TVO.org daily: Friday, March 13

Coronavirus: What’s next for Ontario?
By TVO Current Affairs - Published on Mar 13, 2020
The province has announced that following March Break next week, publicly funded schools in Ontario will close for two additional weeks. (iStock.com)

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Good morning, Ontario.

Here's what we're following 


Ontario schools to shut down over coronavirus

The province has announced that following March Break next week, publicly funded schools in Ontario will close for two additional weeks. In a statement, Premier Doug Ford, Health Minister Christine Elliott, and Education Minister Stephen Lecce said the move to temporarily shutter schools from March 14 to April 5 was being done on the advice of Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. David Williams as a way to slow the spread of COVID-19. “We recognize the significant impact this decision will have on families, students, schools, as well as the broader community, but this precaution is necessary to keep people safe,” the statement read.

In other coronavirus news, several Ontario hospitals are expected to open special COVID-19 assessment centres in the coming days, the Canadian Press reports. The centres aim to provide faster COVID-19 diagnoses while keeping those potentially infected with the respiratory disease away from patients visiting hospitals for other reasons. The first assessment facilities will be at Brampton Civic Hospital, the Ottawa Hospital, North York General Hospital, Mackenzie Health in York Region, Scarborough Health Network, and Trillium Health Partners in Mississauga. More sites are expected to be established in the coming weeks.


English Catholic teachers reach tentative labour deal

The Ontario English Catholic Teachers’ Association is telling its members to suspend all job action after reaching a tentative labour agreement with the Ontario Catholic School Trustees’ Association and the provincial government. “Details of the agreement remain confidential pending ratification,” OECTA president Liz Stuart said in a statement. “Should the OECTA provincial executive and local unit presidents recommend approval, Catholic teachers will participate in a province-wide vote on April 7 and 8.” This is the first tentative deal that has been struck with any of the province’s major teachers’ unions.


Del Duca begins assembling Liberal team

The Toronto Star reports new Liberal leader Steven Del Duca has tapped veteran party strategist Don Guy to lead his transition team. Guy was one of the architects of the party’s three electoral victories under Dalton McGuinty. The Star also reports that Najva Amin, who worked under Del Duca when he was a cabinet minister, will serve as his chief of staff. Ottawa South MPP John Fraser, who was interim leader before Del Duca’s victory last weekend, will lead the party in the legislature because Del Duca does not currently have a seat.


Watch now

The Agenda: Is the tow-truck industry on a collision course?

Tow trucks probably aren’t something most people think about until they need one, but they’ve been making headlines lately. There have been recent reports of tow trucks being shot at or set on fire, and that has sparked talk of a turf war. To explain the issues that have led to this unusual activity, we welcome Mark Graves, president of the Provincial Towing Association of Ontario and owner of automotive-and-towing company Pine Ridge Services.


Off the Beaten Track with Kate Humble

Kate Humble and Teg, her Welsh sheepdog, travel through Wales. Along the way, they witness the comeback of old-style shepherding — learning how canines are saving lives on the mountains — and see a forest through the eyes of a pack of huskies.


Read now

How this Ontario library will help you catch a fish

What do snowshoes and fishing rods have to do with libraries? As northeastern Ontario Hub reporter Nick Dunne learns, letting people borrow outdoors equipment is an inventive way to renew interest in local libraries and introduce newcomers to popular regional pastimes. “Snowshoes and fishing rods are some of the items available on loan through the Greater Sudbury Library’s object-lending programs, the bulk of which have been launched since 2014, when the public institution began dispensing fishing equipment, complete with rod and tacklebox,” writes Dunne in another instalment of TVO’s series on the modern library in Ontario.


Tonight on TVO

7 p.m. — Secret History of the British Garden: The 18th Century

Landscape gardens became popular in the 18th century, giving rise to some of the largest gardens ever created. Horticulturalist Monty Don investigates the inspiration and influences behind Croome Court — the first commissioned work by Capability Brown, the leading landscape designer of his generation — in Worcestershire, England.


8 p.m. — The Agenda:  COVID-19 and the economy

As the world grapples with containing the coronavirus, the economy has already taken quite a hit. To discuss what’s happened and how Canada is expected to fare, we welcome Lindsay Tedds, professor and scientific director of fiscal economic policy at the University of Calgary’s School of Public Policy, and Frances Donald, managing director, chief economist, and head of macro strategy at Manulife Investment Management.


From the archive

Jan. 31, 1989 — Author Jan Morris on women’s roles as writers

British writer Jan Morris, considered one of the world's most famous travel writers, discusses the role of women as authors. Morris’s book Conundrum, a memoir of her gender-confirming surgery in 1972, was one of the first written accounts of such a transition. “There's never been any shortage of women writers, famous and admired women writers in England. But nearly all of them have been people from the liberal, educated classes,” Morris says. “And my experience was in England, when I was toppling between the genders, that the class of society that found this easiest to understand, and to take, was that very class.”

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