BC postpones restart of classes to undetermined date

School restart delayed

UPDATE 2:05 p.m.

The start of the school year is being delayed to a still-to-be-determined date.

Education Minister Rob Fleming said Tuesday teachers and staff need time to implement pandemic guidelines put out by the B.C. Centre for Disease Control prior to student arrival. 

Classes were previously planned to restart on Sept. 8. While it's not yet clear how long the delay will be, it is expected to be minor, reports CTV News.

"Having the restart week staged in some kind of manner that would have staff teams together for a couple days before we gradually welcome kids back to make sure that every school – all 1,500 of them in the province – are truly ready to welcome students is a good idea, and that's the approach that we'll be taking," Fleming said.

The education minister added that the first days back in class will look very different this year.

"Typically what happens is that kids return for the first couple of days to their previous classroom configuration and then they would be assigned to a new classroom," he said. "That obviously can't happen under these pandemic conditions, that would not be a safe practice."

“The idea is to get staff back together, whether it’s support staff, teachers and administrators, to finalize how the school operations are going to work, [undergo] a thorough review of the CDC health and safety guidelines and then start to accept students back later in the first week of school. Discussions are ongoing,” Fleming said.

with files from CTV News Vancouver

ORIGINAL 1:45 p.m.

BC Education Minister Rob Fleming has announced the start to the school year will be pushed back from Sept. 8, but it is unclear when exactly students will be back in class.

Fleming said Tuesday "a couple of days" are needed to allow teachers and school administrators plan for the reopening of schools amid the pandemic. 

He said discussions are “ongoing” to determine a start date for classes.

More to come...

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