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Extension of School Closures and Updated Resources
Extension of School Closures and Updated Resources
Posted on 04/27/2020
School closures extended

Dear UCDSB Families,

I hope that this letter finds you well and that you continue to stay healthy and safe during this period of the pandemic. It is my pleasure to provide you with this weekly update as we close off the month of April 2020.

As you may have heard on the news yesterday afternoon, the Minister of Education announced that all publicly-funded schools will remain closed to students until at least May 31, 2020. This decision was based on the advice of public health officials. While we all want to see our students back in their regular classroom as soon as possible, we fully agree with the government that keeping our students and staff safe is the top priority.

The Minister also indicated the following:

  • The remainder of the Professional Activity (PA) days and examination days in the 2019-2020 school year will now be instructional days; and
  •  An expanded summer learning program will be introduced that will focus on credit recovery, supports for vulnerable students, and course upgrading. The Upper Canada District School Board is very well positioned to support this program experience, having operated the Summer Semester learning program since 2014, using a distance learning model.

We will keep our parents and community informed as we work through the details of this announcement.

Distance Learning Update
Last week, 1,900 secondary students and students with special education needs received loaner laptops to help them participate in distance learning. This was part of the first phase of our device distribution plan. When the plan is complete, approximately 3,000 devices will be distributed.

At this time, we still do not have the means to provide internet to families at home. Free Wi-
Fi is accessible outside of our schools so please consider making use of this current option should students need to upload or download assignments, check email or social media. If you choose to do so by visiting one of our school properties, please ensure you are accessing it from your vehicle or maintaining social distancing by staying six feet away from other people who may be doing the same.

As well, more than 1,000 Learning Activities Booklets were mailed from our central offices last week, to UCDSB families with children in Kindergarten to Grade 8 programs who cannot access internet services at this time. We are proceeding with a similar commitment this week for approximately 300 Grades 9 to 12 students.

K-8 Weekly Learning Menus
Here are the new activity menus for literacy, math and health & physical education for this week. These resources and the ones posted on our Learn at Home webpage are available for students and families to use to whatever extent is reasonable during these unprecedented times.  

Additional Resources
Please also be aware of our Mental Health and Wellness Library and the resources available in your community should you feel you or a family member would benefit from this type of help. As well, continue to refer to our COVID-19 webpage or our FAQ for up-to-date information, and our Learn at Home webpage

Everyone within the UCDSB is working diligently to ensure your child is staying connected to their learning and to their school. Although we aren’t physically together, support is a phone call or an email away. You can count on us to continue to support our families with the adjustment to distance learning in any way that we can during the duration of this school closure period, no matter how long it lasts.

Be safe, be well, and please keep in touch with your local school.

Stephen Sliwa 
Director of Education 
Upper Canada District School Board 

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