HPEDSB educators and students resume teaching and learning

The HPEDSB Education Centre. (Desirée Decoste/Gazette Staff)




Thousands of Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board (HPEDSB) educators and students resumed teaching and learning through an online phased-in approach starting that commenced on Monday

According to HPEDSB, over the past few weeks educators have been preparing the possibility of remote learning pending the provincial school closures extended beyond the original date of Apr. 5, 2020. With the provincial announcement earlier last week schools will now be closed to students until May 4, 2020, preparations were readied to roll out through a phased-in approach.

Phase 1, which covers from April 6-17, 2020, will be focused on meeting Ministry of Education-designated hours of work per student, per week, as well as developing learning tasks to meet the profiles of students, including supporting students with special education needs by providing appropriate accommodations and modifications.

Last week Minister of Education Stephen Lecce, announced the following expectations for the amount of student work:

  • JK-Grade 6 will be provided with 5 hours of work per student, per week;
  • Grades 7-8 will be provided with 10 hours of work per student, per week; and
  • Grades 9-12 will be provided with 3 hours per course, per student, per week.

From Apr. 6-17 parents/guardians can expect from the teachers that they will maintain weekly two-way communication with students and families, learning tasks/plans will be available to families by Monday afternoons, teachers will check in on the progress of student learning, and support students and families through unanticipated challenges which can be done by, the teacher posting to an already established online learning platform students and families are familiar with or, if a teacher is new to the digital/remote learning platform, they may connect with families through email, a phone call or text.

What parents/guardians can expect from school administrators is, they will communicate individually with families by selecting a different sample of families each week. This approach will enable administrators to:

  • Support the connections and learning experiences to ensure continuity of learning;
  • Gain a school-based awareness of successes associated with this remote teaching approach; and
  • Find out about any unanticipated challenges families are experiencing when accessing learning tasks provided by teachers.

In preparation for remote learning, educators had access to online refresher training through an HPEDSB-specially designed website. They could participate in online training sessions, book a meeting with a trainer, participate in peer-to-peer collaboration sessions, access online versions of textbooks and other resources that would normally be used in the classroom, or watch tutorials and videos.

Schools are in the process of surveying families to find out who needs technology. Chromebooks will be available for those in most need.

HPEDSB is supporting students and families through the Learning at Home website with educator curated and created at-home learning activities in two ways:

  • Access to over 250 online resources for anyone with access to technology and the Internet; and
  • Access to 150 no-tech activities that can be done without screen time.

While both are available through the website, a unique approach is in place for the no-tech activities.

Last Thursday, free weekly community newspapers in the board’s catchment area including the Picton Gazette featured a full-page, colour advertisement with a series of language and mathematics activities for Grades K-12. These newspaper ads will continue until such time as they are not needed.

For more information please visit www.hpedsb.on.ca/2020/teaching-and-learning-to-resume-on-monday-april-6-2020/

For the HPEDSB Learning at Home website please visit https://sites.google.com/apps.hpedsb.on.ca/hpedsb-learning-at-home/home