The TDSB continues to implement its COVID-19 vaccination procedure to support the health and safety of students, staff and our school communities.
The procedure says that any staff who had disclosed that they were not vaccinated were to be placed on non-disciplinary administrative leave without pay, effective today. As a result, approximately 330 staff members are being put on administrative leave as of today.
As we implement the procedure, it is important that there is minimal impact on students’ learning, well-being and safety. As part of this plan, we are relying on occasional/casual staff to fill in for these staff members but, like other school boards across Ontario, we are seeing lower levels of occasional/casual staff taking available jobs. In addition, we know that the absence of some staff would have a serious impact on the ability of some schools to maintain the safety and well-being of students.
With those important factors in mind, we have decided to grant temporary exemptions to approximately 290 staff out of the approximately 620 unvaccinated staff members (or 0.7% of the approximately 41,600 TDSB staff members). These exemptions will only last until we are able to adequately fill these positions on a case-by-case basis.
Most of those who received a temporary exemption are school-based staff – such as Special Needs Assistants, Designated Early Childhood Educators and Lunchroom Supervisors – who supervise students including those with additional needs and/or provide safety or health related support. We know this is an incredibly challenging time for the staff impacted by this procedure, but we are doing all we can to ensure the health and safety of our students and staff.
It is important to note that all staff, including those with temporary exemptions, are continuing to meet all Ministry of Education requirements including regular rapid antigen testing three times per week for those that are unvaccinated.
Thank you for your continued support, patience and understanding as we implement the Board’s vaccination procedure while prioritizing the safety and well-being of students.