December, already?! Some times that calendar flies by doesn’t it. I hope you are all finding positives in your day, smiles on the faces you see and reasons to be grateful.
As we head into the last 2 weeks of this month before Winter Break, I recommend you watch for announcements from your teachers. EBUS will be closed from the end of the day Dec 17 and will reopen Tuesday Jan 4. During this time, courses are open, but there are no teachers scheduled to work, set up tests, mark assignments or answer questions. If you are looking at setting up a test or needing your teacher’s input or guidance for something over the Break, we recommend reaching out to them before Dec 14. Often after a holiday like this, teachers come back to a higher than normal email and marking load; we appreciate your patience as we try and catch up as quickly as possible after the break. While many students may be looking to this time to catch up or get ahead in their studies, I do encourage you all to take some meaningful downtime. All work and no play makes an EBUSer less than top notch 😊
As a fulltime student with EBUS, I will email you each a credit check detailing your progress in the graduation program showing the courses and required assessments completed, courses you are registered in and what remains to be complete to meet graduation requirements. I have emailed all our fulltime grade 12s and am more than halfway through the grade 10s and11s with a goal to have all students updated by Dec 17 2021. Watch for this important email in the coming weeks if you have not already received one.
IMPORTANT – REQUIRED GRADUATION ASSESSMENTS
Students graduating under the 2018 graduation program will need to complete a possible total of 3 assessments to meet graduation requirements; Literacy 10, Numeracy and Literacy 12. These assessments must be written in person under the supervision of a teacher and are written in high schools across BC. EBUS will help our fulltime students find a seat a local high school for the January and June sessions.
To clarify who needs to write the assessments this year:
Grade 10 students – literacy 10 and numeracy
Grade 11 students – literacy 10 and numeracy (if you did not write last year)
Grade 12 students – literacy 12 and any others not completed
Students need to complete these one-time only.
For students looking to write in the January 2022 session, EBUS can help you find a school close by for you to write in. You can register for that at www.ebusgradassessment.weebly.com by December 8.
You can get all the details at https://ebus.ca/welcome-package/grade-10-12-homeroomnews/graduation-assessments-provincial-exams/
Recently UBC indicated that students applying there must score a 3 or better on the Literacy 12 assessment, with no requirements for the Literacy 10 or Numeracy. Currently other colleges and universities have not indicated the Literacy 12 result will be used as part of their admissions requirements, but we will inform students through future newsletters if this changes.
For the required graduation numeracy and literacy assessments, all BC students will need government issue photo ID. A drivers license, BCID card or a public school ID card will qualify. If you need a school ID card please send a current colour photo to Nikki at firstname.lastname@example.org well in advance of your assessment date.
We appreciate that COVID will be a big factor in both student comfort in writing during the set sessions and also schools welcoming our fulltime students into their cohorts. Our guidance at this time is to register for the session you plan to write in, and we will work with our students, partner schools and the Ministry of Education to deal with this grad requirement safely. It is not a requirement for grade 10 or 11 students who are concerned to write this year, and for grade 12 students, if the January session cannot work, there is another in June.
REQUESTING NEW COURSES
As you finish a current course, full time students can email me with new course requests. Be sure to put the full student name and the specific course you are requesting, like English New Media 10 or Foundations Math 11. We do not automatically add new courses at the end of January for the beginning of Term 3. As students complete or drop courses they finish or are not interested in taking, that frees up a seat for another, so it is in all students’ interests to not have inactive courses on your dashboard and to finish courses as soon as you can. To drop a course, use the “drop course” button on your dashboard, but be sure to let me know first so I can check the implications of that on your graduation status. If students are looking for a new course to begin for the Winter Break, please email that to me no later than Monday December 13. The latest courses will be added this school year is March 1 2022.
Lots of new things to being a full time online student. And often you only realize the questions you have after you’ve been in the learning trenches for a bit to then see the things you don’t know.
Sooo…what about effective online learning practices?
EBUS has worked with families online since 1993, and over those years we do see some common threads among students who are successful, because online is quite different than a brick and mortar education.
Motivation is a huge element to success for all students, but online looks different. Everyone has internal and external motivators that are unique to them, and with online learning, students and families have the opportunity to see what works more closely. What motivates you or your learner? How is that being provided in the online setting? What are ways this can be strengthened? How does the student feel rewarded for the progress made? What are the celebrations of learning that can happen?
Another huge piece is structure, in the form of a schedule and dedicated workplace. High school students should be aiming for at least 25 hours of learning time each week. If it helps, write down the blocks of time of when you will be doing your course work and make sure it adds up to this amount. Create check in dates where you plan to be ___% through your course and assess these. A dedicated place for school work that is distraction free and supportive of learning is also important.
And as always, any plan needs to be checked and reassessed. When is the last time the questions like “what did you learn in your studies today? What does that mean? What was the most interesting thing you learned today?” get asked? Regular engagement is important for everyone.
MENTAL HEALTH MINUTE
How is your mood of late? Certainly understandable if you or others notice you are not yourself, maybe a little down or anxious. Completely understandable and very common. Looking for a few boosters to pick things up for you? Try any of these, especially in combination. Get outside in the sunshine and outdoors; connect virtually with someone close you have not heard from in a while; think of things you are grateful for, maybe make a list; do something you get totally lost in; do something creative; listen to a song that totally fills your heart and makes you sing for joy; find a video or story that makes you laugh so hard you are in tears. Regardless what it is, I encourage you to find some way to pick up your day, even just a little bit, it will feel better.
UPCOMING IMPORTANT DATES
- Tuesday Dec 7 Grade 10-12 assembly 11AM Click here to join the meeting
- WINTER BREAK Dec 20 – Jan 3 – EBUS staff unavailable, courses open
- Tuesday Jan 11 10:30am assembly
- Friday January 28 Term 2 ends
- Tuesday Feb 8 school assembly 10:30am
- Thursday Feb 10 report cards available
- Friday Feb 11 Professional Development Day – EBUS staff unavailable, courses open
- Monday Feb 21 Family Day – EBUS staff unavailable, courses open
- March 1 deadline to request courses for this school year
- March 18 Professional Development Day – EBUS staff unavailable, courses open
- SPRING BREAK March 21-April 1 EBUS staff unavailable, courses open
- Note that Term end dates are guidelines for students to finish courses, if you do not finish by the November or January term end date, continue with your studies without penalty and finish the course(s) as soon as possible. New courses are not automatically added at the Term change, students must request them as they finish current courses.
You can find the full year school calendar at https://ebus.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/EBUS-2020-2021-School-Year-Calendar.pdf
Parents, you can access your student’s progress and report cards on the EBUS parent portal: https://my.ebus.ca/parentportal/login.php We recommend parents log in with their student at least once a week to stay actively engaged in their learning and progress. Students, you can access your report cards from your dashboard, look for the A+ icon in the upper right-hand corner. Report cards are published 5 times a year; November, January, March, June and for summer session courses only, September.
As I get asked this often, if your student plans to finish their course(s) in a quarterly fashion, meaning by the end of term 2 mid January, they should be about 40% complete. For Sept starts with a planned finish by the end of semester 1, students should be about 65% complete. And for students working in a linear fashion to complete by the June deadlines, they should be about 40%+ complete at this time.
To book a phone appt with me, use https://tinyurl.com/yyrbnz7p and select the appropriate amount of time you need when you are available for my call. My calls will show as “no caller ID” but I will call at the time you request.
Keep well, the next newsletter will be Friday December 17 before Winter Break begins.