Melanie Mark, Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Training, has released the following statement regarding the guidelines for reducing the risk of COVID-19 at post-secondary institutions in B.C.:
“I am pleased that the Go Forward Guidelines have been released. They will provide greater certainty to students, faculty and staff at our post-secondary institutions as they prepare for the fall 2020 semester during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The guidelines were developed by the post-secondary sector, with representatives from Indigenous educational groups, key student associations and major post-secondary labour organizations.
“They provide a minimum standard for both public and private institutions as they develop their own COVID-19 safety plans. They will include detailed policies, guidelines and procedures to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19 in their campus communities.
“They also include general guidance on everything from physical distancing, cleaning and hygiene practices, in-person and online course protocols, mental-health supports, student housing, campus pubs, child care and research.
“The public expects that our institutions are places of innovation, and our government expects that each of B.C.’s 25 post-secondary institutions follow the amended health order on mass gatherings by the provincial health officer. The clarification allows for more in-person course delivery to ensure that everyone in B.C. has access to educational opportunities as close to home as possible.