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UGDSB – Frequently Asked Questions regarding COVID-19

Updated May 20, 2020

Student Information​

What distance learning resources are available to students during the school closures?

Upper Grand students are engaging in distance learning through the board’s Learning at Home program, which provides teacher-led instruction to UGDSB students, assisted by our support staff. Information regarding distance learning can be found here: https://www.ugdsb.ca/community/coronavirus/ugdsb-learning-at-home/

UGDSB also has learning resources available for students that can be accessed from home at any time. Click here for UGDSB learning resources

The Ministry of Education is providing online learning resources for students during the school closure period. ​Click here to visit the Ministry’s Learn at Home website

Will students be at risk of not graduating?

The Minister of Education has said that “no student will have their graduation jeopardized by the developments of COVID-19.”

Will students be receiving year-end report cards?

Yes, all students in K-12 will receive final report cards. The requirement to issue mid-year report cards for secondary students was suspended for this school year. 

How are UGDSB’s Continuing Education programs impacted?

For the status of the board’s Continuing Education programs, please email Julie Bodiam at [email protected]

Will co-op placements, Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Programs (OYAP) and School Within a College (SWAC) programs continue during the closure of schools?

Although all in-person co-op placements, including OYAP work placements, are suspended until further notice, co-op courses will continue.  Co-op teachers are developing creative ways to work through curriculum expectations and support student learning plans.

Will dual credit courses (with community colleges, post-secondary institutions, etc.) continue during this time?

Wherever possible, colleges are transitioning current dual credit program offerings to an online learning environment beginning the week of April 6, 2020.​ Some of the more hands-on dual credit offerings have been cancelled and impacted students have been notified. Alternative options will be offered to these students in order to ensure that all students on track to graduate will have that option still available to them.

Will the International Baccalaureate (IB) program be impacted?

Please visit the International Baccalaureate (IB) website.

Will university and college applications be impacted or adjusted as a result of school closures?

The Ontario Universities’ Application Centre (OUAC) and Ontario universities are closely monitoring the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on students’ applications. Please refer to the following websites for more information about university and college applications: ​​

OUAC
Ontario Universities
Ontario Colleges

Will the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT) scheduled for March 31 take place? ​​

No, the Ministry of Education has confirmed the OSSLT will not take place on March 31. For students who are graduating in the 2019-20 school year, the literacy graduation requirement will be waived. Students who are not graduating this school year will have the opportunity to write the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT) in the upcoming 2020-21 school year.

Will EQAO continue for grades 3, 6 and 9?

No, the Ministry of Education has confirmed that EQAO for grades 3, 6 and 9 for the 2019/2020 school year is cancelled.

Will the DELF proceed as scheduled?

The Upper Grand DSB has cancelled the administration of the DELF French proficiency test in May. For more information, please click here.

Are year end grade 8 trips affected by COVID-19 at this time?

All school trips scheduled during the remainder of the 2019-20 school year have been cancelled. 

Are graduations affected by COVID-19 at this time?

Secondary graduations have been postponed to the fall, provided it is safe to do so at that time.

Will the school year be extended into the summer?

On May 19, 2020, the province announced that all Ontario schools would remain closed for the rest of the 2019-20 school year and that the Ministry of Education would be providing summer learning opportunities to students. We are awaiting further details about summer learning opportunities and will share them when we can. 

When can we retrieve student belongings from schools?

In light of the Ministry of Education’s announcement that schools will remain closed for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year, the UGDSB is putting plans in place for families and students to retrieve their personal items from schools – lockers, desks and other areas. We expect to have students retrieve their items from secondary schools during the week of May 25, and for parents to pick up items from elementary schools during the week of June 1. We are working hard to ensure that our plans will allow the retrieval of personal items, while ensuring that safety and social distancing requirements are met. More information will be coming directly from your student’s school in the coming days/weeks.

Family Resources

How should I talk with my child about COVID-19/Coronavirus?

• Remain calm and reassuring.
• Make yourself available.
• Avoid excessive blaming.
• Monitor their television viewing and social media.
• Maintain a normal routine to the best extent possible.
• Be honest and accurate.
• Know the symptoms of COVID-19.
• Review and model basic hygiene and healthy lifestyle practices for protection.

For more information about supporting your child, refer to:
The UGDSB Mental Health page
Community Mental Health Waterloo/Wellington – COVID-19
National Association of School Psychologists – Talking to Children About COVID-19 (Coronavirus): A Parent Resource
Harvard Health Blog – How to talk to children about the coronavirus 

Click here for a list of mental health resources to help at this time

Will schools be cleaned during the closure ?

Yes, our custodial staff were in the schools during the week of March 16-20 to do deep cleaning of the schools and board facilities. These sites will subsequently be closed and only accessed by a limited number of individuals who will be performing essential services during the closure period.

Will bus companies be cleaning their buses during the closure?

Yes, all buses will be cleaned and sanitized during the school closure period.

How can I stay up to date with information from UGDSB?

While schools are closed we encourage families to continue to check for updates from us through SchoolMessenger, the UGDSB website and the board’s social media pages (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram).

Will Childcare programs and EarlyON Centres be operating?

At this time, all child care centres and EarlyOn programs operating in or on board/school property are closed. However, that could change with further direction from the provincial government. 

Are community use of schools/rentals cancelled?

Yes, we have cancelled all community group bookings/permits for the duration of the closure period.​

UGDSB Business

​Are Board offices/administrative centres open?

No, the Guelph Board Office, Grant Evans Education Centre, St. George’s Centre for ESL and Continuing Education offices are closed during the closure period.

Can I contact my child’s Vice Principal, Principal or Superintendent during the closure period?

Yes. While schools are closed, Vice Principals, Principals and Superintendents will be checking voicemail and email should you have any urgent questions or concerns.

I am a vendor who does business with the UGDSB. How can I send invoices to the UGDSB during the shutdown period?

Invoices and payment – Please be advised that invoices should be forwarded electronically to [email protected]. The UGDSB will process payment of invoices, but please expect delays in receiving payment.

The UGDSB will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates to vendors regarding deliveries of goods.

Is there mail courier deliveries to schools during the school closure?

Mail delivery will be suspended during the closure.​