Ever since schools were closed in March because of the novel coronavirus, school boards across British Columbia have been scrambling to find ways to accommodate students while respecting physical distancing rules. June’s return-to-school was a test run and administrators have spent the summer finetuning the details.
Here is the schedule for high schools in West Vancouver based on an interview with Judy Duncan, the principal of Rockridge Secondary. The split in-school/at-home schedule is for grades 10 to 12. Grades 8 and 9 classes will be in-school five days a week for the full day.
The school year is now split in quarters, with students taking two courses in one quarter. In essence, one course is in the morning and one course is in the afternoon.
Period 1 (morning) classes are at school and in-person for all students. Second period, in the afternoon, is delivered remotely for most students in grades 10 to 12.
“We need to have this hybrid option when the number of students from the morning classes coming together in the afternoon exceeds the cohort limit,” Duncan says. “This makes it necessary to reduce the class size and have students socially distanced.”
On Mondays, the teacher will connect with students remotely, provide instruction and share the learning plan for the week.
These students will attend in-person, socially distanced small group classes of up to 15, for two of the remaining four days. The other two days would be remote, asynchronous learning.
Tuesdays and Thursdays
Both blocks (Period 1 and Period 2) are shortened and occur in the morning. Period 2 might be a hybrid class; half the students will be attending at school and half would be learning remotely. Afternoons provide time for learning support, tutorials, academies and courses better suited for a linear approach such as AP art, career education and band.
Wednesdays and Fridays
First period at school for all students; second period will see half the class attending in person, half learning remotely for most grade 10-12 classes.
Grades 8 and 9
“Grade 8s and 9s are in school receiving in-person instruction for both the morning and afternoon blocks as there are fewer electives and course options for them. Consequently they do not exceed the cohort limit when they combine together in the afternoon,” Duncan says.
Martha Perkins is the North Shore News’ Indigenous and civic affairs reporter. This reporting beat is made possible by the Local Journalism Initiative.