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Ming-Na Mah, whose kid is attending Earl Marriott Secondary in Surrey this year, wants to know how — or if — the district plans to teach hands-on courses remotely.
Citing concerns about overcrowding at her child’s high school, she also wants to know if students will be allowed to wear masks inside their classrooms if they so choose.
Education Minister Rob Fleming has directed every district to offer some kind of remote learning option.
However, there are difficulties associated with teaching metal, glass art, woodworking, or other hands-on type classes to teens choosing to learn from home this fall.
In Surrey, students learning from home will not have access to specialized equipment, so no electives — including hands-on courses — will be available online.
Basic subjects taught remotely are English, Math, Science and Social Studies.
Courses offered through Surrey’s transition program may also include French-as-a-Second Language or Physical Education, but other options may be available in other school districts.
Meanwhile, Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry refuses to implement a B.C.-wide order to cover your nose and mouth anywhere in public, but 1.5-million reusable ones have been ordered for schools — ensuring every student and staff member in the K-to-12 system gets at least two each.
Because most districts are staggering start times and lunch breaks, masks are only required in common areas like buses and hallways.
Staff in Surrey say their restart plan takes into account their school population and physical structures of the actual buildings, so efforts are being made to reduce close contacts.
Administrators have also agreed to respect the wishes of any students wishing to cover their faces all day.
You can find B.C.’s provincial back-to-school plan here.
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