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Update on Remote Learning and First Day of School
Update on Remote Learning and First Day of School
Posted on 08/27/2020
Update on Remote Learning and First Day of School

Dear UCDSB Parents and Guardians,

I want to reach out to you today to provide some additional information and clarity around our remote learning program, as well as some changes to the start date for the 2020-2021 school year. It is my hope that this letter addresses any concerns or uncertainty that our earlier communications to parents created when we asked for final confirmation of preferred learning models.  

Remote Learning  

Late yesterday, staff were able to make several adjustments to the remote learning model for our school district and presented this last evening at a meeting with the UCDSB Board of Trustees. The new model has flexibility that families want and will allow the school district to better manage our staffing needs. Allow me to outline the general nature of our Remote Learning program and the choices within it:  

Remote Learning Option

Key Factors

How learning takes place

Remote Synchronous
(Digital learning, in real-time, from home)

  • ->Access to a teacher in their regular school for synchronous learning;
  • -> connecting with their in-person classmates

Instruction is provided through the local school and the child’s classroom teacher, through a live video stream.

Remote Asynchronous: Digital
(Digital learning, not in real time, from home)

Digital access (email, phone, etc.) to a teacher during scheduled times and by appointment.

Instruction and support provided by District staff on assignment with the UCDSB Virtual School.

Remote Asynchronous: Non-Digital
(Learning is completely offline, at home, using print materials)

Printed booklets for students to complete and return to a Virtual School teacher.

Instruction and support provided by District staff with the UCDSB Virtual School.


If families change their decision regarding whether they want their children to attend in person after the start of school, their requests for a change will be addressed as soon as possible. We will ask that families be patient as time will be required to develop transition plans from one form of learning to another. We will need to adhere to the Ministry of Education and Public Health guidelines that support student and staff health, safety and well-being. Secondary students returning to in-person learning may be limited to new quadmester based on course availability and enrolment.
 

 

We will need to have the right number of staff in place in our classrooms and available for remote learning as part of our essential preparation for the start school. It is important that we hear from parents/guardians if this new information changes the decision you made on your Confirmation of Attendance form that was due on August 20. If you did not fill out the form and want your child in remote learning, please contact your school no later than tomorrow (Friday, August 28) at noon so we can ensure that your child is in the preferred learning model for September.  

At this time, you do not need to indicate what specific option of remote learning you want to participate in. Next week, we will follow up with our remote learning students via email to get these details.

Adjustments to the Start to 2020-2021 School Year: Friday, September 11, 2020 

We can confirm that our school district will adopt a staggered start strategy. This means our schools will welcome students back in small clusters, starting on September 11, rather than have everyone start on September 4. This will allow different grades or groups of students to return to school on different days, so students and staff can become more comfortable with new routines and health and safety practices. 

Here is how the staggered entry will work:

For Kindergarten to Grade 8:  Students with surnames A-G will start on September 11 and continue, surnames H-P will start on September 14 and continue, surnames Q-Z will start on September 15 and continue. This will have all our students in class by September 15.

For Grade 9-12: Students in Grade 9 will start on September 11 and continue, students in Grade 10 will start on September 14 and continue, students in Grade 11 and Grade 12 will start on September 15 and continue. This will have all our secondary students in class by September 15.  

Please note that from September 4 to September 10, teachers will be checking in with our virtual learners and finalizing school routines.  

These updates will be part of our revised Return to School Guide, that we originally published on August 14. We appreciate your continued patience as we work through this unique set of circumstances for the start-up of this new school year.  

 

Yours sincerely, 

Stephen Sliwa
Director of Education
Upper Canada District School Board


UCDSB September 2020

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