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Family Notice – Ministerial Order – April 7, 2020

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April 7, 2020

Dear Families,

As part of our ongoing communication to HWDSB families during the Ontario school closure period, we are writing to provide further details and supports about continuing learning from home. Our plan provided below is with a focus on caring in the face of challenge.

Assessment, Evaluation and Reporting

The Ministry of Education has provided direction for the assessment, evaluation and reporting of student learning during school closures. HWDSB shares the Ministry’s expectation that students will do their best to complete all work assigned as learning resumes. The shift to distance learning should not negatively impact student grades. As always, students and families should connect with their teachers if they have questions about assessment and evaluation.

Elementary Schools (Kindergarten to Grade 8)

  • As per the Ministry of Education’s direction, all school boards will issue final report cards, including the Kindergarten of Communication of Learning for all students.
  • Final grades will be entered in June 2020 and will reflect work completed and evaluated before March 13, 2020. When in the best interest of students, evidence of learning between now and June will be assessed and may be used to improve final grades where a student demonstrates further achievement of expectations.
  • Final grades can only improve from March 13 based on teacher feedback and assessment of student performance on learning tasks

Secondary Schools (Grades 9 to 12)

  • Grade 12 students: Mid-term marks will be recorded for students based on work completed and evaluated prior to March 13, 2020. Students may also submit additional work for consideration to improve their mid-term mark. For those applying to universities, mid-term marks will be submitted to the Ontario Universities’ Application Centre (OUAC) between April 23 and May 1. The Ontario College Application Service (OCAS) has confirmed that mid- term grades from this semester will not be required for admissions this fall. Students and families should contact the school with specific questions or concerns.
  • Grade 9, 10, 11, and 12 students: Final marks will be reported in June 2020, and will be based on work completed before March 13, 2020, and after April 6, 2020. Teachers will continue to assign learning tasks, projects and culminating activities and will provide feedback to students, including marks.
  • Final grades can increase or decrease from March 13 based on teacher feedback, assessment, and evaluations of student performance on learning tasks.

Access to Device and Internet

HWDSB staff have worked towards a solution to support equitable access to learning at home for all students. Many, but not all, students have a device and internet access at home.

This week, staff retrieved from elementary and secondary schools all available devices for students who need access to a device or the internet, identified by last week’s outreach by staff.

Starting next week, we will distribute existing school devices to students who require a device. We will also provide devices enabled with internet to students who do not have home internet.

Identified families will receive specific communications from your child’s school and instructions for family pick-up starting next week. Families will be able to pick up the device from outside your child’s school. This will enable physical distancing. Staff are working with Public Health Services to ensure the safe transfer of equipment to families with or without vehicles.

If you have yet to hear from your child’s teacher and wish to indicate your family’s need for a device or home internet, please reach out in one of the following ways:

  • call the Education Centre at 905-527-5092 and leave your contact information/child’s school on the voicemail
  • email HWDSB at info@hwdsb.on.ca
  • contact form on your school website (see elementary and secondary school listings)

Effective Communication

Our COVID-19 web page found at www.hwdsb.on.ca has been modified to ensure that our students, families and our communities have current information and understand our comprehensive plan to support students in their learning and well-being.

In addition to our website, stay connected with us by phone 905-527-5092, email info@hwdsb.on.ca, or by social media @HWDSB on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Be safe and stay well,


Alex Johnstone

Chair of the Board


Manny Figueiredo

Director of Education

Updated on Wednesday, April 08, 2020.
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