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The delay would allow teachers and principles to better prepare for the arrival of students, Schilling said. He added that LaGrange promised to speak with local school districts to get their perspective on whether the school year should be delayed.
The CCSD is planning to begin a staggered return to school on Sept. 2, with students in Grades 1–12 back in their normal classroom routines by Sept. 8.
Szumlas said the Catholic district hadn’t yet been consulted by the province on a delayed start, but said the district felt they would be ready for school re-entry under current timelines.
“Many of our teachers and administrators are already back in school and preparing for students,” he said.“Perhaps the request going forward could apply to some particular school divisions, but I can assure you that here at Calgary Catholic, we stand behind the calendar as it’s currently set out.”
The Calgary Board of Education declined to say whether they supported a delay to the school year.
“We have not heard from Alberta Education regarding a delay to the start of the school year,” said CBE spokesperson Megan Geyer in a statement. “Once we have more information, we will adjust our planning accordingly.”
Earlier in August, the British Columbia government decided to delay the start of their school year in order to better orient students and teachers to classroom changes.
Carla Davidson, spokesperson for the Project Safe September parents’ advocacy group, said a delay to the school year could aid in decision-making for parents still on the fence about whether or not to send their children to school.