Students will return to on-campus learning in the fall term of 2021 depending on their program. Photo credit: Connor Black

Many post-secondary schools in Ottawa are already deciding on whether their students will return to real-life classes this fall, even if the Ontario Ministry of Education hasn’t yet released any statements.

On March 11, Claude Brulé, president and CEO of Algonquin College, sent an email announcing the college will continue to follow the Fall 2021 planning.

This means that depending on their program, students will either have all their courses virtually or will have learning activities on-campus.

University of Ottawa students will return to campus for the fall term “with an increased number of courses to be delivered in person or using hybrid formats,” wrote a university spokesperson. They issued an update on March 11, on their website.

The university will add equipment in their classrooms to give students the choice of either attending in person or via videoconferencing.

La Cité has not announced its plans for the fall.

Carleton University will have a “gradual and safe” return to campus this fall, according to a letter posted to the community on March 2.

“In all likelihood, large classes will continue online for fall 2021, but we anticipate that it will be possible to offer a significant proportion of smaller classes, labs and tutorials in person or in a blended format,” said Benoit-Antoine Bacon, president and vice-chancellor, in the post.

At Algonquin College, Brulé also mentions in the email the indefinite closing of the food services at the Ottawa campus on May 1, 2021. However, food will be accessible at Student’s Association locations.

Brulé says in his email that in between the three campuses, the college has three active COVID-19 cases (not transmitted on campus) which are currently isolated.

“Of course, the impact of COVID-19 goes far beyond any one individual or institution—it has changed the way we live and work, our families and friendships, our personal and professional lives, our mental and physical health,” wrote Brulé. “As we recognize the year behind us, we can also cautiously look ahead to a future time when in-person connections and group activity are again common—and where we can all play a role in the reconnection and rejuvenation of our campuses and communities.”