The Ottawa Catholic School Board is urging patience among families whose children are learning remotely this fall as they work through technical issues.
In a statement posted to social media on Tuesday, the OCSB said it encountered problems while trying to connect its 7,000 virtual students.
Update for #ocsbVirtual Families: #ThankYou for your patience and understanding as we launch our new Virtual Program today. We know some of you are still waiting to hear from us, we're facing some technical issues, but hang tight!
Read full update below �� #ocsbSchoolReady pic.twitter.com/n8jJavK6Ue
"Let us start by saying thank you for your patience and understanding as we launch our Virtual Elementary School today," the board said. "We have faced some technical issues as we tried to connect to over 7,000 students – but we are almost there."
The board said all kindergarten to Grade 3 students would be fully connected by the end of the day Tuesday, while students in Grades 4 to 6 would be connected by the end of the day Wednesday.
"We know that choosing distance learning was a challenging decision for your family," the OCSB said. "We are here to support you. Together we will make this work."
In a statement, a spokesperson for the Ottawa Catholic School Board said this week is meant for troubleshooting.
"Although it would have been great to have everyone start seamlessly this morning, the reality is that we have new hires, and some classes are still working on access and there were some technical issues with our learning management system," the spokesperson said.
"We have 6,500 students registered for the online elementary program. Today we started our elementary program, and of the approximately 4,091 students who were to start today, 100% will be contacted by an OCSB teacher today."
The OCSB is rolling out the return to school gradually between Sept. 8 and Sept 15.
95 per cent went well, but more glitches anticipated
The OCSB's Director of Education Tom D'Amico told CTV News at Five that the vast majority of virtual learning students did have contact with their teachers, but there were still many who had trouble.
"In terms of our virtual school, we have 6,433 students in elementary, with 95 per cent returning and going well, that still leaves hundreds of students who weren't contacted," he said.
D'Amico said he believed 100 per cent of all students who began virtual learning on Tuesday would be contacted by the end of the day.
He said some of the issues teachers encountered included incorrect or incomplete email addresses.
"Tomorrow is day one for Grades 4 to 6 and we anticipate similar errors," he said, but he urged parents to fill out a form on the board's website if their children were not reached by their virtual teacher.
The website for the OCSB's virtual school can be found here.