The B.C. government says nearly 60,000 students returned to schools across the province on Monday, with about 30 per cent of expected enrolment overall in attendance.
On Monday, classrooms across the province reopened their doors to students between kindergarten and grade 12 and today, B.C. Minister of Education Rob Fleming provided an update on the return to school prior to a tour of Monterey Middle School in Oak Bay Tuesday afternoon.
Education Minister Rob Fleming update on part-time return to in-class learning for BC students from kindergarten to Grade 12.For more information on BC's Restart Plan visithttp://gov.bc.ca/restartbc
Posted by Government of British Columbia on Tuesday, June 2, 2020
Monterey is one of many schools across the province who have returned to in-class teaching under new health and safety guidelines. Schools are only in session part-time and a return to the classroom is optional, as stated by BC Premier John Horgan back in May.
According to the government, at the high end of expected enrolment on Monday was Grade 6 students at 48.3 per cent, with Grade 12 students at the low end of 14.5 per cent.
The B.C. government said will gradually be back in their classrooms throughout the rest of the week. Kindergarten to Grade 5 students are limited to 50 per cent of the school’s capacity, with a half-time or alternate schedule. Grade 6 to 12 classes are limited to 20 per cent of the school’s capacity and approximately one day a week.
Children of essential service workers and students who need more support will still be offered full-time classroom instruction.
Fleming said about 90 per cent of teachers are returning to schools, doing a combination of hybrid and onsite learning.
According to Fleming, it is likely schools will likely continue to offer in-school and online learning until a vaccine is developed and the pandemic is declared after.
“We have to prepare for a second wave in British Columbia. We have to prepare to be able to move forward as we’ve done this Monday and move backwards as we’ve done this fall and winter,” Fleming said, adding that the Ministry of Education will provide an update on closer to the fall.
If families change their minds about in-class learning for June, they are asked to contact their child’s school as soon as possible so the school can plan to support the child.
Fleming also said Tuesday he has drafted a letter to the British Columbia Black History Awareness Society to discuss the province’s curriculum and look at resources available to students.