I wanted to post a note to assure you that plans for students’ return to school, remotely or in person, are well underway! It has been quite a challenge figuring this all out in order to ensure everyone’s safety and well-being and things are still evolving. Please be sure go to the board website (ycdsb.ca) or check here on the school website to see the YCDSB’s School Re-entry Plan – this is where you can find the most updated information about what the return to school will look like in our school.
Be aware that we kept everything in the lost and found from last year, as well as items from classrooms that were never picked up. If there are items you wish to retrieve, please call the office to make an appointment to view and pick belongings up. We intend to give whatever is left to a charity on September 18.
FOR PARENTS/GUARDIANS OF REMOTE LEARNERS: A message was sent to you Friday, Sept. 4 requesting that you fill in a survey that indicates if you need a device at home to assist your child. If you already have a device from last year we will assume that you are keeping it for now (no need to do anything – the paperwork is already in place for this). If you have not yet completed the survey, please do so asap, especially if you need a device. Please be aware that it will take time for us to process these requests and call to touch base with parents. This is because it will take us some time to do a full inventory on the devices we have in the school, especially since many will be returned by students on their first day of school. Thank you for your patience as we work through this process. Be aware that once the board has determined exactly which families have requested remote learning for their child, they will be assigned to a class and a different principal who is in charge of Remote Learners. That principal will be your contact person from that point on, until we return to normal.
FOR PARENTS/GUARDIANS OF FACE TO FACE LEARNERS: Normally I would be sending class lists on Labour Day weekend, but since we needed to reorganize the classes due to the change in numbers resulting from the many who chose remote learning, and since student are starting later, in a staggered manner, this information will be sent later this week, with information about entry into the school. Be assured that we are working hard to create protocols which will protect the health of the children and staff in the building. Teaching the children these protocols will be our first order of business when they arrive.
It is critical that you do the York Region Public Health Self-Assessment (available on the board and school website) with your child every day and do not bring them/send them to school if they have any symptoms. If a child tells their teacher they are ill during the day, they will be brought to the isolation room, their parents/guardians will be called, and they will be required to come and pick their child up right away. We will be following the York Region Public Health Department’s protocols and directions in reporting such incidences.
At this time, it is critical that we avoid having parents/guardians coming into the building unless they have booked a meeting, and even then it will require strict parameters. The secretaries are coming to the door to talk to people who ring the bell and to ensure no one enters that is not a board staff member or someone who has booked a meeting. If you are coming to pick your child up early you are advised to call ahead, and you will not be allowed to come inside to wait for them, but will need to wait outside the door till they come. Students who leave the building during the day will not be allowed to come back to the school until the next day. Thank you in advance for respecting these important safety measures.
I know that one of the beloved routines for many families is the purchase of school supplies each year, and many, no doubt, already have their treasures ready to go. If you haven’t quite gotten to this, knowing the children are starting later, the following are some suggestions and parameters you need to adhere to. Please be assured that if there are items you did not get, the teachers will have supplies to ensure every child has the personal resources they need to do their work safely:
• Students in grade 4 to 8 must wear a face mask and bring a paper bag or cloth container to hold it when they are out at recess. If your child has a medical condition that makes wearing a mask not possible, you will need to contact the office to get the required paperwork giving permission for this accommodation. We will address the situations with children who have special needs and are not comfortable wearing a mask, on a case by case bases; parents of these children also need to contact the office so that we can prepare for this. Students in other grades are also encouraged, though not required, to wear masks. It is strongly advised that you send an extra mask each day and that you begin getting your child accustomed to wearing their mask for extended periods of time now.
• Every child will need their own pencil case and tools – such as pencils, pens, scissors, a ruler, crayons, pencil crayons, markers, a pencil sharpener, erasers, a glue stick. You must LABEL EVERYTHING (each pencil, crayon, marker, etc.). Children cannot share or borrow the tools that belong to another child – and we cannot have communal bins of these items. If something falls on the floor we want to ensure it gets sanitized and returned to the proper owner.
• Do not send bulky binders with your child. The children will have to store all their things in their desk this year and there isn’t room for such items. Any notebooks, binders, duo tangs, etc. that the children need will be provided by the class teacher.
• Make sure your child has a pair of indoor shoes with their name on them.
• At the beginning of the day, ensure your child brings a proper lunch and snack AND please ensure they bring their own spoons or forks as we cannot provide these. Parents are not allowed to drop off a lunch for their child later in the day. We are not allowed to do a hot lunch program at this time. Students will not be allowed to leave the property to go out to lunch. If you take your child out for lunch they will not be allowed to return to school.
Thank you for your understanding and patience as we work through all of the safety parameters that need to be in place. We look forward to seeing our children again and getting back to some routine here at the school.
Keep safe – see you soon!