Back to School Plan: What’s changed?

Updated guidelines from the Ministry of Education

On August 13, the Ministry of Education released updated guidelines for going back to school that have resulted in changes to our Back to School Plan. Important highlights of these changes are outlined below.

Staggered entry for in-person and distance learning

This year’s first day of school will look a little different for families. To ensure a smoother and safe transition back to school students will come to school on different days as noted below. (Chart updated August 26, 2020).

GradeStart Date
1st-year KindergartenThursday, September 3 (orientation) - ½ of students new to Kindergarten
Friday, September 4 (orientation) - ½ of students new to Kindergarten
Kindergarten (all)Tuesday, September 8
Grades 1-3Tuesday, September 8
Grades 4-6Wednesday, September 9
Grade 7Tuesday, September 8
Grade 8Wednesday, September 9
Grades 9-12 Cohort AMonday, September 14
Grades 9-12 Cohort BTuesday, September 15

*Distance Learners will follow the same Return to School schedule as in-person learners.

Kindergarten to grade 8 – Online learning

What’s new?

There will be an online teacher assigned to each online elementary class. 

  • If your child is in Kindergarten, this teacher will be available for synchronous learning (real-time online instruction) for 180 minutes each day. 
  • If your child is in grades 1 to 8, this teacher will be available for synchronous learning (real-time online instruction) for 225 minutes each day.

How will this impact your child?

If you choose distance learning for your child in Kindergarten to grade 8, their online class will be composed of a combination of students from their school and neighbouring schools who chose distance learning. They will remain registered at your neighbourhood school.

Grade 9 to 12– In-person learning adapted model

What’s new?

High school students (9-12) will attend school for full days, every other day.

How will this impact your child?

If you choose in-person learning for your child in high school, they will now receive 50% of in-person instruction at school.

In-person or online? Can you change your mind?

The results from our distance learning survey showed that most parents are choosing in-class learning for their child this September. We know that parents made the best decision they could based on the information they had at the time. If you would like to change your previous selection, please complete this Change of Preference Form by August 21. If no changes are required, you do not have to fill out the form.


The Ottawa School Transportation Authority (OSTA) will be contacting parents regarding transportation.  In order to address the complexities of transportation this year, families are encouraged to drive/walk/bike to school.

Board of Trustees approves funds to address COVID-19 costs

With the guidance of our Trustees, we developed a comprehensive Return to School plan designed to support the health, safety, and wellbeing of our staff and students.

Our Board of Trustees has approved the use of reserves to help address COVID-19 costs. These funds will be used to cover the costs of additional staff to address the largest class size across the board and to support our elementary virtual program.



If you have more questions, you can consult the Frequently Asked Questions for Parents on the Board website.

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