New info on school start up

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In this unusual year, SD83 would like to share what information we currently have, and hopefully answer some questions our parents may have about the new school year.

When will my child begin school?
The Ministry of Education has announced there will be a staggered start to the new school year to give everyone time to become familiar with the new safety protocols.

School District No. 83 staff will report to their schools on Tuesday, September 8 for safety orientations and planning sessions.

Students will report to schools on Thursday, September 10 for their welcoming and safety orientation sessions. Regular learning will commence as soon as appropriate routines are established. School staff will communicate any changes to student schedules. Graduated entry for Kindergarten will still occur in its usual manner.

What is a Learning Group or Cohort?
Through the direction of our Public Health Officer (PHO), the BC Ministry of Education has established learning group limits for regular student interactions that occur inside our buildings. Schools are expected to adhere to this expectation for all learning activities, or establish additional safety protocols, including social distancing. Staff that work with more than one cohort of students will also have to adhere to these safety protocols.
Click here for information on Learning Groups/Cohorts

Will the school buses be running?
School District No. 83 will continue to offer bus services. In late August all bus students will receive a postcard in the mall with a stop location and pick up and drop off times. If you are new to the district and qualify for busing please contact our transportation office at 250-832-9415 to register your child for busing. Please contact the transportation department if you don’t receive yours or if your mailing address has changed.

Please note that additional safety protocols are being finalized for all bus routes. These will likely include seating plans, use of masks for riders in grades four through twelve, as well as PPE for the drivers. Submission of regular health checks may also be required.

Will the school district be staggering school day start and end times?
Changes to school start and end of day times are not being contemplated at this time, as many of our students ride to school on our interlocking bus schedule. However, break and lunch times may be staggered in some schools to reduce hallway, playground, and common area interactions.

What is happening at the high schools?
High schools are currently investigating timetable options to limit the number of contacts. At this time, some secondary schools in School District No. 83 are considering the use of the quarter system, where students would take two courses a day for ten weeks. To meet the cohort requirements determined by the PHO, but still allow students to stay enrolled in their currently selected course options, some of our larger schools may have to divide the student population into groups, having students attend in-person on certain days and work from home the other days. Secondary leadership teams are currently working on this issue and will notify families as plans are nearer to completion.

What health guidelines are being put in place?
The plan and protocols are being updated and will be posted on the district website ( ) by August 26.
Click here to view the COVID-19 Public Health Guidelines for K-12 School Settings

Will there be “health checks” like there were in June
Parents of bus students may be required to submit health checks, but otherwise, health check forms will not be required. However, it is extremely important that parents pay close attention to the health of their children and keep them at home if they are sick or symptomatic. More information is available here.

Our family has an immune compromised member and we don’t think our children should attend school. What are our options?
School District No. 83 is focusing on making our schools as safe as possible for all students. However, if are uncomfortable having your child return to regular learning, you may wish to consider some other options.

School District No. 83 currently has an online option for students in Grades 9-12 known as the Education Outreach Program (EOP). Students in EOP are supplied assignments and resources (such as textbooks and learning activities) as well as some access to a local teacher, but the program is primarily self-directed. The Education Outreach Program currently offers a wide range of online courses to students on a full-time or cross-enrolled basis in Grades 9-12.

School District No. 83 previously offered an Education Outreach Program option to elementary and middle schools student, but it was closed due to lack of demand. We will reopen this program option for the duration of the pandemic if there is sufficient interest. For more information regarding the EOP program, or to express your interest in registering, please contact Education Outreach Principal Rob Macaulay at

Note that the Home Learning Opportunities program that School District No. 83 provided through June will not be available this coming year. Parents who are interested in homeschooling their children may wish to visit this website:

What about music/band/choir/musical theatre?
At this time, all programs will be carrying on as previously planned. However, there music-specific safety protocols and scheduling to allow for sufficient physical distancing for classes outside the set cohort numbers that still need to be worked out. Expect further communication from your school prior to start-up.

Students with special needs?
Students with special needs will be given full access to learning and supports, as they would in a non-pandemic context. For more information about your child’s program or to request an individual meeting or orientation, please contact your school.

What about extra-curricular activities (clubs/sports)
Schools may continue clubs if cohorts or physical distancing can remain intact. The Fall interschool sports schedule has been cancelled. The remaining seasons of play will be re-evaluated throughout the year.

Community use of school facilities?
After hours community use of facilities will be allowed in the fall providing they are in full alignment with health and safety measures.

Further Information
Further information will be provided via the School District No. 83 website over the coming weeks, including the full District Safety Plan. You can also expect a survey confirming your student’s intentions to attend school and/or utilize bus transportation for September.

Additional links from the Ministry of Education and Public Health
Ministry of Education Return To School Information
BC Centre for Disease Control website with the most recent information on school safety and child care safety protocols.
The BC Centre for Disease Control’s COVID-19 dashboard
7 Tips for talking to kids about COVID-19 poster on the Fraser Health website
All joint statements from Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Minister of Health Adrian Dix are posted here
The Provincial Pandemic Coordination plan

Click here for complete SD83 newsletter

Early Dismissal June 25

Hi All!

Next week is the final week of school which is incredibly hard to believe.  This is a reminder that the schedule for the final week of school is not changing, so if your child is attending Monday and Tuesday, than Tuesday June 23 will be their final day of school.  Report cards will be distributed on Tuesday to students; however, they can also be accessed on Parent Connect.  For students that aren’t attending right now, reports will be ready for pick up on Tuesday and you are free to stop by and pick up your child’s report card through the end of the week (June 23-26).


Jared King

Health Check for students

Hi Parents/Guardians!

For those who have students returning to school next week, here is the health check that needs to be completed before you drop your child(ren) off at school OR before your child(ren) get on the bus to go to school.  For students riding the bus, please send a note with your child(ren) that you have done the health check and they are safe to ride the bus.

Please contact your school if the answers to any of the following questions are “Yes”.

Does my child have a fever of greater than 37 degrees Celsius/98.6 degrees Fahrenheit?
Does my child have the chills?
Is my child experiencing any of the following?
– Shortness of breath
– Difficulty in breathing
– Chest pains
– Feelings of confusion
– Loss of consciousness
Does my child have a sore throat or pain when swallowing?
Does my child have and unusually stuffy or runny nose?
Has my child experiences a loss of their sense of smell?
Is my child experiencing an unusual headache?
Is my child experiencing muscle aches?
Is my child more fatigued than normal?
Is my child experiencing a loss of appetite?
Have you or your child traveled anywhere outside of Canada (including the USA) in the past 14 days?
Have you or your child been in close contact with anyone confirmed to have COVID-19?

Thank you for your patience and understanding with all this.  This is an unprecedented time that has required some different thinking and procedures.

Please let me know if you have any questions.  Have a great weekend 🙂


Does your child ride the bus?

As planning continues for school re-start on Monday, June 1, School District No. 83 (North-Okanagan-Shuswap) transportation department has important information for the parents of any child who will be riding the bus.

Student pick up and drop off times will remain the same for their return to school on June 1st. However, due to lower ridership, parents are requested to please have their children at the bus stop a minimum of five minutes early in the morning.  In addition, some high school students may return home a little earlier in the afternoon because fewer people are riding the bus.

Parents who have indicted their child will be riding the bus to school will be receiving an email directly from the SD83 Transportation Dept. with finalized information, later today or early Saturday. Please keep an eye out for it.

Drivers please be aware school zones are in effect. For the safety of all, we ask that everyone remember the importance of stopping for a school bus with red lights activated (We Stop – You Stop), please don’t rush the bus, and ensure you not driving distracted around our students or the bus.

Thank you!

Survey closing, finalizing plans for voluntary classes

The survey to determine who is planning on their child(ren) returning to school on a part-time basis, and whether bus transportation is needed, will be closing at 4 p.m. on Thursday, May 28.

This will give the schools a bit of time to finalize plans before students return to school on Monday, June 1. If you have not yet filled in the survey please do so here:



It would be appreciated if you respond to the survey even if you are not planning on your child returning to class at this time.

After May 28, SD83 asks parents and caregivers to contact their child’s school directly if they change the status of whether their child is attending, or not attending, school. Each week school teams will create weekly class organization structures within the 50% normal classroom limits so this information is critical to planning. Also, after May 28, if your child is a bus student please ensure you also register with transportation (250 832-9415) so that they know who to expect on the bus.

Just a friendly reminder that as of Monday, June 1 our school buses are back on the road, school zones are in effect, and school playgrounds are in use during the school day.

Our staff and students will be following many safety protocols around health checks, handwashing, spacing, equipment use and cleaning. We ask for your support in ensuring your child is not sick if attending school, and in driving safely around our buses and schools. We are also asking the public to not use our schools and playgrounds during school hours as we will be working hard to keep student and staff density low and ensuring safety protocols are followed. Your assistance would be greatly appreciated as we do our best to keep everyone safe. Thank you!

Much organization and thought has gone into preparing our schools including:

  • Surveying all families to see if they intend to send their children to school, and how often.
  • Follow up communication to families that have not completed the survey to ensure all families are contacted regarding their intentions for June.
  • Inform parents which days their children will attend
  • Reduce kindergarten to grade 5 Home Learning support and interactions for May 25-29 to allow teachers and staff to set-up classrooms and prepare to receive students
  • Have Health and Safety Teams at each school review the site-based safety plans
  • Put in place health and safety procedures at each school
  • Have every school staff ‘practice’ the week before return to in-class instruction. This will allow us to identify any improvements we need to make before the return of students.
  • Follow Ministry Guidelines around maximum class sizes (50%) and school densities (50% for K to 5) and (20% for Grade 6 to 12) and strategies to minimize physical contact
  • Organize custodial staff for daytime cleaning supports in each school to accommodate occupancy

Re-Start Up Plan for June 1st

Hi South Canoe Parents/Guardians!

As you well know, schools are scheduled to re-open starting June 1st and parents have the option of sending their child(ren) to school and thank you for responding to the survey that went out from the District.  There is lots of work being put into restarting schools again ours is no exception.  Staff has been hard at work to prepare the school and make sure that students and staff will be healthy and safe.  Here are some things that you need to know as we restart.

Public Heath Measures

  • In the classroom (indoor or outdoor) physical distancing is not an expectation for students.
  • We will be practicing a “hands-off” approach.

If a Child of Staff Member is Ill

  • All children and staff who are ill with fever or infectious respiratory symptoms of any kind need to stay home and be assessed by their health care provider and tested for COVID-19.
  • If your child is showing symptoms of sickness at school, you will be asked to come pick them up. We will be erring on the side of caution during these times.  We ask you do the same.

Health and Safety

  • Hand sanitizer will be provided to schools.
  • Camping jugs with water and foaming hand soap will be set up outside (one per class) for hand washing.
  • Students to wash their hands before entering the building.
  • General cleaning of the school will happen once per day
  • Frequently-touched shared surfaces will be cleaned and disinfected twice a day
  • Washrooms should be cleaned at least twice per day
  • Water fountains will be disabled but students and staff can still fill water bottles at the sink. Please send your child with a water bottle to school.
  • Using gym equipment is permitted. A “Needs Disinfecting” bin and a “Disinfected” bin will be set up outside.  After a class uses the equipment it will be disinfected/wiped down.
  • Students are not to bring personal toys/items from home.
  • Students will not be sharing school supplies.

Arrival and Pick up Procedures

  • If you indicated you will not be sending your child(ren) back to school and change your mind, please contact the classroom teacher at least the day before. Some teachers have different schedules so the child’s teacher may be working from home that day.  Plus, if too many students just show up it can throw off the student ratio we have been asked to maintain for health and safety reasons.  Also, their class may be off site that day.
  • The onus will be on parents to NOT send their child if they are showing any signs of sickness.
  • There is a Health Check Check-List that will be emailed to parents and posted on the school website and if they can check off YES to any of the questions, they keep their child home.
  • Again, students are to wash hands/disinfect hands before they come to school and upon arrival.
  • Teachers need to be outside at 7:50 to start gathering their students.
  • We will continue to meet as a group at the drum. Cones will be set up.  Classes will meet in lines at the cones for attendance then we will move to into a circle.
  • Jared will stay by the bus lane until 8:30 am for any late comers and text Stacy that students have arrived. Any student that checks in after 8:30 am will go to the office.
  • Pick up for Mrs. Scott’s class will be at the south end of the school to alleviate congestion by the bus lane.
  • Please pick up your child(ren) on time (2:00 pm).
  • Parents are asked to not follow their child(ren) onto the school grounds. You can get them out of the vehicle and drop them off at the fence entrance, say goodbye, and then move on.

Administrative Procedures

  • Students need to be prepared to spend the majority of their time outside so please make sure they have their gear for the day.
  • No sharing of food or water bottles.
  • No library book sign outs for June.
  • Max —  2 students in the bathroom at once.

Thanks everyone for you support and patience.  We truly have an amazing family community that helps to make our job more enjoyable and less stressful.  There is a lot of gratitude here.


Jared King

Did you see our survey?

SD83 recently sent an email and survey to all our parents (with an email listed with their children’s school). By any chance did we miss you?

With the positive news about the decline in COVID-19 comes recent direction from the Ministry of Education to re-open our schools effective June 1, 2020, to provide additional in-class instruction. Parents will still have the option of keeping their children at home, and some home learning opportunities will continue on-line until the end of the school year.

Stage 3 of the Ministry plan allows for students in kindergarten to grade five to attend up to two to three days per week, with students in grades six through twelve attending up to one day per week. Schools will be open five days a week for children of Tier 1 Essential Services Workers and students requiring additional supports. Busing will be available with capacity limits in place.

We are following all Health and Safety Guidelines from the Provincial Health Officer, WorkSafe BC and the Ministry of Education in order to ensure that our schools are safe places to learn and to work. These guidelines include having no more than 50% of students in attendance in grades K-5 and no more than 20% of students in grades 6-12 at any given time.

In order to meet all of the Health and Safety Guidelines, including the limits described above, we will need to know which students will be returning to schools in the coming weeks. Additional surveys will follow shortly to gather more specific information as June 1st draws closer.



Thank you!