UPDATED: Remote learning continues for ALL students until Jan 25 - Information for families

UPDATE January 7/8, 2021

 

On January 7 it was announced that all students (K to 12) will continue online learning until January 25. This measure is in alignment with the province-wide closure that began on December 26. Click here to read the full media release. 

Elementary students (grades K to 8)

What does full online learning look like? 

  • All students will be receiving programming through remote or distance learning, but it will be unlike the spring because students will receive more synchronous (live) instruction. Details include: 
    • Kindergarten: Students will be provided with 180 minutes of synchronous learning as well as 120 minutes of asynchronous (independent) learning for a total of 300 minutes of instruction per day. 
    • Grades 1 to 8: Students will be provided with 225 minutes of synchronous learning per day as well as 75 minutes of asynchronous (independent) learning for a total of 300 minutes of instruction per day. 
  • All students will remain in their current classroom organization. 
  • Google Classroom will be used by all educators to provide at home, synchronous learning for students. 
  • Educators will use their professional judgement to provide some flexibility to students on an individual basis when students are unable to participate in synchronous learning. 
  • This change does not impact students enrolled in the Avon Maitland Remote Learning School (AMRLS). Their classes will continue as usual.

Technology and learning support

NEW!! If you need to borrow a device for online learning:

  • Please contact the school principal as soon as possible so that a device can be set up and prepared for you to pick up early next week. 
  • You can call the school office or email the principal directly. 
  • You will receive a phone call from the school with details on when and where to pick up the device. 

 

Note: We have a limited number of internet-enabled devices so if you are looking to borrow one of these, please follow the process as outlined above.

 

  • For self-help technology support for Google, Microsoft, Apple and others, please visit our website for tips, tricks and information: amdsb.ca/apps/pages/techsupport.
  • Each school also has a specific help desk email address that students and families can email for support. Click here for the list of email addresses.
  • The Ministry of Education recently announced the launch of a new portal, TVO Learn which provides support for students learning remotely by accessing additional educational resources developed by Ontario certified teachers.

Childcare and school aged programming 

  • Before and after school programs will be closed until January 25. 
  • To support the parents of school-aged children who may not be able to support their child’s learning/care at home, the Ministry of Education will be implementing a targeted emergency child care program for school-aged children, at no cost to eligible parents, from January 4-22. Emergency Child Care Programs for school-aged children will be arranged by Childcare providers with Ministry of Education approval. With the announcement today,  the Ontario Government has indicated they plan to expand the eligibility of the emergency child care program for a broader number of frontline health and safety workers. 
  • Families should contact their Childcare provider for further details or questions about the program offerings available. 

Secondary students (grades 9 to 12) 

What does full online learning look like? 

  • All students will be receiving programming through remote or distance learning, but it will be unlike the spring because students will receive more synchronous (live) instruction. This includes: 
    • Students will be provided with 225 minutes of synchronous learning per day as well as 75 minutes of asynchronous (independent) learning for a total of 300 minutes of instruction per day. 
  • All students will remain in their usual classroom organization. Quadmesters will remain as they are currently established for all students. 
  • Google Classroom will be used by all educators to provide at home, synchronous learning for students. 
  • Educators will use their professional judgement to provide some flexibility to students on an individual basis when students are unable to participate in synchronous learning. 
  • This change does not impact students enrolled in the Avon Maitland Remote Learning School (AMRLS) or AMDEC. Their classes will continue as usual.

Technology and learning support

NEW!! If you need to borrow a device for online learning:

  • Please contact the school principal as soon as possible so that a device can be set up and prepared for you to pick up early next week. 
  • You can call the school office or email the principal directly. 
  • You will receive a phone call from the school with details on when and where to pick up the device. 

 

Note: We have a limited number of internet-enabled devices so if you are looking to borrow one of these, please follow the process as outlined above.

 

  • For self-help technology support for Google, Microsoft, Apple and others, please visit our website for tips, tricks and information: amdsb.ca/apps/pages/techsupport.
  • Each school also has a specific help desk email address that students can email for support. Click here for the list of email addresses.
  • The Ministry of Education recently announced the launch of a new portal, TVO Learn which provides support for students learning remotely by accessing additional educational resources developed by Ontario certified teachers.
  • In addition, secondary students can continue to access TVO’s Independent Learning Centre (ILC) Open House, which provides access to 144 Grade 9 to 12 courses. These ILC resources are designed to provide flexible learning opportunities to help students keep up with their learning or deepen their understanding of a specific subject.

NEW!! Students with special education needs

  • Individual Education Plans (IEPs) will continue to be developed and implemented to support online student learning, which may require different accommodations and modifications than would be in place in face to face learning. If a parent/guardian does not feel that their child is having their needs met they should contact their child’s teacher, school SERT or Principal.
  • Classroom teachers and Special Education Resource Teachers will ensure that accommodations and modifications match the online learning model. 
  • Educational Assistants will have daily contact with students who typically receive this support.
  • In-person learning will be offered to students in self-contained classes as well as students with complex needs. Those eligible in elementary (grades K to 8) will be contacted by school staff on Monday January 11 with additional details. 

NEW!! Support for families wishing to opt out of synchronous learning

  • We hope that all students will continue learning in our online synchronous (live) format. In some cases, for particular reasons, some families may need or wish to opt out of synchronous learning. We ask that parents connect with their school principal if this is the case.  
  • If you are looking for a reduction of synchronous learning, please discuss this with your classroom teacher. 
  • The classroom teacher can provide activities and assignments for students to do on their own time. 

Mental health support

The AMDSB Mental Health and Well-being (MHWB) Team and our community providers will be available to support students virtually and in person when students return to school. Your child matters to us and we want to do all that we can to ensure students continue to be supported. Students who are currently receiving assistance will be known to their counsellors and may contact them through email or by contacting their school administration (if they are unsure of the counsellor’s email). There may be students who are waitlisted/prioritized for service and the MHWB Team will be monitoring these lists. New referrals should be made to school administrators. As always, families should contact the Huron Perth Crisis Line (1-888-829-7484) or 9-1-1 in the case of an emergency. 

 

AMDSB MHWB resources are posted at amdsb.ca. Newsletters with many tips and mental health supports can be found in this link, as well. The YOU MATTER 2 virtual event on January 19 for school teams will go ahead as planned. More information will be sent to elementary students who are signed up to participate during the week of January 11. A package will be mailed to participating secondary students on January 19. 

 

We understand that not returning to full in-class learning immediately following the holiday break is challenging for many of our families and we agree that students not being in school is not ideal. We do need and want to support the direction of the Ministry of Education and the Province of Ontario as we all work to minimize the spread of COVID-19. We all have to do our part and we appreciate your patience and understanding during this challenging situation. The mandatory COVID-19 refresher training for students is to be taught on the first day of return to face to face school on January 25, to ensure that safety protocols are strictly followed.

 

Sincerely,




Dr. Lisa Walsh

Director of Education