Staff information during school closures
Information for staff related to actions taken in response to the COVID-19 outbreak will be posted here. Please check back for updates. If there is something you would like us to add, please call Education Services.
See also: Mental health resources for staff and families (link) and COVID 19 Information.
Pembina Hills School Division values our staff and intends to keep staff informed. No decisions have been made in regards to staff being laid off. Please do not rely on hearsay or rumors. If you have any questions, please contact Human Resources.
Working from home
Staff were given the opportunity to approach their supervisors about working from home. A letter and guidelines were sent to Principals on March 17. When making decisions about staff requests to work from home, Principals will review the request according to the individuals’ capacity to complete work tasks at home.
The work schedule under these guidelines shall be:
- Certificated staff will be available Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m., as per the 2019-2020 School Division Calendar.
- Full time teachers shall work a minimum of 6 hours per work day.
- The work schedule for part-time teachers will be prorated according to their assignment. The schedule will be approved by their principal or supervisor.
- Support staff – shall work the hours as per normally assigned work hours.
- The 8:30-4:00 timeline allows for two 15 minute breaks, one in the morning and one in the afternoon, as well as a one hour lunch break.
- Teachers are expected to communicate their schedule with students and parents. It is imperative that the students know how and when to contact you for support.
Principals and Supervisors: Please send all signed Temporary Work From Home Agreements to Human Resources.
Employees who continue to come to their worksite should take home their laptops and other required materials on a nightly basis in case circumstances change and or if Alberta Health provides new recommendations/directives.
Tips for Working from Home
- Maintain regular hours – Having regular working hours can help protect your time
- Create a routine – a routine will help determine your mindset for the rest of the day, including appropriate attire and grooming.
- Set ground rules with the people in your space such as children, spouses, friends – It may be difficult for children and even spouses to understand that you are working from home, not just at home. It is better to set ground rules right from the beginning so you are able to complete your tasks
- Schedule breaks – standing up and taking a bit of a walk can play a huge role in your physical and mental health.
- Keep a dedicated work space – find a space that you can dedicate to work and leave it there. This will be much easier for you to pick up from where you left off the day before.
- Don’t hesitate to ask for help from your colleagues, Principal or Regional Office
- Socialize & collaborate with colleagues by using google hangouts, skype, facetime and other online collaboration tools – online tools such as google hangouts can create a sense of community as well as being able to team up with colleagues to boost well-being.
- Record your daily activities in a planner or notebook – by keeping track of what you have done in a day, discussions you have had with colleagues or students you will have an easy referral tool for determining what is needed as you plan your day.
- Share resources you find and interesting online activities – this is new for all of us and the more information/resources we can share, the better off our students will be. Contact RO so we may share this in our Staff Resources section of the website.
- Help students stay engaged – social interaction is important to students so it might help their mental health as well as their learning to connect and see their friends – maybe an online lunch session.
- Set times to connect with students individually if they are struggling with certain concepts – all students learn differently and some may still require one on one learning. Try to schedule individual online meetings with students who are struggling.
- Participate in regular meetings – stay in contact with your Principal and attend any meeting that is scheduled. The more you communicate the more a part of the team you will feel.
Ideas published by CBC: Working from home for the first time? Here’s how to make it a success
Professional Development Opportunities
ERLC Google Suite training recordings
ERLC has collated tools and tutorials here: ERLC Learning Online
Opportunity to Learn about Self Regulation
The Mehrit Centre has offered one of their Self-Reg mini courses at no cost until June 2020. This course is NOT a huge time commitment but WILL give you some insight into the 5 practices of Self-Reg. Here is a description of the course and a link to their website: https://shop.self-reg.ca/collections/online-courses/products/self-reg-30-day-challenge