The Legislative Assembly of Ontario is adjourned until September 14, 2020. The following is an update on recent information.
September Return to School Plans
On July 30, 2020, Minister of Education Stephen Lecce released Ontario’s Guide to Reopening Ontario’s Schools that provides details for school boards with direction for their September plans. This is also being called the “Guidance Document.” All elementary schools will reopen with all students returning to schools and their classrooms, five days a week, Monday to Friday. The ministry has categorized secondary schools by their school board as either “non-designated” or “designated.” All non-designated school boards are able to reopen with a regular schedule that involves all students attending class Monday to Friday. Those school boards that have been identified as “designated” will begin the school year “in an adapted model of part-time attendance with class cohorts of up to 15 students alternating between attending in-person and online.” There are 20 OPSBA member boards that are “Non-Designated” and 11 that are “Designated.” OPSBA will be following up with the Ministry of Education to find out more details about how boards will be given notice that allows them to, “move to conventional delivery when it is determined that it is safe to do so.”
The announcement also included a number of areas of increased funding for additional staff, cleaning supplies, mental health PD/training, mental health supports and special education support. Up to 500 public health nurses will be hired to assist schools and boards in local health protocols. In mid-June, OPSBA sent a submission to the government regarding the return to school and also conducted polling research with Nanos about Ontarians’ comfort in returning to school and funding concerns.
Minister Lecce has confirmed that the weekly Monday teleconferences with school board chairs will continue but that the next week’s call will most likely be rescheduled for Tuesday due to the holiday. The Deputy Minister indicated that a B memo that provides funding details and board by board financial allotments would be issued and released soon.
On July 31, the City of Toronto and Peel Region joined much of the rest of the province in moving to Stage 3 of reopening, leaving only Windsor-Essex in Stage 2. Two recent regulations were filed that support Bill 195, Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act, 2020.
- Ontario Regulation 364/20: RULES FOR AREAS IN STAGE 3
- Ontario Regulation 363/20: STAGES OF REOPENING
- July 31, 2020 News Release – COVID Alert Available for Download Beginning Today
- July 30, 2020 News Release – Ontario Continues to Gradually and Safely Reopen Child Care for Working Parents
- July 27, 2020 – Ontario Regulation 137/15: GENERAL made under the Child Care and Early Years Act, 2014
- July 29, 2020 News Release – Ontario Takes Steps to Improve Child Welfare System
- July 28, 2020 News Release – Ontario Helping to Protect Communities against Racism and Hate
- July 27, 2020 News Release – Historic Agreement Delivers up to $4 Billion to Support Municipalities and Transit
- July 2020 – Ontario Ombudsman Newsletter
- 2019 – 20 Annual Report of the Financial Accountability Officer
- July 21, 2020 – Autism Services: A Financial Review of Autism Services and Program Design Considerations for the New Ontario Autism Program