Latest news

Weekly Update – June 21 – 25

“Just be a good person, love who you can, help where you can, give what you can.”

~Saint Teresa of Calcutta

Sincerest Thanks

Thank you to our Catholic School Community for supporting PRIDE Awareness Day this last Monday, June 14th.

Thank you to our staff and students for persevering through remote learning and demonstrating resilience each day!

Thank you to the members of our Parent Graduation Committee for helping plan our 2021 Grade 8 Graduation!

Thank you to our families for your assistance with picking up student personal items on June 16th and 17th!

Thank you to our St. Gabrielcommunity for your commitment to all our students!

Happy Father’s Day – Sunday, June 20th

We would like to wish a very happy Father’s Day to all of the wonderful St. Gabriel Dads!

Let use praise those fathers who strive to balance the demands of work, marriage, and children with joy and sacrifice.

Let us praise those fathers, who despite marital discord, have remained in their children’s lives.

Let us praise those fathers who adopted their children and whose love has nurtured and supported them with a life that thrives.

Let us praise those fathers who, as stepfathers, freely choose the obligation of fatherhood and earned their step children’s love and respect.

Let us praise those men who have no children of their own, but cherish the next generation as if they were their own.

Let us praise all of those men who have “fathered” us in their role as mentors and guides.

Let us praise those men about to become fathers; may they openly delight in their children.

And let us praise those fathers who have died, but live on in our memory and whose love continues to nurture us!

adapted from Kirk Loadman

End of Year Liturgy/Assembly
We will be holding an online liturgy and assembly to close out the 2021 school year beginning at 12:25 pm on Wednesday, June 23rd. In addition to the liturgy, we will be recognizing staff milestones for years of service with HCDSB as well as extending recognition and well-wishes to departing and/or retiring staff. We hope all students and parents can join us!

Term 2 Reporting
Term 2 Report Cards will be emailed to all families after 4:00 pm on Wednesday, June 23rd. Parents are reminded to check their Junk Mail email folders as well. Please note the information shared below by Director Daly in an email dated June 11th, 2021:

  • If your child’s teacher is a Long Term Occasional Teacher (i.e. not a permanent teacher with the Board), your child’s report card will include both grade marks and comments.  
  • If your child is in Kindergarten, one comment (sentence) will be included in each frame of the report.  
  • If your child is evaluated on an alternative report card (which does not include a grade mark), the report will include one comment (sentence) for each section of the report.  

Final Days of Instruction for the 2020-2021 School Year
Families are reminded that the final day of Synchronous Instruction for the 2020-2021 school year is this Friday, June 25th. Monday, June 28th, and Tuesday, June 29th have been designated Asynchronous Instructional days by the HCDSB. Friday will be the last day for students to participate in live learning with their teachers whereas work and assignments will be posted on all D2L pages for Monday and Tuesday of next week.

Graduation 2021
We would like to share the following information in regards to Grade 8 Graduation for the 2020 – 2021 school year at St. Gabriel CES:

  • Wednesday, June 23rd @ 7:00 pm – Virtual Graduation Ceremony will be posted to our school’s YouTube Channel
  • Thursday, June 24th beginning at approximately 9:00 am – Drive-thru Diploma Distribution
  • Friday, June 25th – Rain date for Diploma Distribution

A reminder that all students of St. Gabriel CES are asked and invited to be a part of Graduation – both students that were virtual and/or in-school at any points during the school year. 

Return of School Devices/Pickup of Student Personal Items – June 28th and 29th
A reminder to all families that Monday, June 28th, and Tuesday, June 29th will be Asynchronous Instructional days. There will be an opportunity for families to return all loaned Laptops/Chromebooks, textbooks, and library books on these days. In addition, parents can collect student personal belongings and have a look at Lost & Found items. More details and information will come this week via email.

Office Hours Starting Monday, August 30th
The school office will be open on Monday, August 30 at 8:30 a.m. Office staff and administration will be available all of that week. New registrations will be accepted that week as well. Please drop off epi-pens, other medications and forms during this week. Parents are also invited to review the medical plans with the administration this week, if possible.

Tuesday, September 7th, Back to School Grades 1 – 8
On your child’s report card is an OEN (Ontario Education Number).  As of September 2nd, you will be able to log onto the board’s website and access your child’s class placement by using the OEN. As registrations continue to come in, please set your children up for success by explaining that class placements are subject to change based on enrollment. At any given time, it may be necessary to re-organize classes within the school to meet Ministry of Education standards. Please be mindful that many hours of care have been put into creating balanced classes to best meet the needs of our students and we ask that you trust our staff.

  2. Click on the “Schools” tab at the top of the page
  3. Click on “School Listing”
  4. Click on “Elementary Class Placement”
  5. Scroll down to St. Gabriel School
  6. Enter OEN, click search
  7. Your child’s name, school year and placement will be displayed

You will be emailed instructions for entry on the first day of school.

Kindergarten Entry
Welcome to all our little ones as they come to join us in the big school! We are so looking forward to meeting you! Emails will be sent to all families with your interview dates and times.

Tuesday, September 7, 2021
Parent / Student Interviews for JK students
Parent / Student Interviews for SK students new to St Andrew

Wednesday, September 8, 2021

Parent / Student Interviews for JK students
Parent / Student Interviews for SK students new to St. Gabriel

Thursday, September 9, 2021

Staggered entry for first half of JK students
Full entry for all SK students

Friday, September 10, 2021
Staggered entry for second half of JK students (first half do not attend)

Monday, September 13, 2021
Full entry for all JK students

Student Agendas
This communication tool will be ordered for students from FDK – Grade 8 and the money will be collected in September at a cost of $7.00 per student. We are informing you at this time so that you can include this in your back-to-school budget.

HCCF Charity Golf Classic
For information on how to support the HCCEF Charity Golf Classic this summer, please click on the link below:

School Uniform – Update from McCarthy’s

As we continue to navigate COVID-19 together, we are pleased to share an update on enhanced options for buying your school uniform in 2021. Our school uniform provider, McCarthy Uniforms, has three enhanced options for shopping:  Updated school e-stores, private appointments, and a web-supported call-center. 

You are encouraged to shop early and utilize these alternative channels to avoid late-August line ups. Long wait times will be the reality this year, given that McCarthy’s must adhere to strict social distancing measures and simply can’t accept normal in-store volumes. In some cases, only five customers will be permitted in stores at any one time.

McCarthy’s has informed us that to support families during this time they have implemented an installment payment program (online only), introduced volume discount buying options and invested in a variety of web support tools to make online shopping easy & fast!  All school uniform products can be exchanged for up to a year and returned until September.

There are three ways to shop for your school uniform:

1. Your School E-Store
Did you know your school has a custom e-store, complete with fit videos, uniform guides and specialized advice? Visit your school store by ‘searching for your school’ on McCarthy Uniforms’ home page. McCarthy’s recently launched a handy web chat feature and have staffed their call-centre so that you can have the support you need if you need some help along the way !  Online shoppers can also now enjoy the industry’s first flexible payment plan (interest-free payments over six weeks !)
Shop online by ‘searching for our school’ at:
  2. Private Appointments Available
When stores are permitted to reopen after June 14th, appointments will be made available for virtual or in store shopping. To manage your time, you can book an appointment on your home store, accessible on the website below.
Book a personalized fitting by choosing ‘book an appointment’ on your home store site accessible on: (search for your school; appointment booking buttons are located on your school e-store)
  3. Your School Call Centre
Your call-centre is open for shopping !  By giving McCarthy’s a shout at 416-593-6900 or toll-free at 1-800-668-8261 Alex and his team would be happy to assist you with your school uniform purchase or questions ! McCarthy’s call centre is staffed with uniform specialists who know the ins & outs of our uniform policy.
Call McCarthy’s at: 416-593-6900 or 1-800-668-8261

Fundsrip School Fundraiser
The St. Gabriel Catholic School Council has found a unique, creative, and COVID-friendly means of raising funds for our school. Do you purchase gift cards often? If so, please consider buying your gift card through our FundScrip account. A portion of the proceeds will go to St. Gabriel CES. Foe more  information and to register, please follow the link below:

Cobs Bread – Raise Some Dough Fundraiser
Throughout the school year families at St. Gabriel CES will have the chance to raise funds which will be donated directly back to school.

How will it work?

  • Each time the families of St. Gabriel CES purchase a product at COBS Bread Maple Mews and they mention they’re raising dough for St. Gabriel, our staff will process a 10% donation of the total sale back to your school.
  • The donations to the school will be presented at an agreed upon time. Running totals can be provided after each school term to let families know how much has been raised.

Families are asked to participate in this fundraiser by purchasing items at the Maple Mews COBS location situated at 1235 Fairview St, Burlington, ON L7S 2K9. Upon purchasing baked good at this COBS location, kindly mention St. Gabriel and 10% of your purchase will be donated to our school!

We look forward to this continued local community partnership!

As office staff will be working remotely whenever possible, secretaries will not always be available to answer school phones. If you need to contact any of our staff, please use our email addresses.

Communication with classroom teachers can continue to take place using previously arranged communication methods. Please note that teachers will be engaged in their virtual classroom during the instructional day and may not be able to respond immediately to inquiries. Please allow 24 hours for them to respond.

Moving? Families are reminded to contact the school if any of your personal contact information has changed or if you are moving out of our school boundary. Please email Mrs. Mulligan at

Student Corner – National Days

Hello St. Gabriel families,

The National Days for this week are…

June 20th: Happy Fathers Day, Summer Begins, National Vanilla Milkshake Day, National Ice Cream Soda Day, National Turkey Lovers’ Day, and National Seashell Day 

June 21st: National Peaches ‘N’ Cream Day, National Go Skateboarding Day, National Daylight Appreciation Day, and National Selfie Day

June 22nd: National Chocolate Eclair Day, and National Onion Rings Day

June 23rd: National Hydration Day and National Pecan Sandies Day

June 24th: National Pralines Day, National Bomb Pop Popsicle Day, and National Handshake Day

June 25th: National Strawberry Parfait Day, National Catfish Day and National Take Your Dog to Work Day

June 26th: National Barcode Day, National Coconut Day, National Beautician’s Day, National Chocolate Pudding Day, and Summers giving 

Have a fantastic week everyone!


Promoting Well-Being: How to have a summer filled with independent play

 ~ Heather Dixon  June 2, 2021  

An article in the New York Times spoke to me recently. As a busy, full-time working parent of three young kids, I couldn’t resist clicking on Now’s a Good Time to Teach Your Kids to Play on Their Own.

Early last summer, when most camps and activities were cancelled, I worried about how I would keep my kids entertained all day for two long months. And then I quickly realized something: I can’t. And I didn’t have to. The reason? They could play on their own. But I needed to do something first.

I had to let go!

Summer 2020 was the season of independence. It was forced upon me.
Because I had to work, and my kids needed something to do, at the start of each day, I took a deep breath and let my kids loose into the outdoors for a full day of unsupervised, unscheduled play

As a parent who was nervous about letting my kids go, I’m not sure I would have given them so much freedom at such a young age if I didn’t have to. But the result was that my kids survived and, in fact, they had one of the best summers of their young lives.

This summer, no matter what happens, I plan to do it all over again. As the New York Times article states, “Independent play is a skill your kids will use for the rest of their lives — and a way to claim some time for yourself during quarantine.” If you’d like to know just how to achieve that kind of freedom, here are a few tips.

Start together and start small

In the article, Dr. Lawrence J. Cohen has advice for any parent with a child not naturally inclined to play on their own. Cohen recommends starting the day with some high-quality connected play.

“Set a timer for 20 minutes, put away your phone and say to your children, ‘I’ve got 20 minutes just for you. What would you like to do?’” The idea is, after spending time together the connection will give your kids the confidence to continue on their own. The takeaway will be that Mom or Dad enjoys being with them, and that they’re good at what they’re doing. And, if you tell your kids you can do it again later, you’ll likely be able to slip away to do your own thing for a while.

Get creative with presentation of toys

When the same toys are left out for kids, they can appear boring. When those toys are put away for a while, or presented in a new manner, suddenly they’re enticing. Try rotating out a few toys to keep things fresh. Or present them differently: Lego that’s half-started, for example, smaller toys put out on a baking sheet, or an empty muffin tin for them to fill.

Go outside and make a mess

If you can, take your chores or work outside with you. And if you have the space, let your kids make a mess. Messy play is so fun and engaging, your kids might just entertain themselves for ages before you know it. Try water with soap suds, sand, paint, or even a dash of colour

Create space for movement

If you’re lucky enough to have a backyard, try building an obstacle course, pitching a tent, or setting up some sleeping bags for them to tumble on. With a bit of imagination, you can bring the outside indoors. Clear a bit of space, add some household items like some pillows and let your kids enjoy. 

Give them ideas to choose from

Although we want them to be independent, your child might equate your request for them to try independent play with being shoved out the door and being told to go figure it out. Cohen suggests that instead, you should try challenging your kids to do activities you can take part in later, like creating a piece of art for you or building their own obstacle course using cushions and chairs.

If you ask them to come show you once they’re done, it’s still about connection, even though they’re playing independently. Even better, you can tell them you’ll time them in the activity for a fun challenge. Here are 30 activities they can get started with on their own, but you can participate in later.

If you’re still stuck for ideas, the articles below will get you going. And while it may take time for your child to be ready for independence, once you get there, you’ll be helping them build an important life skill, while also having fun. Good luck! 


General Information
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National Indigenous Peoples Day
Jun 21 all day
Term 2 Reports Emailed to all Families
Jun 23 all day
Year-End Liturgy and Assembly
Jun 23 @ 12:25 pm – 1:25 pm
Grade 8 Virtual Graduation Ceremony
Jun 23 @ 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm
Grade 8 Graduation – Diploma Distribution
Jun 24 all day
Grade 8 Graduation – Diploma Distribution (Raindate)
Jun 25 all day
Last Day of Synchronous Instruction
Jun 25 all day
Asynchronous Instructional Days
Jun 28 – Jun 29 all day
Return of Devices/Textbooks & Pickup of Personal Items
Jun 28 – Jun 29 all day
Last Day of School – Early Dismissal – 1:20 pm
Jun 29 all day

Tilley, ChristopherWeekly Update – June 21 – 25