Alberta government extending winter break for schools

In a press conference Thursday evening (Dec. 30), Minister of Education Adriana LaGrange extended the winter break for students K-12 to January 10.

LaGrange says as the COVID situation evolves, so to must their response.

“This pause will give teachers, school administrators and school authorities more time to plan for students to return safely to learning. Under very challenging circumstances, I am very grateful to parents, students, teachers and education partners for their flexibility during the pandemic.”

She says the extended break will give everyone involved more time to gather additional data, staffing implications, and other operational impacts.

According to the Government of Alberta (GoA), school authorities will be using this extended break to prepare for potentially both in-person and at-home learning.

Alberta’s Health and Municipal Affairs PPE Task Force is going to be delivering 8.6 million rapid tests, which according to the GoA will be enough for two five-test kits to each student and staff member across the entire education system.

16.5 million medical-grade masks are also being distributed to schools across the province and when fully distributed, the GoA says staff and students will receive an eight week supply.

January high school diploma exams have been cancelled, with another decision coming later in 2022 regarding April and June diploma exams.

The GoA says the decision on whether students will learn in class or at home will be made near the end of next week.

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