Due to the increase in the Omicron variant of COVID-19 cases in the NWT and in an effort to protect the health and safety of the Aurora College community, we will be extending online learning for most programs until February 4, 2022.  In-person classes are now anticipated to resume on Monday, February 7.

There will be a limited number of exemptions for classes that require face-to-face learning, specifically, certain skills labs in Health, ENRTP and Trades programs. These classes will continue under restrictions laid out in our current exemption plans. If these exemptions apply to a course or courses you are taking, your instructor(s) will be in touch to provide further details.

Library Services will continue to provide contactless delivery of materials and services until February 4.  Students and employees will be unable to physically access the libraries during this period.

Internet connectivity issues are ongoing across the NWT. The issues originate with the Territorial network and are being worked on and have resulted in several service interruptions. Please be prepared for further potential interruptions to the MS Team platform and other internet-dependent programs. This is not an Aurora College issue; there is nothing our IST team can do.

The restrictions, processes and rules we have in place make our learning environments very safe. However, as individuals, we must remain cautious, conduct our own risk assessments, and continue to engage in healthy practices such as cleaning personal spaces, good hand hygiene and respiratory practices, and the use of physical distancing where appropriate.

Public health experts have indicated that with the Omicron variant COVID-19 has hit a new level, that potentially everyone has been exposed or will be exposed in the near future and that we should govern our actions accordingly. However, taking simple proactive measures like the ones mentioned here will help keep the risks low. If you have concerns regarding your mental or physical health, please speak with your instructors about your situation.

If you have to access the campus to pick up bookstore or library items please be aware that the entire NWT remains under a mandatory masking mandate for indoor public spaces, which includes all Aurora College facilities. Masks must be worn at all times in all public areas where you may encounter others, including foyer and entrance areas.  In compliance with Health Canada recommendations, Aurora College now requires the use of 3-layer non-medical masking as a minimum standard.  This includes 3-layer blue disposable or cloth masks or the 5 layer N95 or KN95 masks available commercially.  The use of neck warmers or less than three layer masks is now unacceptable at Aurora College facilities. 

If you aren’t feeling well, or have any symptoms of COVID, please stay home. Similarly, if you live with an individual who is not feeling well, please stay home. If you’ve had close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, we ask that you notify your instructor as soon as possible and follow the recommendations of the Office of the Chief Public Health Officer.

As always we will continue to update all members of the Aurora College community as soon as we are able when the situation changes or there is new information to share.

Thank you for your continuing patience; let’s stay safe and treat each other with kindness and compassion.

FORT SMITH, NT – Aurora College is committed to the health and safety of students, employees and residents of the NWT. To meet the commitment to safety, all students and volunteers onsite at any of the College facilities will be required to provide proof of vaccination against COVID-19 starting on March 1, 2022. A similar policy was put in place earlier this year for College staff and contractors.

Students and volunteers are encouraged to get vaccinated as soon as possible so that they will have time to have both doses required to meet the policy by the March 1 deadline. A person is considered “fully vaccinated” 14 days after receiving their second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Exceptions will be considered on a case-by-case basis for medical reasons or based on protected grounds under the Human Rights Act.

Students who choose not to be vaccinated, who do not have both doses, or do not provide vaccination will still be able to come to classes at the College but will be required to undergo regular COVID-19 testing and wear specific Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). COVID-19 testing kits and PPE will be provided to students and volunteers by Aurora College.

Early in the new year the College will engage with students to get feedback on how to make the implementation of the vaccine policy as student-centred as possible. Discussion is expected to focus on how the policy can be made to work in the most effective way possible for students while still achieving the goal of having students fully vaccinated by March 1, 2022.

Covid-19 INFORMATION

2021-2022 Academic Year

We are pleased that most of our 2021-2022 programming will be delivered face to face at all of our locations. In addition, we will continue to enhance and expand the number and types of programs offered through distance learning. Our Campuses and CLCs will continue to follow COVID-19 protocols, which include physical distancing, enhanced cleaning, and the use of non-medical masks and hand sanitizer. Our new mandatory student vaccination policy will take effect on March 1, 2022. Refer to our FAQ document for more information. 

Currently, non-medical masks are required in all indoor spaces in the NWT, which includes our campuses, Community Learning Centres, and other facilities. Physical distancing of two metres (six feet) is required wherever possible.

Student housing is open and available as usual. Common areas in shared accommodations will be subject to enhanced cleaning protocols.

NWT-wide Information: Self-Isolation, Travel, Testing, Vaccinations, Gatherings, etc.

Refer to the Government of the Northwest Territories’ COVID-19 information page for all questions and inquiries, or call 8-1-1 (within the NWT) or 1-833-378-8297 (outside the NWT).

*All program decisions are subject to changes in directions from the Office of the Chief Public Health Officer