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Weekly Update: May 3rd

“The Lord seeks everyone, He wants everyone to feel the warmth of His mercy & His love”

Pope Francis

We All Belong in Our Catholic School

“What does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God.”  Micah 6:8

At Canadian Martyrs CES, we believe that we are all created in the image and likeness of God, and we honour the dignity in each person by treating one another with care, compassion and respect

We are committed to nurturing a safe, welcoming and inclusive learning environment for all of our students – regardless of their race, gender identity, gender expression, disability, sex, sexual orientation, creed, or age. As a school we will continue doing all we can to ensure the 2SLGBTQ+ members in our community experience a positive sense of belonging and well-being.

To learn more about our commitment to Equity and Inclusive Education, please take a few minutes to read Responding with Faith, Hope & Love.


Please join me in welcoming all of our new & returning Kindergarten Families. Please find the following link on our school website to the Kindergarten Orientation PowerPoint Video to help prepare you for September:

Thank you:

Thank you to our Catholic School Council for organizing our Spring Fundraiser using Plantables~ the school will receive 10% of all products purchased! Please see our Gentle Reminders for more details!

Thank you Kyler M, one of our Gr. 8 Leaders, who is organizing our Family Kahoot Night with the support of our Catholic School Council for Tuesday, May 4th! Please click on the following invitation to join us form 7-7:30pm: Click here to join the meeting

Thank you Mrs. Spence-Smith for organizing our 1st Virtual Book Fair~ Please remember to join us for Family Night on May 5th ~ all orders will be shipped for FREE!

Gentle Reminders:

Catholic Education Week 2021: Nurturing Hope

Each year, the Catholic community of Ontario engages in a week-long celebration of the unique identity and distinctive contributions of Catholic education during Catholic Education Week. This year’s celebration is entitled, “Catholic Education: Nurturing Hope and will be celebrated during the week of May 2 – May 7. The theme for Catholic Education Week 2021 was inspired by the following considerations:

  • Recognition of the special Year of Laudato Si’ which will run through May 24, 2021, announced by Pope Francis on May 24, 2020, the fifth anniversary of his papal encyclical, “On Caring for Our Common Home.”
  • In the face of the ongoing reality of the COVID-19 pandemic, a strong desire by the planning committee, along with those consulted, and supported by feedback from the survey, for continuity with the theme for Catholic Education Week 2020, Igniting Hope, which has served so well during the spring recess from in-school instruction.
  • The challenges to personal and spiritual well-being posed by the uncertainty and physical isolation of the current global crisis makes the timing and the concerns of Mental Health Week, which takes place during the same week as Catholic Education Week, all the more relevant.
  • Ongoing recognition of the Truth & Reconciliation Commission and the relevance of Indigenous culture and spirituality to the spirit of Laudato Si.

The five sub-themes for Catholic Education: Nurturing Hope are:

Preparing the Earth

Sowing Seeds of Gratitude

Cultivating Relationships

Harvesting New Fruit

Marvelling in Wonder

There will be a province-wide “virtual” Catholic Education Week Mass, to be celebrated by His Eminence, Cardinal Thomas Collins on Wednesday May 5th at 11:00 am – link for access is:

On Friday, May 7th we will be holding a Liturgy to celebrate Catholic Education Week @ 1:15pm. We will also be recognizing our Caring Family Members OCGE recipients~ Please use the following link to join us: Click here to join the meeting

WALK WITH JESUS – Virtual Event 2021

On Thursday May 6th at 10:00 am there will be a Live Kick-Off Event – Welcome Message and Liturgy – via HCDSB YouTube channel. All community members can access the link to this event via the Everyone is invited to walk at a time that works for them and with family members of the same household at a time which is convenient for you. Prerecorded reflections for your walk are available on Pictures are welcome to be posted on twitter using the hashtag #HCWWJ. Thank you for your adaptability as we continue to honour the message of our solidarity in faith.

Student Class Placement – September 2021 – Although it is only April, preparations are now being made to ensure that our school is organized for the 2021-2022 school year.  As such, in the coming months, teachers will be organizing student class placements.  As you can appreciate, many hours of meetings and consultations go into the class building process to ensure the appropriate placement of all students.  When building a class, teachers look at the following criteria;

  • Balance of ability – academic skills
  • Balance according to gender
  • Learning style – how the learner learns
  • Teaching style – how the teacher teaches
  • Social blending – who gets along with whom
  • Parental input – re: learning style of the student

Please note, that parental input is important to us and is weighed with other criteria.  Specific teacher requests cannot be considered.  Rather, if necessary, parental input, in the form of a letter/email to the Principal, Mrs. L. Cronin-Nowitsky ( This letter/email should focus on the learning style of the student and the type of environment the student best learns in.  Letters/emails should be submitted to Mrs. L. Cronin-Nowitsky by Monday, May 3rd.  Please remember that many discussions and reflections are put into the class building process.  We will have approximately 400 students in September and we do our very best to develop classes that will be formed in order to maximize opportunities for each child to learn and be successful! Your trust in our professional judgment is greatly appreciated.


If you are aware that you will not be returning to Canadian Martyrs’ CES in September, please let the office know. We are starting preliminary planning for next year and having the most updated information is very helpful when we look at class organization.

Scholastic Virtual Book Fair May 3rd-7th

To celebrate our love of learning and literacy, we welcome all our families to support our Scholastic Virtual Book Fair during Catholic Education Week, from May 3rd to 7th, 2021.  Your purchases directly support the library and the purchase of valuable resources for all our students.

The Virtual Book Fair offers:

  • Over 450 books and items that are sure to delight and inspire readers of all ages! 
  • A safe option – no product handling or setup! Just advertise your fair via social media, newsletter and website to encourage your school community to participate in your event!
  • Orders placed online are shipped direct to home and is free with orders $40 or more!

We will also have a Family Night event which will be Wednesday, May 5, 2021 where shipping is FREE from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.  (No minimum order required!)

To make a purchase and support our school library, visit the virtual fair link:

NOTE: Please be advised that the link will not be active for shopping until the Book Fair start date (May 3rd – 7th, 2021).

Spring Fundraiser

We’re very excited to announce that we’ve chosen to be a part of the Plantables School Fundraising Program for 2021. We’re aiming to raise $3000 to raise funds to for school technology (chromebooks & laptops)  and every box of plants you buy helps us get closer to that goal. (We receive 10% of the total of every order you place.) 

Who are Plantables? Plantables are an exciting new startup based in Forest, Ontario that grow healthy, hardy and happy fruit and vegetable plants and ship them to arrive at your door exactly when they need to go into the ground. That means that no matter how busy you are, how unsuccessful you’ve been at growing plants before or how many little hands want to help out, you’ll be able to grow brag-worthy fruits and veggies in no time. All you have to do is pick what plants you want to grow, choose when you want them delivered and wait for your box of garden-ready plants to arrive on your doorstep. 

How does the program work? All you have to do is tell everybody you know to go to If you want to buy garden-ready fruit and vegetable plants for your garden, make sure you enter the code [Plants2021] at the checkout. 
We’re really excited to be launching a fundraiser that involves growing healthy fruits and veggies and spending time as a family instead of selling unhealthy snacks door-to-door, and we can’t wait to see how much we all can raise.

Thank you for ALL of your support & kind consideration,

The Canadian Martyrs Catholic School Council

Catholic School Council Meeting

Our next Catholic School Council Meeting is on Monday, May 11th. Please email by Tuesday, May 4th, if you would like an invite via Teams to attend.

Special French Presentation Gr. 4-8: Wednesday, May 5th

Canadian Martyrs is very pleased to have received French Cultural Funding, allowing us to book Steven “ÉTIENNE” Langlois. He is an ‘award-winning teacher-rockstar and author of the #1 best-selling book “Rock Your Class.” When he’s not performing for millions of fans in packed theaters and arenas worldwide or teaching in packed classrooms back home, he’s busy helping K-12 teachers rock their classes with expert engagement strategies.’

The concert is tailored to the grade levels, comprehension and curricular units related to the FSL audience. The concert will take place virtually on the morning of Wednesday May 5th at 9:15 a.m. The concert duration is 45-50 minutes. Parents are welcome to join us!

A very special thank you to Mme Di Pronio & Mme Pietrantoni for organizing this for our school!

Voluntary Targeted COVID-19Testing

HCDSB has offered voluntary COVID-19 testing at school sites for asymptomatic staff and students. 

During this round of testing, all staff and families are able to attend any of the testing site locations (i.e. you will not have to attend the site designated to our family of schools). Click here to view the Testing Schedule.

Who Can Be Tested?

  • Testing is voluntary, and consent will be required from parents or guardians.  
  • Targeted testing is offered only for individuals who are asymptomatic (i.e. not experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms). 

NOTE: If you have been deemed a close contact to an individual that tested positive for COVID-19, please do NOT attend one of our Voluntary Asymptomatic Testing hub sites, as you will be turned away

 Targeted COVID-19 testing is available to the following individuals:

  • All school staff and their household members
  • All students and their families
  • All Child Care staff and their household members 
  • All Child Care families

About the Testing 

The Ministry of Education has arranged for the testing to be provided through a third party, LifeLabs.    

LifeLabs uses a swab similar to a Q-tip that is inserted into the front part of the nostril and rotated for fifteen seconds (per nostril). Their trained staff will perform the test in a designated space within a school.

LifeLabs will ensure that every mobile collection site adheres to the following health and safety protocols:

  • PPE for Droplet Precautions will be worn by all staff working in the location
  • Enhanced hand hygiene will be followed by the staff conducting the testing
  • Hand hygiene for students and staff will be required before and after service is provided
  • Disinfecting of the cubicles and chairs will be undertaken before and after each individual tested
  • Surgical masks will be provided, if necessary

Get Tested

Pre-registration will not be offered for this round of voluntary COVID-19 testing. 

If you are interested in getting tested, you are encouraged to walk-in for an appointment at any host school during the designated clinic hours.

More Information

Thank you for your ongoing support as we continue to work with the Ministry of Education

Fostering Mental Health & Well-Being- Parent Information Sessions

The Special Education Services department has put together a series of informative parent engagement sessions to help families adjust and respond to the global pandemic, and better cope with the mental health and well-being of their children in these times. Upcoming topics include:

  • Family Wellness & Positive Mental Health during COVID-19 – Wednesday May 5th @ 7:00 p.m.

Please click on this link for more information. 

Free Family Paint Nights

Our HCDSB Indigenous Education Advisor has organized three free on-line paint nights with Indigenous Artist Moses Lunham.  This is a wonderful way of engaging staff, parents, students and family members to come together in community, to be creative and learn more about Indigenous Art.  All information for the paint nights, pictures and supplies will be posted on the HCDSB webpage.

Each session will have a different theme based on the natural cycle of the environment.  All sessions will be on the HCDSB YouTube Channel from 6 pm – 8 pm.

  • Wednesday May 5th, 2021 – Sugar Moon, Representing the Maple Syrup
  • Wednesday June 9th, 2021 – Strawberry being the First Fruit of the Season

Moses Lunham will provide step-by-step instructions, provide encouragement and has agreed to leave the live video up for a period of one week between each session. 

Faith & Well-Being Resources
Recognizing that the extension of remote learning will create additional burdens on our families and staff.
Here are a list of supports for families to access during this difficult time: 

Promoting Well Being: Four Tips to Ease Frustration in Remote Learning

Looking for ways to minimize the amount of frustration and anxiety your child experiences while studying remotely?

Here are four tips to help make remote learning work.

Also, take a look at our Back-to-School Mental Health Kit for more information on Your Child’s Mental Wellness and Remote Learning.

  1. Protect your family’s downtime. You don’t want your children to feel like they’re living at school. They need time off to relax, unwind, and generally enjoy being kids. It can be helpful to wind up the school day with a predictable ritual or activity—perhaps singing a song or heading out the door for a family bike ride around the block.
  2. Tuck your child’s learning materials out of sight when it’s time to switch into family mode. This could be as simple as putting learning materials in a drawer—a powerful visual cue that will encourage your child to shift gears at the end of the school day.
  3. Encourage your child to speak openly about any challenges or frustrations they are experiencing. In addition to validating their feelings (“It makes sense that you’re feeling frustrated. It’s so annoying when your computer keeps crashing!”), you can help your child to brainstorm some possible solutions—like reaching out to the teacher to see if other students are experiencing this same problem. You want your child to recognize that it’s possible to find a way to make things better, even if a particular problem feels completely overwhelming at first.
  4. Continue to prioritize your child’s mental health. Learning can only happen when children feel safe and secure, so meeting your child’s mental health needs is a powerful way of supporting their learning while also enhancing their overall quality of life. It’s okay to make your child’s mental health the priority as you continue to parent through a strange and uncertain time.


Looking Ahead:

First Holy Communion-postponed
May 1 all day
Catholic Education Week
May 3 all day
Virtual Book Fair May 3rd-7th
May 3 all day
Catholic Education Week
May 4 all day
Virtual Book Fair May 3rd-7th
May 4 all day
Family Trivia / Kahoot Night
May 4 @ 7:00 pm – 7:30 pm
Virtual Family Kahoot Night @ 7pm
May 4 @ 7:00 pm – 7:30 pm
Catholic Education Week
May 5 all day
Virtual Book Fair May 3rd-7th
May 5 all day
Family Night ~ Virtual Book Fair
May 5 @ 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm
Cronin-Nowitsky, LouiseWeekly Update: May 3rd