- Pandemic survey and returning to classes
- School operations in the 2020‒21 school year
- Student learning in the 2020–21 school year
- Health and safety in schools
- Adapting school operations if necessary
- Riding the school bus
Pandemic survey and returning to classes
COVID-19 survey of students, families and school staff
We conducted a survey to learn more about the impacts of the pandemic on student learning. This survey will help:
- identify what's been most effective during the suspension of face-to-face classes; and
- inform the delivery of instruction for the 2020‒21 school year.
The survey period was from July 15 to July 22, 2020.
The results of the survey now available. Learn more and view the results.
We’ve provided the results of this survey to school principals and staff, school councils and the local First Nation. It will support preparing and planning for the 2020‒21 school year and ongoing adjustments to learning throughout the school year.
We’ll conduct follow up surveys during the 2020‒21 school year to:
- help plan ongoing instruction; and
- ensure we remain responsive to student learning needs throughout the school year.
School operations in the 2020‒21 school year
Operational plans available for the 2020–21 school year
School operational plans for the 2020‒21 school year are being shared with students, families, school staff, the school council and the local First Nations as they are finalized. They are also being shared on school websites.
Find your school’s operational plan by visiting your school’s website. Visit your school’s website by following the link for your school and clicking on the website link.
School operational plans were developed with opportunities for feedback from the school council and local First Nation. They are reviewed by public health officials before finalized.
School operational plans were developed based on:
- School during COVID-19;
- Health and safety guidelines for K–12 school settings set by Yukon’s Chief Medical Officer of Health; and
- Yukon’s Learning Continuity Requirements.
Operations at rural and Whitehorse schools
Each school will follow their own school-specific operational plans. In general:
- In rural communities, Kindergarten to Grade 12 students will return to full-day, in-class instruction five days per week.
- In Whitehorse, Kindergarten to Grade 9 students in Whitehorse will return to full-day, in-class instruction 5 days per week.
- Grades 10–12 students will return to half-day in-class instruction and half-day learning away from school five-days per week. This arrangement for Grades 10–12 students will be monitored and assessed as part of planning for the second semester of the school year.
- Resource Programs for students with disabilities, transitions programs and other programs for students needing additional support will continue at school all day every day.
Temporary school programming relocation
To support safe spacing at F.H. Collins Secondary, the Grade 8 classes from F.H. Collins Secondary will be moved to the Wood Street Centre for the 2020–21 school year.
The Wood Street Centre’s programs will move into available space at Porter Creek Secondary for the school year.
Student learning in the 2020–21 school year
Yukon Continuity of Learning Requirements
The Yukon Learning Continuity Requirements set the priorities and expectations for delivering learning and the curriculum to students in the 2020–21 school year.
This includes guiding the delivery of blended learning in Yukon schools, meeting all students where they are in their learning and adapting school programming and instruction.
School principals and staff will continue to communicate and work with Yukon First Nations governments to deliver Yukon First Nations ways of knowing, doing and being learning as part of student instruction.
Student learning at each grade level
Students in Kindergarten to Grade 3 will have traditional direct instruction and support from teachers for their learning.
Students in Grades 4–9 will have both face-to-face activities with their teachers and classmates and digital activities with technology and online tools during the day in class.
Students in Grades 10–12 will learn for half the day with face-to-face activities with their teachers and classmates in school and learn for the other half of the day away from school with digital activities with technology and online tools.
Blended learningAs part of Yukon’s modernized curriculum, teachers and students will continue to use technology as part of learning to develop digital literacy and skills they will need for their lives and careers.For the 2020–21 school year, educators will continue to build these skills with students through blended learning.
What is blended learning?Blended learning combines:
- Face-to-face teaching and learning, where students apply their knowledge, deepen their understanding and demonstrate their learning with their teachers (teacher-led activities, on the land learning opportunities, work stations, labs, etc.);
- Student led learning where students use digital tools to gather information through inquiry, reading, research and work on assignments (online tools, resources, and collaboration);
- Teacher support, instruction and feedback both in person and online; and
- Students learning skills to manage some of their own learning (goal setting, organization, prioritizing, time management, etc.) with some flexibility for the time, place and pace of their learning.
What does blended learning look like?Blended learning will look a little different based on:
Grades K–3 students will:
- Grade level;
- The online and digital tools being used; and
- Students’ learning needs.
Grades 4–9 students will:
- Learn in class at school for full days. As per the curriculum, they will learn at school with more traditional direct instruction and support from teachers for their learning with some digital activities.
Grades 10–12 students will:
- Learn in class at school for full days, with some face-to-face activities with their teachers and classmates and some digital activities with technology and online tools;
- Work with teachers and classmates both in person and online;
- Participate in project-based learning;
- Learn and develop skills for self-directing some of their learning; and
- Learn how to progress and succeed, with some flexibility and choices to personalize their learning to their strengths and interests.
Examples of digital learning in class and away from school:
- Learn for the half the day in class in school with face-to-face activities with their teachers and classmates and learn for the other half of the day away from school with digital activities, technology and online tools;
- Participate in project-based learning;
- Learn and develop skills for self-directing some of their learning; and
- Learn how to progress with some flexibility and choices to personalize their learning to their strengths and interests.
Examples of hands-on learning away from school:
- Watching instructional videos;
- Discussing a topic online with their class;
- Working on collaborative projects and activities online;
- Completing an assignment on paper or online;
- Engaging in research; and
- Communicating with their teacher to receive feedback or guidance;
- On-the-land learning; and
- Activities such as:
- Building a garden bed;
- Planting vegetables and flowers; and
- Measuring the area of their bedroom or house
Digital tools used for blended learning in YukonStudents will learn, communicate and collaborate with classmates and teachers through digital tools like:
- Microsoft 365 (Teams, OneNote);
- Google Classroom; and
To learn more about these tools read the Digital tools at a glance a guide for parents and guardians.
Role of the teacher in a blended learning settingWith blended learning, the teacher is a coach and facilitator of learning. They:
- Lead instruction of curriculum through a variety of methods to teach knowledge, skills and competencies;
- Facilitate deep learning, discussion and collaboration;
- Differentiate and personalize learning for students;
- Assess and provide constructive feedback;
- Look at student data to adjust instructional methods; and
- Coordinate collaborative learning and projects.
Supporting your child’s learning
Parents and guardians may be concerned about their child returning to classes in school. More detailed health and safety guidance for school settings will be provided as it becomes available.
Ensure your child has access to devices, technology and the internet away from school. If you do not have devices for your student to access, please discuss it with your school when school resumes.
Keep in contact with teachers about your child’s learning progress during the year.
Talk to your child about using digital tools and ask them to show you what they are learning on their devices.
Stay up to date on school newsletters and information from teachers about learning and health and safety at your child’s school.
Download the What is blended learning handout
To learn more about blended learning, visit:
- Aurora Institute (formerly called International Association for K–12 Online Learning iNACOL) documents on blended learning:
Health and safety in schools
Throughout the pandemic, we’ll keep as many students in classes in schools as is safely possible. Measures in school will follow the health and safety guidelines for K-12 school settings set by Yukon’s Chief Medical Officer of Health.
Staying home when sick
Students and staff must stay home when they are sick or showing symptoms. Parents and caregivers must monitor students for symptoms and keep their child at home if they are sick or showing symptoms.
Parents should consider if they are new or worsening symptoms when monitoring, or if they are otherwise not explained. For example, a child with asthma may have a cough, which may not be new.
You can download and print this checklist to help you to monitor your child each day before school.
You can also use the self-assessment tool on Yukon.ca to assess yourself and your child for COVID-19.
If a child needs to stay home for health reasons, they will have access to digital and self-directed learning options to learn away from school.
Students and staff will need to practice physical distancing in schools. This may include smaller classrooms and group sizes and managing traffic areas in common areas like hallways and cafeterias and staggering pick-up and drop-off times and recess and lunch.
The health and safety guidelines indicate physical distancing is not always possible with children. Where not possible, risks are being reduced by increasing other measures like handwashing, cleaning and disinfecting, and making sure students and staff stay home when sick or showing symptoms.
Handwashing and personal hygiene
Students and school staff will need to wash or sanitize their hands before they come to school and frequently during the day.
Cleaning and disinfecting
All schools will be cleaned and disinfected with disinfectants approved by Health Canada. There will be more frequent cleaning of high-touch areas and equipment like washrooms, light switches, doorknobs, desks and computers.
The best way to stop the spread of COVID-19 is through preventative measures, such as physical distancing, frequent hand washing and staying home when sick.
Yukon’s Chief Medical Officer of Health recommends masks for students age 10 and older when physical distancing is not possible, such as in hallways and common areas, or on the school bus.
While they are recommended, masks are not mandatory at school or on the school bus.
Masks will be available through each school for students and staff when needed. Children age 10 and older may also bring their own mask to use at school or on the school bus.
To support your child in wearing a mask properly, review the Guidance on non-medical mask use in school for important information about wearing a non-medical mask.
If a student or staff gets sick at school
- The student or staff will be immediately separated into a designated area.
- The student or staff will be provided with a mask.
- The student’s parent/guardian will be contacted to pick them up as soon as possible.
- The school staff member who is sick will go home as soon as possible.
- The designated area will be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected.
Adapting school operations if necessary
Our planning for the 2020–21 school year 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 additional or special assistance;
- supports for children of critical and essential service workers; and
- supports for teachers and support staff to deliver flexible learning to students.
If necessary, the plan for 2020–21 school year includes flexibility to:
- reduce the number of students in schools if there is an increased risk of transmission or a second wave or community outbreak of COVID-19; and
- supplement in-person classes with other learning opportunities if students cannot be in school full-time.
Riding the school bus
School bus services for the 2020–21 school year are being adapted based on the health and safety guidelines for school bus operations set by Yukon’s Chief Medical Officer of Health. This includes:
- loading students on the bus from back to front, and offloading students from front to back to support physical distancing;
- seating students at a 2 metres’ distance from school bus drivers;
- limiting students to 2 per seat, unless they are from the same household and using assigned seats;
- ensuring students and bus drivers are washing or sanitizing their hands before and after boarding the school bus; and
- cleaning and disinfecting buses, including high-touch areas after each trip.
Eligibility to ride the school bus
Students are being prioritized for busing in the 2020–21 school year if they are eligible as described in the Education Act and Student Transportation Regulations. Students are eligible for the school bus if:
- they live more than 3.2 kilometres by the nearest passable road from their school; and
- if they are attending their attendance area school.
All students who are eligible to ride the school bus will be able to do so. The Government of Yukon is working with its bus service provider to add additional school buses for the 2020–21 school year to accommodate as many students as safely possible on the school bus.
Based on available space on the bus, the Government of Yukon will also consider accommodating requests to bus students beyond the eligibility requirements in the following order of priority:
- Kindergarten to Grade 3 students; then
- Grade 4-7 students who live within 3.2 km of their attendance area school; then
- Students who attend school outside of their attendance area; and finally
- Special requests, including busing to stops other than from home to school and back.
Families are being directly notified if they can be accommodated on the school bus at the start of the school year. School busing availability will be monitored at the start of the school year and families will be updated if spacing becomes available.
Riding the school bus to different locations
The Student Transportation Ridership Guidelines outline how we consider school bus stops other than to the school and home.
Each school year, we have to determine if there is enough space on our school buses and if there are available school bus routes to consider requests to ride the school bus to other locations.
This school year, the Department of Education will continue to review requests on a case-by-case basis but students will be prioritized for busing from their home to the school and back before other stops are considered.
School bus passes for assigned seats
Students will be provided with a bus pass on their first day of school to take the school bus. It will include their school bus number.
Students will be required to show their school bus pass when they get on the school bus.
City of Whitehorse transit passes
The city of Whitehorse transit passes remain available for high school students. High school students can register for a city transit pass instead of a school bus pass. They cannot register for both.
Students are encouraged to register for a city transit pass to allow for room on buses for students without other means of transport.
Students who take city transit will need to follow the health and safety practices for riding the bus set by the City of Whitehorse.
De-registering for the school bus
The Chief Medical Officer of Health and the Department of Education encourage families to transport students between home and school this year if possible, by arranging for students to walk, cycle, drive or carpool to allow for room on buses for students without other means of transport.
If you are able to transport your child to school, please de-register for the school bus by contacting the Student Transportation Officer at email@example.com.
School bus schedules