Oct. 30, 2020
New COVID-19 Symptoms Checklist and Positive Case Communication
Message from Chief Medical Officer of Health
Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw has written a letter to parents/guardians to explain changes to the daily symptoms checklist - it is now available in
Change in the daily COVID-19 symptoms checklist for children under 18
The Alberta government has updated the daily
COVID-19 symptoms checklist for children under 18. It will take effect on Monday, Nov. 2. The new checklist will apply to children under 18 as well as individuals who are 18 and attending high school.
Checklists for adults and children have been combined by the government and both are
available here in one link.
The government has also updated the
student illness – if a student has symptoms information to reflect these changes. The
If a Student is Sick or has COVID-19 Symptoms page on the CBE website will also be updated with this information.
The biggest change is that symptoms of runny nose and sore throat have been removed from the core symptoms list. The core symptoms for students that require isolation for 10 days are now
one (or more) of the following:
- loss of taste or smell
- shortness of breath
A student can return to school before 10 days
ONLY if a COVID-19 test is negative, symptoms are gone
AND the student is not a close contact of someone with COVID-19.
If a student has one of the following other symptoms, they can return to school if their symptom is improving, as long as it has been at least 24 hours.
- chills (without fever, not related to being outside in cold weather)
- sore throat or painful swallowing;
- runny nose or congestion;
- feeling unwell or fatigue;
- lack of energy
- nausea, vomiting and/or diarrhea
- unexplained loss of appetite;
- muscle or joint aches;
- headache; or
- conjunctivitis (pinkeye)
Testing is not necessary if the child has only
ONE of these symptoms and it improves after 24 hours. If the symptom does not improve, gets worse or another symptom develops, parents should continue to keep their child home until their symptom(s) go away. If a child has
TWO or more of the other symptoms, they can return to school once their symptoms go away, as long as it has been 24 hours since their symptoms started. A COVID-19 test is recommended but not required.
Translated versions of the new Alberta Health daily checklist for children under 18, as well as updates to other materials to reflect this change, are posted at
New Positive Case Notification Process for Schools
We have heard concerns from parents and staff about timely notification when there are positive COVID-19 cases in our schools. We were also concerned about the timelines and worked very closely with AHS to review this process.
Once we are aware of a positive case, we will send a notification to those parents/guardians who have students who may be impacted. Once AHS has completed its investigation, and provided direction to the school, further communication will be sent with quarantine or self-isolation direction if required.
Thank you for your cooperation in helping to keep all of our students and staff healthy and well.
Chief Superintendent of Schools