Full reading week part of revised U of M calendar
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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 12/12/2021 (534 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
University of Manitoba students face a busy remainder to their academic year, but at least it will still come with a bit of a break.
Students returned to classes last Tuesday after picketing members of the university’s faculty association approved a tentative deal that ended a 35-day strike.
Changes to the school’s academic calendar to accommodate missed instructional time were finalized by the university’s senate on Friday. One of the most contentious proposals aimed at making up for lost time was the reduction of the winter reading week to a single day, but the final iteration of the winter schedule will preserve the break in its entirety, from Feb. 22 to 25.
The fall term, for classes put on hold by the strike, will continue in January after the holiday break and conclude on Jan. 19. After exams for those courses, the university’s winter term will begin on Jan. 24.
Almost six in 10 courses were put on pause by the labour disruption.
U of M president and vice-chancellor Michael Benarroch acknowledged the effect of the strike on students last week and committed to provide “a rapid transition back to class.”
So far, that’s being achieved, University of Manitoba Students’ Union president Brendan Scott said.
“There’s ways to mitigate the effects of a 35-day strike, at least as of right now, I see the university trying to mitigate those effects on students,” Scott said.
He pointed to a dedicated website to help students transition back to classes. Scott said the willingness of the university to reevaluate its academic calendar plans was particularly appreciated.
Still, the students union leader anticipates a challenging five months ahead.
Friday was the last day of classes for instruction unaffected by the strike. That means students must adapt to studying for exams for those courses while also attending other classes that have resumed.
If full reading week plans had not been reinstated, Scott said students would have faced four months of continuous studies without a break. The changes will condense and push back the end of winter exams to May 3, but Scott said it’s a worthwhile adjustment.
“It’s a good compromise to not affect students too much and allow the majority of students who wanted a winter reading week to partake in that,” he said.
Previous scheduling plans could have potentially pushed the end of the winter term even further into May, which could have affected arrangements for students at work placements and posed challenges for international students with visa limitations.
“This schedule won’t affect students as badly as one that goes deep into May,” Scott said.
Updated on Monday, December 13, 2021 11:57 AM CST: Fixes typo.