Catholic schools in Mississauga making more tweaks to remote learning model

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About a week after announcing a new hybrid in-person and online learning model for students, the Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board (DPCDSB) is offering more options amid some backlash. 

On Oct. 15, the board sent out a letter announcing that it will try to maintain the remote-only learning mode for some students in response to some pushback from some parents and guardians whose children are currently enrolled in the remote-only mode.

"In this regard, we are going to maintain remote-only classrooms should there be enough interest," the letter reads, adding that students and their families should still expect some classes to be reorganized.

"Both learning models, hybrid and remote only, will require reorganization and a change in classmates and/or teacher assignments may result," the letter reads. 

On Oct. 8, the DPCDSB announced plans to scrap its separate virtual school to allow remote students to learn alongside their in-person peers while at home. In a letter to parents sent out last week, the DPCDSB said the change, which was initially slated to come into effect on Nov. 2, 2020, was made to ensure that all students are aligned to their home school for assigned grades and teaching staff.

Now, the reorganization won’t take effect until Nov. 16, 2020. 

The board says that transitioning from the hybrid model to the separate virtual learning model won't be possible. According to the Oct. 15 letter, once a commitment is made to one of the learning modes, students will be expected to remain in their chosen mode for the remainder of the school year. 

The board says that in the hybrid learning mode, both in-class students and those learning remotely in the same class will be taught simultaneously by the same teacher. Those who opt for this learning mode still have the flexibility to switch from remote learning to in-person and vice-versa within the same classroom throughout the remainder of the school year.

The board says that teachers will not be "live-streaming" lessons, as laptop cameras will be placed at the front of the classrooms directed at the teacher, who will also be equipped with a microphone to enhance audibility. 

"Privacy and security issues will be communicated and addressed," the letter says. 

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