Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on Continuity of Learning in the K to 12 Education System

Update May 15: Minister of Education Rob Fleming announced the B.C. K-12 Education Restart Plan, with optional increased in-class instruction available for parents and students on June 1, along with new health and safety protocols supported by the Provincial Health Officer (PDF). School districts and independent school authorities will move towards Stage 3 of B.C.’s phased-in approach. 

Each school district will develop a return-to-class and safety plan approved by the Ministry before moving to the next stage, and these plans will be posted on each school district’s website for families to access. Independent school associations are also required to submit plans to the Ministry.
 

Update May 6: Premier John Horgan outlined B.C.’s Restart Plan. The announcement included a backgrounder (PDF) on the measured approach to phased-in return to classroom instruction in B.C. K-12 schools. 


Section 1: Class Instruction in Stage 3

  • Schools are not closed. On March 17, 2020, under the direction of Dr. Bonnie Henry, the Provincial Health Officer (PHO), the Provincial Government directed all K-12 schools to suspend in-class instruction until further notice
  • Since in-class instruction was suspended in mid-March, school districts and independent school authorities have prioritized access to in-person supports at schools for children whose parents are Essential Service Workers (ESWs) and other students that may require support, such as students with disabilities. All schools, school districts and independent school authorities have taken steps to ensure a safe and healthy environment in school facilities for students and staff
  • Update May 15: Minister of Education Rob Fleming announced B.C. K-12 students will have optional access to increased in-class instruction on June 1 under Stage 3 of the education restart plan
  • Stage 3 for school districts and independent school authorities will include the following:
    • Optional in-class learning for students in kindergarten to Grade 5 on a part-time basis
    • Access to optional in-class learning as needed for grades 6 to 12 on a part-time basis
    • Remote and online learning continues to be available for those students who choose not to return to school
  • There will be full-time in-school instruction available five days a week for children of Essential Service Workers (ESWs), students with disabilities/ diverse abilities and students requiring additional supports
  • Parents and students will continue to receive regular information updates on school, district and independent school authority websites
  • As the Premier has said, it won’t be like flipping a switch. We can’t anticipate a regular return to education as we know it
  • Our plan is to see some students being gradually introduced back into the classroom this school year, with an ultimate goal of having all students back in class in September 2020 if the Provincial Health Officer determines it is safe to do so
  • Students will be invited to return to school, but parents will continue to have a choice to send their children to school
  • More information on the phased-in approach and timing for resuming more in-class instruction will be available shortly
  • The PHO has advised that it is safe for us to move to this stage of opening schools
  • If it wasn’t safe to do so, we wouldn’t be opening them. The health and safety of staff and students is our top priority
  • Today there are already about 5,000 children in B.C. schools, these include children of Essential Service Workers (ESWs) and those who need the extra support that a school setting provides 
  • The science and research so far tell us that children under 19 are at low risk of transmitting COVID-19 and suspending schools only has modest impacts in minimizing the spread of the virus
  • We have looked at what has worked and not worked elsewhere and have considered this in our planning.
  • At the same time, we need to stay diligent, and that’s why we are looking at a measured, gradual approach to transitioning more students back into the classroom
     
  • To make sure schools are safe for students and staff, the number of students in school each day will be reduced, with most receiving in-class instruction part-time
  • All boards of education and independent school authorities will be required to implement the strict health and safety measures endorsed by the Provincial Health Officer and WorkSafeBC to reduce the risk COVID-19 transmission, which includes:
    • Limiting the number of students in school, avoiding groups or gatherings of students in hallways or other common areas and taking students outside more often
    • Regular cleaning of high-contact surfaces like door knobs, toilet seats, keyboards and desks at least twice a day, and cleaning the school building at least once a day
    • Students, educators and staff will be required to clean their hands before entering school property. And there will be more hand-sanitizing and cleaning stations available
    • There will be staggered drop-offs, lunch and recess breaks, with increased outside time
    • Staff and students (or their parents/guardians) will be asked to assess themselves daily for symptoms of COVID-19 with clear policies not to come to school if unwell. If any student or staff member has even mild symptoms, arrangements will be made for that person to be returned home
    • One student per seat on school buses, unless children are from the same house, with plexiglass separating the bus driver from students. 
    • Students or employees will be discouraged from sharing food or personal items like phones, pens or pencils, and clear protocols will be in place for the safe and healthy handling of all food items.
 

Will there be Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for students and staff?  Will students and staff be encouraged to wear masks? 

  • Students and staff will not be required to wear non-medical masks; however, wearing a mask is a personal choice, and anyone who chooses to do so will be treated respectfully
  • The new guidelines for K-12 settings (PDF) released as a part of the Restart BC Plan include a routine daily screening protocol for all staff and students
  • There will be routine and frequent cleaning of school property and high-contact surfaces
  • Other measures could include smaller class sizes, increased space between desks, alternating attendance arrangements, frequent hand-washing, wearing non-medical masks for group activities and sports, and limiting group sizes
  • Policies will be clear that children, youth and staff who have symptoms of a cold, flu, or other COVID-19, with any coughing or sneezing are not permitted at school or take part in extra curricular activities and sports
  • And international students will need to arrive early and self-isolate for 14 days
  • The PHO is also revising the current public health guidelines for K-12 settings and those will be released soon
  • Among the new health and safety guidelines is a requirement for all schools to have hand sanitizing stations and cleaning supplies to be well-stocked
  • Each school district will determine funding for cleaning supplies based on their local community needs
  • We are working closely with school districts to monitor critical supplies and ensure access to suppliers
  •  The Provincial Health Officer (PHO) has confirmed that hot water is not necessary and that schools can use alternate hand hygiene methods like hand sanitizer if required.
  • If any student or staff member has even mild symptoms of a cold, influenza or COVID-19, arrangements will be made for that person to be returned home, and students are not to participate in extra-curricular activities or sports.  
  • Schools, school districts and independent schools are going to be strict about this.
  • We will soon receive the updated guidelines from the PHO, and we will review them closely with all our education partners – including, trustees, educators, school leaders and staff – to ensure school districts have safety plans that reflect these updates
  • The science and research tell us that, unlike with influenza, children are much less likely to get sick or transmit the virus than adults
  • The public health guidelines for K-12 school settings recognize that physical distancing can be challenging in a school setting – especially for younger children
  • There will be a focus on physical distancing and reduced physical contact in those situations where physical distancing is not practical
  • The new measures will include:
    • Routine daily screening protocol for all staff and students
    • Routine and frequent cleaning of school property and high-contact surfaces
  • Other measures could include smaller class sizes, increased space between desks, alternating attendance arrangements, frequent hand-washing, wearing non-medical masks for group activities and sports, and limiting group sizes
  • Policies will be clear that children, youth and staff who have symptoms of a cold, flu or other COVID-19, with any coughing or sneezing are not permitted at school or take part in extra curricular activities and sports
  • International students will need to arrive early and self-isolate for 14 days
  • School districts will make breakfast and lunch programs and limited cafeteria services available with additional health and safety, physical distancing and hygiene measures in place
  • There will be a continuation of pick-up food support for those not in attendance
  • To make sure schools are safe for students and staff, the number of students in school each day will be limited, with most receiving in-class instruction part-time
  • School districts will determine scheduling for classes and transportation arrangements, but for Kindergarten to Grade 5 this means most students will go to school half-time (such as alternating days), while Grades 6 to 12 will go to school about one day a week
  • Children of Essential Service Workers and students needing additional supports will have the option to attend school full-time, five days a week
  • Families that decide not to send their children to class may continue learning from home
  • Students with disabilities/diverse abilities and students requiring additional supports who would benefit from in-school instruction will continue to have access to classroom instruction full time
  • ESW children in K-5 will be offered instruction five days/week based on parental need
  • School districts and independent school authorities will continue to accommodate ESW children beyond Grade 5 if the children have a disability that precludes them from being alone in a home environment
  • As in-school supports gradually increase, school districts and independent school authorities will be limited in their ability to provide extended hours for ESW children. ESWs should begin to re-engage with local childcare providers if they will have a need for before and after school care
  • All school districts and independent school authorities are to have plans in place for each of the five stages, to ensure if there is an outbreak, increased risk of transmission or second wave, then they can dial-down class instruction for a period of time, or close schools completely under the direction of the Provincial Health Officer (PHO)
  • We’ve directed all school boards to have plans in place in case they need to change how they deliver education, and so they can adapt to any of the circumstances we may find ourselves in over the next year. 
  • Until there is a vaccine, education will continue to be delivered differently than before
  • Ensuring children have time for outdoor play is important and recess is expected to continue
  • The PHO has reassured students and parents that playgrounds are a safe environment as long as appropriate personal hygiene practices are observed before, during and after outdoor play
  • Some schools may have libraries, gyms and cafeterias open, if they can maintain the strict health and safety guidelines
  • Gym and music class may need to be modified, depending on the activities and if kids can avoid physical contact – for instance, we won’t have situations where children are blowing on instruments or playing volleyball
  • We understand that many K-12 students in school districts and independent schools will continue to learn online/remotely to supplement in-school instruction
  • That’s why school districts and independent school authorities will refine remote and online learning resources and delivery to support a “hybrid” instructional design
  • School districts have been asked to work with child care partners in their community to address hours of service outside of instructional hours at each school
  • As in-school instruction gradually increases, school districts will be limited in their ability to provide extended hours for children of Essential Service Workers (ESWs). Essential Service Workers should begin to re-engage with local childcare providers if they will have a need for before and after school care
  • Boards of Education must be licensed to offer before and after school care and must charge fees for the child care they provide for before and after school care
  • Boards of Education cannot charge child care fees to parents while students are at a school during classroom instructional hours (typically 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.)
  • We have developed a 5-stage approach with Stage 1 representing the ‘new normal’ with all students in all grades learning in the classroom and Stage 5 representing essentially a full lock-down of the system
  • We are currently at Stage 4, with children of essential service workers and students with complex needs or those who require extra support receiving in-class instruction
  • Our goal is to transition from Stage 4 to Stage 3 on June 1st – where we will expand in-class learning for some students, with remote and online learning options continuing to be available
  • The current school year is scheduled to proceed as regularly scheduled, which would end on June 30, 2020
  • The Ministry of Education will continue to work with the Provincial Health Officer to ensure students, parents, teachers and school staff are protected through the measured and phased approach for class instruction in schools across B.C.  
  • The new health and safety guidelines for K-12 settings include a routine daily screening protocol for all staff and students
  • All school districts and independent school authorities will be required to implement the strict health and safety measures endorsed by the Provincial Health Officer and WorkSafeBC to reduce the risk COVID-19 transmission, which includes:
    • Limiting the number of students in school, avoiding groups or gatherings of students in hallways or other common areas and taking students outside more often
    • Regular cleaning of high-contact surfaces like door knobs, toilet seats, keyboards and desks at least twice a day, and cleaning the school building at least once a day
    • Students, educators and staff will be required to clean their hands before entering school property. And there will be more hand-sanitizing and cleaning stations available
    • There will be staggered drop-offs, lunch and recess breaks, with increased outside time
    • Staff and students (or their parents/guardians) will be asked to assess themselves daily for symptoms of COVID-19 with clear policies not to come to school if unwell. If any student or staff member has even mild symptoms, arrangements will be made for that person to be returned home
    • One student per seat on school buses, unless children are from the same house, with plexiglass separating the bus driver from students
    • Students or employees will be discouraged from sharing food or personal items like phones, pens or pencils, and clear protocols will be in place for the safe and healthy handling of all food items
  • The new health and safety guidelines recommend that there should only be one person per seat, unless the students are from the same household
  • Plexiglass can also be installed to separate the driver from students
  • Transportation, plans and schedules will be determined by the school district, depending on how many children head back to class this year
  • Because there will be fewer students attending school in June, buses should have the extra room to ensure children can practice physical distancing on buses
  • In most districts, there will likely be the same number of bus trips with fewer children
  • We know there is no substitute for in-class instruction and as we continue to take steps toward recovery, it’s important that we get kids back into the classroom
  • We also know that there is a growing risk of inequity the longer in-class learning is suspended, especially for students who need extra support
  • For families and students who need the extra supports that a school setting can provide will have the opportunity to come to school, if needed
  • Returning students to in-class instruction before the 2019/20 school year ends will ensure we will be well-positioned to start school up at Stage 1, hopefully in September
  • No. Parents can choose to have their children continue to learn at home
  • For families and students who require the supports of learning in a classroom, that option will be available to them
  • We have looked at what has worked and not worked elsewhere and have considered this in our planning
  • We know that access to school for children in Grades K-5 is important for parental participation in the economy
  • As we’ve seen over the last couple of months here in B.C., the older kids get, the better they're able to work remotely
  • The Ministry of Education has asked school districts and independent school authorities to ensure students with disabilities and complex needs have access to the same level of on-going learning as all other students
  • The public health guidelines for K-12 school settings recognize that physical distancing can be challenging in a school setting and offer several different methods for teachers and support staff to consider
  • There is no research or evidence that students with disabilities or complex needs are any more likely to contract Covid-19 or transmit it to others
  • For students whose care plan already involved gloves, masks or personal protective equipment, staff will continue to have access to those resources
  • The PHO’s order is intended to prevent large groups of people from gathering in close quarters with one another and does not apply to school activities 
  • There can be more than 50 students and staff in a school at any given time if they are not all in one area and are actively practicing physical distancing
  • It’s important to ensure children have time for outdoor play, and recess is expected to continue
  • The PHO has reassured students and parents that playgrounds are a safe environment as long as appropriate personal hygiene practices are observed before, during and after outdoor play
  • The science and research tell us that, unlike with influenza, children are much less likely to get sick or transmit the virus than adults
  • As we take steps to remove some of the restrictions, we continue to recommend employers be flexible when it comes to parents of school-age students
  • Children of essential service workers, vulnerable students and those with complex needs will have five days a week of in-class instruction
  • Families will also be able to choose if their children return to in-class instruction for the remainder of this school year
  • At home supports may change and shift as we move towards a focus on in-class instruction
  • Summer school is not a requirement
  • That said, we are currently considering how school districts can prioritize summer school learning opportunities
  • The provincial government, under direction of the PHO, continues to state that child care facilities are an essential service, and are considered safe to operate, as long as they are following the recommended health and safety protocols. Some childcare operators have made the decision to close on their own. Those child care operators that chose to close, may start to reopen in the coming weeks
  • Where child care is being operated in conjunction with K-12 schools, it’s expected that boards of education and/or independent school authorities have determined ways to continue these services operating where possible
  • MCFD continues to work closely with the child care sector to ensure that Essential Service Workers and other parents returning to work during the COVID-19 pandemic have access to child care, with recently announced new funding for providers
  • More information on childcare questions/answers and resources in response to COVID-19
  • The current school year is scheduled to proceed as regularly scheduled, which would end on June 30, 2020
  • The Ministry of Education will continue to work with the Provincial Health Officer to ensure students, parents, teachers and school staff are protected through the measured and phased approach for class instruction in schools across B.C.  
  • The Ministry of Health is shifting the focus of the School Fruit and Vegetable Nutritional program in response to the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Instead of the usual universal program for all students, the program will be delivering fruits and vegetables through Food Banks BC who, in partnership with schools and community-based youth programs, will help prioritize getting fresh produce to low-income families with children

 


Section 2: Learning/Educational Opportunities

  • Teachers will continue to provide instruction and parent/caregiver involvement will depend on the age and ability of the child and the time that parents/caregivers are able to give. Every family will determine what works best for them in discussion with their children’s teachers.
  • Learning opportunities will look different during this time. Each school district and independent school authority has implemented a plan that best responds to the needs of their local community, individual classrooms and individual students. This may include measures such as online learning tools and/or resource packages or assignments emailed or delivered from teachers to parents.
  • School districts and independent school authorities are responsible for ensuring that continuity of learning is reasonable and account for the unique circumstances and abilities of individual students in a home learning environment. For example, teachers may adapt learning plans for students with learning disabilities or students experiencing mental health challenges.
  • The Ministry of Education is working with school districts and independent school authorities to support them in their local planning efforts.
  • On March 27, the Ministry of Education launched a website for parents and students which provides resources and information to support continuous learning at home.
  • More information on what learning opportunities will look like during the phased-in approach to resuming in-class learning will be available in the weeks to come.
  • School districts and independent schools have developed plans for how they can deliver learning opportunities using alternative methods (i.e. not in-person), which can include online learning. The alternative approaches put in place in individual schools and classes may look slightly different depending on the students and families that these schools serve, which is why the planning needs to be completed at the local level
  • Many school districts and independent schools are loaning devices to students to support their learning at home. If parents are seeking additional information regarding technology use and loans from their district, they should inquire with their school principal for more information
  • As we move towards Stage 3, there will be more opportunities for students to resume in-class instruction and use technology supports available in schools
  • In addition to the plans developed by school districts and independent school authorities to provide out-of-classroom learning opportunities for students, the Ministry of Education has created a website with learning resources to help parents and caregivers support their children while in-class instruction is suspended.
  • As well, through ShareEdBC, teachers across the province have access to curated content aligned to B.C.’s new curriculum.
  • The Ministry of Education has worked with Focused Education to provide a provincial license of the Zoom Videoconferencing application to school districts, independent and First Nations schools to to ensure educators can best support continuous learning at home for students
  • Zoom is being used around the world to support education, businesses and governments during the COVID-19 pandemic
  • The Ministry of Education will also explore how to make this application available to B.C.’s independent schools and First Nations schools
  • Zoom has been reviewed by government and meets the privacy and security requirements
  • We have worked with the Privacy Commissioner on this issue and he is supportive of the use of the enterprise version of Zoom in K-12 education
  • The application’s data for Canadian users is housed at its Canadian-hosted data centres in Vancouver and Toronto. Data is encrypted in transit using industry standards
  • The application’s platform is known to offer a smooth audio/video experience with minimal interruptions if any for users with fast or slower Internet connection speeds. Some school districts and independent school authorities may also elect to use other online communication tool
  • The Zoom enterprise application provided to school districts has robust security features meet B.C. government standards
  • These features are not available on the free version of the application
  • The enterprise application of Zoom has been reviewed by government as part of its review of applications used by public sector organizations
  • The Zoom enterprise application does not provide personal information to third party businesses such as Facebook and Microsoft
  • School districts and independent school authorities will work to best support parents and students with access to French learning resources
  • The Ministry of Education has also provided a website with learning resources, including French resources, for parents to support their child’s learning at home
  • School districts and independent school authorities have been asked to ensure that English Language Learners (ELL) have access to the same level of on-going learning as all other students. Parents should inquire with school districts and independent schools directly about translation services available as they relate to homework and students’ learning
  • This includes developing plans to support ELL students based on the learning needs previously identified in an Annual Instruction Plan
  • The Ministry of Education is working with partners across government to increase translation of Covid-19 materials and to ensure that immigrant and refugee service centres also have access to materials related to on-going learning
  • Homeschooling is an alternative method of teaching and learning outside of the B.C. education system. The homeschooling educational program (planning, delivery and assessment) is the responsibility of the home educator (parent/guardian of the homeschooled child/youth)
  • Typically, a family member delivers the educational program to children at home without direct support from the registering school (other than the loan of educational materials and evaluation and assessment services, as per legislative requirements)
  • Parents who are considering formal homeschooling should review the obligations and understand that choosing this option will result in their child no longer being enrolled as a student
  • Keep Learning BC. This is a central place where families can find ideas for everyday educational activities, links to free learning resources, as well as how to help children learn while they are at home

 


Section 3: Support for Students With Disabilities & Diverse (Special) Needs

  • School districts and independent school authorities have been asked to ensure students with disabilities and diverse abilities have access to the same level of on-going learning as all other students. Under Stage 3, students with disabilities/diverse abilities should be offered full-time instruction 5 days/week
  • As a part of planning for on-going instruction, schools should proactively identify supports or accommodations that need to be made to support learning for students with disabilities and diverse abilities
  • School districts and independent school authorities have developed continuity of learning plans for students with disabilities/diverse abilities that ensure equity of access to learning. Under Stage 3, students with disabilities/diverse abilities should be offered full-time instruction 5 days/week
  • From a learning perspective, all students with disabilities and diverse abilities should have access to the same level of on-going instruction and support
  • The Ministry of Education has asked school districts and independent school authorities to ensure students with disabilities and diverse abilities have access to the same level of on-going learning as all other students. Under Stage 3, students with disabilities/diverse abilities should be offered full-time instruction 5 days/week
  • For students who were receiving specialized supports (e.g. physical therapy, occupational therapy) on-site, access to these services may vary by community and will depend on whether services are still available from community providers.
  • For students who were receiving 1:1 service, school-based teams will work with families and caregivers to develop a plan for on-going learning and supports. This plan should include an assessment of how the student can come back into a school environment, based on student and parental consent
 

What about  Individual Education Plans (IEP) – will they continue?

  • As a part of planning for on-going instruction, schools should be proactively identifying supports or accommodations that need to be made to support learning for students with disabilities and diverse abilities
  • Continuity of learning plans for students with disabilities and diverse abilities should be aligned with the goals identified in the student’s IEP and developed in consultation with specialists who typically support the student in the educational setting
  • For students who were receiving specialized supports (e.g. physical therapy, occupational therapy) on-site, school district and independent school teams have been asked to consider alternate service delivery models where feasible
  • For students who were receiving 1 on 1 service, school-based teams will work with families and caregivers to develop a plan for on-going learning and supports
  • Educational Assistants will also continue to support teachers in the delivery of instruction. Support may include:
    • Preparing assignments, content and activities
    • Assisting with the collection of materials
    • Maintaining regular communication and check-in with students
    • Supporting families and students in accessing remote learning and therapy experiences as needed.
  • Most organizations that typically support families continue to be in service during this time; however, support may be offered in different ways.  Families are encouraged to access supports from the agencies they are familiar with and have accessed prior to the pandemic
  • The Family Support Institute and Inclusion BC are both continuing to provide supports to families through new service delivery models during the pandemic
  • The Ministry of Education is in close contact with the Ministry of Children and Family Development on this issue
  • Funding for autism services and respite falls under their area of responsibility and continued planning is underway on how to respond to some of the unique challenges faced by families. Access to Child and Youth with Special Needs (CYSN) staffing, AIS BC and Autism Funding Branch continues to assist families to find the services and supports that meet their needs

 

  • School districts have been asked to ensure meal programs continue in alignment with PHO guidelines.  School districts with universal programs have been asked to prioritize families facing food insecurity
  • Meal programs will be delivered safely and in alignment with the directives from the PHO, which may require creative and innovative approaches
    • School districts with existing meal programs are requested to continue to support students experiencing food insecurity in the community where possible. This will require re-assessing student need based on current context and engaging with community agencies to align supports
    • School districts with universal meal programs may not need to continue to provide meals to all students; but should identify those families and students most in need and develop options for on-going meal service
  • If students are experiencing food insecurity during this time, parents should contact their school principal as soon as possible

 


Section 4: Marks, Assessments & Graduation

  • The Ministry of Education is not mandating or specifying the minimum number of hours that must be completed for a student to receive credit for a grade 10, 11, or 12 course. During these exceptional circumstances, hours do not necessarily reflect the actual learning that occurs. The focus is on determining if, and how, sufficient learning has taken place in relation to the individual circumstances and needs of students
  • Students are expected to continue their learning for each course they are enrolled in and to complete assignments set out by their teachers to finish their courses. Teachers will continue to work with students to develop plans and set reasonable expectations given the current circumstances and the individual needs of students. This will be guided by the plans and priorities set out by districts and schools for continuity of learning at the local level, recognizing that many students may not have easy access to specific learning resources
  • Given the unique structure of trades training programs and oversight by the Industry Training Authority (ITA), important information on assessments and programming for these courses is available online
  • Information for workers is available on the WorkSafeBC COVID-19 information and resources web page, including:
  • School districts, independent school authorities and schools will assess and determine if it is safe for their students to remain on work placements and apprenticeships during the suspension of in-person learning
  • For work placements that cannot continue in person, districts and schools will determine if alternate methods to continue learning are possible, such as working remotely from home
  • For elective courses like these with unique challenges, teachers have the discretion to provide a passing grade if sufficient learning has been achieved since the start of the course and through to the end of the school year
  • Yes, all students will receive a final grade for each course they are enrolled in and successfully complete from now until the end of the school year
  • Teachers will determine a final grade for students based on work completed to date and the assessment of learning that will occur while in-class instruction is suspended and learning continues remotely
  • Teachers will consider those students whose learning needs or circumstances may require unique approaches to assessment
  • Yes, teachers will still need to prepare report cards for their students for June
  • Districts must meet the requirements of the Student Reporting Policy which provides significant flexibility for schools and districts regarding the content and format of report cards
  • Teachers will continue to communicate and work with Grade 12 students to ensure they continue to complete assignments and earn credits toward successfully meeting graduation requirements
  • It’s up to school districts and independent school authorities to determine how best to track student attendance during this period, noting that expectations established for teachers and school administrators around checking in with students may differ depending on the school and/or student’s needs
  • All students – including students who are on track to graduate – are expected to complete course work assigned by teachers
  • As in any given school year, students on track or eligible to graduate will be able to graduate provided the student has completed sufficient learning in their coursework. This includes what they have learned since the course started, along with the learning they will complete from now until the end of the school year
    • To be “eligible to graduate” means a student will satisfy all graduation requirements upon successful completion of courses they currently have underway and are continuing through to June 2020. This does not mean that students will graduate no matter what
    • Sufficient learning will be determined by teachers using their professional judgement. Grounded in the curriculum, teachers will assess what individual students know, understand, and are able to demonstrate to determine whether enough learning has taken place to enable the student to pursue further learning in the curricular and content area
  • Students are expected to continue their learning for each course they are enrolled in and to complete assignments set out by their teachers to finish their courses. These assignments must be reasonable for each student in their home learning environment, recognizing that it is not a regular classroom
    • Teachers will work with students to develop plans and set reasonable expectations given the current circumstances and the individual needs of the students
    • This will be guided by the plans and priorities set out by districts and schools for continuity of learning at the local level, recognizing that many students may not have easy access to specific learning resources
  • There will be a special June 2020 administration of the Grade 10 Numeracy Assessment. This administration will be limited to those Grade 12 students who will complete all other graduation requirements by June 2020 but have not yet completed the Grade 10 Numeracy assessment. Please see the assessment website for details
  • Teachers and Principals will support all students as part of the continuity of learning and help those students who may need additional supports to meet graduation requirements
  • The Ministry of Education is also working with post-secondary institutions to ensure graduating students will transition successfully
  • No. The last administration (June 2020) of the retired Language Arts 12 provincial exams has been cancelled
  • This administration was originally scheduled for the retired Language Arts 12 (LA12) provincial exams associated with the old language arts courses (English 12, English First Peoples 12, Français langue première 12, Communications 12 and Français langue seconde-immersion 12). It was scheduled for June 2020 for the few remaining students who have not yet attempted the exam. These are students who are writing an exam for the first time:
    •  Having completed the school portion of the LA12 course by midnight on June 30th, 2019 or
    • Are enrolled in a DL school, and started the LA 12 course by midnight on June 30th, 2019
  • Instead, Aegrotat standing will be granted by schools to students who needed to write one of the LA12 exams for the first time. To qualify for Aegrotat standing, students must have completed the school portion of the corresponding course by June 30, 2019, or, for students in distributed learning schools, they must have started the course prior to that date
  • Transcripts remain available to students through the StudentTranscript Service. Updates with interim marks were available May 6. Final transcripts will be available on the usual schedule
  • The Ministry of Education is working closely with the Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills & Training to support smooth transitions to post-secondary education for students
  • Yes, international students who are enrolled with a K-12 public or independent school in British Columbia can complete their coursework to continue their education program this school year via Online/Distributed Learning opportunities through their respective school or school district, or through an arrangement approved by their respective school or school district
  • International students (non-residents) who are not enrolled with a B.C. K-12 school, and have not been residing in B.C. to attend school, are not eligible for this option. School District 73 (Kamloops/Thompson) Business Company (Global Education) is the only provincially-approved K-12 online learning provider for students not residing in B.C.

 


Section 5: Parents Unable to Stay Home & Essential Service Workers

  • Essential services are those daily services essential to preserving life, health, public safety and basic societal functioning. They are the services British Columbians rely on in their daily lives
  • The provincial government released a list of essential services in British Columbia
  • Child care providers and schools providing in-class instruction are to prioritize placements for those children whose parents are employed as front-line workers in direct to public health and health services, social services, law enforcement, first responders and emergency response
  • For individuals with children who are essential services workers (ESWs) and require care for their children in order to go to work, the Ministries of Children and Families and Education are requesting that parents take the following steps:
    • Children aged 0-5 (pre-K): Starting March 31st, essential workers can fill out a form to identify their need for urgent child care. The “Temporary Emergency Child Care for Essential Workers” sign up form and more information, including frequently asked questions, can be found at http://www.gov.bc.ca/essential-service-child-care or by calling 1-888-338-6622 and selecting option 4
  • Spaces for ESW workers will be prioritized in the following order for children 0-5:
    • Tier 1 (highest priority): families employed in Health and Health Services, Social Services, Law Enforcement, First Responders, and Emergency Response. For child care, Tier 1 also includes children referred by MCFD and Delegated Aboriginal Agency social workers
    • Tier 2 (second priority): families in all other occupations not included in Tier 1 that are listed in the Essential Services Workers list
    • Tier 3 (third priority): all other families not employed in an occupation listed in the Essential Service Workers list. Accepting families in the third tier is not required but providers may at their discretion
  • Under Stage 3, full-time instruction is available to children of essential service workers in both Tier 1 and Tier 2

 


Section 6: Health & Safety Resources 

If you have symptoms you can call 8-1-1 to pre-arrange health testing. If you have symptoms associated with COVID-19, self-isolate

  • Every British Columbian has a role to play in reducing the spread of this virus and protecting the people we love
  • The most important things people can do to limit the spread of the virus are:
    • Do not come to work if you are sick
    • Stay home as much as possible and limit contact with other people
    • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds
    • Avoid touching your face