The COVID-19 pandemic has forced postsecondary institutions, faculty, staff and students to adapt quickly and without an instruction manual. From the emergency shift from face-to-face to remote learning, to the financial vulnerability of some institutions, to concerns about mental and physical health in the face of prolonged physical distancing, this is a moment in history unlike anything we’ve seen before. While none of us would […]
Faculty and staff at Ontario’s postsecondary institutions demonstrated Herculean dedication and diligence when they transitioned their face-to-face courses to online and remote delivery in only a matter of days this past March. Despite an impressive collective effort, the virtual learning experienced by many students did not reflect the best-case scenario of planned, intentional, universally designed and expertly facilitated online learning. However, the COVID-19 pandemic can […]
Measures to stop the spread of COVID-19 have left the economy reeling. Employment in Ontario fell by a record 403,000 jobs, or 5.3%, in March from February, according to Statistics Canada. The province’s unemployment rate rose to 7.6%, up from 5.5%, the largest monthly increase on record.* No one could have predicted the severity of the COVID-19 fallout. And much uncertainty remains about what the […]
HEQCO CEO David Trick has mused in recent weeks (see here and here) about how Ontario’s postsecondary education sector can look to lessons from the past to help us deal with today’s exceptional circumstances. This idea of finding precedents for the unprecedented is one that we will return to, but this week I’d like to take a moment to recognize the successes of our system […]
Sadly, Ontario higher education’s recovery from current circumstances may take longer than anyone would wish. Some lessons about how things can go wrong can be found in our system’s grimmest postwar decade, the 1970s.