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TLDSB bringing back the semester system in February

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DAN CEARNS, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, for The Standard

KAWARTHA LAKES: The Trillium Lakelands District School Board (TLDSB) has confirmed their secondary schools will transition to a semester system in February.

In a press release, sent out on Thursday, December 9th, the school board stated, these schools “will return to a semestered, four classes a day schedule on February 7th, 2022.”

The press release also explained the timeline for making the decision.

“In spring 2021, TLDSB consulted with our public health units and, in compliance with the Ministry of Education COVID-19 guidelines, started the 2021-2022 school year with a quadmester schedule. On November 18th, Minister of Education Stephen Lecce announced, schools could move back into a regular semestered system. When this announcement was made, TLDSB students had already completed one quadmester and had just started quadmester 2. Thus, TLDSB was not in a position to consider moving to a semestered system until February 2022.

The final decision was made, taking many factors into consideration, including input from students and staff.”

In a quadmester system, students studied two subjects per day. The idea of starting the year in a quadmester system was presented to trustees in June. At the time, Education Director Wes Hahn explained why the board decided to go with the quadmester system.

“[In the previous school year] there was a really strong cohorting message from the Ministry [of Education], which is why we landed in the Octomester. We could not have, I believe, more than 50 to 100 contacts per day. Boards [which] did move into a quadmester back in September had to do the one week on, one week off, which we weren’t really big fans of here. But moving into this year, cohorting has been relaxed from the Public Health and the Ministry perspective[s], and we were allowed to move into a quadmester [which] allowed two subjects per day,” he said, at the June meeting.

At a meeting in late November, Director Hahn said the board was “being very thorough,” getting as much input as possible before deciding on whether to return the schools to a semestered schedule.

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