Canada: Students from Simon Fraser University plan walkout to protest in-class learning amid BC’s fifth COVID wave

Image credit: Twitter handle of SFU Student Walkout (@sfu_walkout)

Vancouver/CMEDIA: As a protest to in-person learning in the midst of British Columbia’s fifth wave of COVID-19, students at Simon Fraser University (SFU) planned a walk-out of class on Jan. 24.

According to social media posts, the walk-out is scheduled for 11 a.m. during which students will rally at Convocation Mall at the university’s Burnaby campus.

Demands of the students on the school’s first scheduled day are that the university should offer courses online since the fall semester, to avoid coming to campus in the midst of the continuity of the highly-transmissible Omicron variant.

n online petition was signed by more than 4,000 students asking for distance education to continue at SFU for at least one more semester.

The petition points out that since many students depend on public transit to get to campus, which means more contact by students with strangers who may or may not have the virus.

Apart from remote learning to continue for one more semester, the signatories of the petition also demanded to make hybrid learning a permanent option, offering students both in-class learning and online classes.

The students are also calling for rapid testing and free N95 masks to be made available at each of the three campuses of the university at Surrey, Burnaby, and Vancouver.