Back to school: digital learning

Catholic board's online classes start on September 14, public board a week later

No parent can be blamed for wanting a safe learning environment for their child. For many parents across Simcoe County and the District of Muskoka, that means learning online instead of the classroom.

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About 4,600 students with the Simcoe Muskoka Catholic District School Board have signed up to learn online. There will be two digital schools-one for elementary students and another for secondary students. Interim Education Director Catherine Mcullough said an example would be a Grade 2 class where students who come from several of the schools in Barrie will be grouped together in a virtual learning setting. There will also be centrally assigned staff to each online school.

“It’s really a collection of and grouping of children according to the grade. The remote learning teacher with a curriculum conducts the instruction.”

Digital learning for Catholic students will begin on Monday, September 14.

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For students with the Simcoe County District School Board, the voluntary learn-from-home program begins on September 21. Students participating in these virtual classes will be contacted by their teacher within the first two weeks of school. Like with the Catholic board, these students could be grouped into classes made up of remote learning students from multiple areas.

Students will be provided a daily schedule of subjects or courses according to a five-hour instructional day.

Attendance will be taken, and those opting for remote learning will have to stick with that choice likely until the end of the semester. Transitioning from in-class and remote learning could take place in February 2021.