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Coronavirus Information for Families and Staff

Coronavirus Information for Families and Staff

Fort McMurray Public School Division (FMPSD) is aware of concerns linked to the Coronovirus, COVID-19 with the recent announcement about presumptive cases in Alberta. While the risk is low, we have been working on implementing measures for the prevention and control of respiratory viruses. Student and staff safety remains an FMPSD priority - always. 


Memo to FMPSD Staff - March 28, 2020 - 3:30 p.m.

Message from the Superintendent - March 26, 2020:

English / Amharic / Arabic / Mandarin 

Somali / Spanish / Tagalog/ Urdu

Letter to Parents/Guardians from Minister of Education, LaGrange - March 20, 2020 - 5:30 p.m.

Memo to Parents/Guardians - March 16, 2020 - 6:00 p.m.

Memo to Parents/Guardians - March 16, 2020 - 5:00 a.m.





Frequently Asked Questions


List of Canceled Events


We understand our students, staff, and families may have questions about Coronavirus. We encourage you to refer to official sources such as Alberta Health Services for the latest information. 

Alberta Health Services update March 8, 2020

Alberta Health Services update March 6, 2020.




There are two important ways to prevent and control respiratory viruses in school settings:

The first is for students and staff who are ill with respiratory illness symptoms (fever, cough, fatigue, and/or muscle aches) to stay home from school. If your child is not feeling well, we ask that you keep them home so they can rest and recover. As always, please remember to inform the school of the absence.

The second way to prevent and control respiratory viruses is the consistent practice of good respiratory etiquette and hand hygiene. Good respiratory etiquette includes covering the mouth and nose during coughing or sneezing with a tissue or a flexed elbow and disposing of used tissues in a plastic-lined waste container, followed by hand hygiene. Hand hygiene is the washing of hands with plain soap and water, which is effective at removing visible soil as well as viruses. We are enhancing our communication to students about hand-washing, sneeze/cough etiquette, and preventing illness – including adding additional cleaning supplies and hand sanitizer supplies at each site across the school Division.

REMINDER: Masks are not necessary for people who are not experiencing symptoms. For children in particular, masks can be irritating and may actually increase touching of the face and eyes, which increases the risk of infection. Children who have symptoms should be kept home from school rather than relying on masks.


Cleaning and Disinfecting

Regular cleaning and disinfecting of high-touch surfaces (e.g., door handles, water fountain push buttons) helps prevent the transmission of viruses. Our school Division has asked our custodial services to focus attention on daily cleaning and disinfection of high-touch surfaces at all of our school sites.


Food Sharing

Students should not be sharing food, utensils, dishes, and water bottles or drink containers. Although this practice is important for preventing exposures to allergens, it is equally important in reducing virus transmission between children.


Psychological Considerations

A new virus such as the COVID-19 can create anxiety and be difficult for students/children to understand, especially if someone they know is sick, or they see or hear troubling messages on the radio, Internet or television. It is normal for children to feel worried and nervous and have questions.

You can support your children by reassuring them about their personal safety and health:

  • Limit their access to news and online stories about the issue.
  • Maintain a normal routine unless otherwise advised by an authority.
  • Encourage them to talk to you about their concerns.
  • Reassure them they are safe. This is a child-friendly video on COVID-19.
  • Advise them of steps they can take to stay healthy:
  • Wash hands regularly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds (sing the ABC’s to measure time), especially after coughing or sneezing.
  • Cough and sneeze into arm or tissue.
  • Stay home if they are not feeling well.
  • Keep hands away from face and mouth.
  • Stay healthy by eating healthy foods, keeping physically active, and getting enough sleep.


Health Information

Contact 8-1-1 (Health Link) or your health care provider for questions about your personal health situation.


Once again, please refer to official sources such as Alberta Health Services for the latest information.

Please note:  School divisions do not have the authority to make public health decisions. If steps are taken in relation to a public health concern, it is at the direction of the Alberta Health Services and local health authorities. Fort McMurray Public Schools is in regular communication with Alberta Education, Alberta Health Services, and school divisions across the province.