Education, Culture and Employment COVID-19 Updates

Information for Post-Secondary Students


Important information for post-secondary students returning to the NWT

Effective immediately, the NWT Chief Public Health Officer has ordered that NWT residents travelling into the NWT by air and road must immediately self-isolate for 14 days upon return to the NWT, regardless of if they have symptoms or not. 

The 14 days self-isolation period must only take place in the communities of Yellowknife, Inuvik, Hay River or Fort Smith. Residents must complete a self-isolation plan that must be approved by the NWT Office of the Chief Public Health Officer (OCPHO). 

To find out more information and get a copy of the self-isolation plan template to complete, contact or call 1-833-378-8297 between the hours of 8am to 8pm, 7 days a week.

What should I do upon returning to the NWT?

Upon returning to the NWT, residents must immediately go home or to one location and stay there until their self-isolation plan is approved by the OCPHO. Please see the link describing the requirements of self-isolation. 

If you are returning to the NWT to support essential services, please inform the OCPHO.

What does this mean if my home community is Yellowknife, Inuvik, Hay River or Fort Smith? 

It means you need a plan that as soon as you arrive to your community (by air or road) you must immediately begin a 14 day self-isolation period. 

What does it mean if my home community is not Yellowknife, Inuvik, Hay River or Fort Smith? 

It means upon return to the NWT (by air or road) and prior to traveling back to your home community you must complete a 14 day self-isolation period in Yellowknife, Inuvik, Hay River or Fort Smith only. 

Making travel arrangements

Though the office the CPHO encourages everyone to have their Self-Isolation Plan submitted upon coming into the NWT, you are not required to provide confirmation that your Self-Isolation Plan has been approved by the Office of the Chief Public Health Officer prior to making your travel arrangements. You can proceed with making your travel arrangements, by contacting one of the Travel Agencies noted below:

Travel Agency

Phone Number

Email Address

Aurora TPI Travel – Fort Smith


Okpik Travel – TPI – Inuvik


Top of the World Travel – Hay River


Top of the World Travel – Inuvik



Top of the World Travel – Yellowknife


YYZ Travel – Yellowknife



Why must I follow the order of the NWT Chief Public Health Officer?

This measure is required to ensure protection of residents of our smallest communities as people return north.

This is necessary due to the growing risk of COVID-19 as it spreads through throughout Canada, and make it possible to ensure those at risk of COVID-19 due to travel are self-isolating in communities with well-equipped healthcare facilities. 

You may be a carrier of the virus and not even be aware until it’s too late and you have infected those around, including your family members and loved ones. 

We all must take active responsibility for the health and safety of yourself and the health and safety of those you love…your NWT family, friends, Elders and community members by making arrangements to go immediately into self-isolation upon return to the NWT. 

Failure to comply may result upon summary conviction, of a fine up to $10,000 or 6 months imprisonment.

What do I do now?

Step 1: Self-Assessment 

If you have any flu like symptoms including a fever, cough or difficulty breathing, you must not return to the NWT until you have been tested for COVID-19 and cleared by medical authorities in the province you are currently in. 

You must stay where you are and contact your nearest health provider to arrange for testing to see if you have contracted COVID-19.

If you are tested and the results are positive, you must let the SFA office know immediately so we can assist you in making the arrangements you need in order for you to stay where you are to receive the medical care you require. 

Step 2: Contact Student Financial Assistance (SFA) 

You must contact the SFA office by phone or email and inform us of your particular circumstance and your travel and OCPHO self-isolation plan. 

SFA staff will help you make your travel plans and to help you find accommodation for your 14 day self-isolation period.  

The SFA office is here to help. Call or email us and let us help you figure this out. 

ECE Service Centres building closures

In an effort to protect the health and safety of our ECE staff and the clients we serve, effective Monday, March 23, 2020, ECE will be practicing social distancing by having the majority of our Department staff working from home.

For those ECE staff that are considered essential, and who will be required to be on site at their work place, ECE has put into place extra measures for the safety of both our staff and clients. This means that essential services such as Student Financial Assistance (SFA) will be provided primarily over the phone, by email and through pre-scheduled appointments for all face to face meetings.

Our Service Centres have the building doors locked with information posted at each door letting the public know how to contact the staff and arrange for appointments.

When clients are having a face to face meeting, ECE has put processes in place to ensure that there will be at least 6 feet between both the client and the staff member so that proper social distancing is maintained.

For more information, contact or call toll free 1-800-661-0793 or (867) 767-9355.

Will I still receive SFA payments if I continue my studies online?

ECE has notified all post-secondary students currently receiving Student Financial Assistance (SFA) that their payments will continue uninterrupted as post-secondary institutions begin implementing alternative instruction plans, such as moving classes online.

For more information, contact

Do I have to repay my student loans during the COVID-19 public health emergency?

To support student loan borrowers during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Government of Northwest Territories (GNWT) has announced that the repayment of all GNWT student loans will be suspended until September 30, 2020.  Please be assured that no interest will accrue during this time period. 

The Student Financial Assistance (SFA) office has cancelled all pre-authorized debits, scheduled credit card payments and will not process any post-dated cheques that are on file. You do not have to action this, as it has automatically been completed.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact your Finance Officer, Revenue and Collections via email below:

First Letter of Last Name

Finance Officer

Email Address

A – G

Tehnille Gard

H – M

Nathan Kogiak

N – Z

Huy Ha