Transcript: Restarting Ontario Education | May 12, 2020

Steve sits in a room with white walls, a low slanted ceiling and several framed pictures on the walls including one of George Drew and one of Walter Kronkite. He's slim, clean-shaven, in his fifties, with short curly brown hair. He's wearing a blue shirt and a spotted blue tie.

A caption on screen reads "Restarting Ontario education. @spaikin, @theagenda."

Steve says ANY DAY NOW, THE PROVINCE WILL DECIDE THE FATE OF THE SCHOOL YEAR FOR THE ROUGHLY TWO MILLION STUDENTS CURRENTLY COOLING THEIR HEELS AT HOME. IN THE MEANTIME, THE ONLINE LEARNING, HOMESCHOOLING, AND OTHER BACK-OF-THE-ENVELOPE EFFORTS AT EDUCATION ARE UNDERWAY ACROSS ONTARIO. HOW DOES IT ALL INFORM THE PATH FORWARD AFTER WHAT MIGHT TURN OUT TO BE THE LONGEST MARCH BREAK IN HISTORY? LET'S ASK: ALL HERE IN THE PROVINCIAL CAPITAL: ANNIE KIDDER, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, PEOPLE FOR EDUCATION...

Annie is in her sixties, with shoulder-length wavy blond hair. She's wearing glasses and a cream turtleneck sweater.

Steve continues PRACHI SRIVASTAVA, ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR SPECIALIZING IN EDUCATION AND INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT AT WESTERN UNIVERSITY...

Prachi is in her forties, with long straight dark hair and bangs. She's wearing a beige blouse.

Steve continues AND CAROLINE ALPHONSO, EDUCATION REPORTER WITH THE GLOBE AND MAIL. IT'S GREAT TO SEE YOU THREE ON TVO TONIGHT...

Caroline is in her thirties, with chin-length wavy black hair. She's wearing a black blazer.

Steve continues LET'S, ANNIE, GET YOU RIGHT INTO THIS. THE KIDS HAVE BEEN OUT OF SCHOOL NOW FOR TWO MONTH, OUT OF THE CLASSROOMS, THAT IS TO SAY, BUT THEY HAVE BEEN DOING SOME KIND OF EDUCATION OVER THE LAST FIVE WEEKS OR SO. IN YOUR VIEW, WHAT IS THE QUALITY OF THE EDUCATION THEY HAVE BEEN GETTING?

The caption changes to "Annie Kidder. People for Education."

Annie says WELL, I THINK IT'S REALLY HARD TO ANSWER THAT QUESTION BECAUSE IT'S HAPPENING IN THE PRIVACY OF THEIR OWN HOMES. MAYBE THE MOST IMPORTANT ANSWER IS THAT IT'S DIFFERENT FOR EVERY SINGLE KID AND EVERY SINGLE FAMILY, AND THAT'S PROBABLY THE HARDEST THING RIGHT NOW IS THAT WE CAN'T MAKE ONE POLICY OR ONE SYSTEM OR ONE METHOD WORK FOR ALL FAMILIES. THEY ALL HAVE DIFFERENT CAPACITIES. THEY'RE ALL LIVING IN DIFFERENT SITUATIONS. I HEARD SOMEBODY SAY YESTERDAY, WHICH I LOVED, WE'RE ALL IN THE SAME STORM BUT WE'RE NOT ALL IN THE SAME BOAT. AND I THINK THAT THAT'S WHY IT'S HARD TO TELL IN TERMS OF QUALITY OR EVEN FROM A PRACTICAL PERSPECTIVE WHAT THEY'RE ACTUALLY DOING. BUT THERE'S LEARNING GOING ON FOR SURE AND THE LEARNING IS TAKING MANY DIFFERENT FORMS.

Steve says HMM. WE'LL TALK MORE ABOUT THAT IN A BIT. PRACHI, LEARNING GOING ON. BUT HOW WOULD YOU RATE THE QUALITY OF WHAT IS BEING LEARNED? IS.

The caption changes to "Prachi Srivastava. Western University."

Prachi says I THINK AS ANNIE HAS SAID, IT IS VERY HARD TO HAVE AN ANSWER TO THAT BECAUSE WE'RE JUST TOO EARLY INTO IT. THE ONE THING IS THAT IF WE HAD HAD PERHAPS MORE CLEAR DIRECTIVES FROM THE MINISTRY EARLIER ON AND EVEN HAVE A PARED DOWN CURRICULUM, HAVE SOME OBJECTIVES THAT ARE SOMEWHAT MORE TRANSPARENT, WE MIGHT BE IN A BETTER SITUATION IN TERMS OF BEING ABLE TO REALLY ASSESS THAT. AS WE ARE IN THE CURRENT STATE, SCHOOLS AND SCHOOL BOARDS AND TEACHERS REALLY ARE DOING THE BEST THEY CAN IN THE CONTEXT THAT WE'RE IN, AS ARE MOST PARENTS. SO THERE WILL BE SOME DIFFERENCES. THERE'S A STUDY THAT'S JUST COME OUT IN THE NETHERLANDS WHICH HAS SHOWN DIFFERENTIAL EFFECTS OF HOME-SCHOOLING EXACTLY AS ANNIE HAS SAID. SOME PARENTS ARE BETTER ABLE TO SUPPORT AND SOME ARE NOT. AND ALL OF US AS PARENTS ARE ALSO GOING THROUGH THE SAME ISSUES IN TERMS OF WORKING FROM HOME, INCREASED DEMANDS, INCREASED PARENTING RESPONSIBILITIES. ALL OF THAT WILL HAVE AN EFFECT.

Steve says CAROLINE, WHAT WOULD YOU ADD TO THAT?

The caption changes to "Caroline Alphonso. The Globe and Mail."

Caroline says I THINK, YOU KNOW, AS ANNIE POINTED OUT, IT VARIES FROM ONE HOUSEHOLD TO THE OTHER. I THINK IT'S BEEN A STEEP LEARNING CURVE, NOT ONLY FOR TEACHERS BUT ALSO FOR FAMILIES. THERE IS TECHNOLOGY HAPPENING IN HOMES. YOU KNOW, SCHOOL BOARDS HAVE DONE A TREMENDOUS JOB IN PROVIDING TECHNOLOGY TO STUDENTS AND FAMILIES THAT DON'T HAVE IT. SO THAT SORT OF HAPPENED INITIALLY OFF THE BAT. JUST TALKING TO FAMILIES IN RECENT WEEKS, YOU KNOW, THERE ARE SOME FAMILIES WHO ARE DOING QUITE WELL AND THEY'RE GETTING THEIR ASSIGNMENTS FROM TEACHERS AND THEY'RE ABLE TO COMPLETE THEM. AND THERE ARE SOME FAMILIES TO HAVE COMPLETELY THROWN IN THE TOWEL. IT'S JUST TOO MUCH RIGHT NOW. THERE'S A LOT OF STRESSES HAPPENING WITHIN THE HOME. IT'S SOMETIMES UNMANAGEABLE. PEOPLE ARE WORKING. PEOPLE HAVE OTHER STRESSES GOING ON IN THEIR LIVES. AND SOME FAMILIES HAVE SAID, YOU KNOW WHAT? MY KIDS ARE GOING... ESPECIALLY YOUNG KIDS... MY KIDS ARE GOING TO DO OTHER THINGS INSTEAD. AND THAT'S OKAY. AND SO YOU'RE SEEING A WIDE SWATH, A WIDE VARIETY OF THINGS HAPPENING IN HOUSEHOLDS RIGHT NOW.

Steve says WELL, LET ME FOLLOW UP, CAROLINE. YOU SAY IT'S OKAY BUT THAT DOES MEAN THAT THERE ARE... THAT MEANS THAT THE VAST DIFFERENCE OF THE KIND OF EDUCATION THAT KIDS ARE GETTING OVER THE LAST THREE MONTHS OF THEIR SCHOOL YEAR WILL BE AS DRAMATIC AS IT'S EVER BEEN. YOU KNOW, OFTENTIMES IT'S DIFFERENT BECAUSE OF, YOU KNOW, SOMEONE LIVES IN A RICH NEIGHBORHOOD OR SOMEONE LIVES IN A LESS WELL OFF NEIGHBORHOOD. NOW WE'VE GOT EVEN MORE DIFFERENT METRICS BY WHICH EDUCATION IS GOING TO BE DIFFERENT. IN WHICH CASE, YOU KNOW, IF YOU PASS THE YEAR, WHICH EVERYBODY IS GOING TO DO, IS THAT A GOOD THING?

Caroline says WELL, I MEAN, THAT'S AN INTERESTING QUESTION, RIGHT? BECAUSE THE BOARDS AND THE MINISTRY HAVE SAID THAT MARKS ONLY COUNT TILL MARCH BREAK. AND IF YOU IMPROVE, YOU'LL SEE AN IMPROVEMENT IN YOUR MARK. BUT YOU WON'T BE AFFECTED NEGATIVELY BY THAT. YOU KNOW, STEVE, IN THE SUMMER... WHEN THE SCHOOL YEAR STARTS IN THE FALL, WE TEND TO SEE AMONG KIDS, AMONG SOME KIDS, THE SUMMER SLIDE, THE SUMMER LEARNING LOSS. AND TEACHERS DO A VERY GOOD JOB, OR THEY'RE TRAINED TO DO A VERY GOOD JOB IN THE FIRST FEW WEEKS OF THE SCHOOL YEAR TO REVIEW MATERIAL FROM THE PREVIOUS YEAR. AND I IMAGINE... I BELIEVE THAT WILL HAPPEN IF SCHOOL STARTS UP AGAIN IN THE FALL AND IT WILL BE MORE PRONOUNCED TO CATCH THOSE KIDS UP THAT PERHAPS SAID, YOU KNOW, WE CAN'T DO IT ANYMORE, OR FAMILIES HAVE SAID WE ARE JUST GOING TO STOP RIGHT NOW AND TAKE A BREAK FROM SCHOOLING.

Steve says YEAH, ANNIE, WHAT DO WE DO ABOUT THE FACT THAT THE CONSISTENCY, YOU KNOW, WHICH IS NEVER 100 PERCENT TO BEGIN WITH, IS GOING TO BE EVEN WORSE NOW?

Annie says WELL, I THINK LEARN FROM IT. I THINK THAT'S OUR BIGGEST HOPE THAT (a) ONE OF THE THINGS WE'VE LEARNED IS SCHOOLS ARE REALLY IMPORTANT AND THEY DO AN INCREDIBLE JOB AND PART OF THE JOB THAT THEY DO IS KIND OF LEVELLING THAT PLAYING FIELD IN TERMS OF PROVIDING, YOU KNOW, ALL OF THE RESOURCES AND SUPPORTS OR AS MANY AS POSSIBLE IN ORDER TO KIND OF MITIGATE, WHICH IS NOT A VERY NICE WORD, ALL THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN FAMILIES. AND I THINK THAT THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN FAMILIES AREN'T BECAUSE THEY DON'T CARE ABOUT EDUCATION, BUT IT IS, LIKE SOME FAMILIES ARE UNDER INCREDIBLE STRESS OR THEY'VE LOST THEIR JOBS OR THEY'RE STILL ESSENTIAL WORKERS OR THEY DON'T HAVE THE TECHNOLOGY AT HOME. I THINK THE OTHER THING WE'VE LEARNED RIGHT NOW IS THE INEQUITY ISN'T NECESSARILY ABOUT WHETHER OR NOT YOU HAVE A COMPUTER, IT'S WHETHER OR NOT YOU HAVE ALL THE OTHER STUFF, ESPECIALLY TIME, IN ORDER TO SUPPORT YOUR CHILDREN. I THINK THAT WE SHOULDN'T WORRY TOO MUCH, AS CAROLINE SAID, THAT... IT'S IMPORTANT THAT WE UNDERSTAND THAT LEARNING TAKES A LOT OF FORMS AND HAPPENS IN A LOT OF DIFFERENT WAYS. PEOPLE HAVE BEEN COMPLAINING FOR YEARS THAT THE CURRICULUM IS TOO PACKED, THERE ARE TOO MANY, YOU KNOW, OUTCOMES IN IT THAT ARE SUPPOSED TO BE MET. SO HOPEFULLY WHAT'S HAPPENING NOW IS THAT WE'RE REINFORCING THAT UNDERSTANDING THAT LEARNING HAPPENS IN A DISCUSSION THAT YOU'RE HAVING, IN WHATEVER KIND OF WAY KIDS ARE CONNECTING WITH THEIR TEACHERS AND IT'S NOT NECESSARILY THAT YOU LOSE THREE MONTHS OF SCHOOL, YOU LOSE THREE MONTHS OF LEARNING, OR THAT EVERY SINGLE THING IN THOSE THREE MONTHS WAS AN ABSOLUTE NECESSITY IN ORDER TO GO ON TO THE NEXT YEAR. BUT, YOU KNOW, I THINK THAT THAT'S WHAT'S INTERESTING, THAT PRACHI MENTIONS ABOUT THE STUDY IN THE NETHERLANDS THAT WE REALLY HOPE THAT THERE'S A LOT OF RESEARCH BEING DONE NOW, THAT THERE'S A DEEPER UNDERSTANDING OF HOW LEARNING DOES HAPPEN, ALL THE DIFFERENT WAYS, WHAT'S MORE EFFECTIVE, HOW WE ENGAGE STUDENTS, THINGS LIKE THAT. BUT I DON'T THINK THAT IT'S IN THE GRAND SCHEME OF THINGS THAT THREE MONTHS IS GOING TO HAVE AN ENORMOUS KIND OF IMPACT ON KIDS THAT CAN'T BE UNDONE.

Steve says NO, I HEAR YOU. PRACHI, FOLLOW UP IN THIS REGARD, IF YOU WOULD? I LOVE THE NOTION OF THE EDUCATION SYSTEM AS THE GREAT LEVELER IN SOCIETY, MEANING THAT OBVIOUSLY, WHETHER YOU COME FROM A VERY RICH BACKGROUND OR A NOT-SO-RICH BACKGROUND, IF 95 percent OF THE KIDS ARE IN THE SAME PUBLIC EDUCATION SYSTEM AND IT'S OF DECENT QUALITY REGARDLESS OF WHERE YOU GO TO SCHOOL, EVERYBODY HAS GOT A SHOT. EVERYBODY HAS GOT A SHOT. APROPOS OF WHAT CAROLINE SAID AS WELL, THIS LEARNING LOSS THAT TAKES PLACE OVER THE SUMMER, IS ACTUALLY FOR SOME KIDS STARTING RIGHT NOW. HOW IS THE EDUCATION SYSTEM GOING TO OVERCOME THE LEARNING LOSS THAT'S HAPPENING NOW ON TOP OF THE LEARNING LOSS THAT'S GOING TO HAPPEN IN THE SUMMER, JUST FEELS TO ME THE GREAT LEVELER IS NOT LEVELLING RIGHT NOW.

Prachi says SO THAT IS THE HOPE WITH EDUCATION SYSTEMS, THAT IT IS A GREAT LEVELER. IN FACT, MUCH OF THE RESEARCH THAT WE HAVE OVER THE LAST 50 OR 60 YEARS IN MOST CONTEXTS, INCLUDING CANADA, BUT GENERALLY GLOBALLY AROUND THE WORLD, IS WE FIND THAT'S NOT ACTUALLY THE CASE, IN MANY SOCIETIES THAT'S NOT THE CASE, THAT EDUCATION IS NOT THE GREAT LEVELER UNLESS WE MAKE A CONCERTED EFFORT FOR IT TO BE THAT WAY. SO IN TERMS OF WHAT WE'RE TALKING ABOUT OF LEARNING LOSS, WE HAVE TO REMEMBER A FEW THINGS. FIRSTLY, WE ENTERED THE PANDEMIC IN A SOMEWHAT DISRUPTED ENVIRONMENT FOR EDUCATION IN ONTARIO. THERE WAS A TEACHERS STRIKE, WHICH I PERSONALLY SUPPORTED, BUT THERE WAS SOME DISRUPTION, BUT IT WAS... I THINK IN MY MIND MINIMAL DISRUPTION. BOARDS AND TEACHERS DID THE BEST THAT THEY COULD IN TERMS OF ROTATION STRIKES, BUT THERE WAS A BIT OF DISRUPTION THERE. OF COURSE NO ONE THOUGHT THAT WE WERE NOW GOING TO BE IN A SITUATION WHERE ESSENTIALLY ALMOST HALF THE SCHOOL YEAR IS GOING TO BE GONE. AND I SAY HALF THE SCHOOL YEAR BECAUSE WE HAVE TO REMEMBER, WHEN WE TALK ABOUT LEARNING LOST IN THE SUMMER, WE'RE TALKING ABOUT LOSSES THAT OCCUR AFTER WE'VE ACTUALLY GONE THROUGH A WHOLE YEAR OF INSTRUCTION, A WHOLE YEAR OF SCHOOLING. THAT'S NOT THE CASE HERE. WE STARTED... ENTERED THIS PANDEMIC IN MARCH. THERE WAS DISRUPTION BEFORE THAT. WE ALSO HAD CHRISTMAS HOLIDAYS AND HOLIDAYS BEFORE THAT. SO IN TERMS OF REALLY LOOKING AT INSTRUCTION, WE HAVE TO SEE THAT WE DIDN'T ACTUALLY ENTER THE PANDEMIC IN THE BEST OF CIRCUMSTANCES. WE ENTERED IT IN MUCH BETTER CIRCUMSTANCES THAN MANY, MANY OTHER COUNTRIES GLOBALLY. WE ARE IN A RELATIVE TIME OF PEACE. WE ARE A G-7 COUNTRY THAT HAS MANY, MANY RESOURCES TO DEVOTE. WE DID ENTER IT IN A BETTER CIRCUMSTANCE. BUT IT'S NOT IDEAL. AND WHEN WE TALK ABOUT AUTOMATIC PROMOTION, I'M NOT ENTIRELY SURE THAT AUTOMATIC PROMOTION IN A CONTEXT WHERE WE DO NOT HAVE INDICATIONS YET FROM THE GOVERNMENT IN TERMS OF WHAT THE NEXT SCHOOL YEAR IS GOING TO LOOK LIKE, WHETHER OR NOT THAT'S A GREAT IDEA. SO, FOR EXAMPLE, IF WHAT WE WANT IS FOR CHILDREN TO ENTER, FOR EXAMPLE, GRADE 3 NEXT YEAR. THEY'RE IN GRADE 2 RIGHT NOW. THEY WANT TO ENTER GRADE 3 NEXT YEAR. WHAT IS THAT CURRICULUM ACTUALLY GOING TO LOOK LIKE? I THINK THE IDEA THAT TEACHERS ARE GOING TO HAVE TO CATCH UP ALL THE KIDS OF WHATEVER IT IS THEY MISSED IN GRADE 2 AND THEN ON TOP OF IT TEACH THE GRADE 3 CURRICULUM IS JUST GOING TO BE STRESSFUL FOR THE TEACHERS, STRESSFUL FOR THE CHILDREN, AND IT'S NOT THE WAY THAT WE'LL BE ABLE TO SEE LEARNING GAINS. PROBABLY WHAT WE WANT TO DO IS SEE HOW WE CAN REFORM THAT CURRICULUM FOR NEXT YEAR AND THE HE YEARS AFTER TO ACTUALLY TAKE INTO CONSIDERATION THE EFFECT OF THIS PANDEMIC ON LEARNING.

Steve says WELL, I WAS GOING TO GET TO THIS LATER, BUT SINCE YOU'VE RAISED IT NOW, CAROLINE, DO YOU KNOW WHETHER THERE'S ANY DISCUSSION AT ALL... I KNOW WHAT THEY'VE SAID ALREADY. THEY SAID EVERYBODY'S GOING TO GET THEIR YEAR. SHOULD THERE BE DISCUSSIONS AT THE HIGHEST LEVELS IN THIS PROVINCE TO JUST CALL THIS YEAR A MULLIGAN AND HAVE ALL THE STUDENTS DO IT AGAIN?

Caroline says AS FAR AS I'M AWARE, THERE'S NO DISCUSSIONS AROUND THAT. THERE COULD BE, BUT I'M NOT AWARE OF IT. IT'S A TRICKY THING, STEVE. IT'S A TRICKY THING TO HAVE STUDENTS REDO THEIR PREVIOUS YEAR, YOU KNOW. WHAT DO YOU DO IN HIGH SCHOOL? WHAT DO YOU DO FOR THOSE STUDENTS WHO ARE EARNING CREDITS? ARE YOU ASKING THEM TO GO BACK AND REDO SOME OF THOSE CREDITS, REDO WHAT THEY HAVE DONE? IT'S A REALLY TOUGH SITUATION RIGHT NOW. I DON'T KNOW ACTUALLY HOW YOU WOULD HANDLE SOMETHING LIKE THAT.

Steve says BUT THERE'S NOBODY OUT THERE WHO IS GOING TO CONVINCE ANYBODY THAT A PRE-PANDEMIC GRADE 12 GRAD IS THE EQUIVALENT TO A IN-THE-MIDDLE OF A PANDEMIC GRADE 12 GRAD. IT ISN'T THE SAME. ANNIE, I WONDER IF THAT DOES SUGGEST THAT IT'S A GOOD YEAR FOR CALLING IT A MULLIGAN AND HAVING EVERYBODY DOING IT AGAIN.

Annie says I CAN JUST IMAGINE THE REACTION TO THAT. I THINK YOU'RE RIGHT, WE CAN'T PRETEND IT'S THE SAME. I KIND OF LOVE PRACHI'S IDEA THAT THERE'S AN OPPORTUNITY TO LOOK AT THE CURRICULUM, NOT BECAUSE OF THE PANDEMIC BUT BECAUSE THE CURRICULUM SHOULD BE LOOKED AT ANYWAY. NOT JUST TO TWEAK BUT TO MAKE SURE IT'S MATCHING ALL THE THINGS PEOPLE ARE SAYING WHAT WE NEED TO DO IN ORDER TO MAKE IT SUCCESSFUL. EVEN GRADE 12 STUDENTS, WHO HAVE ANOTHER MONTH AND A HALF OF SCHOOL, THEREABOUTS, IT'S TRYING TO MAKE SURE THAT WE'RE BUILDING THOSE SKILLS IN THOSE KIDS, THAT THEY'RE ABLE TO HANDLE THE TRANSITION TO WHATEVER KIND OF POSTSECONDARY THING THEY'RE DOING, WHETHER THEY'RE GOING TO UNIVERSITY OR COLLEGE, APPRENTICESHIPS OR GETTING A JOB, THAT IT'S NOT NECESSARILY THAT THEY MISSED THAT LAST SECTION IN CALCULUS THAT'S GOING TO AFFECT THEM, THOUGH IT MIGHT, BUT IT'S WHETHER OR NOT THEY ACTUALLY CAN HANDLE THE TRANSITION, THEY KNOW HOW TO WORK INDEPENDENTLY, THEY KNOW HOW TO COLLABORATE, THEY KNOW HOW TO TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR THEIR OWN WORK. SO, YOU KNOW, I THINK THIS IS AN ARGUMENT FOR LOOKING AT ALL THE CURRICULUM ALL THE WAY UP AND DOWN, BUT I DON'T THINK THAT IT'S, YOU KNOW, NECESSARY TO SAY THIS YEAR DOESN'T COUNT AT ALL. HOPEFULLY KIDS WERE LOADING UP UNTIL THE MIDDLE OF MARCH AND HOPEFULLY THEY ARE STILL LEARNING IN DIFFERENT WAYS, AND IT'S INTERESTING RIGHT NOW WATCHING THE PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT AND EVERYBODY, AND DIRECTORS, TRYING TO FIGURE OUT HOW TO DO THIS. YOU KNOW, CAN YOU SEND A DIRECTIVE TO TEACHERS SAYING, YOU MUST DO IT THIS WAY? HOW DOES THAT TAKE INTO ACCOUNT DIFFERENT FAMILIES? HOW DO YOU MAKE SURE THERE'S SOME ACCOUNTABILITY FOR WHAT'S GOING ON? BUT AGAIN UNDERSTANDING ALL THE DIFFERENT CIRCUMSTANCES. SO THAT WE'RE NOT GIVING UP. AND I THINK THAT SOME OF THE PEOPLE WE SHOULD BE LISTENING TO ARE, LIKE PRACHI, ARE PEOPLE WHO ARE EXPERTS ON LEARNING IN AN EMERGENCY. BECAUSE THAT IS WHAT THIS IS. IT'S NOT e-LEARNING, IT'S NOT HOME SCHOOLING, IT'S NOT JUST LET'S TAKE IT ALL ONLINE. THIS IS AN EMERGENCY. AND THERE ARE LOTS OF EXPERTS IN THAT WHO HAVE BEEN DEALING WITH SCHOOLS CLOSING BECAUSE OF EBOLA OR BECAUSE OF WAR, AND THAT WE... THERE ARE THINGS THAT WE COULD LEARN AND UNDERSTAND FROM THEM, AND I THINK THAT WHAT THEY KNOW IS YOU CAN'T JUST GO, WHICH IS A BIT OF WHAT GOT SAID IN THE DIRECTIVE FROM THE MINISTRY ON FRIDAY, YOU CAN'T GO, IT'S JUST LIKE SCHOOL EXCEPT IT'S HAPPENING IN YOUR COMPUTER AT HOME, BECAUSE IT'S NOT JUST LIKE SCHOOL. AND SO I THINK THAT WE HAVE TO BE OPEN STILL AND WE HAVE TO NOT GIVE UP ON THIS YEAR, IT'S STILL ONLY THE MIDDLE OF MAY, TO WHAT OTHER WAYS COULD WE BE DOING THIS? HOW COULD WE BE USING, YOU KNOW, OTHER KINDS OF TECHNOLOGY OR EVEN THINGS THAT AREN'T SO HIGH-TECH, LIKE RADIO OR WHATEVER, TO MAKE SURE THAT IN WHATEVER WAY FAMILIES CAN ACCESS THIS, THAT IT'S EASY FOR THEM BUT THAT THERE ARE LOTS OF CHOICES IN IT. BUT THEN, AGAIN, WITHIN, YOU KNOW, SOME KIND OF STRUCTURE, SOME KIND OF SENSE OF ACCOUNTABILITY, SOME KIND OF WAY TO SUPPORT TEACHERS SO THAT THEY'RE COLLABORATING WITH EACH OTHER AND WORKING TOGETHER AS A SCHOOL. I OBVIOUSLY DON'T HAVE THE ANSWERS. I'M NOT AN EXPERT ON EDUCATION IN EMERGENCIES. BUT THEY ARE OUT THERE. AND I THINK WE SHOULD BE LISTENING TO THEM TOO.

Steve says OKAY. BUT BEFORE WE CONSIDER THAT, CAROLINE, I WONDER IF YOU COULD HELP US UNDERSTAND, YOU KNOW, OKAY, THERE'S THE LITTLEST KIDS IN JK AND SK AND THEN YOU'VE GOT ELEMENTARY SCHOOL AND THEN YOU'VE GOT MIDDLE SCHOOL AND THEN YOU'VE GOT HIGH SCHOOL. WHICH COHORT OF STUDENTS DO YOU THINK THIS PANDEMIC HAS BEEN MOST INJURIOUS TO THEIR EDUCATION?

Caroline says PERSONALLY I HAVE A FIVE-YEAR-OLD AND NINE-YEAR-OLD. THE FIVE-YEAR-OLD IN SK IS CONTENT COLOURING AND BUILDING FORTS AND HAVING THE BEST TIME AND READING AND SHE'S FINE. I THINK THE IMPACT IS THE GREATEST FOR THE HIGH SCHOOL KIDS, QUITE FRANKLY. I THINK THEY ARE THE ONES WHO, ESPECIALLY IN A GRADUATING CLASS, YOU KNOW, THOSE ARE THE ONES WHO WERE LOOKING FORWARD TO THOSE OCCASIONS OF THEIR GRADUATION CEREMONIES AND PROMS, WHERE THEY'RE HELD, AND THEY'RE MISSING OUT ON THAT. THEY ARE THE ONES WHO RECEIVE MORE FEEDBACK, I WOULD IMAGINE, FROM TEACHERS. YOU KNOW, THEY ARE MOVING FROM CLASS TO CLASS. THEY'RE WORKING TOWARDS POSTSECONDARY OR THE WORK FORCE. AND THOSE ARE THE KIDS WHO ARE, I THINK, YOU KNOW, MISSING THE MOST. THE YOUNGER KIDS I THINK... YOU KNOW, MY FIVE-YEAR-OLD, MY NINE-YEAR-OLD, WILL BE FINE. AND MOST KIDS, YOU KNOW, THEY'RE MISSING SCHOOL, THEY'RE MISSING THEIR FRIENDS, THEY'RE MISSING SORT OF THE INTERACTION AND THEY'LL GO BACK AND THEY'LL BE HAPPY WHENEVER THAT HAPPENS. THEY'LL BE FINE. BUT I THINK IT'S THE HIGH SCHOOL KIDS THAT ARE MISSING SORT OF THE LEARNING THAT TAKES PLACE IN THE CLASSROOM, THE INTERACTION THAT TAKES PLACE WITH TEACHERS AND THEIR PEERS.

Steve says PRACHI, IS THAT YOUR SENSE OF IT? THE OLDER YOU ARE, THE WORSE IT IS FOR YOU?

Prachi says I THINK... YOU KNOW, THESE ARE ALL... RIGHT AT THIS POINT THIS IS ALL CONJECTURE. I THINK THE STUDENTS THAT ARE COMING IN FROM GRADE 12 INTO UNIVERSITY, IF THEY'RE GOING INTO ONTARIO UNIVERSITIES, I'M AT UNIVERSITY AND I KNOW THE BACKGROUND DISCUSSIONS AROUND THAT. WE'RE TRYING VERY HARD TO BE MORE RESPONSIVE IN TERMS OF NEXT YEAR AND, YOU KNOW, THE PROFESSORS ARE GOING TO BE TEACHING THOSE FIRST YEAR CLASSES, THEY'RE GOING TO BE VERY COGNIZANT OF THE FACT THAT THESE STUDENTS ARE COMING IN WITH AN INCOMPLETE KIND OF FULL EDUCATION. SO IN MY MIND AT THE UNIVERSITY, THOSE STUDENTS THAT ARE COMING IN FROM GRADE 12 TO UNIVERSITY, IN MY MIND THEY'RE ENTERING A MORE FLEXIBLE SYSTEM. SO IN THAT SENSE, I THINK WE HAVE A LITTLE BIT MORE FLEXIBILITY AT THAT LEVEL TO KIND OF ADDRESS SOME OF THOSE ISSUES. BUT I WOULD LIKE TO GO BACK TO SOMETHING THAT ANNIE HAS SAID IN TERMS OF EDUCATION IN EMERGENCIES. WE HAVE I THINK IN CANADA GENERALLY BEEN VERY FORTUNATE THAT WE HAVE NOT HAD CONFLICT ON OUR SOIL, AND THAT IS A GREAT BOON. I STARTED MY CAREER IN EDUCATION IN EMERGENCIES 20 YEARS AGO AND I WORKED IN CONFLICT ZONES AND THIS WAS EXACTLY WHAT I WAS DOING. AND THOSE...

Steve says WHERE DID YOU WORK? CAN I ASK?

Prachi says IN KOSOVO AND ALBANIA DURING THE KOSOVO CONFLICT. THAT'S EXACTLY WHAT I DID. HOW DO WE PROVIDE EDUCATION IN MASS DESTRUCTION. IN THAT CONTEXT, IT WAS MASS DESTRUCTION FOR 10 YEARS. HERE WE'RE TALKING ABOUT MASS DISRUPTION FOR A FEW MONTHS. BUT THE ISSUES AROUND WHAT WE MISS OUT DURING THAT TIME, SOCIALLY, THE PSYCHOSOCIAL IMPACT, THE EDUCATION IMPACT, ALL OF THAT ARE ISSUES THAT WE IN CANADA HAVE BEEN FORTUNATE ENOUGH NOT TO DEAL WITH, BUT BECAUSE WE'VE BEEN SO FORTUNATE, WE'RE ALSO LESS PREPARED. SO OUR MINISTRIES, FOR EXAMPLE, OF HEALTH AND EDUCATION, I DON'T THINK THERE WAS THAT MUCH COORDINATION BETWEEN THEM BEFORE THIS PANDEMIC, AND I'M NOT ENTIRELY SURE HOW MUCH COORDINATION THERE IS NOW IN TERMS OF HAVING TASK FORCES THAT ARE LOOKING AT PSYCHOSOCIAL WELL-BEING FOR CHILDREN AND ADULTS, LOOKING AT HOW THE CURRICULUM REFORM SHOULD BE. WE NEED ACTUALLY TO TAKE SOME CLEAR DECISIONS EVEN IN THE FACE OF INCOMPLETE INFORMATION. WE KNOW WHAT OUR SCHOOL YEAR USUALLY LOOKS LIKE. WE KNOW WHAT WE'RE TRYING TO ACHIEVE IN TERMS OF THE SCHOOL YEAR. WHAT WE NEED TO BE ASKING ARE QUESTIONS LIKE: ARE WE GOING TO STAY WITH THE IDEA THAT THE SCHOOL YEAR STARTS IN SEPTEMBER AND ENDS IN JUNE? OR ARE WE GOING TO BE THINKING ABOUT OPENING A LITTLE BIT EARLIER, IF IT'S POSSIBLE? AND IF WE DO, WHAT IS THAT CURRICULUM GOING TO LOOK LIKE FOR THE NEXT TWO YEARS? ARE WE GOING TO TAKE PERHAPS HALF OF GRADE 2 AND HALF OF GRADE 3, AND THAT BECOMES THE NEW CURRICULUM FOR GRADE 3. AND THEN DO WE DO THAT THROUGHOUT THE SYSTEM? AND HOW DO WE LOOK AT THE INTEGRATION FROM PRIMARY TO MIDDLE, FROM MIDDLE TO SECONDARY? THOSE ARE THE QUESTIONS WE NEED TO BE ASKING. AND MORE THAN ASKING, WE NEED TO SEE SOME STRONG DIRECTIVES FROM THE GOVERNMENT IN TERMS OF SETTING UP THE TASK FORCE AND REALLY THINKING ABOUT HOW TO MOVE THIS FORWARD, RATHER THAN WEEK BY WEEK OR MONTH BY MONTH.

Steve says ANNIE, THAT SUGGESTS SOME REAL BIG-PICTURE THINKING RIGHT NOW.

Annie says YEAH.

Steve says CAN YOU DO THAT KIND... I KNOW THE EXPRESSION, YOU NEVER LET A CRISIS GO TO WASTE. SO THIS IS IN SOME RESPECTS AN OPPORTUNITY TO REOPEN THINGS UP AND CONSIDER VASTLY NEW WAYS OF DOING THINGS. BUT, YOU KNOW, GOVERNMENTS TODAY LOOK LIKE THEY'RE JUST RACING AROUND AS FAST AS THEY CAN TO PUT OUT FIRES, LET ALONE TO ENGAGE IN THIS KIND OF BIG THINKING. CAN WE DO THIS NOW?

Annie says I THINK WE CAN. I THINK IT'S WORRYING THAT THERE IS THAT PERCEPTION, AND I THINK IT'S PARTLY TRUE, THE PUTTING OUT FIRES ONE. BUT IT IS AN OPPORTUNITY. WE JUST PUT OUT A REPORT ON TECHNOLOGY AND WE WENT BACK IN AND REWROTE IT AND SAID NOW WE HAVE EVEN MORE OF AN OPPORTUNITY TO UNDERSTAND, YOU KNOW, HOW TECHNOLOGY IS NOT JUST A MACHINE, HOW THAT KIND OF SUPPORTS LEARNING, BUT I WANT TO ANSWER KIND OF ALL THREE QUESTIONS. BECAUSE I THINK THAT THE KIDS WHO ARE MOST AT RISK AREN'T ANY PARTICULAR AGE. THEY'RE THE ONES WHO WERE ALREADY AT RISK. I MEAN, I TALKED TO A HIGH SCHOOL TEACHER WHO SAID I'M NOT WORRIED ABOUT THE KIDS THAT I'M IN CONTACT WITH. I'M WORRIED ABOUT THE KIDS I'M NOT IN CONTACT WITH, AND THEY WERE ALWAYS THE KIDS THAT WERE GOING TO STRUGGLE. AND I THINK THAT IT IS AN OPPORTUNITY RIGHT NOW TO GO: OKAY, YES, THIS IS THE PANDEMIC AND THIS IS THIS EMERGENCY. BUT HOW COULD... I MEAN, PRACHI'S POINT IS SO GOOD ABOUT HEALTH AND EDUCATION WORKING TOGETHER. BUT HOW DO WE UNDERSTAND ALSO WHAT IT'S EXPOSED, WHICH IS SUDDENLY THIS HAS REMINDED US ABOUT FAMILIES AND ALL THE DIFFERENT CIRCUMSTANCES OF FAMILIES AND HOW MUCH NEED THAT THEY HAVE. YOU KNOW, SOMEBODY WAS WRITING ABOUT THIS AND GOING, YOU KNOW, THIS REMINDS US THAT SCHOOLS ARE MOST IMPORTANT SOCIAL SAFETY NET. WELL, THAT'S GREAT AND THAT MAY BE TRUE, BUT NOW THAT WE'RE REMINDED AGAIN ABOUT FAMILIES WHO ARE STRUGGLING OR FAMILIES WHO HAVE ALWAYS HAD A HARD TIME, NOT FROM ANYTHING THAT THEY'RE DOING WRONG BUT, YOU KNOW, PROVIDING ALL OF THE EXTRA KIND OF SUPPORT, INFORMATION, WHATEVER CONTEXT FOR KIDS TO LEARN. ARE WE GOING TO THINK ABOUT THAT NOW? AND ARE THERE OTHER THINGS WE COULD BE DOING IN TERMS OF COMMUNITY AND FAMILIES? AND I HOPE... I THINK IT'S A GREAT IDEA, A TASK FORCE, THAT ACTUALLY WE'RE PUTTING THAT IN PLACE RIGHT NOW. BECAUSE THERE ALREADY HAVE BEEN CALLS FOR YEARS... US AMONG THEM... FOR, YOU KNOW, AN EVOLUTION IN PUBLIC EDUCATION FOR THINKING ABOUT THE FUTURE OF PUBLIC EDUCATION. AND WHAT WE DON'T WANT TO DO IS GO BAND-AID, BAND-AID, BAND-AID, ON TOP OF THE PANDEMIC AND HOW CAN WE GET BACK TO NORMAL. INSTEAD IT'S HOW CAN WE LOOK AT ALL THE STUFF WE'VE LEARNED AND GO FORWARD. PEOPLE TALKING ABOUT BOUNCING FORWARD AS OPPOSED TO BOUNCING BACK. AND WE COULD BE DOING THAT. PEOPLE ARE DOING SOME INCREDIBLE THINKING ABOUT LEARNING RIGHT NOW. THERE ARE CONFERENCES HAPPENING WITH PEOPLE FROM ALL OVER THE WORLD NOW WHICH WE WOULDN'T HAVE BEEN ABLE TO DO BEFORE. SO LET'S USE IT TO MAKE SOME CHANGES, NOT JUST TO ADDRESS THE PANDEMIC, BUT FOR THE LONG TERM. SORRY, THAT'S A BIT OF A RANT.

Steve says NO, WE ENJOY YOUR RANTS, WHICH IS WHY WE KEEP INVITING YOU BACK ONTO THIS PROGRAM. BUT CAROLINE, I'LL ASK YOU THE SAME QUESTION I ASKED YOU EARLIER, JUST IN A DIFFERENT CONTEXT. ANY INDICATION YOU'RE GETTING THAT PEOPLE AT THE HIGHEST LEVELS OF THIS GOVERNMENT ARE CONSIDERING THESE VERY BIG QUESTIONS ABOUT THE FUTURE OF EDUCATION?

Caroline says YOU KNOW, YOU'RE RIGHT, STEVE, THERE'S BEEN A SCRAMBLE GOING ON ON SCHOOL EXTENSIONS RIGHT NOW AND, YOU KNOW, SCHOOL CLOSURE EXTENSIONS AND PEOPLE ARE SORT OF FOCUSED ON THAT AND HOW KIDS ARE LEARNING, HOW TO GET TEACHERS INVOLVED IN GETTING KIDS LEARNING, AND RIGHT NOW I THINK IT'S A GREAT PERIOD TO ALSO... FOR PEOPLE IN GOVERNMENT PERHAPS TO PAUSE, TO STOP, TO RE-THINK PUBLIC EDUCATION, RE-THINK SORT OF WHAT WE'VE BEEN DOING IN CLASSROOMS AND HOW WE'VE BEEN ADDRESSING STUDENT NEEDS. LOOKING AT STUDENTS AT RISK. KIDS, YOU KNOW, WHO WERE AT RISK IN THE CLASSROOM, CONTINUE FALLING BEHIND AT HOME. WELL, WHAT ARE WE DOING WHEN WE KIDS RETURN BACK TO THE CLASSROOM? HOW ARE WE RETHINKING THEIR EDUCATION? WHAT ARE WE DOING WITH TECHNOLOGY? YOU KNOW, HOW ARE WE RETHINKING HOW TECHNOLOGY IS USED IN EDUCATION? THAT'S A GREAT QUESTION THAT NOBODY HAS SORT OF APPROACHED. LOOK AT CLASS SIZES. CLASS SIZES WAS A HUGE SOURCE OF TENSION IN THE CURRENT NEGOTIATIONS WITH TEACHERS. WELL, YOU KNOW, YOU CAN'T... WHEN WE DO RETURN TO THE CLASSROOM, WHENEVER THAT IS, WITHOUT A VACCINE, WE CAN'T HAVE CLASSROOMS OF 20 KIDS, 23 KIDS PLUS. WE'VE GOT TO RE-THINK HOW WE DO THINGS. AND THIS IS A GREAT PERIOD I THINK FOR GOVERNING LEADERS TO SORT OF PAUSE, TO STEP BACK, RE-THINK ASPECTS OF EDUCATION, LIKE CLASS SIZE, LIKE TECHNOLOGY, LIKE STUDENTS WHO ARE DISADVANTAGED, AND REASSESS WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE BECAUSE...

Steve says WELL, CAN I JUMP IN ON THAT FOR A SECOND, CAROLINE? TALK ABOUT... YOU KNOW, RE-ASSESSING OR CAN YOU PUT 20 KIDS... I'M NOT SAYING THIS WELL, BUT I'M LOOKING AT THE PROVINCE RIGHT NEXT DOOR, WHICH HAS, YOU KNOW, RELATIVELY SPEAKING THE WORST RECORD ON FIGHTING COVID AND THEY HAVE, YOU KNOW, A DISPROPORTIONATE AMOUNT OF THE SUFFERING GOING ON THERE, AND THEIR KIDS ARE BACK IN THE CLASSROOM THIS WEEK. WHAT'S THE PLAN IN QUEBEC?

Caroline says SO QUEBEC HAS REOPENED SCHOOLS OUTSIDE OF MONTREAL THIS WEEK. KIDS STARTED BACK YESTERDAY. THEY PUSHED BACK... MONTREAL'S OPENING WAS SUPPOSED TO BE NEXT WEEK, BUT THEY PUSHED THAT TO THE FOLLOWING WEEK AND THEN PROBABLY AGAIN IF THE SITUATION DOESN'T STABILIZE. IT'S INTERESTING TO WATCH WHAT'S HAPPENING IN THESE QUEBEC SCHOOLS. YOU KNOW, THE VARIATION AND UPTAKE FOR STUDENTS AND FAMILIES RETURNING IS HUGE. I SPOKE TO SOME BOARDS WHERE THEY [indiscernible] ANOTHER BOARD EXPECTING A THIRD OF THEIR KIDS TO RETURN. PARENTS ARE ANXIOUS ABOUT THIS. AND WATCHING THE MEASURES THEY PUT IN PLACE AROUND SOCIAL DISTANCING. PLEASE KEEP IN MIND, THESE ARE THE YOUNGEST KIDS. THESE ARE NOT HIGH SCHOOL KIDS. THESE ARE ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS AND DAY CARES THAT HAVE RETURNED AND HIGH SCHOOL CONTINUES ONLINE. SOCIAL DISTANCING MEASURES, HAND HYGIENE. TEACHING THE CORE SUBJECTS. PHYS. ED. IS OUT. ART IS OUTSIDE. THERE'S A LOT HAPPENING THERE TO SORT OF BRING THESE KIDS BACK AND I THINK ONTARIO AND OTHER PROVINCES ARE WATCHING THIS CLOSELY BECAUSE WHEN OUR CHILDREN RETURN BACK, WHETHER IT BE SEPTEMBER, WE'RE GOING TO BE WATCHING QUEBEC AND OTHER COUNTRIES TO SEE HOW THEY'RE DOING IT AND WHAT CAN BE APPLIED IN ONTARIO.

Steve says PRACHI, IS THERE A REOPENING FOR THE PROVINCE OF ONTARIO THAT YOU THINK MAKES SENSE?

Prachi says I THINK... THIS IS A GREAT QUESTION IN TERMS OF WHAT'S HAPPENING IN QUEBEC AND THE RESPONSE IN OTHER PROVINCES. QUEBEC, UNFORTUNATELY, IS THE EPICENTRE OF THE PANDEMIC HERE IN CANADA, AND WE ARE SEEING INCREASES IN THE NUMBERS OF DEATHS AND WE'RE ALSO SEEING SUBSTANTIAL NUMBERS OF CASES EVERY DAY, IN THE HUNDREDS. I THINK ON THE WEEKEND IT WAS 700 AND A FEW NEW CASES. THESE ARE NOT CONDITIONS IN WHICH IT IS ADVISABLE TO REOPEN SCHOOLS. AND THE REASON I SAY THAT IS BECAUSE WE ARE NOW SLOWLY SEEING SOME GLOBAL EVIDENCE EMERGING FROM OTHER COUNTRIES THAT HAVE REOPENED... DENMARK IS BEING FOLLOWED VERY CLOSELY. IT WAS THE FIRST COUNTRY IN EUROPE TO REOPEN. IT REOPENED ABOUT TWO WEEKS AGO. AND INITIALLY THEY SAW AN INCREASE IN INFECTIONS, BUT THE DIFFERENCE IN DENMARK IS THAT THEY CONTROLLED THE SPREAD VERY EXTENSIVELY BEFORE THEY OPENED SCHOOLS AND BUSINESSES. THEY MODELLED FOR THE INCREASE. THEY KNEW... THEY KIND OF HAD DIFFERENT MODELS IN TERMS OF WHAT HAPPENS IF THE INFECTION RATE GOES UP BY THIS MUCH AND THAT MUCH. CAN OUR HEALTH SYSTEM ACTUALLY SUSTAIN THAT? AND THEY MODELLED IT. AND SO THE INCREASE WAS MODELLED AND ACCEPTED AND THAT IS THE CONDITIONS IN WHICH THE SCHOOLS OPENED. AND THEY OPENED WITH EXTENSIVE PHYSICAL DISTANCING MEASURES. IF PEOPLE ARE INTERESTED, UNICEF AND UNESCO HAVE PUT OUT A WHOLE LIST OF GUIDELINES IN TERMS OF THAT ONLINE. BUT WHAT WE'RE SEEING NOW IN DENMARK IS THAT THE INFECTION RATE IS NOT GOING UP. INITIALLY IT DID, AND NOW IT ISN'T. AND THE REASON I DON'T THINK IS SPECIFICALLY BECAUSE OF SCHOOLS. THE REASON IS BECAUSE THEY DID A VERY INTEGRATED APPROACH IN TERMS OF OPENING UP SOCIETY GENERALLY. AND THEY DID THAT AT A TIME WHEN IT WAS SAFE TO DO SO. FRANCE OPENED UP ON THE SAME DAY AS QUEBEC, AND PEOPLE IN FRANCE ARE EXACTLY AS WORRIED AND NERVOUS AS THEY ARE IN QUEBEC. OTHER COUNTRIES LIKE SOUTH KOREA, THAT WAS AN EARLY... THAT WAS SEEN AS AN EARLY PLACE IN TERMS OF REALLY CONTROLLING THE VIRUS, KEPT SCHOOLS CLOSED THROUGHOUT THE WHOLE... THROUGHOUT THIS FIRST PHASE OF CONTROLLING THE TRANSMISSION. EVEN THOUGH THE REST OF THEIR ECONOMY AND BUSINESSES WERE OPEN AND THEY ACTUALLY AVOIDED THE STRICT LOCKDOWN THAT WE DID IN MOST OF THE OTHER COUNTRIES. SO THESE ARE DIFFERENTIATED RESPONSES. BUT WE'RE SEEING THAT IN CASES WHERE SCHOOLS ARE OPEN AND THEY'RE OPEN SAFELY, IT'S IN A CONTEXT WHERE THERE HAVE BEEN VERY EFFECTIVE CONTROL OF THE VIRUS. AND I'M NOT SURE WE'RE THERE YET IN ONTARIO. WE'RE CERTAINLY NOT THERE IN QUEBEC. SOME OF THE OTHER CANADIAN PROVINCES ARE PERHAPS IN A BETTER POSITION TO THINK ABOUT THAT MORE SUBSTANTIALLY AND SOONER THAN WE ARE. BUT THERE ARE NO SHORT CUTS. IF WE WANT TO REOPEN SOCIETY AND WE WANT TO REOPEN OUR ECONOMIES, WHAT WE HAVE TO DO IS INSTITUTE MASS HEALTH MEASURES AND THEN ACTUALLY INTEGRATE THAT WITH OUR OTHER SECTORS. AND IN EDUCATION, WHAT WE NEED TO BE THINKING ABOUT IS, YES, OF COURSE FORMAL SCHOOLING, INFORMAL SCHOOL IS OUR GOAL. IF WE CAN'T DO THAT IN THE INTERIM, WHAT ARE BETTER SOLUTIONS THAT REALLY JUST TRANSFERRING ALL LEARNING ONLINE IN AN EMERGENCY RESPONSE, WHICH IS WHAT WE MIGHT HAVE DONE IN WEEK ONE, TWO, AND THREE. BUT AS THIS CONTINUES, WE REALLY DO NEED TO THINK ABOUT, WHAT ARE THE OTHER WAYS THAT WE MIGHT HAVE TO DELIVER SCHOOLING? MIGHT IT MEAN THAT CERTAIN CHILDREN RETURN TO FORMAL SCHOOLS IN SHORTER BURSTS OF TIME? AND WHAT DOES THAT MEAN IF THEY'RE IN SCHOOL FOR THREE DAYS AND OUT OF SCHOOL FOR TWO WEEKS... TWO DAYS OF THE WEEK? WHAT DOES THAT MEAN FOR THE TWO DAYS THAT THEY'RE NOT IN? HOW ARE WE LOOKING AT THIS AS AN INTEGRATED RESPONSE? THESE ARE BIG QUESTIONS. BUT I REALLY DON'T SEE A LOT OF COUNTRIES... CANADA IS NOT ALONE. I DON'T SEE A LOT OF COUNTRIES ADDRESSING THESE QUESTIONS IN A MORE SUSTAINABLE WAY.

The caption changes to "Producer: Meredith Martin, @MeredithMartin."

Steve says WELL, I'M GLAD THE THREE OF YOU DID DURING THE TIME THAT WE'VE HAD HERE ON TVO TONIGHT AND I'M GRATEFUL TO ALL OF YOU FOR COMING ON. CAROLINE ALPHONSO FROM THE GLOBE AND MAIL; PRACHI SRIVASTAVA FROM WESTERN UNIVERSITY; ANNIE KIDDER, PEOPLE FOR EDUCATION. BE SAFE, YOU THREE, AND AGAIN, THANKS FOR COMING ON TVO TONIGHT.

Annie says THANKS A LOT.

Prachi says THANK YOU

Caroline says THANK YOU, STEVE.

Watch: Restarting Ontario Education