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COVID-19 Overview

We take the safety of our staff and students very seriously and acknowledge that safety is a heightened concern during this time. We decided to pause all operations on March 17th, 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Administration has been closely monitoring the decision and working hard to update our policies, and have made the decision to resume in-person classes.

In March, many of our classes were moved online with the same dedication as always to give our students professional and competitive training. While online-only classes are still available, Vancouver Acting School is excited to offer full-time in-person classes starting Monday June 8th. We are working hard to follow directions from WorkSafe BC, the BC CDC, and updates from provincial and federal health administrators.

We are proud at Vancouver Acting School to be part of a studio that is an industry hub in Vancouver. During this time, everyone in our building will be held to the same standards. Please visit GO Studios for guidelines and policies set specifically for the entire space, including casting facilities.

Safety Plan

Below is our action plan that we have created to ensure safety without disrupting or compromising the quality of our classes at Vancouver Acting School.

Facility

  1. Masks or face coverings are mandatory for all students, instructors, staff, and guests.
  2. Entry will be denied to anyone without a mask or face covering or who is experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms.
  3. Temperatures will be taken upon arrival using a non-invasive temperature check. Anyone with a temperature over 38°C will be asked to wait outside the building for five minutes, at which time their temperature will be re-taken. If their temperature remains over 38°C, they will be denied entry into the building and advised to take the BC Self-Assessment Tool, and to seek testing if required.
  4. At the beginning of each shift, all staff must complete the Active Health Screening questionnaire as per the Provincial Health Order.
  5. Everyone must exit out the back door to reduce congestion at the front foyer and stairs.
  6. Hand washing/sanitation is mandatory upon entering the building. A sanitation station has been set up at our main entrance
  7. Signs and notices are placed throughout the building stating these policies, as well as guidelines on hand washing and mask wearing.
  8. Sanitation materials are placed in each classroom for instructor and student use.
  9. All visitors must have an appointment to enter the building to limit the number of people within the building. Students must make appointments to meet with admin and instructors outside of class time.
  10. Directional arrows have been implemented to reduce congestion in the hallways.
  11. Our kitchen facilities have been closed to discourage congregation and reduce contact with high touch surfaces.
  12. Many high traffic doors will be kept ajar to avoid contact with door handles.
  13. Classrooms have been spaced and clearly labeled to allow students and instructors to be a minimum of 6ft apart.
  14. Each classroom has a maximum occupancy limit that reflects the number of people that can safely physical distance within the space.
  15. Staff work stations have been spread out and work-from-home policies are available.

Classes

  1. Class sizes are limited to ensure physical distancing is practiced within the classrooms.
  2. Sufficient physical distancing is clearly measured to allow students to be able to remove their masks/face coverings when on camera – readers and camera operators will be a minimum of 6ft away from the student and each other.
  3. Class start times are staggered to allow for extra time between arrivals.
  4. Break times are staggered to further reduce chance of contact between classes.
  5. Webcams have been installed for classes to be viewed remotely if students are unable to come to class for any reason. Links for viewing will be securely released to students as needed.
  6. Several programs and individual classes have been moved online to help reduce the number of students and instructors in the building at once.

Case Management

Below is listed our set of procedures should there be an exposure event within our facilities.

Should a student or staff member test positive for COVID-19, the following procedure will be followed:

  1. President / CEO should be informed immediately, and it is their responsibility to action all items moving forward.
  2. Notify public health and follow their instructions on contact tracing.
  3. Based upon direction from public health, school leadership will identify appropriate communication and notification plan for students and staff.
  4. Temporarily move classes online for all students in the same class group as the infected person.
  5. Potentially infected people to get tests as required by public health and monitor their health and symptoms. Test results and health updates are reported to the President / CEO.
  6. When it can be safely determined that there is no further spread, return the class(es) onsite, and keep the infected person / people participating online.
  7. Once the infected person / people receive a clearance notice that they are no longer contagious, they are to provide that report to the President / CEO, and then they are permitted to return to onsite classes.

Student Support

Vancouver Acting School recognizes that at this time students might feel they are in need of extra support. This includes support for mental health, anti-racism support, and cultural/religious considerations. We encourage students to reach out to Student Services at studentservices@vancouveractingschool.com, or to look for support through Here2Talk.

Here2Talk is a service that connects students registered in a B.C. post-secondary institution to confidential mental health support for free. Their services are accessible 24/7 through their app, phone number, or website.

Testing Resources

If you are experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19 as outlined by the BC CDC, you should complete the Self-Assessment Tool and seek testing.

Several clinics are open for testing to the public in Vancouver and around the province of British Columbia. Some are available without an appointment, but you may need to book an appointment for others. Click HERE to see a list of all of the clinics available near you.

International Quarantine Requirements

All international students attending in-person classes at Vancouver Acting School (VAS) are required to complete a 14 day quarantine upon arrival to Canada. Students must complete a Self Isolation Plan before being permitted to attend classes onsite. A Self Isolation Plan template will be sent to students via email. Students are also required to use the ArriveCan App and BC COVID-19 App.

Communication

All accepted International Students will be in contact with Scott Gamble, President & CEO of Vancouver Acting School prior to their arrival. The following information on airport and travel procedures, accommodation, food, check-ins, community integration, support, and COVID-19 testing during the required fourteen (14) day quarantine period will be communicated to students through email. This information will be kept public on this webpage, as well as be accessible as a PDF document* that will be emailed to accepted international students.

* This PDF will be updated regularly as protocols are updated. Please check back regularly to view any changes.

Check-In Procedure

During the mandatory 14 day quarantine, students should expect to be contacted by Vancouver Acting School for regular check-ins. Failure to complete the following steps in a satisfactory manner will result in their acceptance being voided.

  1. Prior to arrival, student must submit to the President / CEO their full travel plan with dates and place of lodging, including all contact details. This information must be included in the Self Isolation Plan that will be sent to the student prior to their acceptance.
  2. School senior administration to provide check ins with quarantining student a minimum of 3 times per week, either by phone, video conference, or in-person.
  3. During check ins, students will need to confirm their current health status as it relates to COVID-19, report their general well-being, and confirm that they are complying with quarantine requirements.

Airport and Travel to Accommodation

Upon arrival to the airport, students are required to follow all airport policies. Please review the YVR site before your arrival, as it will be updated as policies change.

Students must wear a medical or non-medical face mask or other accepted face covering while in common areas of the airport, as well as during travel to their accommodation. Students are required to travel directly to their place of quarantine. Below is a list of possible direct forms of transportation:

Quarantine Accommodation

During your mandatory 14-Day quarantine, there some requirements your accommodation must meet according to the Canadian Public Health Services website. From the canada.ca website:

“Ensure you have a suitable place of quarantine that has access to the necessities of life and is not shared with those at risk of more severe disease.
Do not quarantine in places you can’t separate yourself from those who live with you. For example: in a group or communal living setting;
in a household with large families or many people; in a shared a small apartment,  or have roommates who have not travelled with you; or at a camp, student dorm or other group setting where there is close contact and shared common spaces.”

canada.ca

Click here to see hotel accommodations that are nearby the Vancouver Acting School campus.

Accessing Food During Quarantine

There are several ways to access food during quarantine, but it is important to check with your accommodation to ensure they accept deliveries, provide room service, or that your space has a kitchen to cook your own meals.

Takeout Delivery in Vancouver:

Grocery or Meal Kit Delivery (kitchen required):

Accessing Prescription Drugs

If you need access to prescription drugs during your quarantine, there are several options for delivery of prescription drugs through pharmacies.

Community Integration

While in quarantine, students will begin to be integrated into the VAS community.  Students will be entered into forums with all of our alumni to help them get to know the city, what to expect here, and provide a support system outside of the walls of the school.  In this same virtual space, students will also be introduced to their upcoming classmates so that they can start to build the network of people around them.  Additionally, weekly emailed communication will come from the admissions team to all new students to help prepare them for the first day of classes, and ensure they have everything they need in order to be successful.

Helpful Links