Return to School Plan 2020

infoUpdate: On Monday, February 1st in-person learning will resume for OCDSB elementary and secondary school students. Learn more.

We have updated our OCDSB Return to School Plan and added detailed information about the Back to School Schedule. Our progressive back to school schedule is designed to ensure a safe and caring transition back to learning. Between September 8th and 18th, students will be welcomed back to school over a series of days. By Friday, September 18th, 2020, all students will be attending school full-time.  Take a few minutes to review the Return to School Schedule below.

Elementary In Person

Students attend In Person five days per week, with enhanced health and safety protocols in place. Students will remain in one classroom with the same group of students all day, including lunch and when they go outside for recess. Read the sample daily schedule.

Secondary In Person Model
Students attend school on alternating days and will have 2 periods of In Person instruction, plus independent learning. Using the quadmester model, students will take 2 courses at a time, and attend school on alternating days (A, B, A, B). Students will take one course every day for one week and then will take their other course every day the following week. For example, if a student takes math and geography, they have math instruction in class every day in the first week and the geography every day in the following week. The school day dismissal time will be earlier than usual. Here are more details and a sample schedule

Remote Learning K-12
Students attend OCV Elementary and OCV Secondary, our new virtual schools, with other students in the same grade and program from across the district. There is a prescribed number of instructional minutes for synchronous (live teacher) and asynchronous learning (teacher-recorded lessons or independent learning). Students are not connected to their home school for daily instruction. Students with special education needs will be supported. Remote learning is quadmestered at the secondary level. Read the daily schedule.

Confirmation of Attendance
The Confirmation of Attendance process is complete. We understand how challenging it was to make this decision under such short timelines and we are deeply grateful for the cooperation from OCDSB families. Whether your child will attend school in person or remotely, we are committed to helping your child succeed. 

The confirmed attendance data will allow us to finalize enrolment, determine class sizes, staff schools and programs and implement appropriate health and safety measures. Based on this data, we will redesign our practices to open elementary schools, adapt programming for secondary schools, and create virtual schools. 

Can I change my decision after the school year starts?
Updated November 23, 2020 - Some families have asked us about switching between in-person learning and OCV during the 2020-21 school year. Over the past few months, we have been able to transfer over 2000 students. In order to bring stability to the system, and to allow schools to work with students and their families to make plans for the remainder of the year, movement between in-person learning and OCV will only be done on a limited case-by-case basis, where circumstances permit.
Students, parents and guardians should assume that their child will continue to learn for the balance of the 2020-21 school year in the program in which they are currently enrolled.
While this may be of concern to some parents, a large number of transfers would result in changes to class sizes, teaching assignments, cohorts and course offerings. Our goal is to minimize impacts on students and staff, and to provide the stability that will help students successfully complete their school year.
We understand that family realities can change and we will work to support students and families with exceptional circumstances, such as critical illness, in the best way possible. Families in these situations who are seeking a transfer should speak with their principal (OCV families should contact their principal). Any individual transfers will be considered based on space, staffing, course schedules and program requirements.


Planning with Safety in Mind
There will be increased health and safety measures in every school including hand hygiene, physical distancing, personal protective equipment and more. Some examples include:

  • Before coming to school, all students and staff must complete a COVID-19 self-assessment;
  • Access to school buildings will be restricted to staff and students;
  • Physical distancing and directional signage will be in place in all schools;
  • Upon entry at the school and into each classroom and at lunch and recess, hand washing/sanitizing will be required;
  • All students in grades 1-12 and all staff will be provided with masks and required to wear them in the building, and classroom-based staff will be provided with face shields;
  • Students will have designated desks;
  • School offices will have plexiglass shields;
  • Access to common areas will be restricted.

Return to School Plan
Our Return to School Plan is based on the directions of the Ontario Ministry of Education and with guidance from health authorities.  Click on the links below in order to learn more:

Keeping You Informed
The OCDSB Return to School Plan helps to explain how schools will operate, what safety plans are in place, and what supports are available. We have also created a video to help explain how schools will operate. You can watch the video in English or Arabic. We know there are many questions and we will continue to get the answers that families need.  Please watch for an email update from both the OCDSB and your child school.

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