All AMDSB Schools Move to Remote Learning Until Further Notice

On Monday, Premier Doug Ford announced that all elementary and secondary schools in Ontario would be closed for in-person learning following the spring break. Click here to read the full media release. 

To this end, Minister Lecce announced that elementary and secondary students will begin online learning, after the spring break. An overview includes:

  • Grades K-8 will begin online learning on Monday April 19 with a check-in from the classroom teacher. Students who previously requested to borrow a device can pick it up from the school on this day as well (details will come directly from the school). Full instruction begins at the usual start time on Tuesday April 20. 
  • Grades 9-12 will begin Quadmester 4 online learning on Wednesday April 21 with a morning check-in. Full instruction will begin on Thursday, April 22.  

See further details below separated by elementary (grades K to 8) and secondary (grades 9 to 12). 

Elementary students (grades K to 8)

Monday April 19:

  • Each student will receive a communication from their classroom teacher via Google Classroom welcoming them to online learning and informing them of the routines, learning and attendance expectations.
  • Families of students in grades K to 6 who previously requested technology devices will be able to pick up devices from their homeschool from 10 am to 4 pm. Students in grades 7 and 8 should have their NGL (Next Generation Learning) iPads at home. 
  • Any family who did not request technology, but who now requires a device, should call the school office and arrangements will be made for device distribution.  

Tuesday April 20:

  • Full online learning to begin (details below).
  • Face to face learning will begin for students with complex learning needs. 

What does full online learning look like? 

  • All students will be receiving programming through remote or distance learning, similar to the remote learning provided earlier this year. 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 advise students and families of the schedule for learning, and additional details regarding programming and attendance on Monday April 19.
  • Classrooms will begin instruction on Tuesday April 20, at the regular class start time.
  • 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 beginning Monday April 19.

Technology and learning support

  • For information about borrowing a device, please see the “Monday April 19” section above. 
  • For self-help technology support for Google, Microsoft, Apple and others, you can find tips, tricks and other information on our website at amdsb.ca/apps/pages/techsupport.
  • Each school also has a specific help desk email address that students and families can use to get support. Click here for the list of email addresses.
  • The Ministry of Education also provides an online learning portal, TVO Learn, which provides support for students learning remotely by accessing additional educational resources developed by Ontario certified teachers. 
  • Also, Eurêka is a service available to French-language students and families that provides resources and supports for all subjects, Grades 1-12.

Childcare and school-aged programming 

  • Early years and preschool programs that operate within or attached to AMDSB schools are allowed to continue, as arranged by Childcare providers with Ministry of Education approval.
  • Child Care programs for Elementary students, such as Before and After School programs and full-day care for School Aged children, will cease on April 19. However, 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 once again offer a targeted emergency child care program for school-aged children, at no cost to eligible parents, to start April 19. Emergency Child Care Programs for school-aged children will be arranged by Childcare providers with Ministry of Education approval.
  • Families should contact their Childcare provider for further details or questions about the program offerings available. 

Secondary students (grades 9 to 12) 

Monday April 19:

  • Students who previously requested to borrow a device can pick it up at the school from 10 am to 4 pm. 
  • Any student who did not request technology, but who now requires a device, should contact the school office and arrangements will be made for device distribution.  
  • Secondary schools are engaged in student success/credit recovery programming. If students were scheduled for student success for this day, school staff will reach out to provide alternate arrangements. 

Tuesday April 20:

  • Secondary schools are engaged in student success/credit recovery programming. If students were scheduled for student success for this day, school staff will reach out to provide alternate arrangements. 

Wednesday April 21 (Beginning of Quadmester 4):

  • A morning check-in for all secondary students at the usual start time will occur.
  • Face to face learning will begin for students with complex learning needs.

Thursday April 22 (Full online classes begin):

  • Full programming for Quadmester 4 courses begins for all secondary students at the usual start time.

What does full online learning look like? 

  • All students will be receiving programming through remote or online learning, similar to what was offered in January/February. 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 advise students and families of the schedule for learning, and additional details regarding programming and attendance on Monday April 19 or Tuesday April 20.
  • Classrooms will begin online instruction on Wednesday April 21 (with a morning check-in), at the regular class start time. Full instruction will begin on Thursday April 22. 
  • 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.
  • Please contact the school office with questions/concerns with student timetables.  
  • This change does not impact students enrolled in the Avon Maitland Remote Learning School (AMRLS). Their classes will continue as usual beginning on Monday April 19. 

Technology and learning support

  • For information about borrowing a device, please see the “Monday April 19” section above.
  • For self-help technology support for Google, Microsoft, Apple and others, you can find tips, tricks and other information on our website at amdsb.ca/apps/pages/techsupport.
  • Each school also has a specific help desk email address that students can use to get support. Click here for the list of email addresses.
  • The Ministry of Education also provides an online learning 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 Grades 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. 
  • Also, Eurêka is a service available to French-language students and families that provides resources and supports for all subjects, Grades 1-12.

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. Classroom teachers and Special Education Resource Teachers (SERTs) will ensure that accommodations and modifications match the online learning model. Educational Assistants (EAs) will have daily contact with students who typically receive this support.

Mental Health and Well-being Support

The AMDSB Mental Health and Well-Being (MHWB) Team and our community providers continue to be available to support students virtually during the move to remote learning. Student well-being is essential to their growth and learning and our team has prepared a number of resources and tools to ensure students’ continued engagement in school. Our full suite of services includes direct support for classroom teachers and schools in creating and maintaining mentally healthy online classrooms, individualized coaching for school staff in activities that promote student well-being, and assisting families in accessing counseling services and support for students in crisis. AMDSB Mental Health and Well-being Team will continue to reach out to students currently on their caseload and students 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 through school administrators. 

For  24/7 support you can call:   

  • Huron Perth Helpline and Crisis Response Team  at 1-888-829-7484  OR  
  • Kids Help Phone 1-800-668-6868 or TEXT 686868

We understand that not returning to full in-class learning is challenging for many of our families and we agree that students not being in school is not ideal. We do however, have to follow 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. 

Enjoy the rest of your spring break and we look forward to seeing students online next week.

 

Sincerely,

Lisa Walsh signature

Dr. Lisa Walsh
Director of Education