Government of Ontario Announces Three Options for the Return to School in the Fall with Final Decision Expected in August

Today, Ontario Premier Doug Ford and Minister of Education Stephen Lecce announced the government’s plan for the reopening of schools in the fall.

The plan includes three options: the continuation of learning at home; a return to in-school instruction with enhanced health and safety protocols; and, an adaptive learning model that features a combination of learning at home and in-school instruction with limited class sizes and alternating days and/or weeks.

The adaptive learning model, as outlined by Minister Lecce, provides for a maximum of 15 students per classroom per day. It also requires students to register prior to the start of the school year so that class assignments and timetables can be set in advance. If the adaptive learning model is selected for the start of the 2020-21 school year, the decision will be re-evaluated at the end of September based on direction from the Ontario Medical Officer of Health as well as local health officials.

Over the next month, the Ministry of Education is asking all publicly funded school boards in Ontario to develop operational plans to match the three options announced today. Grand Erie District School Board staff will have operational plans and protocols in place for all three options by the end of July. The Board will share specific details on Grand Erie’s back-to-school plans with students and families in August.

“As we’ve learned over the past few months with COVID-19, there are a lot of unknowns we have to work through together,” said Brenda Blancher, Director of Education. “We appreciate the ongoing patience and understanding of our students and families as our staff works through each of the options for back-to-school in the fall. As always, our priority will be the safety and well-being of our students and staff.”

Minister Lecce also noted there will be protocols in place for personal protective equipment, enhanced cleaning, and instances where a student or staff member tests positive for COVID-19. Additionally, the province outlined guidelines for transportation, including the approximate number of students allowed per standard bus (24), plus siblings.

Grand Erie’s school-year calendar for 2020-21 has not yet been approved by the Ministry of Education. Currently, the first day of school is set for Tuesday, September 8.

For the latest news and information, visit: or follow the Board on Twitter (@GEDSB). Students and families can also contact the Board via email ( or by phone (519-756-6301 or Toll Free: 1-888-548-8878).

Grand Erie District School Board represents more than 26,000 students in 58 elementary and 14 secondary schools within the City of Brantford and the Counties of Brant, Haldimand, and Norfolk as well as secondary students from Six Nations of the Grand River and Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation.

Important Updates:

  • June 24: Director of Education Brenda Blancher sent this message to all Grand Erie families asking for feedback via a survey on the three back-to-school options for the fall.
  • June 22: Minister of Education Stephen Lecce shared this message with Ontario parents after the government's announcement last week.
  • June 19: Director of Education Brenda Blancher sent this message to all Grand Erie families to update them on the Province's back-to-school plan for the fall.

June 7, 2016

Dear Parents/Guardians:

Re: Report of an incident and suspicious male in the Ryerson Heights area

In the interest of community safety and to best ensure the safety of our students, the Brantford Police Service has provided us with information about the report of an incident in the Ryerson Heights Elementary School area.

On Monday, June 6, 2016 at approximately 4:55 p.m., three primary school students who were at the after-school program at Ryerson Heights School on Dowdon Ave, observed a man outside of the school fence line acting in a suspicious manner. The man was described as holding a sharp object in his hand, which possibly was a knife. The man was reported to have had blood on his hand. The man did not approach the students, however made some negative comments to them before walking away from the area.

The man was described as white, 40-50 years old, with a bald head and wearing a black t-shirt.

Police are continuing in their investigation. Anyone who has information regarding the potential identity of the man or may have witnessed the event is urged to contact Detective Laureen Bird of the Child Abuse and Sexual Assault Unit at 519-756-0113 ext 3001.

To help ensure the safety of our students, please talk to your child about what to do if a ‘stranger’ or ‘strangers’ approach them for any reason. Teachers will also review safety protocols in class about how to stay safe in the community.

Click here for more information about street safety.

If you have any questions, please contact me.


Jane Goldspink

Principal (Acting)

Bus Incident

On February 29th, 2016, during the Grade 3 Swim to Survive Trip, the bus was pulled over by police at Conklin and Blackburn. The police had received a report about the driver's abilities. The bus company sent another bus to bring the students back to the school. The students were supervised by the teachers until they met up with their parents. An investigation was carried out by the bus company and communicated by the transportation department. I can tell you that outside influences, such as substances, were not a factor in the driver's abilities. The bus company will take their own action. The driver will not drive for our school moving forward. I am sorry that this happened to our students on their trip. It was upsetting for them and their parents as they waited. Please contact me with any concerns.

Thank you. Mrs. Clara Anderson

Santa Visits WGES

Santa made a special visit to the students of WGES. Students and staff made Christmas crafts and celebrated the season with our Adoptive Grandparents from John Noble Home. Thanks to the School Council for organizing this event.