Superintendent Angus Wilson said school closures are a possibility if staffing levels dwindle due to covid. / Kevin Mills file photo

Superintendent Angus Wilson said school closures are a possibility if staffing levels dwindle due to covid. / Kevin Mills file photo

More school closures a possibility says Mission superintendent

Heritage Park Middle School was closed last week due to staff shortages

Higher than normal staffing absences at Heritage Park Middle School, forced the local facility to shut down last week.

Students and teachers quickly switched to a remote learning system.

While the school was set to re-open yesterday (Jan. 20) Mission school superintendent Angus Wilson said it is possible there will be more closures in the future.

Wilson said the closure isn’t due to “covid in the school” in fact he said student attendance at this time is normal – an average amount of students away – but “we did have a number of teachers out” and about half of those teacher absences were covid-related, either due to actual illness or self-isolation because of close contact.

“And that’s enough to tip it over and make it hard to keep the school open,” said Wilson.

He went on to say the shortages impact the learning and safety of students.

While the number of student absences in Mission’s elementary schools are currently normal, it has risen slightly in the past week. Absences in Mission’s middle schools are higher than normal.

“We are noticing a few more absences by teachers in other schools, but so far its manageable,” said Wilson adding it is a “fluid situation.”

The situation is being constantly monitored.

If you have any concerns you can contact the superintendent at angus.wilson@mpsd.ca.