Total solar eclipse prompts PA Day change

SOUTH DUNDAS – An astronomic event has prompted local school boards to reschedule a planned professional activity day in April.

On April 8, a rare total solar eclipse will occur with the apex of the eclipse taking place in the skies over Eastern Ontario. According to the Canadian Space Agency, a total solar eclipse is when the Moon perfectly aligns between the Earth and Sun. When this alignment takes place, “temporary darkness will sweep across parts of the country, captivating countless spectators.”

The eclipse’s “path of totality” meaning the line it follows from start to finish, sweeps along the St. Lawrence River and Lake Ontario. This narrow 100-115 kilometre band of the eclipse occurs the same time as students are leaving from school for the day.

Directly viewing an eclipse can cause permanent damage to a person’s eye sight. Protective eyeware designed for safely viewing an eclipse is required. Regular sunglasses do not provide enough protection to prevent temporary or permanent eye damage.

Both the Upper Canada District School Board and the Catholic District School Board of Eastern Ontario had Professional Activity days scheduled for April 26. The boards rescheduled that PA Day to April 8. The move is to ensure or lessen the risk that students are outside at the time of the eclipse and reduce potential risk of eye damage.

The eclipse will begin to be seen in South Dundas at around 2:11 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, and will reach its apex or totality at 3:24 p.m. The duration of the totaltity is estimated to last 2 minutes and 7.8 seconds.

To safely view the eclipse, the CSA recommends using special viewing glasses that are ISO 12312-2 standard. Taking photos of the eclipse with your smartphone or digital camera may cause permanent damage to the sensors and is not recommended without specialized glass filters attached.

The next total solar eclipse is not expected to be viewed in Eastern Ontario until 2106.

Since you’re here…

… Thanks for reading this article. Local news is important. We hope that you continue to support local news in your community by reading The Leader, online and in print. Please consider subscribing to the print edition of the newspaper. Click here to subscribe today.

Subscribe to Email Alerts

Enter your email address to subscribe to Email Alerts and receive notifications of new posts by email whenever The Leader publishes new content on our website.