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Waterloo public schools to offer online learning for the 2021-22 school year

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The director of the Waterloo Region District School Board issued a letter to parents on Monday which said that online learning will be offered for the 2021-22 school year.

“We recognize that there may be some families who will ask for a virtual learning option for their child,” John Bryant said.

Read more: Over 3,000 students switched learning streams at Waterloo schools in February

“Knowing this, the WRDSB will provide virtual learning for both elementary and secondary students where required.”

He says that over the next few months, the board will provide updates and timelines with parents.

“As we do every year, students registered in our schools will be automatically enrolled in their home school for the 2021-2022 school year,” Bryant explained.

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While Bryant says the board will continue to offer online learning, he also noted that he believed in-person learning offers benefits the other stream doesn’t.

“We have heard from you through our Let’s Connect surveys that you feel strongly about the importance of school in the lives of your children, and the many benefits of in-person learning,” he said.

“Like you, we continue to believe that student mental health and well-being are best supported through in-person learning as part of a classroom and school community.”

Bryant also said that the board has learned valuable lessons over the past year with the COVID-19 pandemic.

Read more: Asymptomatic COVID-19 testing now available for school staff in Waterloo Region

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“Having a teacher attached consistently to a group of students, for the whole school year, where they experience care, inclusion, connection and belonging, is in the best interest of both students and staff,” he said.

“Our experience over this past year has also reinforced that in-person learning best meets the needs of our most marginalized students, families and communities.”

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