Letter to CMSD82 Parents-Guardians from Acting Superintendent of Schools – May 22, 2020 (letter in PDF format)
Dear CMSD82 Parents and Guardians,
I would like to thank those of you who took the time last weekend to respond to one or both of our surveys and your feedback received regarding your thoughts on returning to school part-time. Your input is greatly valued and appreciated.
The Ministry of Education, in consultation with the Provincial Health Officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry, announced last week that we would be resuming face-to-face instruction on a part-time voluntary basis starting June 1, 2020. I feel it is appropriate to outline the reasons why BC’s Restart Plan includes kindergarten to grade 12 in-class instruction, in a gradual and controlled manner, while ensuring health and safety measures are in place. There are four reasons for this transition to Phase 3 of the Ministry’s plan:
- It is safe to do so.
- The importance of face-to-face instruction with children and youth.
- Education is a critical part of the BC Restart Plan.
- Our work now will set us up for success in September.
While remote learning will continue, we are making plans for a voluntary part-time return to school for students in kindergarten through grade 12. Every possible step is being taken to ensure it is safe to return, we understand that this may not be the right choice for you or your children. If this is the case, rest assured, their remote learning will continue.
You have either been contacted by your child’s school already, or you will be contacted in the very near future, to determine whether you will opt for in-class instruction part-time or whether you will opt to continue with remote learning. We do not have enough information yet to be able to share what part-time in-class instruction will look like. You will receive that information next week from your child’s individual school. In-class instruction will look different in different schools across our school district. Remote learning will also look different than it has up to this point. We will be unable to guarantee that the educator providing instruction either face to face or remotely will be your child’s regular classroom teacher. In-class instruction will be two days a week for students for kindergarten to grade 5 and one day per week for students in grades 6 to 12. Again, each school may structure their Phase 3 differently and you will receive information on that next week.
The health and safety of our students, staff and parents/guardians is our priority. District-wide guidelines will be made public very soon and these guidelines will be consistent with those outlined by WorkSafeBC. A component of the guidelines focuses on individuals not attending school when they have symptoms of an illness. It is the school district’s expectation that all parents and guardians will monitor their children for symptoms and not send them to school if they are sick. Persons who are sick will not be allowed in school. Additionally, parents and guardians will be expected to confirm emergency contact numbers for their children prior to sending their children back to school. Should a student become ill or show symptoms of an illness while at school, the school must have accurate and reliable contact information in order that the child be taken home for the remainder of the day.
We understand that you may have other questions about what things will look like if your child returns to school. After your school staff works through all the details, additional information will be provided to parents and guardians during the week of May 25. Each school within Coast Mountains School District will be sending home a safety plan specifically addressing issues related to the pick-up, drop-off, hand washing, entry doors, etc.
We appreciate your patience as we work through the process to ensure a safe learning and work environment is provided as students and staff return to schools around the school district.
Acting Superintendent of Schools