Marit Stiles MPP, Davenport

Government of Ontario

COVID-19 Update - March 31

Published on March 31, 2020

My MPP bulletin from March 31, 2020.

Davenport Friends and Neighbours,  

Today the provincial government announced that publicly funded schools will remain closed until at least May 4, and that a second phase of supports will be released for students to learn from home.  

Read the goverment’s release 

In advance of the announcement, I released a statement with some of the key concerns I’m hearing from parents, students and educators about their needs during this pandemic.  

Read my statement on behalf of the Official Opposition 

According to the Education Minister, this second phase will include

  • Reconnecting students with teachers and other school staff, including mental health workers; 

  • Re-establishing teacher-led learning by grade groupings, for marks, with final report cards still required. 

  • Prioritizing and supporting students on track to graduate; 

  • Distributing laptops and/or devices from schools as needed, through school boards. 

Many of the details and logistics will be left to the school boards to determine. Please check with your own local board for further details: 

Toronto District School Board 

Toronto Catholic District School Board 

Conseil scolaire Viamonde 

Conseil scolaire catholique MonAvenir 

English and French-language materials will continue to be added to the Ministry’s Learn at Home site on a regular basis. 

I know there will be a lot of questions and I will do my best to get answers. Parents and students can count on me to advocate for flexibility, clear expectations and greater supports as we all adjust to realities of learning and teaching from home.  

I want to hear from you about the government’s plan for students, and if it will meet the needs of your family. What are your thoughts on the fact that students will be graded on the work they do during the closure? If you’re an education worker, I want to know what you think about the proposals and what it means for your work and support for students. Please share your thoughts with me anytime at MStiles-QP@ndp.on.ca 

Thanks and take care, 

Marit 

Marit Stiles, MPP 
Davenport 

Reminder:
 You can find more information on the COVID-19 response and links to my past email updates at: maritstiles.ca/coronavirus

 
With rent due tomorrow and many facing lost income due to the pandemic, we're calling on the Ford government to do more to help renters make ends meet - now. Earlier this week we presented a series of policy options to do just that, including a rent subsidy, six-month rent freeze, stronger eviction protections and a call for a federal ban on mortgage foreclosures.
Read more about our plan here.
 

Updates for Post-Secondary Students 

The provincial government reaffirmed today that they will be deferring OSAP payments. Loan repayments will be subject to a six-month interest-free moratorium until September 30, 2020. This means that during this time, borrowers will not be required to make any loan payments and interest will not accrue on their OSAP loans.  

An agreement was also announced to provide online supports for college and university students to complete their coursework. Read more here. 

In response to the announcement, our Critic for Colleges, Training and Universities, Chris Glover (MPP Spadina-Fort York) had this to say:

"As post-secondary institutions turn to online learning as a stopgap measure, the government needs to ensure that there is equitable access, including for students with low incomes and those who live in remote parts of Ontario. Many students do not have access to computers and Wi-Fi, or cannot afford data plans.

And while the grace period on paying back student loans is welcome relief for graduates who have student debt, many students will need more support to be able to continue their studies in September as they and their parents suffer loss of income and summer jobs disappear because of the pandemic."

 

City of Toronto cancels mass events and festivals until June 30 

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and in response to the recent provincial emergency order to prohibit organized public events and social gatherings of more than five people, the City of Toronto will cancel all City-led major mass participation events, festivals, conferences and cultural programs, and all City permits for major mass participation events organized by external groups at civic centres and squares, parks, public spaces (including road closures), City-operated museums and cultural centres through June 30. Learn more on the city’s website. 

 

Public Health Updates

COVID-19 self-assessment tool:
Use this to determine what steps you should take should you exhibit symptoms: https://covid-19.ontario.ca/self-assessment/#q0

Reminder that updates on the pandemic response are available daily on the following websites:

Toronto.ca/coronavirus

Information from Toronto Public Health on local cases, how to protect yourself and where to seek further medical support.

Ontario.ca/coronavirus

Information from Ontario’s Ministry of Health and Long Term Care

Find out how to protect yourself, what to do if you’re sick and how to recognize possible symptoms. Updated twice daily, in 30 languages.

Canada.ca/coronavirus

Information from the Government of Ontario and the Public Health Agency of Canada

Updates on the national response, travel advice and preparedness.