Ontario Provincial Police say officers have been assigned to investigate the death of a 15-year-old Toronto District School Board student who drowned during a school field trip in Algonquin Park last month.
Jeremiah Perry, a student at C.W. Jefferys Collegiate Institute, drowned while on a week-long school excursion. He was swimming in Big Trout Lake on July 4, a remote area of Algonquin Park, when he went under the water but did not resurface. Officers found his body the following day.
The OPP announced Monday the criminal investigation branch was assigned to look into the circumstances of Perry’s death, but officers didn’t release any other details.
The announcement comes after the Ontario government announced it will launch a review of outdoor education policies for every school board in Ontario.
“I want to ensure that the safety of students is of top priority and that an incident like this never happens again,” Education Minister Mitzie Hunter said Thursday.
Toronto District School Board Director of Education John Malloy announced Wednesday that Perry did not pass a swim test required to go on the trip.
“I am deeply troubled by these findings and that such a critical safety requirement in our procedures appears not to have been followed,” he said.
“The approval form was very clear and set out that students who did not pass either the canoe trip swim test or the pool test were not allowed to go on this canoe trip.”
The circumstances surrounding Perry’s death are also under investigation by the Chief Coroner for Ontario and a third-party company.
With files from Adam Miller and The Canadian Press