In an attempt to contain the spread of the covid-19, also known as the coronavirus, the Quebec government has mandated all educational institutions, including private schools to close for a 14-day period from Monday, March 16 to Friday, March 27, 2020. The Quebec government has also banned any indoor gatherings that exceed 250 participants. They have closed all public libraries, museums, tourist attractions, the Montreal Casino and all festivals, parades, musical performances and sporting events until further notice.
Iko tours has also taken the decision to postpone all of their upcoming excursions until further notice.
These are unprecedented times and circumstances that we have never had to deal with at EC. There have been trying times but never to this magnitude.
We want to assure all our EC Montreal students that we are all in this together. We are doing everything possible to keep our EC community safe and engaged during this difficult time.
During this temporary school closure, we ask all our students to stay indoors, to avoid public venues and to adhere to the recommended social distancing of 6 feet away from other individuals. We urge you to not go outside, but if you absolutely must because you need to see a doctor or you need to buy an essential item, we ask that you not use the metro and bus system during peak hours, that is during the morning and evening rush. It is also recommended that you keep washing your hands with soap for a period of 20 seconds or longer and to cough or sneeze into a tissue or your elbow. You must throw away the tissue immediately in a waste basket and wash your hands. You should keep all surfaces clean and disinfected at all times. Think of it as cleaning up after yourself at the gym. Wipe down what you use.
During this 14-day temporary school closure, EC Montreal will be giving online lessons. All our EC students will be notified by email with instructions on how to access the online lessons. EC Montreal teachers will be delivering the lessons and will be giving the students language exercises to work on. All our English students can still access EC online and do the language exercises there as well as IELTS practice tests and listening exercises.
There are many online sites you can visit to keep your English and French skills fresh. You can also use this time to do your EC homework from your workbooks.
It is important to stay informed of the latest news on the covid-19 virus, however, there is such a thing as information overload that may lead to anxiety and stress. We encourage you to be knowledgeable, however, we urge you to only read factual sources like those issued by the Quebec and Canadian governments as well as any news releases from the WHO, World Health Organisation. The media likes to sensationalize events which does not help with keeping calm.
You may start to feel cooped up while you are staying indoors. We recommend that you do fun things to keep you happy and engaged. You can help your homestays in the kitchen by offering to cook a delicious meal from your country. You can take out the board and card games or even play charades. Open the windows or step outside on your balconies, to get some fresh air to to take a look at the blue sky and rays of sunshine. This will help with your mood and keep you in a more relaxed state.
Plan a pajama day, watch movies, listen to music, Skype or call your friends and loved ones. Have a group chat, read a book, do some sit ups and push ups, plan a spa day at home, practice different make up looks, curl your hair, straighten your hair, try a face mask, paint your nails, take selfies of your new look and post them on Instagram and share them with your friends. Have a selfie contest with your friends, make plans for after this 14-day period. There are so many things we can do to stay busy, stay relaxed and get through this together!
The government mandate to close all schools and public venues is to keep you inside to contain and stop the spread of the virus. Remember that!
The EC Montreal team is still available, working mostly from home during this time to also keep ourselves safe. You are welcome to email us if you need any assistance or suggestions.
Your EC Montreal family