HOW TO CONTACT US DURING COVID 19 STATE OF EMERGENCY:
Dear Graduating (Year Two) Teacher Candidates:
The Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Education, Nancy Naylor, recently announced important amendments to teacher certification regulations.
With respect to the practicum placement for year two teacher candidates, an amendment has been made to Ontario Regulation 176/10 (Teachers’ Qualifications) made under the OCTA.
This amendment will allow teacher candidates in their final semester of an Ontario initial teacher education program, despite not having completed the practicum component, to be eligible for certification by the College if they have successfully completed all other graduation components of the program, including a portion of the practicum.
The missed practicum days must have been missed solely as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak and the closure of schools.
Dear Pre-Service Teacher Candidates:
We know that you are all anxiously awaiting word on what will become of your spring practicum placement. Public schools will remain closed to teachers until Friday, May 1, 2020, and to students until Monday, May 4, 2020. Provincial decisions to extend the school closure beyond May 4th will be based on the advice of the public health officer. If you missed Premier Ford’s press conference on Tuesday, the details of his announcement pertaining to education can be found here: https://news.ontario.ca/opo/en/2020/03/ontario-extends-school-and-child-care-closures-to-fight-spread-of-covid-19.html?utm_source=ondemand&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=p
Although we had hoped to have something concrete to share with you by now, I’m afraid that all Faculties of Education are still awaiting a government direction on the matter of practicum placements. We can tell you this much for certain: face-to-face practicum placements will not be happening for students in our B.Ed. program between now and September.
The only question really is whether or not the government will oblige our teacher education candidates to make up days to meet certification requirements via virtual placements alongside associate teachers who will soon be working online to implement the second phase of the Ministry’s Learn at Home initiative. That is, we can’t say that practicum placements are ‘cancelled’ until we are certain that teacher candidates won’t be compelled to complete their required days online.
The vast majority of you who are in your fourth semester of the B.Ed. program (i.e., year 2) require less than 15 days to fulfill the 80-day minimum requirement for certification. We have a high degree of confidence that for you there will be few issues. For some others, however, things may be more complicated.
We are frustrated by the government’s delay on this too, but to be fair, they are working from home like the rest of us and their first priority must be the enormous health crisis we are collectively facing. Just as soon as we receive clarity from the government, we will communicate that to each of you. In the meantime, please take every precaution to ensure that you and your loved ones stay healthy and safe.
Dear B.Ed. Consecutive and B.Ed. Concurrent Students:
The Faculty of Education will be offering online courses to replace any traditional face-to-face courses from the beginning of May until the end of August. This includes all of our graduates, continuing teacher education (AQ, IB), and pre-service courses.
We are also very much aware of the anxiety created by the closure of K-12 schools and suspension of all practicum placements as a consequence. The Ministry of Education, the Ontario College of Teachers (OCT) and the Ontario Association of Deans of Education (OADE) are meeting on Friday, March 27, 2020. We hope, after that meeting, to have a much clearer picture of contingency plans for B.Ed. students who have yet to meet the minimum requirement of 80 days of practicum placement. We also expect to hear from the government on what is planned in relation to the government’s Math Proficiency Test.
We wish you all to know as well that the Faculty of Education building was closed indefinitely effective March 20. We have taken this measure to reinforce the seriousness of social distancing, but also to enhance overall safety in the building.
All staff and administration are now working remotely. If you have questions for us, please email us at EDUC@uwindsor.ca
You will find all official university communications here: http://www.uwindsor.ca/coronavirus/
During this unprecedented COVID 19 pandemic, we would ask each of you to take the greatest precautions to protect yourself and others from this serious, and rapidly spreading, virus. If you are feeling unwell, exhibiting any symptoms of illness, have travelled out of country, and/or have potentially come in contact with others exposed to the virus, please stay home, self-quarantine for the full 14 days as recommended by all health authorities, and/or seek medical treatment, as necessary.
Dear Pre-Service Teacher Candidates:
By now you are likely aware that the Ontario provincial government has issued a Ministerial Order to close publicly funded schools in Ontario for two weeks following the March break, in response to the COVID-19 emergency. This means that Ontario schools have been ordered to remain closed from March 14 through to April 5, 2020.
We have now heard directly from the Directors of each of the major school boards we work with confirming that their teachers will not be in school. Obviously, this will mean that your scheduled practicum placements will not happen according to the original schedule. To put it clearly, all practicum placements scheduled to begin after the March break are postponed. However, all efforts will be made to re-schedule these placements when COVID 19 restrictions are lifted and assuming no other complications arise. Please also note that all academic activities in the B.Ed. associated with outreach, community engagement, or community-based service will be modified for non-face-to-face contexts or cancelled.
We recognize that the cancelations resulting from this emerging health crisis will have a significant impact on your academic schedule and possibly even your plans beyond the semester. Do please keep in mind that the extraordinary measures announced by the Ontario government are intended to contain the spread of COVID-19 in Ontario with the aim of protecting children and their families across the province.
Please monitor your emails and the university website regularly for updates. We will be endeavoring to send out regular updates from the Faculty of Education as well, by email and via our website.
COVID 19 has been declared a worldwide pandemic by the World Health Organization. I would ask each of you to take the greatest precautions to protect yourself and others from this serious, and rapidly spreading, virus. If you are feeling unwell, exhibiting any symptoms of illness, have travelled out of country, and/or have potentially come in contact with others exposed to the virus, please stay home, self-quarantine for the full 14 days as recommended by all health authorities, and/or seek medical treatment as necessary.