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Quebec announces measures to help students catch up after COVID-19 disruptions

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Quebec announces measures to help students catch up after COVID-19 disruptions
WATCH ABOVE: As the summer break approaches, the province is already planning for the next school year and how students can catch up after a difficult year of learning. On Thursday, Quebec's education minister unveiled his plan. Gloria Henriquez has the details – May 6, 2021

As the summer break approaches, the province is already planning for the next school year and how students can catch up after a difficult year of learning.

On Thursday, Quebec’s education minister, Jean-François Roberge, announced a $110-million investment as part of the province’s post-pandemic stimulus plan.

The plan includes a series of measures aiming to improve students’ academic performance.

Read more: Coronavirus: Air quality concerns among reasons for Quebec teachers’ strike votes

One of the measures the province plans to put in place is to funnel $60 million into tutoring programs for students who are behind.

The school year will be also be divided in two semesters, while grading will also be changed so that the second semester is worth more, and final exams worth less.

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There’s $6 million set aside for field trips, and young students will have access to special summer camps.

Read more: Quebec nixes ministerial exams, stands by decision to reopen schools amid coronavirus surge

Meanwhile, students in grades 10 and 11 will have to write year-end ministry exams next year. But the exams will only be worth 20 per cent of the final grade, instead of 50 per cent.

“It takes a bit of stress off our backs. It’s nice to know that the government is going to have our back with tutoring and stuff, too,” said Grade 10 student Lucas Bernardino from Pointe-Claire.

Report cards will also be sent each semester to keep parents informed of how their child is performing.

“We find that two causes a lot of stress and anxiety, three would have been better,” said Katherine Korakakis, president of the English Parents Committee Association.

Read more: Quebec suspends R score for winter term in CEGEPs amid coronavirus pandemic

Korakakis says she’s cautiously optimistic about the plan, but says there is a lot of missing information.

She hopes that when implementing the measures, the English-speaking community is not forgotten.

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“We hope that when we’re putting measures in place that they’re equally distributed and that all students have access to having a shot and having a great year,” Korakakis said.

The ministry says it will update the plan at the beginning of August according to the epidemiological situation.

“We’ll see after this if we need to invest more money into continue those special measures,” Roberge said.

Roberge also announced that he will soon present a plan for health measures in schools for the 2021-2022 school year.

— With files from Global’s Raquel Fletcher and La Presse Canadienne

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