Lakehead Public Schools Families
This has been a very trying and difficult time for everyone and we thank you for your understanding and patience. The Minister of Education announced today that schools will now be closed until Monday, May 4, 2020. We understand that the decision to extend the closure will be challenging for our students and staff, but one that had to be made in order to continue to “flatten the curve”.
In anticipation of the extended closure, Lakehead Public Schools has been working to develop a teacher-led learning at home program. Beginning the week of April 6, 2020, students will be provided with teacher-directed learning specific to their grade. In a news release today, the Ministry of Education communicated a new set of expectations that will be included in our plan including:
- Kindergarten-Grade 3: five hours of work per student/week (focus on literacy and math);
- Grades 4-6: five hours of work per student/week (focus on literacy, math, science and social studies);
- Grades 7-8: 10 hours of work per student/week (focus on math, literacy, science and social studies); and
- Grades 9-12: three hours of work per course per week for semestered students; 1.5 hours of work per course per week for non-semestered students (focus on achieving credits/completion/graduation).
Over the course of this week, details of our plan will be communicated to families through our website, social media, mainstream media and phone/text messaging. While the plan is being finalized, online learning resources are available on our website at https://www.lakeheadschools.ca/online-learning-resources/. Additionally, the provincial government has posted resources on the Learning at Home website at https://www.ontario.ca/page/learn-at-home. As we stated before, the resources are not required learning for students, but rather intended for students and their families to engage with as they choose.
Families have been asked to complete a survey with regard to their technological needs that may be required for digital learning. The survey can be found at https://www.lakeheadschools.ca/phase-ii-learn-at-home-plan/. The data collected in this survey will provide the information needed to finalize a plan that will include the lending of devices to students who currently do not have access. If you are aware of families who are unable to access and complete the survey, please ask them to call Lakehead Public Schools at 625-5100. They will be required to leave a message for a staff member to return the call.
Due to the disruption of the school year, the Ministry of Education has waived the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT) as a requirement for graduation this year. Students who are not graduating in June 2020, will be required to write the OSSLT during the 2020-2021 school year. Secondary schools will be contacting students with information with regard to school-based bursaries and scholarships. The Minister of Education has stated that the extended closure will not impact the ability for students to graduate. Grade 3 and Grade 6 EQAO testing for this school year is also cancelled.
In addition to addressing the academic needs, the mental health needs of our students, staff and their families is a priority. A number of mental health resources and links have been posted on our website at https://www.lakeheadschools.ca/mental-health-resources-for-students-staff-and-families/.
With the extended closure of the schools, the following will continue to be in effect:
- All childcare centres and EarlyON centres located in schools remain closed.
all questions or concerns related to school based childcare centres should be directed to the service providers;
- all before and after school programs cancelled;
- all on and offsite athletic practices and school activities cancelled
- all community use permits cancelled;
- all co-op and work placements suspended; and
- all breakfast programs cancelled.
The Jim McCuaig Education Centre remains closed to the public. All enquires should be directed to:
- 625-5100. Messages will be checked on a regular basis.
All efforts will be made to ensure that all questions and concerns are addressed in a timely fashion.
Once again, thank you for your understanding and patience during this unprecedented time. We will continue to keep our students and their families updated as information becomes available.