Yorkton Regional High School moves to remote learning
The Yorkton Regional High School has moved to remote learning as a result of a “large number of positive COVID-19 cases.”
“From September to December we had 32 cases,” Mike Haczkewicz, principal of Yorkton regional high school, said. “From January 4 to yesterday we had 66 cases so our numbers have really hit the roof.”
A total of 21 classes at the school have been affected
According to the school website, the Good Spirit School Division and the school's administration decided remote learning would begin on Jan. 12, with classes cancelled on Jan. 11.
“We consulted with our local medical health officer and determined that an outbreak would be declared, a school wide outbreak,” Quintin Robertson, the director of education and CEO of Good Spirit School Division.
Mandatory remote learning will be in place until Jan. 21. In-person classes are tentatively scheduled to resume on Jan. 24.
Extra-curricular activities are also paused until Jan. 21.
“It has been challenging for 20 months for teachers and that was part of the rationale behind moving to a remote,” said Robertson.
“[Teachers] have been redlining, I think they have been working hard and they are tired and they are doing the best they can to meet the needs of our kids,” said Haczkewicz.
Haczkewicz added that the decision to move to remote was made to combat the teacher shortage within the division.
"If we run out of teachers, we don't have the luxury of a Regina or Saskatoon (division) where we have an unlimited supply of subs. If our teachers are ill, they can't teach online or face to face and then then we're in trouble,” said Haczkewicz.
The Saskatchewan Teachers Federation (STF) has also voiced concerns over the lack of teachers.
“Our system across the province is in disarray. We're hearing of caretaking shortages, we're hearing of teacher shortages, educational assistant shortages, even in some cases in school administrators have gotten sick,” said Patrick maze, president of the Saskatchewan Teachers Federation.
The Good Spirit School Division also said that the decision was made with good intentions in mind keeping students and teachers safe and healthy.