Information for Parents & Caregivers
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If a child becomes ill with COVID-19 symptoms while at school/child care, the administration will follow guidelines to ensure that the child is separated from others and cared for. A parent or caregiver should pick them up as soon as possible.
- Self-isolate immediately. Follow the guidance for individuals with symptoms.
- If they are eligible, or have access to a rapid test, get tested.
- If the rapid test is negative and they are still showing symptoms, a second rapid test should be completed in 24-48 hours.
- Notify close contacts that your child has symptoms
- Follow the school/childcare screening tool results for returning to school/childcare.
The Government of Canada website provide information on how to care for a child who needs to self-isolate, which may include a child who has tested positive, has symptoms of COVID-19, or a household member of someone with COVID-19.
For medical or health advice, contact your health care provider or Health Connect Ontario toll-free at 8-1-1.
If a child is having difficulty breathing or develops severe symptoms, call 9-1-1.
- When calling an ambulance, tell the dispatcher that the child has/may have COVID-19. If a child is going to the hospital in a private vehicle, call ahead and let the hospital know they have/may have COVID-19.
For information about testing and quarantining after international travel visit the Government of Canada website.
- PCR testing is available only to individuals who meet specific criteria outlined by the Ministry of Health.
- The Ministry of Education has provided publicly funded schools and licensed child care centres with rapid antigen test kits for symptomatic students, children, and staff. Students and staff will receive a rapid antigen test kit proactively, for at-home use if they develop symptoms.
- Parents/guardians can choose if their child participates in this additional testing option. If participating, testing is to be completed at home.
- If a symptomatic individual (staff or student) chooses not to participate in this testing option, they would be presumed positive and would be required to isolate and follow the updated guidance.
No. A positive Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) is highly indicative that the individual has COVID-19 and does not need to be confirmed with a PCR test.
If you have access to PCR or RAT testing and test positive, please follow the guidance for Individuals Who Have Tested Positive.
Instructions for how to use a Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) are provided with the test itself; however, the following instructional videos provide clear visual demonstrations on how to perform a RAT.
- How to test your child Rapid Response™ video (English)
- Rapid antigen testing for asymptomatic students video
- Tests antigéniques rapides pour les élèves asymptomatiques vidéo
Visit the links below for further direction related to the specific test you are using:
- BTNX Rapid Response™ (English)
- BTNX Rapid Response (French)
- SD Biosensor (English)
- SD Biosensor (French)
- Trimedic FaStep® (English)
- Trimedic FaStep® (French)
Fact Sheets in Other Languages:
For fact sheets in other languages visit the Ministry of Health website.
- If the first rapid antigen test (RAT) is negative, complete a second test within 24-48 hours of the first test.
- If two consecutive RATs, separated by 24-48 hours, are both negative, the symptomatic individual is less likely to have COVID-19 infection. The individual should isolate until symptoms are improving for at least 24 hours (or 48 hours if gastrointestinal symptoms are present).
- If symptoms persist / worsen, individuals are encouraged to seek advice from Health Connect Ontario or a health care provider
If you have access to PCR or Rapid Antigen Testing (RAT) and your child has tested positive, they must self-isolate. Depending on vaccination status, household members may also be required to self-isolate. Follow public health guidance for details on how long to isolate and additional precautions to be taken.
The below definitions are referenced in the COVID-19 School/Childcare Screening. It is important to follow the guidance provided based on the result of your screening.
- Fully vaccinated: Individuals are considered fully vaccinated 14 days or more after getting a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine series. You are also considered to be fully vaccinated if you have received:
- One or two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine not authorized by Health Canada, followed by one dose of a COVID-19 mRNA vaccine authorized by Health Canada at least 14 days ago, or
- Three doses of a COVID-19 vaccine not authorized by Health Canada with the final dose received at least 14 days ago.
- Symptoms: The online COVID-19 School/Childcare Screening lists ten symptoms to screen for each day. The symptoms are: fever/chills, cough, difficulty breathing, decrease or loss of taste or smell, sore throat, runny nose/nasal congestion, headache, feeling very tired, muscle aches/joint pain, nausea/vomiting/diarrhea.
- Positive for COVID-19: For the purposes of daily screening, an individual is considered to be positive for COVID-19 if they have:
- Received a positive Rapid Antigen or PCR test result; OR
- Any of the following symptoms of COVID-19: fever/chills, cough, difficulty breathing, decrease or loss of taste or smell; OR
- Two or more of the following symptoms: sore throat, runny nose/nasal congestion, headache, feeling very tired, muscle aches/joint pain, nausea/vomiting/diarrhea.
Vaccine Information for Children, Youth and Caregivers
Information, booking, and ways to ease anxiety about getting a vaccine.
It is always important to continue to follow public health advice:
- Monitor for symptoms daily using the school and childcare screening tool.
- Wash your hands and high-touch surfaces regularly.
- Follow the guidelines for our region to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.
- Wearing a mask/face covering and maintaining 2 metres of physical distancing in public are strongly recommended.
Masking tips for children that are sensitive to touch:
- Use a soft fabric mask
- Find a mask that ties around the head, or use a clip to tie the ear loops behind the head
Other Helpful Resources
- How to support your child’s mental health during COVID-19
- Mental Health Resources in Windsor and Essex County A list of programs and services available in Windsor and Essex County to support student mental health