Students at a B.C. high school: schools are technically open as of March 30, but most students will be learning from home. (Black Press files)

Schooling stays home next week for most B.C. students during COVID-19

Districts to provide outreach, service for children of essential workers

Public and independent schools across B.C. are preparing to reopen schools March 30, with most students and staff staying away to comply with the order to suspend classroom instruction due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Schools are not closed, but in-person instruction is suspended by order of Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry. The order allows daycare facilities to continue on school properties if their operators choose to keep them going, and some students to come to school to allow health care and other essential service workers to carry on with their jobs.

The education ministry has established a website to assist parents and schools, with districts developing their own strategies to continue education.

“Each school district and independent school authority will develop a plan that best responds to the needs of their local community,” the ministry website advises. “This could include measures such as online learning tools and/or resource packages or assignments e-mailed from teachers to parents.”

RELATED: Time off work due to COVID-19 now medical leave

RELATED: B.C. bans ‘shameful black market’ of food, medical supplies

Surrey school district superintendent Jordan Tinney posted a video message advising teachers and support staff to stay away from schools until notified.

“Doing our part means that unless a principal or site supervisor has communicated directly with you about the need to be on site from March 30 to April 3, then we are asking you to stay away from school sites so that we can keep them clean, so that we can arrange a rotation for some staff to gather materials and resources as absolutely necessary, and for us to be able to monitor who is on site and to continue to keep our sites clean and safe for all,” Tinney said.

The rotation will allow teachers to pick up needed technology and do photocopying, with administration knowing who is in the building and using equipment so it can be cleaned.

The ministry and the B.C. Teachers’ Federation have set up technical committees to deal with special needs students and accommodate employees who are self-isolating or have other medical issues.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislatureCoronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Broadwater Road residents allowed to return home after evacuation order

Area near Castlegar evacuated due to flooding risk

Castlegar grad takes on a new form during COVID-19 pandemic

Stanley Humphries Secondary Class of 2020 will be celebrating in a unique way this year.

Mercer Celgar announces 30 days of downtime at Castlegar mill in July

Sawlog stumpage charges on pulpwood and complex stumpage rules some reasons for downtime

Evacuation orders for Duhamel, Salmo-Ymir and Crawford Creek rescinded

RDCK warns public that streams are still dangerous

VIDEO: A Vancouver Island black bear takes weekend nap in eagle tree

Videos captured by Terry Eissfeldt shows the bear arriving Saturday night and sleeping in on Sunday

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

How to safely drink water in areas impacted by flooding

Quality and safety of drinking water can be affected during and after floods

NDP getting COVID-19 wage subsidy ‘indirectly,’ B.C. Liberal leader says

B.C. NDP says Andrew Wilkinson is wrong about federal link

Parent, superintendent, trustee report smooth return to classrooms in B.C.

The biggest challenge is convincing families that it’s safe, some say

189 homes in Grand Forks area given evacuation orders

Homes are in the Nursery, Grand Forks Airport, Gilpin Rd., Johnson Flats and Granby Rd. areas

George Floyd asphyxiated by sustained pressure: family autopsy

Death sparked a wave of protests across the U.S. and abroad

COVID-19: B.C. commercial landlords can’t evict if they decline rent assistance

Emergency order ‘incentive’ for federal program, Carole James says

Most Read