Thunder Bay – NEWS – Public schools in the Lakehead District are facing the COVID-19 pandemic challenges by advising students and parents that action is being taken once school resumes.
The Board of Education issued the following informational update for parents and student:
- Elementary school students will participate in remote learning from January 4-January 8, 2021. In-person instruction will not be permitted during this period;
- Elementary students will resume in-person instruction on January 11, 2021;
- Daily attendance will be taken;
- The elementary virtual program will be delivered through a combination of synchronous and asynchronous learning. Schedules will be provided by teachers to all families.
- Seesaw and MS Teams will be the primary platforms for teaching and learning;
- Monday, January 4th will support the transition to virtual learning; teachers will share instructions to access the programs required for virtual learning;
- Parents can expect to be contacted by their child’s teacher on January 4th, 2021;
- Students already enrolled in virtual learning will see no change to their learning method nor schedule.
- Virtual learning will be identical to the full virtual days we ran at the end of Quadmester 1. Students will participate in full days of virtual learning instead of half days. Both courses will run each day;
- In-person instruction will not be permitted during this period;
- Daily attendance will be taken;
- Secondary students will resume in-person instruction on January 11, 2021;
- Students already enrolled in full-time virtual learning will see no change to their learning method nor schedule.
Remote Northern Communities:
- Schools will continue to support schools in remote communities where Internet access is not available.
- Students with special education needs will continue to be supported by their classroom teacher remotely during the virtual learning period;
- Lakehead Public Schools remains committed to ensuring that students with special education needs will be engaged in remote learning with appropriate supports, and in some cases in-person learning may be appropriate due to student needs. Work is underway to determine how this could be safely operationalized;
- Parents and guardians of students enrolled in specialized program classes can expect communication from the classroom teacher on January 4, 2021.
- Mental health supports will continue to be available to students and their families. Any students who are experiencing or could experience mental health challenges will have continued access to social workers, attendance counsellors, tutors, grad coaches, child and youth workers, student support professionals, as well as their community connections;
- Students and families will also continue to have access to mental health resources via our website, School Mental Health Ontario and Kids Help Phone which offers 24/7 counselling and referral services across the province. To use this free resource, children can call 1-800-668-6868, or text CONNECT to 686868.
Additional Remote Learning Resources:
- Students and families are encouraged to explore two new portals recommended by the government of Ontario to assist with remote learning: TVO Learn and TFO IDÉLLO. These portals provide additional educational resources developed by Ontario certified teachers. Secondary students can continue to access TVO’s Independent Learning Centre (ILC) Open House and Portes ouvertes pour les cours TVO ILC in French-language, which provide access to 144 Grade 9 to 12 courses.
- Child cares services located in Lakehead Public Schools will remain open for pre-school and infant groups for the duration of the province-wide shutdown period;
- During the week of January 4th – 8th licensed child care centres in LPS schools will be prohibited from serving school-aged children. All before and after school programs are closed during this one-week period. These programs may resume operation when elementary schools return to in-person learning on January 11, 2021.
- Students who do not have access to a device to use during the virtual learning week will have the opportunity to use a device from their school. Devices will be available on January 4th for pick-up at schools. Schools will communicate their respective device pick-up arrangements with families. All devices must be returned to the schools on January 11th in good working condition to avoid damage fees.
Lakehead Public Schools is aware that these adjustments may be challenging and stressful for many families. We would like to take this opportunity to remind families that Lakehead Public Schools strives to keep open channels of communication with its families and will keep families informed of any new developments affecting its school communities. Please remember, Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health has confirmed that schools remain a safe environment for students and Lakehead Public Schools will continue to keep all school environments clean and safe to welcome back students on January 11th,. If the directive from the Ontario government changes the current return to in-person learning date of January 11th, you will be notified.