Emergency Notice

Registration for transportation is open!

Please visit the Transportation website to learn more: https://www.gsacrd.ab.ca/transportation

Dear Families,

We hope this message finds you well and enjoying a restful spring break. We want to bring to your attention an astronomical event that will be occurring on April 8th: a partial solar eclipse. While this is an exciting event, it's important to prioritize safety, especially for our students.

During a solar eclipse, the Moon moves between the Sun and the Earth, partially or completely blocking the Sun's rays. The danger lies in the fact that even during a partial eclipse, the Sun's intense radiation can cause severe damage to the eyes. Looking at the Sun directly during an eclipse can lead to solar retinopathy, permanently damaging the retina's light-sensitive cells.

In our communities, the partial solar eclipse is expected to begin at 11:54 a.m., peak at 12:46 p.m., and finish by 1:39 p.m. We are taking precautionary measures to ensure the safety of all students during this time.

Here are the safety measures we will be implementing:

Indoor Activities: Students will be indoors from 11:30 am to 2:00 pm. It's crucial to remind students that looking directly at a solar eclipse, even for a short period, can cause eye damage. Additionally, looking at the eclipse through sunglasses or windows is not safe. We will ensure that classroom blinds are closed during this time.

Kindergarten Transportation: Mid-day kindergarten bus runs will be cancelled. Kindergarten classes will continue as usual, allowing parents to decide whether to transport their children. Our staff will contact each kindergarten student who typically takes a mid-day bus to ensure they have received this information.

Communication with Older Students: Parents of older students, especially those who drive, will be encouraged to teach their children about the risks of driving and being outside during the eclipse.

Cancellation of Field Trips and Academy Programs: Any field trips or Academy sessions scheduled for that day will be cancelled. Even if a trip is expected to return before the eclipse, unforeseen delays could pose risks.

Preschool Programming Adjustments: Schools with preschool students will communicate and adjust programming as necessary to ensure families do not drop off or pick up children between 11:30 am and 2:00 pm.

We want to assure you that these measures are being put in place with the utmost concern for the safety and well-being of our students. We also strongly advise all families to follow the guidelines provided by the Canadian Optometrists of Canada regarding eye safety during the eclipse.

For additional information, please see below:

Click here for more information about the eclipse.

Click here for information from the Canadian Association of Optometrists.

Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.

Warm regards,

Greater St. Albert Catholic Schools