Janine  Kobylka
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COVID-19 Information & Updates from BCCPAC

Effective March 17 in-classroom instruction was suspended indefinitely in all schools across BC. As we now approach the end of the two week March Break (for most districts but not all), we are mindful that members are wondering what will happen this week and next week.

For the benefit of our members, we've put all the information we have shared online in one place and will update as we move forward during this unique time.

Please know that many groups and individuals are working diligently to ensure communication and planning for the continuity of learning. This is an unprecedented and significant undertaking.

Staff at the district and school level are working together on developing plans for the continuity of learning of your children. Districts will provide information to parents directly once they have finalized their plans. Many of you may have already received an update by email or requests for information via surveys etc. Watch for these and respond quickly to aid your school district in their planning for your benefit.

Everyone is working under the four guiding principles set out by the Ministry. Districts and schools are being asked to prioritize vulnerable learners and come up with a plan that protects their health and safety while also maintaining continuity of education services. Districts will try to adhere to a special education student’s individualized education plan. Specialist teachers and support staff who typically support students in the school environment will be able to support the student’s learning at home by providing materials specifically designed to meet the child’s individual learning needs.

On behalf of parents and members, President Andrea Sinclair and CEO John Gaiptman will continue to attend all meetings/calls with the Minister of Education Rob Fleming, Deputy Minister of Education Scott McDonald, and all the key stakeholders in the K-12 education sector (unions, education partner associations, First Nations associations, and Independent school associations). A Continuity of Learning Opportunities Advisory Group has been struck and BCCPAC is part of that group. We will share information as we are able.

Please understand and recognize that:

  • As March Break comes to an end for most of us, that next week Monday may not be what you expect and you should not expect it to look just like in-class instruction prior to March Break
  • Continuity of instruction and learning will look very different for your children, varying by region, by district, by school and by grade level. We are a diverse province and School Districts/Boards are developing their own plans for alternative instruction to best meet the needs of students and families in their communities
  • Instruction will not just flip over 100% to online - it may be part of many students continued learning but don't assume it’s the 100% replacement to in-class instruction
  • Change is difficult but change doesn't equate to bad or less.

Please don't speculate, jump to conclusions or make assumptions. Rely on factual information. As parents/guardians in public education, your trusted and accurate sources for K-12 information are BCCPAC, the Ministry of Education, your School District, your local DPAC, your School staff and your PAC. Know who and where to direct your inquiries...and no it’s not into your echo chamber on social media.

For the benefit of our members, we've put all the information we have shared online in one place and will update as we move forward during this unique time.

There are still questions to be answered but know that discussions and the sharing of information continues throughout the sector.

Together we will make this work.