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Province announces launch of online learning portal for students

Ontario Premier Doug Ford (Ontario.ca Photo)

TORONTO – The province announced today (March 20) that they are launching an online portal to provide families with resources that will allow students to continue their education while schools are closed due to COVID-19.

The portal, called Learn at Home (Apprendre à la maison in French), will include educational content for students in grades Kindergarten to 12 in both English and French.

“As a father myself, I know parents always want the best for their children, and I also know from speaking to parents that many are concerned that their child is going to fall behind while schools are closed during this difficult period,” said Premier Doug Ford at a press conference on March 20. “To support families and students, our government has developed a one-stop spot for at-home learning. It doesn’t replace school but offers a great alternative as we approach the end of March Break.”

Minister of Education Stephen Lecce stated that Learn at Home offers all students high-quality, made-in-Ontario math and literacy resources, created by Ontario-certified educators, in both English and French. Elementary resources are designed to help young students learn at home with interactive activities that encourage participation through entertaining and stimulating digital content. High school content was designed with a focus on STEM courses and ensure core competencies and skills are reinforced. The government is also providing access to course content for students who take the initiative to refresh and extend their learning.

“The Learn at Home initiative will help mitigate ‘learning loss’ during this period of uncertainty,” said Lecce. “Our plan will provide interactive teacher-led math supports to keep students learning and empower all students to learn key skills with an emphasis on STEM education, while also arming parents with resources to support them as their kids learn at home.”

Tutors will also be available through the portal. The portal also uses resources from TVO and TFO.

“TVO is proud to be part of this important initiative by the Ministry of Education,” said Jennifer Hinshelwood, TVO’s acting chief operating officer. “TVO’s suite of digital learning products are designed to engage young minds in learning – a mission that seems doubly important at times like this when many of our traditional learning environments are not accessible.”

For students who do not have access to a computer, Lecce said work is underway, in conjunction with school boards, to provide the necessary technology to everyone who needs it.