Approximately 800 SD69 students returned to school this week. (File photo)

Approximately 800 students in Qualicum School District to return to class

Staggered attendance in place

Approximately 800 students in School District 69 (Qualicum) returned to class this week.

The first day was Monday, June 1, but not all students attended classes on day one. That’s because it’s a voluntary, part-time return to school in an effort to allow some distancing and proper health protocols. Younger children are going to have minimal contact with each other and older students will be expected to physically distance where possible.

At the secondary school level, students are using an online booking system to make appointments with specific teachers to get help.

Keven Elder, superintendent of schools for the district, said the district has figured out a schedule where younger students are in class for two days a week, while older ones attend for a day.

READ MORE: COVID-19: SD69 gears up for some students to head back to classrooms

”K-5 students are in for two days per week and we have most of that happening on Monday/Tuesday, with some classes having enough students in to add a second grouping on Wednesday/Thursday,” said Elder. “Students in Grades 6 and 7 need to be in smaller groupings so they are in one day per week, with most classes having one grouping on Monday but a number having a second group on Wednesday and in a small number of cases a third grouping on Wednesday.”

There are also approximately 100 students who are spending more time at school because they’re children of essential service workers. There are also many students who will not return to school for now.

“In terms of support for remote or home-based learning, teachers are scheduled during the week in ways that allow them time to continue reaching out to families that have chosen not to have their children return at this time,” said Elder. “That outreach is happening from schools rather than from home as teachers are needed on-site to be supports for on-site children should that need arise.”

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