May 29, 2020

As you know, B.C. has decided to gradually expand in-class instruction for the remainder of the 2020/21 school year, effective June 1. This decision was based on the expert advice of the Office of the Provincial Health Officer, and schools have implemented strict health and safety measures to ensure the safety of students and teachers when they return to the classroom.

Many of you have asked why Government chose to begin the transition back to in-class instruction now. There are a few reasons for this decision. First and foremost, the latest research shows that it’s safe for students and staff to be in schools. A gradual return to in-class instruction is also in the best interests of learners. Teachers have done an exceptional job of connecting virtually with their students. However, the human connection through in-class instruction is important for the social-emotional well-being of students, especially in these challenging times. Teachers play such a crucial role in students’ lives and their smile and encouragements are invaluable to help students thrive.

School district staff and leaders have been working tirelessly to make sure the necessary health and safety measures are in place now, so we are set up well for a full return to the classroom in the fall.

This gradual return in June also acknowledges the critical role that teachers play, not only in the lives of their students but in the fabric of our communities and in the economy of our province. Getting you back in the classroom with your students in a safe and healthy manner as soon as possible is an important step in our province’s long-term recovery.

Thank you for the amazing work you’ve done to support students thus far during these extraordinary and challenging times. As you prepare to gradually transition back to in-class instruction, please know that at every step, we will move slowly and that health and safety remain our top priority.

For more information on how this gradual return to in-class instruction will take place, please read the K-12 Education Restart Plan.

The PHO’s population health survey is open until May 31. Take the survey to share your experience, knowledge and actions during the COVID-19 pandemic.

This publication may include articles authored by individuals who are not employees of the Province of British Columbia.  The views and opinions expressed in those articles are the authors’ own and do not necessarily reflect the view of the Province.  The Province makes no representations or warranties of any kind in relation to this publication, and is not responsible for damage or loss of any kind whatsoever in connection with it.

 

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