Lakehead Public Schools Learning at Home Program

On Tuesday, March 31, the Minister of Education extended the emergency closure of all schools in Ontario until Monday, May 4 due to the COVID 19 virus pandemic. In response to the closure, Lakehead Public Schools is launching Phase II of the Ontario Learn at Home plan for extended closures of schools during the COVID-19 Pandemic.

While the Learn at Home plan is for the duration of the extended closure, families are asked to be patient as it will take some time to ensure that all facets of the program are in place. For the week of April 6, there will not be hardcopy learning packages available for students without digital access to learning materials. Hardcopy learning packages will be available to families beginning the week of April 14th. Families will be contacted by their schools with regard to pick up times.

During this new learning and instruction process, Lakehead Public Schools staff will be guided by the following guiding principles:

  • At Lakehead Public Schools, we are committed to doing our part to limit the spread of the COVID-19 virus in order to flatten the curve. This requires our students to learn from home, and our educators and support staff will work with families to provide the best possible learning experience for our students.
  • We are committed to doing our part to support students’ well-being and learning. At Lakehead Public Schools, all of our students belong here, including when “here” is the safety of their own homes.
  • For elementary students, the main goal is to support their continued growth in literacy and numeracy through their interests, wonderings and exploration.
  • For secondary students, the main goal is to support them in demonstrating the overall expectations of their Semester 2 classes in order to achieve these credits.

In addition to the guiding principles, Kindergarten to Grade 12 guidelines were developed for staff. Some of these include:

  • We understand that every household is unique and educators will be flexible in how they support students and families.
  • We are not expecting parents to homeschool their children.
  • Educators are encouraged to plan with “quality over quantity” in mind. Our focus is Communication, Connection, Content.
  • The main method of delivery will be electronic and educators will ensure that all students are able to access the learning materials and plans.
  • Educators will be available on a daily basis to support students and families.
  • Parents can expect their child to do a certain number of hours of schoolwork per week, as outlined by the Ministry of Education for learning from home.

Elementary Students
The total number of hours includes the time it will take students to engage in the recorded and posted individual online learning and any resulting work or activities.

Kindergarten – Grade 3 5 hours of work per student per week with a focus on Literacy and math
Grades 4-6 5 hours of work per student per week with a focus on literacy, math, science and social studies
Grades 7-8 10 hours of work per student per week with a focus on core math, literacy,
science and social studies (history and geography)

Elementary Assessment

Elementary teachers will assess students by gathering evidence of how they are progressing in their learning. Teachers will also provide feedback to their students on their progress. Lakehead Public Schools will issue final report cards, including the Kindergarten Communication of Learning, for all students.

Classroom teachers will:

  • provide students/family with a weekly schedule/plan by Monday of each week
  • be available to correspond and support students and families throughout the week
  • schedule check-ins with parents and/or students (e.g., virtually, email, phone call)

Kickstart Program

For students in the Kickstart Program, Kickstart teachers will use the Edsby platform for posting content and Microsoft teams for live interactive chats. Kick Start programs will begin the week of April 13th. Teachers will make contact with students and students will perform 1.5 hours of work per week.

Secondary Students

The total number of hours includes the time it will take students to engage in the recorded and posted individual online learning and any resulting work or activities.

Grades 9-12 3 hours of work per week per course

Delivery of secondary program will be a combination of teacher directed content, which is posted online and teacher dedicated time to be available to support students on Microsoft team meet or by telephone.

Secondary teachers will continue to work with school staff including guidance counsellors, graduation coaches, student success teachers, attendance counsellors and support staff to create a culture of learning during this time when face to face interaction is not possible.

Secondary students will be assigned learning tasks, projects and culminating activities that will be marked by their teachers. Teachers will communicate results of these marked assignments to students. Results will be used by teachers to inform students’ final course marks. The requirement to issue mid-term marks for non-graduating secondary students is suspended for this school year.

Content will be posted on Edsby or D2L by 9:30am Monday of each week.

Senior Students

Secondary teachers will be focused on ensuring that senior students are supported in order for them to graduate. The Ministry of Education is working with the Ministry of Colleges and Universities to coordinate admissions for students entering post-secondary education.

Community involvement hours and the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT) requirement for the 2019-20 graduating class are waived.


Students enrolled in Cooperative Education are able to earn credits through the use of posted lessons and activities and live online instruction or conversations with their teacher.

Teachers will use EDSBY and Microsoft Teams to post lessons and connect with their students.

Dual Credits

Team taught dual credits are cancelled.

Dual credits will continue. Two of the dual credits (tech and baking) will NOT be offered and therefore these students have the option of being moved into another course at the College.

Specialist High Skills Majors (SHSM)

Specialist High Skills Major requirements are paused at this time. SHSM graduating students WILL NOT be compromised due to Covid-19.

The Board will apply for an override for requirements that are not achievable due to the present situation. This process is completed on a student by student basis. An example would be mandatory certification such as First Aid CPR.

Alternative Education

Day school alternative education students (SAM MISOL, Connections, College Link) will continue with course requirements to earn credit(s).

Supervised Alternative Learning (SAL) students will continue to complete course requirements to earn credits(s).

Supplementary Learning Resources

Supplementary learning resources beyond what is delivered by educators can be found at and

Supporting Students with Special Education Needs in K-12 Classes

Classroom teachers will work with students and families to develop and assign appropriate tasks/activities for students, ensuring that the required accommodations and/or modifications specified in their Individual Education Plans are in place. Classroom teachers will seek support from the school Special Education Facilitator if additional support is required. Empower Reading Teachers will work with students and families to adapt the program for home delivery. Classroom teachers will collaborate with Student Support Professionals as required. Students will be provided access to SEA technology and equipment

Learn at Home Support

Schools have contacted families about their requirements for the Learning at Home program. Devices will be deployed next week to families who require them. We have had conversations with community partners to provide internet access where possible. Those families with internet access will receive learning activities and resources electronically. Some of the learning activities can be printed at home and completed by students, others will be completed online. Those without digital access will be provided with a weekly package for learning each Monday. These can be picked up at the school or in some cases they may be delivered. Schools will coordinate the distribution of these materials. For secondary students, printed work packages will come with a stamped return envelope for work to be returned to the teacher. In ALL cases where materials are provided to families, our protocols are informed and approved by the Thunder Bay District Health Unit.

The response to COVID 19 is in a critical phase. We must respect the direction of municipal, provincial and federal public health agencies: stay home as much as possible, remain at least two metres away from others, do not attend gatherings of five or more people, and wash your hands often.

Throughout this process, communication will be extremely important. Parents are urged to monitor the Lakehead Public Schools website at and social media channels for updates.

This has been a challenging time for all of us. We are committed to supporting the needs of our students. Our staff are working diligently to ensure the continued success of every student.

Thank you for your ongoing support


Ian MacRae, Director of Education
Lakehead Public Schools