With just 25 days left until we return to learning together, we wanted to share some important updates about what learning in-person at school and remote learning at home will look like.

Learning In-Person at School

Masking for Kindergarten to Grade 12 Students

Students in Kindergarten through Grade 12 in the Waterloo Region District School Board (WRDSB) will continue to wear masks in the 2021-22 school year, as they did last year. Students must wear non-medical or cloth masks indoors, including in hallways and during classes and on school vehicles.

Wearing a mask throughout the day may be a challenge for some of our learners. Our staff will work with students to make sure they understand why they are wearing a mask and how to wear it safely.

This approach enhances the guidance provided by the Ministry of Education, as directed by a motion of the Board of Trustees in August of 2020.

We recognize that there are unique situations that may prompt parents or caregivers to request a mask accommodation for their child. Parents or caregivers should reach out to their Principal to discuss. Exemptions to mask requirements may be necessary to accommodate some individuals under Ontario Human Rights Code. No one should experience harassment or other discriminatory treatment based on a Human Rights Code ground because they are unable to wear a mask.

Other details related to health and safety measures will be provided in the coming days. Families, students and staff can be assured that health and safety measures are a key priority as we return to school in September.

Modified Semester for Secondary School Students

Secondary students who are learning in-person at school in September will see some changes from last year. For semester one, The Waterloo Region District School Board (WRDSB) will be using modified semesters for secondary students in September 2021.

All students will attend school in person every day, with their classmates. Students will be learning two courses each day, with one in the morning and the other in the afternoon. Students will receive 150 minutes of instruction daily on each subject, with a 40 minute nutrition break in between.

The daily schedule for a modified semester model allows students to return to school for full days and to take four courses instead of two. Students would take two courses one week and their other two courses the next week.

Sample Schedule

Week One Daily Schedule

Course 1 Learning Block (AM) 150 minutes
Nutrition Break 40 minutes
Course 2 Learning Block (PM) 150 minutes

Week Two Daily Schedule

Course 3 Learning Block (AM) 150 minutes
Nutrition Break 40 minutes
Course 4 Learning Block (AM) 150 minutes

Secondary Remote Learning Program (SRLP)

The WRDSB will be providing a Secondary Remote Learning Program (SRLP) for students who registered for Remote Learning by the June 2, 2021 deadline. Details about the Remote Learning Program will be shared with Remote Learning students by their home school. The Remote Learning School schedule and timetable will follow a similar schedule as the in-person schedule and timetable.

Students registered in Remote Learning will be “shared” with the Remote Learning Program but will continue to be attached to their home school and will be eligible to partake in co-curricular activities and sports offered at their home schools. Students who graduate from the Remote Learning Program in June 2022, will be considered graduates of their home school and will participate in home school graduation activities.

The Secondary Remote Learning Program (SRLP) will provide:

  • Limited course options at each grade level for each pathway
  • Secondary ESL/ELD program with fewer course options
  • Programs NOT available: Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM), French Immersion, Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB), Integrated Arts Program (IAP)

Changing Modes of Learning

We appreciate that making the decision for your child’s mode of learning was a challenging one, given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. We do expect that there will be families who may now have unique individual needs or extenuating circumstances that may lead to a request to change their child’s mode of learning and we would ask that families reach out to their Principal. Each case will be reviewed individually by Principals, in consultation with families.

Families with individual needs and extenuating circumstances have until August 20, 2021, to contact their Principal. Changes to mode of learning must also take into consideration program availability given staffing and timetabling restrictions.

Stay up to date

We look forward to sharing more details about the 2021-2022 school year as they are finalized. Please make sure you are subscribed to our website, or your school’s website, to receive the latest information.