When will your school reopen? Check out this map

CBC Kids News • Published 2020-06-02 15:00
This story was last updated on June 2 at 3 p.m. ET.

Plans vary from coast to coast to coast

It feels funny saying it out loud, but we bet you kinda miss school right now.

You aren’t alone. A lot of kids in Canada are wondering when coronavirus restrictions will ease up and they’ll get to go back to class.

The answer depends on which province or territory you live in — and right now everybody seems to be reading from a different textbook.

 on whether they have a reopening date, are closed for the rest of the school year, reopening part-time or open.

The latest

On June 1, schools in B.C., Manitoba and P.E.I. reopened in some way.

Elementary and high schools in Manitoba partially reopened.

Partially means that students won’t all be going back at the same time.

Instead, they’ll take turns going in for one-on-one instruction, or small group classes.

The return to class is voluntary and all students will be checked for symptoms of COVID-19 before they enter the school.

In B.C., kids in all grades returned to class on a part-time, voluntary basis.

A girl walks by a sign that says

A student at Lynn Valley Elementary in North Vancouver returned to school on June 1. (Ben Nelms/CBC)

Under the new rules, half of elementary school classes in B.C. will be taught in-person. The rest of the classes will be virtual.

Students in older grades will only attend classes at school about one day a week. The rest will be online.

In P.E.I., students can schedule meetings with their teachers at school.

It’s up to the teachers to decide how to make that work.

Some teachers could explore small, outdoor classes, for example.

What's happening elsewhere

In Quebec, most elementary schools began reopening on May 11, except in Montreal, where they will remain closed for the rest of the school year.

On May 19, the Ontario government announced it was cancelling in-person classes for the rest of the school year.

In the rest of the country, including Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Yukon, Nunavut, Northwest Territories, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, and P.E.I., schools will remain closed for the rest of the school year.

Students with masks on sit in desks separated by plastic dividers.

Students in this elementary school in Taiwan are separated by plastic partitions and wear masks. (Sam Yeh/AFP/Getty Images)

Why doesn’t everybody agree?

Because the coronavirus is so new, there isn’t a lot of research available to help officials make these big decisions.

Some studies suggest kids should stay home because they play a big part in spreading the virus, even though their own symptoms are usually pretty mild.

Teens sit around a kitchen table covered with books.

In Sweden, high school students had to study at home, but elementary schools remained open throughout the coronavirus outbreak. (Jessica Gow/TT News Agency/via Reuters)

Others suggest there are ways to contain the spread of the virus without having to close schools entirely.

That might mean making physical distancing part of the school day.

Some experts have also pointed out that keeping schools closed could harm kids in other ways, especially those who don’t have access to healthy food and other supports at home.

Kids sit outside with lots of space between them facing their teacher.

Elementary students in Denmark went back to school on April 15. Classes are held outdoors as much as possible to limit the spread of the virus. (Thibault Savary/AFP/Getty Images)

What will the return to school look like?

When all schools eventually do reopen, there are some things that can be done to make the situation safer.

Kids might be asked to wear masks, or sit with their desks farther apart and only go out for recess in small groups.


With files from Jill Coubrough/CBC and Jessica Doria-Brown/CBC

Top illustration: (Philip Street/CBC)

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