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Guelph public school board opens registration for 2021-22 Elementary Remote School

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Registration for the 2021-22 Elementary Remote School in Guelph’s Upper Grand District School Board opened on Thursday.

The board, like the rest of the province, is offering remote learning to students in the next school year, but it noted that the online option will not be a hybrid model.

Read more: Ontario government reveals virtual school option for 2021-22, funding plan

“Students who register for remote school will be placed in the standalone remote school where classes are staffed by dedicated remote learning teachers,” the board said in a post on its website.

The hybrid model sees students attending class in-person and students attending remotely being taught by the same teacher simultaneously.

The board said in-person learning best supports students, but it recognizes that some families may want their child to learn remotely.

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“Families should be aware that there will be some differences in the remote learning program in 2021-22 compared to what we were able to offer in the 2020-21 school year,” the board said.

“For instance, with more students expected to return to in-person learning, our ability to offer a similar breadth of remote programs as was offered during the 2020-21 school may be limited.”

Read more: Ontario parents frustrated over special needs remote learning

Families should also be aware that the decision they make about remote learning versus in-person learning will be for the entire school year.

Movement between learning modes can cause disruptions for many students and classrooms, the board said.

“We recognize that making a decision now about next school year may be challenging, however we will be using the registration information we receive now to organize and create our staffing, class organization and timetables for the fall,” the board said.

Those opting for remote learning can choose between synchronous and asynchronous learning.

Upper Grand did say that it cannot guarantee French immersion (FI) programming in the remote school because of the limited availability of qualified teachers.

“Those families wanting to guarantee FI programming for their child(ren) should consider in-person learning,” the board said. “We will confirm if FI will be offered at a future date.”

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The board also added that students enrolled in specialized class placements such as those who are developmentally delayed or have a learning disability are strongly encouraged to opt for in-person instruction.

Read more: Online learning has become a COVID-19 reality. But experts say kids aren’t thriving online

“These programs are much better served in person,” Upper Grand said.

“There will be special education supports for students in the remote school, however, we may not be able to offer specialized classes in remote this coming school year.”

Registration for the Elementary Remote School is open until June 3 at 4 p.m. Parents can register their child on the board’s website.

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