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Most Students to Learn Remotely Until Jan. 17 to Ensure Schools Can Prepare for Return to In-Person Learning: Premier

As a proactive measure, the Manitoba government is shifting to a one-week remote learning period for most Manitoba students after the holiday break to ensure schools can implement enhanced measures for in-person learning, Premier Heather Stefanson and Education Minister Cliff Cullen announced today.

“Our government’s number one priority is to protect the health and well-being of all Manitobans, especially our children, youth and most vulnerable citizens,” said Stefanson. “Today we are announcing a slight adjustment for the return to classes to give schools additional time to implement enhanced protocols to ensure in-person learning for all students can continue under our pandemic plans and to give public health more time to learn about the omicron variant’s effects in Manitoba. We know our children learn best in a classroom setting and it is our goal to ensure they can return to the classroom as quickly as possible.”

Effective Jan. 10, 2022, a phased-in approach will be applied to allow students of critical service workers in kindergarten to Grade 6 and all high-risk students and students with special learning needs in kindergarten to Grade 12 to attend school if no alternate care is available. Current plans are to have all other students return to in-person learning on Jan. 17.

Manitoba Education has heard from stakeholders this phased-in approach will give school divisions more time to address expected staffing shortages and develop plans for the implementation of enhanced measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19. This will also allow schools time to prepare to move to the Restricted (Orange) level on Manitoba’s Pandemic Response System.

Child-care facilities that offer twelve months of service, including centres in schools, will remain open and are strongly encouraged to prioritize children of critical service workers. School-age child-care facilities that operate based on the school calendar and do not provide service during school breaks will offer services to children of critical service workers requiring before- and after-school care.

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