Canada’s largest school board has released plans for students returning in September. But there are concerns about the provincial government’s decision to keep classes the same size.
The trustees for the Toronto District School Board met on Tuesday to consider plans for a safe return to classes in September.
A week ago, the Ontario government revealed its plan to reopen schools and announced that elementary and high schools students would return to classrooms full time. It included more than $300 million in new money to help with masks and personal protective equipment, additional staff, cleaning supplies and health and safety. But it did not reduce class sizes.
Elementary school students would resume classes full time, five days a week.
Kelly Iggers has launched a petition asking the Ontario government to reassess its plan, because it puts students at risk.
“With regular class sizes in our classrooms in September, we absolutely do not have space for physical distancing,” Iggers said.
Toronto’s plan, which must still be approved by the Ford government, includes in-class learning for elementary schools students and for high school students, alternating days in-class and remote learning. Class sizes will be limited to 15 students, cafeterias and lockers will be closed and there will be no sports and field trips.
Ford defended the provinces blueprint, adding that parents don’t have to send their kids to school; they can be kept home to learn online. But Kelly Iggers said many families in Ontario don’t have the resources to pull their children out of school.