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Heartland’s response to the COVID-19 (coronavirus)

Heartland’s response to the COVID-19 (coronavirus)

As part of our response to the evolving COVID-19 situation, this website has been created to provide students, staff, agents, and homestay families with the most up-to-date information about COVID-19, including tips for staying healthy, information for travelers, and other useful resources.

Heartland is continuing to follow the advice of the Public Health Agency of Canada, the World Health Organization, Manitoba Health, and Ontario Health. The Public Health Agency of Canada has assessed the current public health risk associated with the virus for Canada as low. At this point in time, Heartland has no cases presumed or confirmed.

Heartland is also closely following updates from industry associations such as Languages Canada, and the International Association of Language Centres (IALC).

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Updates

March 31, 2020

  • Care for Your Mental Health. The COVID-19 pandemic brings a high level of stress and anxiety as it rapidly changes the way we work, socialize and live. Caring for your mental health is important in these times. Access to a new digital therapy from Morneau Shepell will soon be available to Manitobans.
  • AbilitiCBT digital therapy program is a new digital therapy program that will help with anxiety symptoms related to the COVID-19 pandemic. You will be able to connect to a professional therapist trained to help you deal with:
    • pandemic challenges
    • the state of uncertainty
    • physical isolation
    • care for family and community members
    • information overload
    • stress management
  • The chief provincial public health officer is issuing orders under The Public Health Act as approved by the minister of health, seniors and active living.  The following measures will be in place as of 12:01 a.m. on Wednesday, April 1:
    – Public gatherings are limited to no more than 10 people at any indoor or outdoor place or premises.
    – All restaurants and other commercial facilities that serve food are prohibited from serving food to customers in their premises.  This prevents eat-in dining at all facilities.  However, restaurants and other commercial facilities can prepare and serve food for delivery or takeout.  If this takes place, the operator of the restaurant must ensure that all people maintain the appropriate social distancing from other customers when picking up food.
    – All businesses that are not listed in the schedule of critical services that accompanies the order must close between April 1 and April 14. This closure order does not prevent these businesses from operating on a remote basis.
    – Municipal transit services, taxis and other private vehicles for hire can continue to operate.  The operator of the vehicle must take measures to ensure there is a reasonable separation of people in a vehicle.  This order does not contain specific distance restrictions because it is hard to impose a limit in small vehicles.  The goal is to ensure a reasonable level of spacing between people.

March 30, 2020

  • Heartland is proud to continue offering high value cultural activities, online! As part of our normal class schedule, Friday afternoons are reserved for giving students the chance to participate in unique, Canadian experiences.  With our new online platform, we can still bring this important part of English learning to students, in the comfort of their home!
  • Friday, April 3rd will be our first online activity – a live musical performance and Q&A with Marie-Elyse Badeau, an accomplished viola player from the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra.
  • Friday, April 3rd we will also offer an Immigration Session with on of Manitoba’s top immigration lawyers, Reis Pagtakhan, following the WSO performance.

March 27, 2020

  • Following provincial recommendations, Heartland’s buildings will continue to be closed until at least April 17th.  Heartland online classes will remain available for current students and new applicants during this time.

March 24, 2020

  • Heartland’s first online class start date was March 23, 2020.  The online placement test was a success and students were able to join their classmates virtually for their first classes. Overall the reviews have been positive! We are looking at ways to expand on this option to include more new students who are already in Canada, and hopefully students who are abroad as well. Please keep checking for updates.

March 20, 2020

  • The province of Manitoba (which includes the city of Winnipeg) is declaring a provincewide state of emergency under The Emergency Measures Act to protect the health and safety of all Manitobans and reduce the spread of COVID-19. The public health orders currently in place for a period of 30 days include:
    • Limiting public gatherings of more than 50 people at any indoor or outdoor place or premises. This includes places of worship, gatherings and family events such as weddings and funerals.
      • This does not apply to a facility where health care or social services are provided. Retail businesses including grocery or food stores, shopping centres, pharmacies or gas stations must ensure separation of one to two metres between patrons assembling in the business. Public transportation facilities must also ensure that people assembling at the facility are reasonably able to maintain a separation of one to two metres from others assembling at the facility.
      • Limiting hospitality premises where food or alcohol is served or any theatres offering live performances of music, dance and other art forms as movies theatres to 50 people or 50 per cent of the capacity of the premises, whichever is lesser.
      • These establishments must be able to ensure social distance of one to two metres between customers.
    • Immediate closures of all bingo and gaming events.
    • Immediate closures of all wellness centres offering physical activities, gyms, fitness centres and athletic clubs and training facilities.

March 19, 2020

  • Heartland developing online placement test and orientation to allow new students to join virtual classes soon.  News will be released soon.

March 18, 2020

  • First day of online classes for both campuses a success.

March 17, 2020

March 16, 2020 – Heartland Winnipeg:

  • working towards offering online classes. More details to be announced as soon as possible
  • reduce class sizes by adding another classroom
  • reconfigure desks in classrooms to allow more space between students
  • is only admitting new students who have already been in Winnipeg for 14 days or longer and have been symptom-free
  • is requiring all students to wash hands before entering class
  • installed two hand-sanitizer dispensers outside of elevator

March 12, 2020

  • Heartland created a COVID-19 website resource page where we post the most up-to-date information about COVID-19, including tips for staying healthy, information for travelers, and other resources for students, staff, agents, and homestay families.

March 9, 2020

  • COVID-19 hand-out circulated to all staff and students, and added to weekly student orientation

March 6, 2020

  • Posters mounted throughout school advising students on how to stay healthy (wash hands, avoid touching face, staying home when sick, etc.)
  • Additional cleaning procedures scheduled
  • Communication circulated to staff