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April 27, 2020

Continuing updates related to COVID-19

As we all continue to work together to support each other and those most vulnerable in our communities, we are pleased to share information on a few recent federal updates concerning students:

Financial support for students: the Government of Canada announced a historic $9-billion student aid package to support students facing financial challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic, including:

  • The Canada Emergency Student Benefit, providing $1,250 per month to eligible Canadian citizens and permanent residents enrolled in a post-secondary program or recently graduated, and otherwise ineligible for the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit.
  • The Canada Service Grant, recognizing the critical role students play in supporting their communities and providing up to $5,000 in recognition of their volunteer efforts to pursue further education.
  • Increasing existing support for First Nations, Inuit, and Métis students pursuing post-secondary education by providing an additional $75.2 million in 2020-21. 

As many of the previous measures designed to help Canadians did not address the specific challenges of our members and their students, this package is a big success! View our full update online.

For international students: Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) advises international students who are in Canada and whose temporary resident status will soon expire to apply online to extend their status before it expires. In doing so, their period of authorized stay as a temporary resident will be extended by the regulatory provision is commonly referred to as ‘implied status.’ Learn more.

IRCC has also temporarily removed restrictions limiting international students to work a maximum of 20 hours per week while classes are in session, for those working in an essential service or function, such as health care, critical infrastructure, or the supply of food or other critical goods. 

For Canadian and international youth participating in an experience through International Experience Canada, IRCC has shared an update that includes travel advisories, information on application processing, permit extensions, and mandatory isolation requirements upon entry to Canada.

Moving learning and teaching online

With a strong history in online and blended learning methods, colleges and institutes all across the country were able to respond to distancing measures associated with COVID-19 incredibly quickly. Now, as many colleges and institutes are working through the finer points of transitioning their regular programming online, still more are moving to train and support students, faculty, and community partners in unique online ways. Subscribe to Perspectives for more on the college and institute response to COVID-19.

College and institute response

As ongoing challenges in post-secondary education related to COVID-19 persist, colleges and institutes have made quick work of their incredible versatility in developing solutions. We put together a showcase of some of the responses we’ve seen in areas ranging from applied research and online learning to support for small businesses and student well-being. Share with us more of what your institution is doing!


  • Our new COVID-19 webpage gathers all of our most recent updates,including advocacy with the federal government and freely available teaching and learning resources. Be sure to check in often.
  • Join our weekly webinar series for updates on our efforts in Ottawa and to share amongst yourselves how the situation is evolving in your various regions and what approaches you are taking to tackle the challenges. Join us every Friday at noon.

This is a challenging time that calls upon each one of us to act in the best interests of all Canadians, and citizens around the world. Keep up the good work we’ve seen from coast to coast to coast.

The College and Institute Response

Discover some of the resilient and creative ways we’ve seen colleges and institutes step up to support their communities.

Learn more


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