Ontario teachers’ unions slam Ford government over report that province could make remote learning permanent

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Teachers unions across Ontario are blasting the provincial government after reports surfaced of them potentially making optional remote learning a permanent practice in public schools, CTV News Toronto reports. “The move to virtual learning was never intended to be permanent; it was a temporary measure intended to deliver emergency instruction during a global health crisis,” said Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario President Sam Hammond. “To be clear, this plan will negatively affect students, increase inequities, lower standards in publicly funded education, and put us one step closer to the privatization of public education.” Ontario Secondary School Teachers Federation President Harvey Bischoff also criticized the idea, arguing that there are no conceivable benefits for students. “I’m not sure what the pros are at all because I don’t know what problem it is the ministry is trying to solve. We’ve seen all this year them saying that keeping schools open in a face-to-face setting was the highest priority and, you know, I agree with that as a priority, even though they failed to put in sufficient resources. But now they’re saying they want to create a permanent remote learning option and I just can’t reconcile those two things.”

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