September 14th, 2020
Ministry of Education
438 University Ave.
Toronto, ON M5G 2K8
Re: Request for Smaller Class Sizes
Dear Minister Lecce,
As a City Councillor and parent myself, I am writing to respectfully request that smaller class sizes be mandated for elementary students from grades K to 8 throughout the duration of this pandemic. As referenced in Ontario’s Guide to Reopening Ontario’s Schools, class sizes for secondary schools have been mandated to not exceed approximately 15 students per a cohort. The same consideration should be made for our younger students, as recommended in Toronto Public Health’s Guidance for Reopening Schools and by experts from SickKids, COVID-19: Guidance for Reopening Schools.
With the limited resources and consultation that your government has given to the school boards serving Toronto to safely re-open schools, trustees, board and school staff have been making their absolute best efforts to work within the parameters and funds that you have put in place for them.
However, parents and school staff in my community have been left feeling that this current approach is equally as inadequate as it is unacceptable.
Given that capacity issues is a real challenge that both the TDSB and TCDSB face, I’d like to remind you that with the support of our Mayor, the City has offered to loan extra unoccupied space in community centres and City buildings. Please let me know if you require my assistance and support in facilitating this for any schools located in our city.
As seen in other countries across the globe, what happens in our schools inevitably ends up impacting the health and safety of our communities.
Please immediately consider amending the Guide to Reopening Ontario’s Schools and mandating smaller class sizes for our elementary schools. I look forward to hearing from you.
Councillor Josh Matlow
Toronto – St. Paul’s
CC Premier Ford, Trustee Shelley Laskin, Trustee Norm Di Pasquale