In response to teacher shortages in schools as a result of the pandemic, the Ontario government is enlisting some new recruits.\nMinister of Education Stephen Lecce said on Monday that Ontario schools will be permitted to hire eligible education students when there are no supply teachers on their lists.\nEditor's Choice: Here Are All The New Air Travel Rules That Take Effect In Toronto Starting Today\n\n\n\n“\n\n\nIt means we’ll meet our staffing needs, and will be able to keep our schools open.”\n\n\nStephen Lecce\n\n\n"Despite what some will say, there are not tens of thousands of teachers available to enter our schools and educate our students," said Lecce during the announcement. \nLecce said that this will provide "immediate access to potentially thousands of young, capable, innovative educators."\nTo qualify, they "must be doing well in their teacher education program, already have some practicum (in-class) experience and be on track to graduate by the end of 2021," according to the province's news release.*\nTemporary certificates will be made available to these candidates by the Ministry of Education and the Ontario College of Teachers.\nToday is the first day back to in-person learning for students in four more public health units in Ontario, while students in hotspot regions continue to learn from home.\nEarlier this month, the province announced that some school boards will be closed until mid-February in order to curb COVID-19 transmission.\nStudents in Windsor, Peel, Toronto, York, and Hamilton's public health regions, will continue to learn online until February 10. \n*This article has been updated.