With the month of May comes the start of spring/summer courses and day 50 of our quasi-quarantine in Ottawa. Like many others, we have regularly gone from thinking this will end shortly to looking at a date in a few months’ time thinking “clearly it won’t last until then (then being replaced by summer vacation, Thanksgiving, Christmas, etc.)”.
Educational institutions have had this line of thinking for a few weeks now and we have been tracking the end dates for online/distance learning that they have been predicting since March. It’s interesting to go back and see just how these predictions have changed in such a short time.
Some institutions are using the phrase ‘until further notice’ for back to on-campus, face-to-face meetings, while others keep postponing a definite decision by a few weeks at a time.
For this post, we looked at about 1,000 institutions that had end dates in March or April to see what was now being projected, with snapshots at about 15-day intervals. We see three different scenarios:
In the March 31st scenario, half of the institutions assumed that classes would resume in April.
In the April 15th scenario, we see a mixture of hope that this will be over by the end of the month, but we also see that some institutions have pushed back the dates to May and some have just planned to have all summer courses online.
In the May 1st scenario, we see a high concentration in May and August indicating that institutions still have hope that this will end in the next few weeks. Over 35% of institutions decided to pursue distance learning for the remainder of the summer with the Fall being the ‘back-to-normal’ scenario.