London

Here's what the return to school will look like in the new year

With half of the province under lockdown through most of January, students will be returning to remote learning starting Monday. Here's what you need to know about what that will look like.

Provincial lockdown means London elementary students won't be back in classrooms until Jan. 11

Elementary students will be away from the classroom until Jan. 11, while secondary school students won't be back until Jan. 25. (Sofia Rodriguez/CBC)

With the region under lockdown through most of January, all students will be returning to classes for remote learning starting Monday.

Here's what you need to know about what that will look like: 

Elementary students

The start of the new term will see more than 45,000 Thames Valley District School Board (TVDSB) elementary students move from in-person classes to remote learning on Jan. 4.

According to the TVDSB, school staff will be meeting Monday morning and educators will check in with families before the end of the day. Families with students enrolled in schools part of the London District School Board (LDCSB) can expect the same, with staff making contact with parents via email and phone on Monday.

At this time, it's expected for students to return to in-person learning Monday, Jan. 11.

Secondary students 

All secondary school students will be engaging in full remote learning from Jan. 4 to Jan. 22. 

Secondary student cohorts will remain in place, meaning the days when students were scheduled to attend classes in person will be the days they engage in synchronous learning, which is teacher-led and in real time. Meanwhile, the days when students were scheduled to learn at home will remain the same. Those are the days when students engage in asynchronous learning in which pupils learn at their own pace with programmed learning material.

Families of TVDSB secondary students enrolled in special education classrooms will be contacted on Jan. 4 to talk about the opportunity of having the students return to in-person learning the week of Jan. 11. 

The rest of secondary students enrolled in in-person learning are expected to return to classrooms on Jan. 25.

Remote learning expectations

The Ministry of Education said school boards across the province are expected to work with parents to ensure all students have access to learning devices and internet during this period of remote learning. (Radio-Canada)

Schools will be following the Ministry of Education's expectations for remote learning. A school day consists of 300 minutes or five hours of learning. The province has set up a minimum time requirement of synchronous learning each day, which is as follows: 

  • Kindergarten students:180 minutes
  • Grade 1 - 8 students: 225 minutes
  • Grade 9 - 12: The higher of 60 minutes for each 75-minute class period or 225 minutes per day for a full course schedule.

Technology

The TVDSB has asked families to request any devices needed for remote learning by Jan. 3 through the board's Parent Portal. After this time, staff will accept device requests through the school's main office.

Parents who are unable to access the portal can call or email their school and leave their contact information along with what devices they need. 

Schools will be contacting families to arrange pick-up dates for the devices. The board said it may take several days for the devices to be prepared and deployed.

The Ministry of Education said school boards across the province are expected to work with parents to ensure all students have access to learning devices and internet during this time. 

Child care and before and after programs

The TVDSB said child care centres operating from their schools will remain open. Before and after school programs will be closed from Jan. 4 to Jan. 8. 

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