Schools remain closed until the end of June

posted May 19, 2020, 11:35 AM by Caroline Girardin

The Premier and Minister of Education announced today all schools would remain closed for the rest of the school year in consultation with Ontario's Chief Medical Officer of Health and the COVID-19 Command Table. We understand you might be disappointed with this news, but the decision was based on the best advice of health experts.

Distance learning continues

Although schools will not reopen until September, distance learning will continue until the end of the school year. Students in grades K-12 will continue to keep learning at home under the guidance of their educators. 

Staff access to school & Board office 

Many staff have asked when they can work at their school or at the Board office. At this point, the Ministry of Education has not permitted this to take place. The Ministry of Education has been asked to consider approving some staff to work in schools or at the Board office while ensuring physical distancing. Once this direction comes from the Ministry, we will notify the staff, and we will be as flexible as possible to accommodate individual circumstances.

Students/Parents retrieving items from school

We are waiting for approval from Ottawa Public Health on our submitted protocol for retrieving personal items from schools. We expect students and/or parents will be able to access schools sometime in June to retrieve their personal items. Principals are working on a plan that will permit controlled access once ready to implement. 

Summer learning

The province also unveiled an expanded summer learning plan for students to continue learning through the summer months. Plans are underway for summer school credit recovery and reach ahead credit courses. At this time, the format for this learning (face-to-face, online or hybrid) will depend on guidance from Public Health. 

Child care and day camps

The government plans to gradually reopen child care, open summer day camps as long as there continues to be progress in trends of key public health indicators. We expect this to begin when the Province is ready to transition to Stage 2 and will include safety protocols. 

Return to school plan 2020-2021

By the end of June, the government will announce reopening plans and safety protocols to enable students and staff to return to in-class instruction for the school year 2020-2021. In addition to the Ministry of Education’s guidelines, we are working with Ottawa Public Health (OPH), our staff, our local employee groups, our Catholic School Parent Association and Parent Involvement Committee (CSPA/PIC), and our Special Education Advisory Committee (SEAC) to develop a safe, comprehensive education plan for return to school in September. 

Staff can feel confident that our new plan for the fall will include appropriate physical distancing measures, disinfecting requirements, and where advised by OPH, the provision of staff personal protective equipment. Your school principal or department manager will continue to be your primary contact as this information becomes available.

Thank you 

I am thankful for your dedication and commitment to our school system. We will continue to be innovative while addressing the unique needs of this situation in the coming weeks.


Communications Department

Ottawa Catholic School Board