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How does the strike affect your child’s learning?

VANCOUVER — Whether your child has special needs or is gifted, every day lost in the ongoing strike between the BC Teachers’ Federation and the provincial government can affect their education.

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Global News’ Randene Neil explains there have been few studies on how a strikes impact students’ grades. But the University of Toronto has studied a series of teachers’ strikes in Ontario during the late 1990’s and early 2000’s in elementary schools. The results found the lower the grade of the student, the less he or she would be impacted by missing school days.

“Any kind of drop in test scores and such would depend upon how long the strike goes on, but would also be mitigated over time,” Dr. Daniel Laitsch from the Simon Fraser University Faculty of Education told Global News. “While you might have a short term drop in scores, certainly continued instruction I think would catch most of the students up,” he said.

But for students with special needs, it will be even harder to get them back into the classroom environment after an extended absence, according to parent Cheryl Hondronikolis. For every strike day missed, she says her son Steve will suffer setbacks that will take him months to regain.

And for those students who excel in academics, the strike will also impact them. Kole Poirier, an international baccalaureate student, wasn’t able to complete summer school this year, and now has to take difficult pre-requisites for engineering on top of his heavy course load.

–With files from Randene Neill.