COVID-19 Response

Following the guidance of our Provincial Government, this section serves to provide our Montcrest Community with pertinent information in regard to COVID-19. We will continue to provide updates by email and in the Montcrest Mirror.


To maximize the health and safety of all community members, Montcrest is taking a “layered” approach with multiple measures to reduce the risk of COVID-19 and its spread. We are focused on the key tenets outlined by medical experts and Ministers of Health. This includes, but is not limited to, physical distancing in classrooms, increased health and safety measures, air quality, ventilation and plenty of time outdoors.

For the start of the 2021-22 school year, Montcrest’s focus is on creating a dynamic and safe environment for in-person learning.

If the need arrises due to government mandated closures, we will switch to our remote learning model, Montcrest Goes Mobile (MGM). The overall strategy of MGM focuses on the relationships between teachers and students and their individual needs, aligning with our school’s Mission.

As the nature of the pandemic changes and we gather information from a variety of sources, we will continue to update our plans. Updates will be shared by email and in the Montcrest Mirror. Links to these communications will also be shared on this page.



Declaration Statement

At this time, Montcrest School has zero cases of COVID-19. During the 2020-21 school year, Montcrest School has two recovered cases of COVID-19 (1 student, 1 teacher).

COVID-19 Updates

April 12, 2021 - Continued Remote Learning Announcement
April 9, 2021 - Head of School Update
April 5, 2021 - Remote Learning Announcement
April 1, 2021 - Head of School Communication - COVID-19 Update
March 25, 2021 - COVID-19 Update
March 22, 2021 - Head of School Communication - COVID-19 Update
I have recorded a 7 minute video of the following announcements:

– Single Symptom: the “stomach ache”
      – Montcrest currently classifies this complaint as nausea or a general feeling of being unwell
      – Will discuss with TPH later this week and provide clarity as it is not a named symptom of COVID-19
– Recess equipment 
      –  continuing to restrict additional equipment due to outdoor masking (masking during intense physical activity is not advised, but outdoor masking is advised)
      –  A priority to address once we can loosen some restrictions
      – Will discuss with TPH later this week and provide further clarity
– Travel advisories
      – Inter-Provincial travel is not advised at this time. If you do travel outside of Ontario, a self-imposed quarantine is suggested by Ontario Health upon your return.
      – International Travel restrictions requiring quarantine are still in place. (this is not in the video, I simply refer to Canadian travel)
– MGM feedback 
      – request will be coming your way as we begin plans for 2021/22. Have a think about what worked well, was tricky and if you have thoughts about how it might be done differently. We will send this out in a few days.
Thank you everyone!
Take care,
February 26, 2021 - TPH Variant of Concern

We continue to receive almost daily updates from Toronto Public Health (TPH) related to the Province’s response to COVID-19 in school settings. Yesterday we received a letter from TPH regarding the COVID-19 “variants of concern” that have now been confirmed in some Toronto schools (no CIS Toronto Independent Schools have reported a case at this time, to our knowledge).

At this point in time, TPH is not advising schools to take any additional precautions; however they are reminding everyone of the importance of the existing health and safety measures in place in our schools, including the revised screening tool for students and staff. Key highlights include:

If ANY MEMBER of the household (parent, sibling, etc) has ONE OR MORE symptoms (Screening tool) all members of the household who attend a school or work at a school, MUST STAY HOME until the individual(s) with symptoms receive a negative COVID-19 result.

Families should not be meeting with anyone outside of their households (playdates, etc) and should only be going out for “essential purposes”.

We continue to have success with our protocols here at Montcrest and thank you for your continued support in keeping children home who are unwell and picking them up promptly when they present with a symptom while at school.

TPH Letter

February 19, 2021 - TPH Updated COVID-19 Screening
As we return to school we continue to emphasis the importance of following all protocols to maintain a safe and protected environment for our students. Toronto Public Health (TPH) has updated it’s COVID-19 screening tool to reflect the changing environment. Please remember:
  • If anyone in your household has one or more COVID-19 symptoms, all children and adults who attend a school setting must stay home from school until COVID-19 has been ruled out 
  • If anyone in your household is self-isolating at home because they were a close contact of someone who had COVID-19, all children in the household will need to stay home from school until the person who was a close contact completes the 14 days of self-isolation. 
  • If anyone in your household has travelled outside of Canada in the last 14 days, all children and adults who attend a school setting must stay home from school until the person who travelled completes the federally-required 14 days of self-isolation.
To view the changes in more detail, please view a letter from TPH HERE.
February 17, 2021 - Spring Break Adjustments

Click HERE to view

February 9, 2021 - Town Hall & Delayed Start to Classes

Click HERE to view

January 18, 2021 - Provincial Emergency Declaration

Hi Montcrest,

It is wonderful to see students learning online and participating in community activities such as #FabFridaySpiritDays.

Please find attached a letter to Ontario parents from Toronto Public Health in regard to the Provincial Emergency Declaration.

Thank you for everyone’s continued efforts in keeping our community healthy and safe. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out.

Warmest wishes,

Erin Corbett
Head of School

January 7, 2021 - Remote Learning Extension

Good evening Montcrest,

Once again, we find ourselves in the familiar territory of 2 week extensions
The Ontario government has extended remote learning for Elementary and Middle School students until January 25, 2021. Therefore, in person classes will not resume on Monday as planned. You can read the full government press release here.
Your teachers will communicate with you in the days ahead, but MGM programming will continue Monday-Friday for all students from 8:30am-3:30pm.
This is disappointing news and we recognize it presents a significant challenge for many of you at home. Montcrest remains committed to meeting the needs of our students and supporting each and every family as best we can. Please let us know if you have challenges that we can help you with over the next couple of weeks. Reach out directly to you teacher, Matthew Barry, Jeff Borsten or myself. In addition, feel free to contact Daniela Aptowitzer, our school social worker, if you have specific mental health concerns for your child.
Thinking of you all and hoping to see you again soon.
Warmest wishes and big hugs,
January 5, 2021 - Announcement: Minister of Education

Good evening Montcrest community,

Happy New Year!

It was wonderful to have our students learning online today through MGM – Montcrest Goes Mobile.

Please find attached a letter to Ontario parents from Minister Lecce as shared today by the Private Schools and International Education (PSIE) Unit.

Thank you for everyone’s continued efforts in keeping our community healthy and safe. We look forward to having the students back on campus with us on January 11th.

Warmest wishes,

December 21, 2020 - Announcement: Online Learning - January 5 - 8, 2021

Good afternoon Montcrest families,

As you have likely heard, Ontario is moving to another full lockdown. This includes a remote start to learning in January at Elementary and Middle schools for a period of one week.

Therefore, all Montcrest students will use our MGM remote learning service from Tuesday, January 5th at 8:30am until Friday, January 8th. We will reevaluate as required.

You will receive more details from me, your teachers & Matthew Barry early in the New Year, but the team is taking some much needed time off! ☺️

Please call or text me if you have any questions in the meantime.

Take care,

December 14, 2020 - Toronto Public Health (TPH) Holiday Guidance

Good morning Montcrest community,

We wanted to share the attached letter from Toronto Public Health (TPH). It includes a holiday guide and additional information about gift giving and celebrations specific to school communities.

Thank you for everyone’s continued efforts in keeping our community healthy and safe.

December 4, 2020 - Toronto Public Health Updated Public Health Measures & Note from Head of School

Click HERE to view the letter from TPH.

 Good afternoon Montcrest community,

There are important and immediate changes to screening for children and schools in Toronto. You will find a letter from Toronto Public Health (TPH) attached outlining things in greater detail. 
I was informed by TPH at 1:15pm that effective immediately children presenting with ONE or more symptoms of COVID-19 must be kept home and parents should arrange for testing at an Assessment Centre. The new screening tool can be found here
Another significant change is that all siblings must also stay at home. Siblings cannot attend school until a negative test result is received for the child with symptoms. Montcrest students can still participate in class via MGM during this time.
If you choose not to get tested, your child and their siblings are required to stay home for 10 days and can only return to school if they are symptom free. While public schools do not require a doctor’s note to return to school, it may be required to return to Montcrest. This will be a decision that I make in collaboration with each family.
Given the nature of this abrupt announcement and the Grey Zone Lockdown in Toronto, if you wish to move your children to MGM until the holiday break and re-evaluate in the New Year, please know that option is available to you. I will ask that you email your teacher and Matthew Barry ( to let them know.
If you have questions about anything related to your child’s health or COVID-19 protocols at Montcrest, you know where to find me. My mobile number is in the signature line and I am happy to connect with any of you at any time. Please don’t hesitate to reach out.
The rollercoaster of emotion continues but I am comforted in the knowledge that we are all buckled up together. 
Thank you for your continued vigilance. 
Warmest wishes and big hugs,
November 25, 2020 - Toronto Public Health COVID-19 Letter

Click HERE to view.

November 25, 2020 - Important Message regarding COVID-19

Click HERE to view.

November 11, 2020 - Health & Safety Protocol Updates

Click HERE to view.

October 27, 2020 - COVID-19 Halloween Update

Click HERE to view.

September 28, 2020 - COVID-19 Update - Staying safe & vigilant
September 18, 2020 - Health & Safety Protocols & MGM 3.0 Message
May 20, 2020 - Head of School Communication - School Closure and Looking Ahead at 2020/2021
May 4, 2020 - Head of School Communication
April 24, 2020 - MGM 2.0 & Reentry Task Force Information

Please watch here:

April 14, 2020 - School Closure Update 4.0

Good evening Montcrest families.

As you have likely heard, Premier Ford announced this afternoon that schools will not reopen in early May and that the Government of Ontario is extending the Declaration of Emergency under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act for a further 28 days. You can read the full press release here. We will continue with the roll out of MGM and are making tweaks and improvements in response to your feedback last week. Rest assured, we were prepared for this eventuality and have been putting pieces together in the background for our students and families.


In my last video to you all, I shared that I wanted to have the opportunity to connect with families in the coming days and weeks. Given the latest update from the Premiere, it felt important to find the opportunity sooner rather than later. I want to thank the MPA, and particularly Candra Reynolds & Lindsay Evans for relinquishing their Cocktails and Conversations slot this Thursday evening so that I could host a gathering for our Montcrest families. We will reschedule their important conversation on Boosting Your Families Nutrition at a later date.

This Thursday, at 7:30pm I will provide a summary of results from our first parent satisfaction survey, give you a sense of where the school is at and our plans moving forward, as well as provide an opportunity for you to ask questions. If you would like to send me questions in advance, please feel free, alternatively, there will be opportunity during the event.

Please feel free to join me and other members of the Montcrest team at the following zoom link (community members, please check your email from Erin Corbett on April 14 or email for the link).

Join Zoom Meeting
Date: Thursday, April 16, 2020
Time: 7:30pm

I hope that you are able to join me on Thursday, but I will also be hosting coffee times and “grape juice” times for grade groups starting next week. If none of these offerings work and you would like to connect, as always, please reach out and we will find a suitable time.


This has been a taxing time, to be sure. I try to find strength in the simplest of things and am encouraged by your children’s resilience and the kindnesses I have experienced in our community. Thank you all for your continued support of Montcrest School. I look forward to connecting soon.

Warmest wishes and big hugs,

Erin Corbett
Head of School

April 3, 2020 - Erin Corbett's Video Message - Montcrest Goes Mobile Update
March 31, 2020 - Provincial Update - School Closure Update 3.0
Good evening Montcrest families.

You can look forward to another instalment of “Live from Casa Corbett” later this week, but given today’s Provincial update regarding school closures due to the global pandemic, I wanted to provide you with an immediate update.

Premier Ford and Education Minister Lecce, announced that Ontario public schools will remain closed until May 4, 2020. Please read the official News Release here.

You will read in the release that at this time, Private Schools are still closed until April 13th. This is because we fall under the Declaration of Emergency, which “only allows closures to be extended for one 14 day period at a time”. Since the announcement of school closures in early March, we have repeatedly stated that Montcrest would follow the directives provided by our Government Officials to ensure the safety, health and well-being of our students, families, faculty, and staff. As such, Montcrest School will align with today’s directive from the Government and extend our school closure until at least May 4, 2020. Ultimately, we will not return to school until it is deemed safe to do so.

 My video update this week will provide details on the next phase of Montcrest Goes Mobile and future opportunities for our community to connect in the coming days and weeks.

Thank you for your patience and support during this constantly evolving situation.

See you soon on a screen near you!

Warmest wishes and big hugs,

Erin Corbett – Head of School

March 20, 2020 - Montcrest Goes Mobile - MGM
Good evening Montcrest Families.

In the spirit of joining our teachers in trying new things, please watch this imperfect video (approx. 11 minutes) meant to address, at a very high level, what the next 2 weeks at Montcrest School will focus on.

Your homeroom teacher will send you specific details regarding your child’s online learning offering on Tuesday afternoon. Our programming will begin Wednesday morning at approximately 8:30-8:45am.

Please watch here:

Take care and I hope that you are all well.
“Talk” again soon.

Warmest wishes,

Erin Corbett
Head of School

March 16, 2020 - School Closure Update 2.0
Good afternoon Montcrest families,

As the COVID-19 response continues to evolve, I thought that I would reach out with a brief update so you didn’t think I was slacking and had stopped thinking of all of you!

These are some of the questions that I have been receiving from families:

I need something from the school!
If you are in need of anything from the school for your child, please contact me to arrange suitable pick up. If you have been travelling and are in self-isolation, we can find another option.

Will anyone be at the School on a regular basis?
We will have a very small skeleton staff on a rotating shift, effective immediately. This will include your Head of School, a facilities team member, and possibly a member of the Finance or IT team.

What does the two week school closure mean for my child’s learning needs?
We are in the process of establishing online learning plans, teacher videos, 1:1 and small group online conferencing, etc. This will look different depending on the age and stage of your child, but there will be plans for all of our students JK – Grade 8. Your homeroom teacher will be in touch on Tuesday, March 24th with an initial plan for the following days. Teachers will use a variety of platforms (again, matching age and stage) including: Seesaw, email, Zoom, Google classroom and the rest of the Google Suite and various other applications. We will focus our energy initially on Mathematics, Reading and Writing for all grades with additional work in other curricular areas in the upper elementary and middle school years. Specialists will also be providing things for students to work on and Learning Support teachers will be connecting with students 1:1 and in small groups online.

How are the teachers and staff preparing for this?
We will be virtually meeting with all faculty on Monday, March 23 for our scheduled PD Day. Monday and Tuesday will be dedicated to planning and collecting materials for a digitized environment and each teacher will have a member of the Academic leadership team to support them in planning and execution. Our IT department will be assisting faculty with tech needs and we will run operations using the tenets of an effective remote workplace.

Will Montcrest be extending the school year to accommodate for this disruption?
At this time, we are exploring all options. When there is more information to be shared, rest assured I will do so.

What if the closure lasts longer than 2 weeks?
We are dealing with the information that we have now but should the closure last longer, we will continue with an online environment and reevaluate as necessary.

I have another question that you haven’t answered.
Email me! Once school is back in session next week (online) your main contact will be your teacher, but I will still be here to support everyone as best I can.

This is certainly an unprecedented situation to navigate. Our Montcrest community is strong though and, while it will be unusual, we will manage it with typical Montcrest flare!

If any of you find yourself in a situation where you need assistance of any kind, please reach out. We are better together and can support you and your family if you’re in need.

You can count on hearing from me again later this week.
Take care and talk soon!

Erin Corbett
Head of School

March 12, 2020 - School Closure Update

Good evening, Montcrest families.

I have had the opportunity to connect with our Board of Governors and they all agree that we will follow the guidance of our Provincial Government. Montcrest School will close for 2 weeks following Spring Break. This means that we will reconvene classes on Monday, April 6th.

I regret any inconvenience that this causes you, but know that you appreciate our continued position to follow the advice and guidance from our Government agencies. At this time, it seems prudent to take this easy step to assist in managing any spread of COVID-19 to our community.

I will be connecting with our Leadership team and faculty over the coming days in order to establish a plan for on-line supports that we can provide to our students during this closure. We will also be determining the requirements for any on site staff, but will be looking for further guidance from Toronto Public Health prior to any decisions on that front. All of this to say, we have a few details to iron out over the next week but you can rest assured, you will hear from me again soon!

As always, reach out any time.
Take care,

Erin Corbett
Head of School

CIS Ontario
CIS Ontario