Nearly 500,000 college students across Ontario found themselves back in the classroom last week, after the Ontario government voted to end the five-week college faculty strike. The 1,000 students in joint UTM-Sheridan College programs and 170 in UTSC-Centennial College programs headed back to class on Tuesday.
UTM Vice Principal Academic and Dean Amrita Daniere said that her administration has been in “hourly” contact with administrators at Sheridan to accommodate students. “We have… a plan for every single course that will allow students, we believe, to finish their education, finish their work, in a way that everyone can get done, almost without exception by [mid January].”
UTM-Sheridan students will also have their credit/no-credit option period for first semester courses extended until January 26, 2018 from the original December 4 deadline. They will also be able to withdraw from a course without academic penalty up until January 8, 2018.
Students in UTM-Sheridan courses won’t experience a shortened winter break, though assessments will take place during the UTM exam period.
Representatives from the Dean’s office at UTSC did not meet with Centennial administrators until November 24, when it was determined that students in UTSC-Centennial programs would be allowed to drop courses without academic penalty up to a date that has yet to be set by the Centennial administration.
UTSC Media Relations Officer Don Campbell said it was agreed that a “detailed document” would be produced, “specifying those delayed drop and add dates and providing advice to students on how to deal with other issues and possible conflicts that will arise as a result of the extended fall term and delayed winter term at the college.” Students can expect that document to be sent to them and posted on the UTSC Registrar’s website later this week.
“We’re all on high notice to prioritize these students,” said Daniere. “So I’m actually feeling very calm compared to how I imagined I would be feeling over the weekend as we all waited for some kind of resolution.”