March 20th, 2020

NDP Education critic responds to announcement about alternative learning tools for Ontario students during COVID-19 school closure

QUEEN’S PARK — NDP Official Opposition Education critic Marit Stiles issued the following statement in response to the government’s announcement Friday of alternative learning tools during the closure of schools due to COVID-19:

“Parents and students are understandably anxious during this unprecedented closure of schools to address the COVID-19 crisis.

Second only to their health and well-being during this pandemic, the priority for students is ensuring some ongoing learning so that kids don’t fall behind.

When I met with Minister Lecce this week, I offered the NDP’s support to identify and seize opportunities to use technology to support learning during this time, while ensuring equitable access to these tools. I’m encouraging the government to also work in close partnership with its education partners, including parents, teachers, school boards and education unions, to develop and implement these solutions.

Many parents and students, particularly Grade 12 students preparing to graduate, are asking for more clarity from the government on how the school year will be completed and how final grades will be assessed if students can’t return to classrooms in the coming weeks. We urge the government to provide that clarity to students, parents, teachers, education workers and school boards, and offer our help to get that plan finalized and effectively communicated.”