- Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board (HPEDSB) - http://www.hpedsb.on.ca -

Province announces return to school plans for September 2020

Last updated August 4, 2020

July 30, 2020—Today the Ministry of Education announced plans [1] for return to school in September. Highlights are shown below starting at Highlights from the Ministry of Education Reopening Plan.

The priority of Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board is the safety and well-being of students, families and staff, particularly as we prepare for the return to school in September. We know that the first day of school will be filled with a combination of excitement and anxiety due to COVID-19 combined with the length of time students have been away from school. The first day school for all students is Thursday, September 3, 2020.

“We appreciate the direction from the Ministry of Education about reopening schools in September. Now that we have this information, we can finalize plans for all HPEDSB schools. We know that that students, parents/guardians and staff may be feeling anxious during these uncertain times. We are doing our best to be nimble in order to adjust to this dynamic situation and commit to providing updates as timely as possible,” said Sean Monteith, Director of Education.

The safety and well-being of students and staff are the foundation of our school re-opening planning and decision making. Return to school plans are based on advice, guidance and directives of the Ministry of Education and the provincial health officials, and are in consultation with local public health officials. Staff are working closely with public health, our neighbouring school boards, Tri-Board Student Transportation Services, community partners and staff.

Staff will be focusing on everyday strategies to support educators and students for a mentally healthy return to school, encourage inclusivity, build trust and create the optimal conditions for learning and development.

The decision to send children to school remains the choice of parents/guardians. HPEDSB always respects and honours that parent choice. In the coming days, outreach will occur with parents/guardians to assist in understanding the number of students to be in school in September.

“We realize that the decision to send children to school is an incredibly difficult one. To prepare our schools to be as best and responsive as possible, we will be contacting families in the days ahead to get an idea of parent intentions,” said Monteith.

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Highlights from the Ministry of Education Reopening Plan

Elementary schools

Secondary schools

Multiple strategies to support healthy and safe environments for students and staff

Support for families

School health monitoring system

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“As a parent myself, I fully appreciate how confusing these times are for students and families. Terms such as cohorting, distancing and adaptive learning add more confusion. We remain steadfastly committed to reassuring our parents/guardians that the number one priority is the safety of their children, our students, our staff and our families,” added Monteith.

As with controlling the spread of other viruses, we urge you to speak to your child about the following prevention measures:

In the coming days, this web page will outline important information for students, parents/guardians about what a school day will look like, health and safety protocols, well-being resources and more.

Some COVID-19 links are below. Refer to the COVID-19 webpage [2] for additional information.

COVID-19 resources

FAQs for COVID-19, closures, mental health and well-being resources and more [8]

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Kids Help Phone
Text CONNECT to 686868
1-800-668-6868
www.kidshelpphone.ca [9]

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Financial resources

Find financial help during COVID-19 [10]

The Hastings and Prince Edward Learning Foundation [11] assists families with emergency items

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At-home learning resources

No-tech learning activities of the week [12]: newspaper ads

Learning at home [13], HPEDSB online resources

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Tips sheets from School Mental Health Ontario

For more information, please contact:
Kerry Donnell, Communications Manager, 613.966.1170 or 1.800.267.4350, extension 62354, [email protected]