Coronavirus: Most students expected to return to school at 2 Ontario boards in Toronto, Ottawa

TORONTO – School boards in two of Ontario’s urban centres say more than two-thirds of their students will return to in-class learning come September.

The Ministry of Education is giving parents the option to keep their kids out of the classroom, and the Toronto and Ottawa-Carleton district school boards are both reporting the responses to the surveys they sent out to parents.

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Ottawa-Carleton reports that of the 91 per cent of parents who responded, the majority will be sending their kids back to class.

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It says roughly 73 per cent of elementary students will return to class, while 27 per cent will learn from home.

And 78.5 per cent of high schoolers will be back in class on an adapted model that will see them learn remotely half the time, while 21.5 per cent will stay at home full-time.

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The Toronto District School Board, meanwhile, says 71 per cent of elementary students will return to school if class sizes are not reduced, compared to 78 per cent who would return if class sizes could be brought down to between 15 and 20 students.

It says 83 per cent of high school students will return to in-person lessons, also on the adapted model.

But in Toronto, the board will send out a second survey once it comes up with a new back-to-school plan.

The board’s plan to cut all elementary school class sizes was rejected by the Ontario government last week because it also shortened the school day by 48 minutes.

© 2020 The Canadian Press

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