Grande Prairie, AB – Monday, June 1 will mark the partial reopening of Peace Wapiti Public School Division (PWPSD) school playgrounds within the six municipalities that make up the Grande Prairie Regional Emergency Partnership (GPREP): the City and the County of Grande Prairie; the towns of Beaverlodge, Sexsmith and Wembley; and the Village of Hythe. The M.D. of Greenview has also reopened its playgrounds, which includes PWPSD schools in Ridgevalley and Grovedale. Plans to reopen playgrounds in the northern portion of the school division will follow any future announcements from area municipal and county offices.
Using playgrounds does have some risks. PWPSD staff will not be sanitizing school playground structures. Children may find it difficult to avoid touching their eyes, nose, or mouth. This can lead to the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) to playground equipment, other children, and other families. Parents are encouraged to review the provincial Guidance for Playgrounds document. Signage posted at PWPSD playgrounds will reflect key points from this document.
Playground users must comply with current gathering restrictions and maintain physical distancing of two metres between individuals who are not from the same household.
Key points to remember:
- Those who are sick or have symptoms related to COVID-19 must not use playgrounds.
- PWPSD staff will not be sanitizing playground structures.
- Individual users should assess the exposure risk of attending a playground.
- Parents should remind children not to touch their face, practice proper hand hygiene, and limit contact with individuals outside their household.
- Wear a mask in public places where maintaining a distance of two metres is difficult.
- Limit congregating with other people while entering, using and leaving the playground.
- Carry and use hand sanitizer containing at least 60 per cent alcohol content.
- Use the playground closest to home to limit contact with others.
- Any water fountains will be shut off and children should bring a labeled water bottle. It is extremely important not to share drinks or food with others.
- Follow the guidelines on the posted signage and in the provincial Guidance for Playgrounds document.
PWPSD prioritizes the health and safety of students and their families. If an increase in cases of COVID-19 occurs, or guidelines are not being followed, playgrounds may close again to prevent the spread of the virus. PWPSD will continue to monitor and adhere to provincial guidelines.
GPREP Playground Signage: