As announced by Premier Doug Ford on Tuesday, March 31, 2020, publicly funded schools will remain closed until May 1 for teachers and May 4 for students effective immediately. Besides, the Premier said that he is prepared to extend the closures should the province’s chief medical officer of health advises him to do so.
To help support students during this time, Education Minister Stephen Lecce announced a new “teacher-led” program that will ensure students continue to learn from home during school closures.
In the program, teachers will continue to issue final grades and report cards which indicate that student work completed at home will be graded.
When asked about how the program is to be run, Education Minister Stephen Lecce says he plans to incorporate online learning, however, if this option is not available other options such as telephone calls and mail-out packages will be used as an alternative.
In reassuring graduating students, the Education Minister said that “no student will have their graduation compromised by COVID-19”.
Here is what the “Learn-at-Home” program will look like for students:
Kindergarten to Grade 3: students will complete five hours of work each week with a focus on literacy and math
Grades 4 to 6: students will complete five hours of work each week focusing on literacy, math, science, and social studies
Grades 7 to 8: students will complete 10 hours of work each week focusing on math, literacy, science, and social studies
Grades 9 to 12: students will complete three hours of work per course each week for semester students, 1.5 hours per course each week for non-semester students
The program will include training for educators to help better enable them to teach students online, and the schools could be distributing laptops and other devices to students who need them to access the Learn at Home program, Minister Lecce said.
“By providing clarity for parents, enhancing support for students and enabling the teacher-student relationship, we are ensuring our children continue to safely learn — providing some sense of stability and hope for them amid this difficulty,” said Education Minister Stephen Lecce.
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