August 27, 2020
Dear Parents and Caregivers,
We are excited to welcome your children back to our safe, caring, and positive learning environments. Orientation for your child is on September 10thor 11th(your principal will provide the schedule soon) and then full time on Monday, September 14th. Our schools are rigorously following all directives of the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Education to make sure that every school is safe and healthy for our students and staff.
For this very particular September we have some options from which to choose for your child’s education. Please review the four options carefully and let us know your plans through the survey by Tuesday, September 1st. This survey is an information gathering process for our schools and district to plan and organize staff support in the right way. It is not a registration process for the different options. Please complete a separate survey for each of your children.
As a part of our safety plan we will be reducing school bus ridership. Please review this year’s considerations under the options below.
If you have any questions, please contact your child’s principal. If you are a new student to our district, please visit https://sd46.bc.ca/schools-and-services/registration/ to begin the registration process.
You can find the survey at this link: https://sd46.bc.ca/families-and-students/education-during-covid-19-pandemic-resources-supports/. The survey is located on the first tab of the page. The survey will close Tuesday, September 1st at noon.
As always, thank you for your patience and support as we navigate this changing journey together.
Superintendent of Schools
School District 46 – Sunshine Coast
Option 1: Full-time In-Class Instruction
All schools have carefully prepared safety plans for COVID-19 exposure control according to the enhanced safety guidelines under Stage 2 of the BC Return to School Plan for the safe return of all students. In most elementary schools, your child’s learning group will be their class mates and teacher. In secondary schools learning groups may be up to 120 students and staff. Any other interaction inside the school will require physical distancing and/ or the adult / Secondary student wearing a mask.
STUDENTS WITH IMMUNE SUPPRESSION
According to the Provincial Health Officer and the BC Centre for Disease Control, most children who are immunocompromised can return to in-class instruction when safety measures are in place.
Protective self-isolation is only recommended for children who are severely immunocompromised, as determined on a case-by-case basis.
The advice from the Provincial Health Officer and the BC Centre for Disease Control for parents/caregivers of children with complex medical conditions or underlying risk factors, or parents/caregivers who are immunocompromised themselves, is to consult with their medical health care provider to determine the level of risk regarding their child’s return to in-class instruction. Parents/caregivers seeking an alternative to in-class instruction, and who do not wish to register their child in a distributed learning program or homeschooling, will be required to obtain a doctor’s note indicating the need for accommodations due to health-related risks.
If attending in-class instruction is right for the child: schools will work with parents or caregivers to develop a plan that provides options for learning to ensure appropriate preventative measures are in place within the school setting.
If attending in-class instruction is not right for the child: our schools will work with families to develop options to continue their child’s education remotely.
Option 2: Transition Phase
Parents who are not yet comfortable with their children attending in class will notify their child’s principal by choosing this option. A simple structure and learning materials list (online resources, etc.) will be provided from which you would support the academic growth of your child until you’re ready for your child to be back in school. This is NOT the remote learning that you recall from last year because your child’s teacher is fully engaged in teaching the students present at school. Under this option, you may choose for your child to return to their classroom full time at set times during the school year. For clarity, Option 2: Transition, is intended for those parents who are not immediately ready to have their children attend their regular school.
Option 3: NEW Sunshine Coast Online Program (*This is not the SPIDER program)
In this option students enroll with Sunshine Coast Online. Families will collaboratively plan with a district teacher rather than a teacher in your home school. Due to staffing limitations, you must be commited to the online program for the entire academic year and may only return to your home school should there be space available in the appropriate classroom. Students are supported at home by their parent or guardian. Under this program there is no connection with the home school and no physical attendance at any school. In this special circumstance of managing the pandemic, your child will be eligible to return in September 2021 to the school in which they were enrolled at the end of the 2019/ 2020 program.
Option 4: Traditional Homeschooling (*This is not the SPIDER program)
All educational programming and supervision will be provided by their parent/guardian. The parent creates and delivers their own curriculum and all learning activities. A qualified teacher is not involved in the educational program. Students who remain in homeschooling in grades 10 to 12 are not eligible for a BC Certificate of Graduation (Dogwood Diploma).
Full Time In-Class Instruction
Sunshine Coast Online
September orientation and 100% back to school.
*Families with physician diagnosed immune supression should choose option 1. Your child’s principal will contact you regarding appropriate accomodations. Alternatively, you may choose another option.
Some delay in starting, some resources provided. Parents support learning program.Re-entry schedule will be shared soon.
Collaboratively planning with a Distance Learning teacher. Parents support the program. Commitment for the school year.
Families responsible for their child’s education
If you have plans other than the four options above, please let your child’s principal know.
School Bus Information
In order to reduce the number of students on buses this year, all families should consider making alternative arrangements and utilizing active transport strategies (walking, bicycling) to reduce the number of students on buses. If you are an eligible rider or cross-boundary rider, you may be asked by your child’s school if you plan to use the school bus this school year. Cross-boundary riders may be required to make alternative arrangements depending on available space. School Buses will not be accepting unregistered riders, which includes after-school friends coming home with a bus student. Alternate transportation will need to be arranged by families in those cases.
For those families who do require service, the Board of Education has established walk limits to school from student’s homes. If a student lives within a walk limit, they are not eligible for school bus transportation. The walk limits established are 2.0 km for Kindergarten to Grade 7 and 3.2 km for Grade 8 to Grade 12. If you are unsure about your eligibility for a school bus, you can use google maps to enter your home address and your school’s address and choose the “walk” option to determine the shortest route. You can also contact our transportation contractor, Thirdwave, if you need more assistance in determining your eligibility. In normal years the school district sometimes provides courtesy ridership where space permits to students living within the walk limits, however that courtesy will not be available during the COVID pandemic.
September Restart 2020 Video
*Update: the video section outlining the Sunshine Coast Online program as K- Gr. 9 is now being offered K – Gr 12.