practice, which includes the not-for-profit Soul Matters Counselling. (Photo: Malin Jordan)
Not-for-profit counselling service opens in Cloverdale

Soul Matters Counselling is located on 176th in the Dale Building

Daily confirmed COVID-19 cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day rolling average in white, to May 12, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. preparing ‘Restart 2.0’ from COVID-19 as June approaches

Daily infections fall below 500 Friday, down to 387 in hospital

Bradley Priestap in an undated photo provided to the media some time in 2012 by the London Police Service.
Serial sex-offender acquitted of duct tape possession in B.C. provincial court

Ontario sex offender on long-term supervision order was found with one of many ‘rape kit’ items

Rich Coleman, who was responsible for the gaming file off and on from 2001 to 2013, was recalled after his initial testimony to the Cullen Commission last month. (Screenshot)
Coleman questioned over $460K transaction at River Rock during B.C. casinos inquiry

The longtime former Langley MLA was asked about 2011 interview on BC Almanac program

Mandarin Garden in Abbotsford had two event tents set up for outdoor dining. One of the tents, valued at more than $5,000, was stolen early Friday morning (May 14). (Submitted photo)
UPDATE: Dining tent stolen from Abbotsford restaurant is located

Owner says it would have cost more than $5,000 to replace the rented event tent

Steven Shearer, <em>Untitled. </em>(Dennis Ha/Courtesy of Steven Shearer)
Vancouver photographer’s billboards taken down after complaints about being ‘disturbing’

‘Context is everything’ when it comes to understanding these images, says visual art professor Catherine Heard

Trina Hunt's remains were found in the Hope area on March 29. Her family is asking the public to think back to the weekend prior to when she went missing. (Photo courtesy of IHIT.)
Cousin of missing woman found in Hope says she won’t have closure until death is solved

Trina Hunt’s family urges Hope residents to check dashcam, photos to help find her killer

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam listens to a question during a news conference, in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Restrictions will lift once 75% of Canadians get 1 shot and 20% are fully immunized, feds say

Federal health officials are laying out their vision of what life could look like after most Canadians are vaccinated against COVID-19

Police are at Ecole Mount Prevost Elementary but the students have been evacuated. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)
Gardener finds buried explosives, sparking evacuation of Cowichan school

Students removed from school in an ‘abundance of caution’

Most Read