Student trip to Italy was cancelled for Mount Douglas Secondary amid COVID-19 fears. (Google Image)

Coronavirus causes cancellation of Saanich school trips

School district cancels Italian trips by Mount Douglas and Royal Oak students

The Greater Victoria School District (SD61) and the Saanich School District (SD63) will cancel two student trips to Italy amid concerns over a COVID-19 travel advisory.

The SD61 cancelled trip involves 16 students from Mount Douglas Secondary scheduled to travel on a cruise excursion during spring break. According to Dave Eberwein, Saanich School District superintendent, Royal Oak Middle School will reschedule their student trip to Italy and Germany.

The district’s choice to cancel the trips comes after a level three travel advisory issued for the northern region of Italy. Both districts will decide whether to cancel any trips on a case-by-case basis.

Concerned parents from Parkland Secondary will meet on Wednesday night with school officials to discuss the potential cancellation of a trip to England, France and Spain.

Cancellations will be discussed and plans will be shared with parents, but no cancellations have been announced at this time, Eberwein said.

In Italy, a country that has now reported the highest number of the coronavirus cases outside of Asia, authorities reported Monday that they have 1,694 confirmed cases of the virus, up from just 1,100 on Saturday. Eleven cities and towns have been placed on lock-down, banning people from entering or leaving affected areas. The move has put an estimated 100,000 people under quarantine.

ALSO READ: Sooke School District cancels one student trip and reviews another over COVID-19 scare

SD61 said they are closely monitoring the trip advisory to decide if any other student trips abroad need to be cancelled. Any non-essential travel to affected areas will be avoided.

SD 61 will increase cleaning and handwashing within their schools. In addition, a letter home to remind parents and guardians of the importance of handwashing and respiratory etiquette was sent.

“Student safety is our first priority, and the school district will continue to assess each scheduled trip case by case,” according to a release from the Greater Victoria School District.

Sooke School District officials joined the two districts in cancelling one oversees school trip while another is in doubt. The first trip planned for Journey Middle School students that would have seen 21 students depart for Japan on March 14 has been cancelled. The second trip, planned by students at Edward Milne Community School, is under review.

With files from Tim Collins.

ALSO READ: B.C. confirms 9th case of COVID-19 as man who travelled to Iran

sarah.schuchard@saanichnews.com


Like us on Facebook, or send a tweet to @sarah_schuchard
and follow us on Instagram

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Sooke creates local business directory during COVID-19 pandemic

District’s community update asks residents for vigilance during crisis

Volunteers collect and deliver pet food across Greater Victoria during COVID-19 pandemic

Richard Hawkes has ‘food coming out of his ears’ and would love to help those in need

COVID-19 has been impacting Canadian economy since January

But full effects of pandemic won’t be known for months

Local grocers, Victoria Foundation raise over $30,000 for Food Rescue Project

Donation will go towards food insecure communities in region

Cycling advocates call for more pedestrian space, temporary bike lanes during pandemic

An increase in foot traffic means transportation needs to be prioritized, advocates say

First Nations, remote communities need special attention in pandemic, Freeland says

Health-care workers, seniors, Indigenous Peoples some of people most at risk, health officials say

POLL: Will you be able to make your rent or mortgage payment this month?

With the COVID-19 delivering a devastating blow to the global economy, and… Continue reading

Doctors trained abroad want to join front lines of COVID-19 fight in Canada

B.C. is looking to allow internationally trained doctors to work under the supervision of attending physicians

Fake test kits and other COVID online scams play on public anxiety: fraud centre

Vancouver has seen a spike in commercial property crimes, with offices and stores empty because of COVID-19

Canada’s 75% wage subsidy is coming, but not for several weeks: finance minister

Subsidy will cost Canada $71 billion, but push down cost of emergency benefit, Morneau said

Feds amplify stay-home message as cost of financial aid to Canadians mounts

Liberals have unveiled around $200B in direct financial aid and tax deferrals

‘We will get through this’: B.C. sees new COVID-19 death, but 57% have recovered

A total of 1,066 people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus

World COVID-19 update: Six million U.S. jobless claims; Russia sends medical aid to U.S.

Comprehensive update with COVID-19 news from around the world

Couple celebrates 61st anniversary through Vancouver Island seniors’ home window

Frank and Rena Phillips marked occasion at Nanaimo Seniors Village this week while social distancing

Most Read