B.C. Teachers’ Federation says despite classes being cancelled, teachers will be required to return to schools after spring break. (Black Press Media files)

B.C. Teachers’ Federation says teachers will return to work after spring break

Educators will return to work despite province suspending K-12 classes indefinitely

The B.C. Teachers’ Federation (BCTF) says all teachers will return to work after spring break even though students won’t be in school.

On March 17, Premier John Horgan announced that all in-school K-12 classes across the province would remain closed after spring break at the recommendation of provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry.

READ ALSO: B.C. to suspend K-12 schools indefinitely due to COVID-19

“This is a crisis situation, there’s no making that sound any better,” Horgan said. He added that a decision on when classes resume will be made in the future.

Later the same day, teachers received a notice from the BCTF explaining that while students won’t be on campuses until further notice, teachers will need to come into work after their respective spring breaks end.

“No one knows exactly what that will look like, but there is time to sort that out by working cooperatively with ministry and district representatives,” said BCTF president Teri Mooring in an email sent to teachers on March 17.

READ ALSO: VIDEO: B.C. teacher returns from Spain, makes impassioned plea to Canadians

She added that teachers aren’t expected to be working over the spring break and that there will be time for collaborative planning when staff return.

Mooring also noted that contract teachers won’t lose pay and that updates for substitute teachers will be available once the federal government provides information about making access to Employment Insurance “easier and quicker.”

READ ALSO: B.C. declares state of emergency, recalling legislature for COVID-19

Saanich Teachers’ Association president Don Peterson said that while many details are unclear, the message teachers have received from the BCTF is clear: “continuity of learning” is important.

He speculated that teachers may be asked to move their classes online. However, Peterson noted that the “buy-in” from families will vary. Education Minister Rob Fleming announced on March 17 that all students who are currently on track to move onto the next grade or to graduate will do so.

Peterson recommends that residents continue to “listen to advisories” and stay informed as the situation with COVID-19 progresses. Updates about classes will be communicated to students and teachers when information is available, he said.

-With files from Katya Slepian


@devonscarlett
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

British ColumbiaCoronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Residents experiencing homelessness back outdoors as temporary winter shelters close

Kelowna’s homeless are going back to Recreation Avenue

COVID-19: Social media use goes up as country stays indoors

Overall messaging is up more than 50 per cent over the last month

Brushfire reported along Okanagan Rail Trail in Kelowna

The bushfire reportedly occurred just before 1 p.m on Wednesday afternoon

Lake Country athlete selected to participate in national training program

Volleyball player Chloe Ladd will be heading to the Lower Mainland in the fall

Kelowna’s The Bridge receives $30,000 donation for youth substance treatment program

The investment will support its Youth Recovery House project

First Nations, remote communities need special attention in pandemic, Freeland says

Health-care workers, seniors, Indigenous Peoples some of people most at risk, health officials say

UPDATE: Coronavirus concerns prompt event cancellations across the Okanagan

This is a running list of events cancelled across the Okanagan

Demand doubles at Revelstoke food bank

Community Connections concerned whether they can meet increasing need

BC Hydro offers three-month bill ‘holiday’ for those affected by COVID-19

Industrial customers can defer half of their power bills

“I call her my adopted daughter”: Salmon Arm couple embrace student exchange experience

Rotary Youth Exchange students choose to shelter in place during COVID-19 pandemic

Some April Fool’s Day jokes bring much-needed laughter; others tone deaf to COVID-19

Police are warning the public not to use the ongoing pandemic as a punchline

Super Beaver Task Force: April Fool’s Day joke lightens weight of COVID-19 uncertainty

Ducks Unlimited Canada enlists beavers’ help to protect wetlands in unconventional way

Solar panels installed at Summerland’s municipal hall

Power from energy project expected to provide five per cent of building’s power use

COVID-19: Okanagan College student pens petition for pass/fail grades

Optional pass/fail program would reduce stress, recognize students’ challenges faced in pandemic

Most Read