UBCO extends winter break by a week, grants withdrawal deadline extension

The UBC Okanagan Senate has approved a week-long extension of winter break, delaying the start of winter term two.

Previously, term two at UBCO was set to run from January 4 to April 8, 2021. Semester will now begin a week later on January 11 and end on April 13 — a decrease of two teaching days.

Reading break remains unchanged and will run February 15–19.

The UBCO Student Senate Caucus tweeted that some programs are able to opt out of the change and maintain the original start date of January 4. The changes will be in the online UBCO calendar midday tomorrow.

“What I’ve heard from a lot of students is there’s an overload of work,” said Jassim Naqvi, a UBCO student senator, adding that administrators were largely in favour of the term date changes.

The UBCO Senate had rejected another option to maintain the scheduled 62 teaching days for winter term two, ultimately choosing to go with the 60-day option.

“In the end, we realized that there are not too many options, but we should err on the side of giving the students the most flexibility [and] the most comfort,” said Naqvi.

The Senate also unanimously voted to extend the deadline to drop a class with W standing to the last day of classes for both winter terms one and two.

The impact of this decision on the UBC Vancouver campus is still unknown — a UBC spokesperson said last week that there are currently no plans to delay the start date.

However, President Santa Ono appears to have messaged a student saying that he has asked the UBCV Senate to consider a similar extension.

UBCV Student Senator Julia Burnham had posted on Reddit earlier today that the academic policy committee at Senate would be discussing an extension on Monday.

The full UBC Vancouver Senate meets next on Wednesday, December 16.

This article was updated to include comment from Jassim Naqvi.