School operations in the 2020‒21 school year: COVID-19

Each school will follow their own school-specific operational plans in the 2020‒21 school year. Public health officials and school superintendents approve operational plans. 

The plans are available:

  • from your child’s school; and
  • on school websites.

Find your child’s school website by:

School administrators developed school operational plans based on:

Overview of rural and Whitehorse schools

Resource programs will continue at school all day every day for students with:

  • disabilities;
  • transitions programs; and
  • other programs for students needing extra support.

In rural communities

Kindergarten to Grade 12 students are in school:

  • full-day in-class instruction; and
  • 5 days per week.

In Whitehorse

Kindergarten to Grade 9 students are in school:

  • full-day in-class instruction; and
  • 5 days per week.

Grades 10 to 12 students are in school:

  • 1/2 day in-class instruction;
  • 1/2 day learning away from school; and
  • 5 days per week.

This arrangement will continue for the rest of the 2020–21 school year to continue to meet the health and safety guidelines for K-12 school settings.

To find out more about learning in school, visit Student learning in the 2020–21 school year: COVID-19.

Temporary school programming relocation

To support safe spacing at school during the 2020–21 school year:

  • Grade 8 classes from F.H. Collins Secondary School moved to the Wood Street Centre;
  • the majority of the Wood Street Centre’s programs will continue at Porter Creek Secondary School; and
  • the MAD program will be returning to the Wood Street Centre.

Self-isolation measures and closing the school

If a student or school staff tests positive for COVID-19 it does not mean the whole class or school will:

  • need to self-isolate; or
  • close.

Yukon Communicable Disease Control will:

  • provide direction on who may have to stay home and self-isolate based on the specific circumstances of the case; and
  • gather information during their investigation, including risk of exposure to any close contacts.

What if there is a COVID-19 outbreak in Yukon?

The School during COVID-19 guidelines sets the following priorities during the pandemic:

  • health and safety of students, staff and school communities;
  • learning continuity for all students, with as many students in class as safely possible;
  • supports for students who need extra or special help;
  • supports for children of critical and essential service workers; and
  • supports for teachers and support staff to deliver flexible learning to students.

Based on the direction of Yukon’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, the plan for the 2020–21 school year includes flexibility to:

  • reduce the number of students in schools if there's:
    • an increased risk of transmission; or
    • a 2nd wave; or
    • community outbreak of COVID-19;
  • supplement in-person classes with other learning opportunities if students cannot be in school full-time.

School operations during the pandemic

Pandemic risk

School capacity

What school looks like for students



Kindergarten to Grade 12 students:

  • in classes in schools full-time (1/2 days for Grades 10–12 in Whitehorse);
  • for the maximum instructional time possible; and
  • 5 days per week.

Flexible learning programs for all students.



If necessary:

  • essential groups in school full-time; and
  • part-time rotating schedules for other students.

Flexible learning programs for all students.



If necessary:

  • essential groups only in school. For example:
    • students with disabilities or diverse learning needs; and
    • students in need of additional support.

Distance learning for the majority of students.



Last resort: face-to-face learning suspended; no students in classes in schools.

Distance learning for all students.


Roles and responsibilities if a COVID-19 case is connected to a school 

Yukon Communicable Disease Control and Chief Medical Officer of Health

  • Yukon Communicable Disease Control (YCDC) receives COVID-19 test results. 
  • YCDC notifies the patient if there is a positive result.
  • YCDC, in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health, investigates the case. This includes:
    •  starting the contact tracing process by contacting any close contacts; and
    • providing direction on who may have to stay home and self-isolate. 
  • YCDC and the Chief Medical Officer of Health notify;
    • the Department of Education’s Deputy Minister; 
    • Assistant Deputy Minister (ADM) of Schools and Student Services; and 
    • the school administration.
  • They do this on a confidential basis and they’ll give recommendations on impacts to school operations. They also work with:
    • the Chief and Council of the local First Nation; and 
    • the Mayor in the community.

Department of Education central administration staff 

If there is a positive case connected to a school, the Deputy Minister and ADM of Schools and Student Services may receive confidential information from:

  • YCDC; and 
  • Chief Medical Officer of Health.

The ADM of Schools and Student Services will

  • tell the school administration with YCDC; and 
  • work with school administration to ensure any YCDC recommendations are implemented. 

School administration 

  • School administration implements YCDC recommendations at the school. 
  • School administration does not notify other students, staff or families. YCDC directly notifies those who may be affected.  
  • School administration does not need to contact YCDC if a student, staff or parent says they or a student has COVID-19. YCDC will contact the school administration if there is a confirmed case connected to their school. 

To learn more about health and safety at school and on the school bus, visit: