Blyth@CIHA Collects Little Bags of Goodness

Yesterday, staff and students at Blyth@CIHA drove 3 SUVs that were fully packed with bags and boxes of donations to an amazing organization called Operation Come Home.

OCH is an employment, education, and support centre for homeless and at-risk youth in Ottawa and the surrounding areas. It relies heavily on donations to support its programs, such as its youth only drop-in centre that provides 20-50 youth each day with a warm breakfast, clean clothes, social support or any number of things. This centre is a lifeline for youth living on the street, especially during the holiday season when they do not have a home to go to at Christmas.

The boys collected the donations from the local community here in Rockland by using the Little Bags of Goodness Program. This is their 3rd year to participate in this great program and collect donations for OCH.

Though our physical doors remain temporarily closed, the minds of our students stay open. Full-time, Night School and Summer classes are continuing to meet on their regular daily schedules, in virtual classrooms with face-to-face instruction and peer interaction. We have been heartened by the resilience of our community of students, teachers and families through these challenging times, and the spirit with which our community has pressed forward with coursework, office hours, extracurricular activities, guidance consultations and community initiatives. The Blyth Academy model of small class sizes, flexible scheduling and individualized approach have enabled us to remain faithful to our standards. Our commitment to ongoing and meaningful communication between school, teachers, students and families has been critical to this effort.

Going forward, we are staying agile in our responsiveness to developments with COVID-19, always with the health and safety of our community top of mind. We are conducting ongoing planning to confront scenarios as they develop, with an array of options combining virtual classrooms, distancing measures at the schools, and scheduling modifications; all combined with the innovative teaching practices our faculty are developing through collaborative exchanges within and between our campuses. We will have several phases of return to, and if necessary retreat from, the bricks and mortar classrooms at the ready. We will continue consultations with our community and provincial health and education authorities to determine best options as the COVID situation progresses on its non-linear path.

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