The Fort McMurray Catholic School Division (FMCSD) released a statement concerning preparations for Holy Week.
Holy Week on the Christian calendar begins on April 5, 2020, and concludes on Easter Sunday, April 12.
Superintendent of Schools, George McGuigan said as the COVID-19 pandemic spreads last week was difficult for the FMCSD.
“Due to the recent Alberta Government announcement regarding a decrease in funding, we are saying a temporary goodbye to many of our support staff team.”
McGuigan added he hopes these valued Division members will return soon.
He encouraged children and parents to spend time with each other.
While teachers and staff won’t provide off-site instruction for Easter Week, McGuigan said he is proud of their timely efforts to get off-site learning online.
“We are very proud of the work that all of our staff has completed very quickly as this global pandemic necessitated the move to off-site learning. I can only imagine as a parent that this may feel overwhelming at times within your homes.”
McGuigan said families should reach out to teachers and school administration to thank them for their efforts to help the community.
He added some teachers must balance working from home with raising young families as well.
“We ask that we all be mindful of the demands and expectations placed on us all in these unprecedented times. Teachers will get back to you, if not the same school day, then the next.”
He also encouraged families to maintain a sense of normalcy for their children and for the community.
McGuigan said the connection is vital as schools continue to provide off-site learning.
“Without this connection, they would feel a tremendous loss, as would we. More waking hours of your children’s day is spent at school with us. To shut it down completely, would be a tremendous loss. We love your children and will continue to care for them in these unprecedented times.”
McGuigan shared a similar message on social media and included counselling resources for families.
We may be physically distant right now, but you are never alone. We are always here to support our #WeAreFMCSD family. Please reach out to your teacher, school, and school counsellor. https://t.co/U50WA0qUEp #ymm #rmwb pic.twitter.com/6PBybUfvhI
— FMCSD (@FMCSD) April 2, 2020
“We know this is a time of high anxiety for so many. Please remember you are not alone. Our counselling team has created a website with resources for families. We encourage you to visit this site and always reach out for assistance when needed.”
FMCSD classes run until April 10 for the Easter Break and then resume on April 20, 2020.