CTV's Madison Erhardt chats with Simcoe Muskoka Catholic District School Board Director of Education, Catherine McCullough, about returning to school.
Madison: With the first day of in-class learning less than a week away, what still has to get done before students can enter the classroom?
Catherine McCullough: We are spending three full days on a range of professional activity topics. These topics range from health and safety, mental health and wellbeing, and a whole host of other curriculum and academic expectations.
Things like plexiglass and all those other things that were in place before and how you communicate as well as outreach is all different, so we have to spend time on that.
Madison: Remote learning is set to begin on Sept 14 with school reorganization and staff training are set for next week. What will that involve?
Catherine McCullough: For our virtual schools, we have elementary and secondary, and as we speak, we are finalizing those teaching assignments.
Even though teachers are coming into our school, we are letting them know this week what their new assignment will be.
So if it's the virtual school, they will be teaching the virtual school from their home school. The exception would be those teachers who are on medical accommodation. They will be teaching from home.
Number two, we need to take time to have our teachers understand and have an in-service online learning platform that they are going to be using. The other thing that our virtual teachers are going to be doing is reaching out to the students that they are going to be teaching, making that one-on-one introduction.
Madison: Once kids are back in the classroom, is there a certain point when you will be sitting down and assessing if what you're doing is working?
Catherine McCullough: Quite frankly, the assessment of how we are doing has to be ongoing and then where we have to, we will improve.
I am making the assumption that we are going to have to improve. We all want to get this right, so we are all going to work together to make sure that we are doing our very best job to provide that service and support to kids.