Grade 12 Town Hall

Grade 12 Town Hall Summary

Thanks to everyone who joined us for our grade 12 Town Hall last week. We had 91 unique Zoom windows open, and many of the windows showed entire families gathered around the screen. It was good to see so many faces and to connect with so many of you. For those of you who weren’t able to attend, here’s a brief summary of the evening conversations.

There is much to celebrate!
Mr. Apers opened the evening with a welcome, and with a recognition that this was not the kind of final semester that most grads had envisioned. However, he also noted that there was lots to celebrate, and that the leadership team, graduation committee, prom committee, and the entire school community were still committed to honouring our grads and to celebrating their time at HD.

Gratitude
Mr. Todd offered a welcome and a prayer. He expressed his gratitude for such a great turn out and for such an engaged community.

Contingency planning for Graduation
Mr. Blyleven updated us on contingency planning for graduation. In the event that a June graduation would not be possible, the graduation committee is considering how best to have a community celebration. One real possibility would be a fall commencement ceremony.

He also talked about how we might recognize grads formally at the end of the semester, and shared ideas like an expanded memento booklet. We still plan to select a valedictorian and to suggest classmates who might contribute a musical performance. The grad committee will be sending out a survey with some options, together with the standard graduation information form.

Prom
Members of the prom committee were present in the meeting, and indicated that initial planning was underway with some possible contingency planning. A survey was posted in the Grade 12 page on Edsby.

Admissions and Awards:
Most university and college admission processes are proceeding with little disruption. Students can expect to continue to receive offers or updates in the coming weeks.

Most universities are showing increased flexibility with regard to the submission of supporting documentation. The deadline window for submission of midterm grades has been extended to April 23 – May 1. Students should check with their individual institutions to see if there is any outstanding supplementary material.

For general information, please check:
https://www.ouac.on.ca/news/important-covid-19-update https://www.ontariocolleges.ca/en/covid-19
Most universities and colleges are offering virtual tours and on-lne open houses in lieu of on-campus visits.

Scholarship applications and HDCH Grad Awards
Scholarship applications and HDCH grad awards are proceeding with little disruption. Students are encouraged to apply for the HDCH Grad Awards. For award descriptions, please visit https://hdch.org/resources/student-services/graduate-awards

Applications can be found in the Grade 12 EDSBY page. The deadline for applications has been extended until May. 15.


Q&As

What is happening with end of term and exams/summatives?
Mr. Todd and Mr. Blyleven shared that there were no plans to alter the school calendar, but that the leadership team and staff department heads were engaging in a discussion about end-of-year activities including summatives and exams.

What about OSAP?
The expectation is that OSAP applications will proceed normally, though the website currently says “available spring 2020”. Students will still need to create an account at https://www.ontario.ca/page/how-apply-osap after accepting their offer of admission.

What about volunteer hours?
The Ministry has waived the Community Volunteer Service requirement for students intending to graduate this year. Students are still encouraged to continue blessing their communities in whatever ways they can, and to log already completed hours in HourRepublic as a personal record/resource.

How will universities and colleges manage “readiness” for students entering programs in the fall?
Each postsecondary institution will develop its own “readiness” plan for students entering programs in Fall 2020. However, there is widespread recognition, given the almost universal impact of the virus on learning, that admitting schools will need to consider what first-year programming looks like. There has been some talk about changes to orientation weeks, and to “crash courses”, but for the most part, it seems like schools will simply adjust curriculum and pacing for incoming students. For an example of one school’s responses, check out: https://uwaterloo.ca/coronavirus/academic-information

Questions?

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us via EDSBY or at info@hdch.org or japers@hdch.org