Students of the Keewatin Patricia District School Board will sadly not be returning to school this year, as announced by Premier Doug Ford on Wednesday, virtual learning will continue through this school year with in-class learning returning in September.

“Well for me, I'm really glad that the decision was made," stated by Sherri-Lynne Pharand, Director of Education. 

"I think you know one of the most challenging things for parents and families and for our staff is to not know from you know or not be sure in which manner they're planning for and, so I'm glad that it was announced yesterday for the remainder of the year.”

Virtual learning has been implemented for students across Ontario since April 12, 2021. Pharand says staff across the KPDSB have done everything they can to assist students to adjust to online learning.

“We do know that remote learning presents numerous challenges for families, particularly in our area of Ontario,  with access to Wi-Fi, and things like that. So we've done everything that we can to help mitigate that for our students and to provide, you know hotspots for those who need it,” said Pharand

Pharand also stated to keep student engagement up, teachers of a hands-on subject like a cooking class, have sent materials to their house and the students will cook virtually with their teacher.

Students are expected to return to in-class learning in September and the KPDSB wants to try to make it as smooth of a transition as it can be for students.

“Creating transition plans because we know that there will be kids transitioning from virtual learning. As good educators, meet kids where they're at and help them learn what their next steps are, and so that's what we're planning to do for September,” noted Pharand

The last day of school for students of the KPDSB is scheduled to be on June 25, 2021.