B.C.’s colleges planning return to campus for Fall 2021

British Columbia’s public post-secondary institutions should be planning a return to on-campus education this September, according to Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Training Anne Kang.

Kang issued a press statement today (March 8, 2021) which states, in part,  “Today, Dr. Bonnie Henry, provincial health officer, advised the presidents of all public colleges and universities to prepare for a full return to on-campus education this September.

“This year has been incredibly hard,” said Kang, “and I’ve heard from many students, faculty and staff who are eager to return to campus when it is safe. That’s why I’m encouraged by Dr. Henry’s advice that a return to in-person instruction can be done safely this fall for all students, staff and faculty. In fact, it’s important to do so for people’s well-being. “

You can read the statement from Minister Kang here and Dr. Henry's advice to post-secondary institution presidents here.

“Over the past 12 months, since the onset of the pandemic, we have worked with the College’s employee groups and student associations to develop and review the plans that have brought safely us to this point,” said Okanagan College President Jim Hamilton.

“Employee and student safety and wellbeing will remain paramount in our planning processes, and as indicated by Minister Kang, we will be developing the necessary health and safety plans to assure ourselves of that. We will be developing those plans according to revamped Go-Forward Planning guidelines, and the advice and direction of the PHO, Interior Health and WorkSafeBC. Students and staff will have many questions. This has a host of implications for our delivery of classes and services. Look for more communication in the coming days as this planning process continues.”