We have been very impressed with the work of our teachers, who have migrated to home learning platforms with tremendous efficiency and creativity during this global pandemic. Teachers have been very busy preparing lessons, providing feedback on learning, connecting with students, working through year-end transition processes and supporting the social and emotional well-being of students. Teachers have and continue to be available to students and families through various means of communication.
Like all Islanders, staff at the Public Schools Branch (PSB) have been very encouraged with recent messaging from the province and the Chief Public Health Office (CPHO), including the positive trend toward lifting restrictions on mobility and gatherings in PEI. As home learning continues to unfold, we are able to consider broader opportunities to connect and engage with students and families. We would like to provide you with an update.
In accordance with the provisions outlined in Renew PEI, new possibilities for staff and students to connect at their respective school will be available. With the easing of restrictions, PSB staff may be available to provide additional support to students.
As restrictions are being lifted, PSB staff are excited that there are greater opportunities to connect with students to support academic and well-being needs. Teachers will be reaching out to their students with options they can participate in.
In addition, Respite Programming will begin operating at all 56 PSB schools. Please contact email@example.com or (902) 368-4997 for more information.
Student Services consultants and specialists will be in contact with families as additional supports become available. For more information please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or (902) 368-5155.
Schools are excitedly working on plans for High School Graduations and year end closing activities, within the public health guidelines outlined by the Chief Public Health Office. While activities will not look the same as in previous years, schools are committed to offering a unique experience to mark the end of the school year and wish their students well.
The PEI Literacy Alliance is excited to launch their Ready Set Learn summer tutoring program for another year! Because of Covid-19, the process to apply is a little different this year. Parents – please click the following link to get started: https://peiliteracy.ca/ready-set-learn/ The application form for Ready Set Learn will open Monday, May 25.
Ready Set Learn is a free one-to-one tutoring program for children in grades K to 6 who need it the most. Each child selected for the program will receives 1 hour/week of free tutoring for 8 weeks over July and August in a fun and positive learning environment. For younger children this may be two 30-minute sessions a week. Changes to this year’s program due to Covid-19 include:
· Tutors will work one-to-one with children virtually through Zoom Classroom.
· Each child will receive a Literacy Kit to be used during tutoring sessions.
· Parents will have to sign a legal waiver.
May 20, 2020
‘It’s like driving a car at night. You never see further than your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.’ – E. L. Doctorow
Dear Parents/Guardians, Students, and Staff;
Have you ever noticed when driving late at night that the road ahead is pitch-black? Even though our headlights are on, we still can only see a little ways down that road. This limited sight line requires us to stay attentive with our hands firmly on the wheel to navigate the part of the road we can see, so we can safely make the entire trip. The same can be said for how we navigate our lives and plan for the future during this pandemic.
While we do not know what will happen in the distant future, we don’t need to. We can trust others for leading and caring for us, have faith in the contributions we can make, and navigate the unknowns as they arrive. We can successfully travel the whole journey through COVID–19 that way.
Our recent planning and navigating has ensured the Respite Program is off to a smooth start. The program is being utilized by 215 students and has been a welcomed support to their parents and caregivers.
Planning is also underway for some PSB staff to safely return to their work places. Custodians and cleaners started back to schools full-time this week and administrative assistants will be back part-time next week.
Operational plans allowing schools to complete essential tasks have been approved by the Chief Public Health Officer. These plans include packing up student items (desks and lockers) and working with families to distribute these items, providing Term 2 Report Cards to K-9 students who have not yet received them, collecting library books or other items on loan etc. Schools will communicate their detailed plans with families soon. Given the difference in school populations and layouts, things may be done differently at each school. However, we can assure you that approved safety guidelines will be followed.
Additional activities and planning include, year-end student transition planning by our Student Services teams, exploring the use of Google Meet for some high school teachers and students, wrapping up Chromebook deliveries to over 1000 students, preparing for summer school, finalizing school supply lists and packaging Welcome to Kindergarten bags.
American novelist E. L. Doctorow’s quotation at the beginning of the message is our reminder that we don’t need to know everything in the future. We need only know enough to make hopeful, wise, and realistic plans. If together we don’t go too fast or deny the limitations, and we stay focused on the road directly ahead, the journey will be much more successful.
Thank you and take care,
Director, Public Schools Branch
Dear Parents and Guardians,
Since March 23rd, our focus has been on literacy, numeracy, and student health and well-being in kindergarten through grade 9. During this time, home learning materials have been provided for students. Our goal has been to provide opportunities for learning, rather than evaluation.
As the year progresses you have been asking about your child’s achievement and report cards. In June, you will receive an end of year report with comments from your child’s teachers. There will not be an end of year achievement mark because we have been focusing on student learning in specific areas of the provincial curriculum.
Students in K-9 will not be retained as a result of COVID-19 and will move to the next grade level.
In the fall, teachers will be using a revised curriculum to teach your child. The curriculum will include key aspects of learning from this school year that your child will need to learn as they continue in the next grade.
If you have any questions or concerns about your child’s learning, please contact your child’s teacher.
Director of English Education, Programs and Services
Department of Education and Lifelong Learning