PURPOSE OF THE SCHOOL CODE OF CONDUCT
The school community functions best when, in a spirit of cooperation, staff, students and parents and guardians treat one another with dignity, kindess, and respect. Further, proactive and preventative strategies are essential to promote appropriate behaviour in schools. Clear guidelines maintain a positive, caring atmosphere and a safe and orderly learning environment. The following information about OLP will assist you in getting acquainted with some of the school procedures. Understanding these rules and procedures will make school life rewarding and positive.
SAFE ARRIVAL PROGRAM
Our Lady of Peace’s Safe Arrival Program is designed to ensure that you arrive safely at school. When you are absent from school (or if you are going to be late), remind your parent or guardian to use the SchoolMessenger attendance system (website, app, or dedicated phone number) to report the absence or late arrival. If we do not receive a notification to explain your absence we will do the following to ensure that you are safe:
- call your home,
- call your parents/guardians at work,
- call the emergency contact number,
- call the Halton Regional Police.
Your safety is our greatest concern. Please make sure we know where you are, so we don’t worry about you!
Attendance Information: https://elem.hcdsb.org/ourladyofpeace/report-student-absence/
Being on time for school is important. You are considered late for school if you are not in the school yard area when the bell rings. Your teachers are required to record late arrivals in the Ontario Register of Daily Attendance as well as on the Provincial Report Card. If you are late, report to the office to get a late slip before going to class. Give the late slip to your teacher.
LEAVING SCHOOL EARLY
If it is necessary for you to leave the school at times other than the regular dismissal time, your parents or guardians must advise the teacher in advance with a note or register it through the SchoolMessenger attendance system. Understandably, there may be emergencies when it is not possible to plan on leaving early; at such times your parents should inform the school by telephone. When picking you up early, your parents or guardians will need to the front of the school and contact the office. If someone other than your usual caregiver will be picking you up, your parents/guardians need to inform the office. We will NOT release you to anyone who is not your usual caregiver unless we have been informed ahead of time.
Recess breaks are an important part of the daily routine and learning. Except where required for specific medical reasons, or due to weather, all students are expected to go outside for recess. If you cannot go outside for fresh air and exercise because of a heavy cough or cold, then it is likely you are too ill and contagious with the cold virus to be at school and should stay at home.
Due to COVID-19, all students are expected to stay at school for lunch unless they are picked up and signed out by a parent or guardian.
When you eat lunch at school, you are expected to:
- eat and remain at your desk or table,
- talk quietly,
- clean up after yourself,
- put garbage in the garbage container, food scraps in the compost and recyclables in the blue boxes,
- ask the lunch supervisor for permission to go to the washroom.
We encourage you to bring a “litter free” lunch. Do not bring glass containers with lunch or snacks to school.
SCHOOLYARD & RECESS SAFETY
The playground is supervised by staff who wear bright orange vests to make them more visible.
During recesses, you may not enter the school without permission from the teacher on duty. Teachers on duty will record your information to acknowledge your request for permission to enter the school. You should go immediately to your classroom to perform hand hygiene and put your mask on unless it is for first aid, in which case you should report directly to the office.
To ensure the safety of all students you are asked to show mutual respect to everyone and to:
- Play within the designated boundary areas.
- Stop playing when the bell rings and line up right away, one behind the other on your designated dots.
- KEEP YOUR HANDS AND FEET TO YOURSELF AT ALL TIMES!
- Leave snow, sand, dirt, grass, sticks, stones, on the ground.
- Do not loiter inside the school.
- Report all injuries to the playground supervisor immediately.
- Enter and exit the school in an orderly manner (i.e., walk quietly in the halls, in single file, leaving appropriate spacing between students).
- During indoor recesses, students are expected to stay in their seats and to read or take part in quiet activities.
- You are not allowed to have electronic games at any time during the school day so don’t bring them for indoor recesses.
For safety, proper attire is expected to be worn in the gym. You need to bring running shoes (with non-marking soles), a short-sleeved shirt, and shorts.
Clothing items, such as a belt or scarf, must not dangle. Long hair must be tied back. Earrings, watches, and rings must be removed. A note from a parent/guardian is required to temporarily excuse a student from regular gym classes. Exclusion from this part of the school program for an extended period requires a note from the family physician.
School staff cannot give you any medicine (including Aspirin, Tylenol, cough syrup, etc.) without the signed permission of your parent/guardian. This form is called Request and Consent for the Administration of Prescribed Medication (Form HC-1) and can be obtained from the office.
If you bring medicine to school (after your parents complete the form HC-1), it needs to be brought to the office; do not keep medicine in your locker or backpack.
ANAPHYLAXIS / ALLERGIES
Anaphylaxis describes a serious type of reaction someone may have when allergic to something. These reactions can be life-threatening. The most common allergic reaction we experience in school has to do with an allergy to foods. So that everyone can be as safe as possible we ask that:
- all foods and snacks are eaten in the classroom – not outside in the school yard or on the bus;
- snacks are not shared with other students;
- hands are thoroughly washed with soap and water after eating anything that may have the traces of nut product. (Please also do this at home before coming to school.)
If you have a life-threatening medical problem, make sure the office and your teacher know this.
We encourage all students to develop and practice a healthy lifestyle as much as possible. This means regular exercise and healthy eating habits. We realize that your parents have the right to choose what you eat for lunches and snacks. Please remember to eat more healthy snacks than non-healthy snacks at school! Food should not be shared among students at any time.
Roles and Responsibilities of Students
As a Catholic school system that teaches the respect, dignity and love of all people, our Board is committed to providing safe, equitable and inclusive school environments. Our Lady of Peace Catholic School encourages acceptance and understanding of all students and it remains our priority to ensure safe and inclusive environments for everyone in our school. Students have the right to learn in a safe, orderly and stimulating Catholic environment and to be conscientiously instructed by the teaching staff. In return, they must demonstrate respect for themselves, for others, and for the responsibilities of citizenship through acceptable behaviour.
Respect and responsibility are demonstrated when a student:
- Participates fully in the religious life of the school, including the celebration of the liturgy, Religious Education courses and related activities.
- Develops personal skills and talents to serve God, and thereby his/her neighbour.
- Contributes positively to the Catholic climate of the school and exhibit the responsibilities of citizenship.
- Cooperates with all adults in positions of authority in the school community.
- Complies with all adults in positions of authority in the school community.
- Uses language that is appropriate to their dignity as Catholics.
- Adheres to the school dress code.
- Respects the school property and property of others at all times.
- Comes to school prepared, and on time.
- Refrains from bringing anything to school that may compromise the safety of others.
- Exercises self-discipline and accountability for their actions based on age and individual ability.
Teachers and other school staff members, under the leadership of administrators, maintain order in the school and are expected to hold everyone to high standards of respectful and responsible behavior. As Catholic role models, staff uphold these high standards when they:
- Help students work to their full potential and develop their self-worth;
- Empower students to be positive leaders in their classroom, school and community;
- Communicate regularly and meaningfully with parents;
- Maintain consistent standards of behavior for all students;
- Demonstrate respect for all students, parents, volunteers and other members of the school community;
- Prepare students for the full responsibility of citizenship as outlined in the Catholic Graduate Expectations.
Parents and guardians play an important role in the education of their children and can support the efforts of school staff in maintaining a safe and respectful learning environment for all students. Parents and guardians fulfill their role when they:
- Show an active interest in the child’s school work and progress;
- Communicate regularly with the school;
- Help their child to be neat, appropriately dressed and prepared for school;
- Ensure that their children attend school regularly and on time;
- Promptly report to the school their child’s absence or late arrival;
- Show that they are familiar with the provincial Code of Conduct, the Board’s code of conduct and the school rules;
- Encourage and assist their child in following the rules of behaviour;
- Assist school staff in dealing with disciplinary issues involving their children.
Progressive discipline is a whole-school approach that makes use of a continuum of interventions, supports, and consequences that build upon strategies that promote positive behaviours. The range of interventions, supports, and consequences used by the Board and all schools must be clear and developmentally appropriate, and must include learning opportunities for pupils in order to reinforce positive behaviours and help pupils make good choices. For pupils with special education and/or ability-related needs, interventions, supports and consequences must be consistent with the expectations in the student’s Individual Education Plan (IEP) and/or his/her demonstrated abilities.
The Board, and school administrators, must consider all mitigating and other factors, as required by the Education Act and as set out in Ontario Regulation 472/07.
Progressive discipline may include early and/or ongoing intervention strategies, such as:
- Contact with the pupil’s parent(s)/guardian(s);
- Verbal reminders;
- Review of expectations;
- Written work assignment with a learning component;
- Volunteer service to the school community;
- Peer mentoring;
- Referral to counseling;
- Conflict mediation and resolution; and/or
Progressive discipline may also include a range of interventions, supports and consequences when inappropriate behaviours have occurred, with a focus on improving behaviour, such as one or more of the following:
- Meeting with the pupil’s parent(s)/guardian(s), pupil and principal;
- Referral to a community agency for anger management or substance abuse counseling;
- Withdrawal of privileges;
- Withdrawal from class;
- Restitution for damages;
- Restorative practices;
- Transfer with support
In some cases, short-term suspension may also be considered as a useful progressive discipline approach.
Notwithstanding the above, the principal will take immediate and appropriate action in any situation involving the welfare of others.
The Board also supports the use of suspension and expulsion as outlined in Part XIII of the Education Act where a pupil has committed one or more of the infractions outlined below on school property, during a school-related activity or event, and/or in circumstances where the infraction has an impact on the school climate.
The infractions for which a suspension may be imposed by the principal include:
- Uttering a threat to inflict serious bodily harm on another person;
- Possessing alcohol, illegal and/or restricted drugs;
- Being under the influence of alcohol;
- Swearing at a teacher or at another person in a position of authority;
- Committing an act of vandalism that causes extensive damage to school property at the pupil’s school or to property located on the premises of the pupil’s school;
Aggressive and typically repeated behaviour by a pupil where;
(a) the behaviour is intended by the pupil to have the effect of, or the pupil ought to know that the behaviour would be likely to have the effect of;
- i) causing harm, fear or distress to another individual, including physical, psychological, social or academic harm, harm to the individual’s reputation or harm to the individual’s property, or
- ii) creating a negative environment at a school for another individual, and
- b) the behaviour occurs in a context where there is a real or perceived power imbalance between the pupil and the individual based on factors such as size, strength, age, intelligence, peer group power, economic status, social status, religion, ethnic origin, sexual orientation, family circumstances, gender, gender identity, gender expression, race, disability or receipt of special education; (“intimidation”)
Behaviour includes the use of any physical, verbal, electronic, written or other means.
Bullying includes bullying by electronic means (commonly known as cyber-bullying), including,
(a) creating a web page or a blog in which the creator assumes the identity of another person;
(b) impersonating another person as the author of content or messages posted on the internet; and
(c) communicating material electronically to more than one individual or posting material on a website that may be accessed by one or more individuals.
- Any act considered by the principal to be injurious to the moral tone of the school;
- Any act considered by the principal to be injurious to the physical or mental well-being of members of the school community;
- Any act considered by the principal to be contrary to the Board or School Code of Conduct including but not limited to the following:
- Academic dishonesty – attempting to deceive by cheating, copying or plagiarizing
- Defiance – refusal to comply with persons in authority
- Disorderly conduct – persistent opposition to authority, conduct injurious to the moral tone of the school or to the physical and mental well-being of others in school
- Explosive devices – use of or possession of explosive devices
- Extortion – to take money, homework or property under threat of harm or duress
- Fire setting, bomb threat, fire alarm – setting a fire or an act that places individuals, property or community at risk
- Harassment – repeated comments or conduct that is known or ought to be known as unwelcome
- Hate Crimes – words or actions considered offensive in reference to a person’s race, religion, culture, gender, age, appearance or disability
- Smoking or vaping on school property – violation of the Smoke-Free Ontario Act
- Theft – taking, possessing property without the permission of the owner
- Trespass – unauthorized presence on school property
- Truancy – persistent unexplained absence
- Vehicle use – reckless or dangerous use of a vehicle i.e. Car, motorcycle, bicycle etc.
A pupil may be suspended only once for an infraction and may be suspended for a minimum of one (1) school day and a maximum of twenty (20) school days.
Expulsion is a possible consequence in extreme circumstances. Refer to page 6 & 7 of Policy No: II-39 Progressive Discipline and Safety in Schools / Code of Conduct Suspension & Expulsions.
- Mitigating and Other Factors:
Before imposing a suspension, the principal, as required by the Education Act, must consider any mitigating and other factors as set out in the Student Discipline Procedures. For the purpose of the Student Discipline Procedures, the Board interprets the provisions of the Education Act and Regulations consistent with the Ontario Human Rights Code.
Harassment is any unwanted or uninvited form of attention. It may involve remarks, gestures, or actions that make a person feel unsafe or uncomfortable. The remarks, gestures, or actions may occur over time, and in a way that causes the victim to be upset and feel that she or he cannot come to school, make use of the school, or learn properly. At OLP, everyone deserves and should expect understanding and respect. Any inappropriate comment or action that leaves someone fearful or uncomfortable about coming to school may be considered as harassment and will have consequences. All students are encouraged to report inappropriate comments or actions to a staff member so appropriate actions can be taken.
WHAT CAN YOU DO
IF YOU ARE BULLIED?
- Tell them to STOP!!
- Try to ignore the bully and walk away.
- Tell the teacher on duty, your teacher, parent and other trusted adults.
- Share “STAND UP to Bullies” strategies with your friends and teachers.
- Bullying is hard to deal with but remember you are not the problem. You have the right to feel safe.
- Use humour – even bullies like to laugh!
- Walk tall with confidence. Be proud of who you are.
Our Lady of Peace is a uniform school. The uniform as outlined in board policy includes:
- Navy bottoms
- Navy or white tops with a school crest
- Navy or white socks and tights.
Our uniform supplier is ISW:
www.iswuniforms.com or call 905 844-1414
It is expected that students, especially in the junior and intermediate divisions dress appropriately and modestly when wearing non-uniform clothing (e.g. gym or on any other occasion). Clothing should provide adequate coverage and be comfortable to move in. Safe footwear is also encouraged, such as running shoes and closed-toe sandals that are securely strapped.
EXPECTATIONS AROUND SCHOOL
- At the bell, line up quietly, in single file, and wait for your teacher to lead you into the school.
- Move quietly through the halls to ensure the uninterrupted learning of others.
- Stay to the right, in single file, when moving through the halls.
- Washrooms are to be used during class time, or during recess, only with teacher permission, after obtaining a “pass” or completing the sign out book.
- Return library books by the due date.
- To avoid problems resulting from the disposal of gum on floors, desks, and outdoor grounds, gum chewing is not permitted at school.
- Report all strangers without a visitor’s tag to a teacher or to the office.
- Before school, at recess, and during noon hour, you may not stay in the school unless a teacher has given permission and remains to supervise.
- Show respect by holding doors for others when possible.
You are expected to:
- work to your full potential and to be courteous, cooperative, and attentive during class;
- complete all homework and prepare and study for tests;
- permit others to work in an undisturbed class environment, and;
- demonstrate cooperation with and respect for all members of our school community.
CARE OF SCHOOL & SUPPLIES
You must not vandalize, mark, or damage school equipment, furniture, or buildings. Also, remember to be respectful of our school yard – please, do not damage trees or vegetation. As well, do not litter on any part of the school environment. You are expected to treat the property of the school and that of other students with respect.
The school provides you with a wide variety of supplies such as workbooks, pencils, erasers, rulers, art materials, textbooks, and library books. Treat all materials provided with the greatest respect. Do not doodle, write, highlight, or place other marks in books.
We expect you to treat all supplies with respect and to replace or pay for items which are lost or damaged while in your care. You are responsible for all items and books assigned to you.
Homework is work that students do at home to practice skills, consolidate knowledge, and skills, and/ or prepare for the next class. (Growing Success, 2010, p. 148). Homework should support learning in one of four ways: pre-learning, checking for understanding, practicing, or processing.
Your responsibilities for homework are to:
- Understand the purpose and task, and to ask for clarification if those are not clear.
- Use a management tool to record all assigned homework.
- Organize materials and resources and ensure they travel between home and school as needed.
- Manage time and priorities to ensure a healthy balance of school, family, and personal activities.
- Complete assigned homework on time to the best of your abilities.
Due to guidance from Halton Public Health, lockers will not be used this year until further notice. When we are able to use lockers, please remember that their use is a privilege. You are expected to keep the locker assigned to you clean and well organized. Lockers are school board property and may be entered by the school staff at any time should the need arise. Do not keep money or valuables in your locker. Do not mark lockers with graffiti, stickers, or by scratching or etching.
VALUABLES / LOST AND FOUND
Please do not bring valuable personal items to school. Valuables such as jewellery, electronic equipment, cherished toys, collections, etc., should be left at home. The school cannot accept responsibility for the storage, replacement, or recovery of any of these personal items. If an item is to be brought to school for a school project, you must have the permission of your parent/guardian.
To help avoid loss and confusion, try to label your clothing as much as possible. Articles found are stored in the “lost and found” box and students will need to practice good hand hygiene before and after looking through it. At the end of each term, unclaimed items are taken to a local charity.
USE OF TECHNOLOGY
AND DIGITAL CITIZENSHIP
Cell phones and all other forms of electronic video or audio recording and/or transmitting devices are not to be activated on school property during the school day and school sponsored events without direct permission from a staff member. This includes recess and lunch. Recording devices of any kind are to be used only with staff member’s permission and only for special class events and projects. Please refer to our Board policy I-43 with respect to use of technology and digital citizenship. Students may bring their own technology to school to use for instructional and learning purposes when asked to by a teacher. Please note that when using personal technology:
Parents will assume full responsibility for the equipment. The Halton Catholic District School Board (hereafter defined as H.C.D.S.B.) and the school will not undertake any responsibility for the equipment and will not be liable for any loss, misuse, etc., of said equipment.
- The H.C.D.S.B. and the school will not load software onto personal electronic devices and will not address any technological difficulties as related to said device.
- The student will not be able to connect to their personal H:\ drive at school nor connect to the H.C.D.S.B. intranet. The student will not have access to the H.C.D.S.B. Student Desktop and will need to use the software/apps loaded on their personal device. The student MAY be able to access public wireless, if available, and the personal device is equipped for wireless access.
- School staff, and most specifically the classroom teacher, would have to agree that the student’s needs would be met with the use of the personal device. Preferably, the student will have an Individual Education Plan stating the same.
The HCDSB and school are not responsible for storing and/or securing the equipment in the classroom and/or school.
BICYCLES / SKATEBOARDS /
SCOOTERS / ROLLER BLADES
- Make sure that the bike you are riding is the right size for you and in good repair.
- Know and follow the Bicycle Safety Rules, and the rules of the road.
- Wear your helmet at all times. It is the law.
- Bicycles, skateboards and scooters, must be walked when on school property.
- Bicycles and scooters are to be left in the bicycle rack and locked. The school is not responsible for stolen or vandalized bikes or scooters.
- Please be aware of weather conditions before you decide to ride your bike or scooter to school on any given day.
SCHOOL BUS TRANSPORTATION
Students living within a distance of 1.6 km of the school are required to walk to school. The Education Act states that “every pupil is responsible for his\her conduct to the Principal of the school that pupil attends…while travelling on a school bus that is owned by a board or on a bus that is under contract to a board”. Regulation 262, Sec. 23
Parents are responsible for the safety and behaviour of their children prior to bus pick-up and after disembarking from the bus at the end of the day. Riding a school bus\taxi is a privilege which can be terminated for students who cannot abide by the school bus regulation.
Students are expected to:
- arrive at least 10 minutes prior to the designated time at their bus stop;
- act in a safe and appropriate manner on the bus and at their bus stop;
- conduct themselves in such a way as to not create any disturbance to the driver;
- get on and off the bus in an orderly manner;
- obey and take direction from the bus driver;
- respect the property of neighbours at the bus stop, by keeping off yards and driveways;
- keep all of themselves and any belongings inside the bus at all times;
- keep feet, or arms and bags out of the aisle;
- remain seated during the entire trip to school or home;
- use low tones and appropriate language while riding on the bus (no yelling\screaming);
- be held responsible and accountable for any damage they do to the bus;
- not eat and not drink while on the bus.
Students may ride only on the bus to which they have been assigned. There are no courtesy seats this year and no one may change buses. Students are expected to adhere to the behavioural expectations as outlined in the Student Code of Conduct.
Students who must cross the street after leaving the bus must go to the right front of the bus and wait for the driver to signal before crossing. The driver must see that the way is clear before signalling pupils to cross. Students must never cross behind the bus. If there is a stoplight at the bus stop, students must cross with the light.
Students who misbehave on the school bus will be dealt with as follows:
- The bus driver will control misbehaviour by informing the student of the danger of her/his actions.
- The bus driver will notify the Principal/Vice Principal/designate about the student’s behaviour in writing.
- The Principal/Vice Principal/designate will discuss the incident with the student.
- The student will receive a copy of the warning to take to her/his parent.
- The parent is asked to sign the letter and return it to the school.
- For any two warnings or for any one serious incident, the Principal/Vice Principal/designate may withdraw transportation privileges. In this case the school will be in contact with the parent.
- A student, who continually misbehaves may have bus transportation privileges withdrawn for the balance of the term or for any period of the school year that the Principal and/or Board may deem necessary.
If your child misses the morning bus, ensure that you have made arrangements for your child to contact you or your emergency contact. If your child misses the homeward bound bus, s/he is to report to the office to call home for instructions.
Parents are asked to write a note when their child changes the usual way of getting home. Last minute use of the office phone to arrange a last minute change in travel routines is not always possible. Students will need to go home as usual and make arrangements from home.
TRANSPORTATION OF STUDENTS IN PRIVATE VEHICLES
The Halton Catholic District School Board requires all authorized volunteer drivers of students to have a minimum third party liability insurance coverage of $1,000,000. The Board does not authorize student drivers to transport other students. For the protection of your child against a minimally insured third party, the Board recommends that the volunteer driver obtain the Family Protection Endorsement SEF Number 44 on their vehicle.
In addition to the above, before driving students, volunteer drivers are required to complete the School Board’s Authorization to Transport Students Participating in School Events form (this form is part of the Volunteer Package and can be obtained from the school office). Please note that current Board policy requiring that all volunteers undergo a Police Criminal Reference Check is also applicable to volunteer drivers.
ANIMALS ON THE SCHOOL SITE
Animals are not permitted on school property; this includes the sidewalks and parking areas. We know that excited children can be unpredictable and impulsive in their movement in the school area. Animal behaviour can also be unpredictable, particularly with many children and much commotion. We wish to ensure that no child is at risk of an accidental bite or an attack from an animal brought onto the school site.
Animals may be brought into the school building with the prior permission of the Principal. Permission for bringing an animal into the school will only be granted under the following conditions:
- that no child in the class or vicinity is allergic to animals;
- that no other risk is posed to students, staff, or volunteers, by the presence of the animal in the school;
- that the animal is secured or contained as appropriate for the safety of students, staff, volunteers, or guests, and for the humane treatment of the animal;
- that the presence of the animal supports an aspect of the curriculum;
- that the animal will be in the school for only as long as is required to serve the purpose.
In the event that a student, parent, or staff member, is served by a guide dog, the person and animal will be accommodated to the fullest extent possible without compromising the safety of anyone else on the school site.Code of Conduct and School Rules and Procedures