1-in-5 choose remote learning

UCDSB’s Morrisburg Public School – File Photo

BROCKVILLE – With 85 per cent of the projected enrollment responding, 20 per cent of students of the Upper Canada District School Board chose remote or distanced learning when they start the 2020-21 school year next month.

Officials with the UCDSB released the results of its “Confirmation of Attendance” survey on August 24th. Nearly 3,200 elementary and 1,270 secondary students will learn from home. Just over 18,000 elementary and 4,450 secondary students will return to in-class, at-school learning.
The board has projected enrollment this year of 26,399 elementary and secondary students. Families were to complete the survey by the end of August 20th to give the board a clear picture on how many students will be going to class.
Families that did not complete the survey by the deadline – about 3,800 students – will be counted as choosing in-class, at-school learning. Parents can still contact the board to opt in or out of at-school learning.
“We know that this wasn’t an easy decision for parents, as there are many factors to consider. We all want what is best for students right now and only our families can decide that,” said director of Education Stephen Sliwa. “Although this school year will look very different, what hasn’t changed is our dedication to our students.”
During the August 19th UCDSB trustee meeting, it was reported that only 53 per cent of students enrolled had responded. That meeting saw up to 900 people attend via online streaming and over 600 questions asked via the chat-function of the meeting.
Several of the questions dealt with mask use, bus transportation, and classroom routines.
UCDSB trustees will held another public meeting on August 26th to receive another update from staff. This included the possibility of a staggered-start to the school year, now that the provincial government has indicated that boards could do so.
Survey numbers from the Catholic District School Board of Eastern Ontario have not been released. That board’s survey closed on August 20th.

Since you’re here…

… Thanks for reading this article. Local news is important. We hope that you continue to support local news by reading The Leader, online and in print. Please consider subscribing to the print edition of the newspaper. Click here to subscribe today.