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Weekly Update – September 7 – 10

Discern pathways where others only see walls…recognize potential where others see only peril. – Pope Francis –

Welcome Back!
We begin to welcome our students back to school this week, with several reminders and procedures to share with families for our return to school. The health and well-being of our students, families and staff is our priority. Our school board is working very closely with Halton Region Public Health to ensure health and safety protocols are in place and followed so that our students and staff can enjoy a safe and healthy learning environment this year.

Our staff are looking forward to welcoming our students back to instruction and remain committed to providing a quality Catholic education that is flexible and engaging. We look forward to creating and maintaining a strong sense of community and welcoming spaces in our school.

Stopping the spread of COVID-19 is a community effort. Working together, we will ensure a safe, healthy and happy return to school for all.

The St. Gabriel Return to School Plan can be viewed on our website:

St. Gabriel Staff 2021
Please see the staff list for the 2021 – 2022 school year below:

Ms. Chambers – Classroom Teacher/ Ms. Flores – DECEFDK-A101
Ms. Malatesta – LTO Classroom Teacher/ Ms. Gaspar – DECEFDK-B102
Ms. Zvonar – Classroom Teacher/ Ms. Glavac – DECEFDK-C103
Ms. Fayarchuk – LTO Classroom Teacher/ Ms. Ribau – DECEFDK-D112
Ms. Walker1A108
Ms. Frederick1B109
Ms. Saris1/2A111
Ms. Smyth2A107
Ms. Torres2B106
Ms. Kellner – LTO2/3A110
Ms. Main3A209
Ms. Sanfilippo3B210
Ms. Burrows – LTO3C105
Mr. Byrnes4A211
Mr. Hagan4/5APort 1
Ms. Short5APort 2
Ms. MacRae -0.5EF/0.5FSL5EF (Fr.)207
Staff TBD – 0.5 English5EF (Eng.)207
Ms. Knight5/6A212
Ms. Melfi6A208
Mr. Caunce6EFA205
Mr. Wisniewski7A204
Ms. Polizzi7EFA213
Ms. Pulsone7EFB206
Ms. Barclay8A201
Ms. Smits8B202
Mr. Sloan8EFA203
Ms. GoodmanSERT 
Ms. InnesSERT 
Ms. KellySERT-0.5 
Ms. MuvrinFSL 
Ms. PasykFSL/PTM 
Ms. LanzaPTM 
Ms. PomponioPTM 
Ms. JachyraI-ARTS 
Mr. PorcoESL 
Ms. SpotoLIB. TECH. 
Ms. CadetCYC 

Daily COVID-19 Screening & Confirmation
The Ministry of Education has directed all schools to implement daily confirmation of COVID-19 self-screening for all students attending school in person. This will be in place for the first two weeks of the school year, unless otherwise directed by the Ministry of Education. 

Parents and guardians are asked to complete the COVID-19 School Screening Tool for each child every day before leaving home for school.

Confirmation of the daily screening must be provided to the classroom teacher in one of the following formats: 

  • Show “pass” confirmation on a personal device; OR
  • Show printed copy of the screening tool indicating the current date and a “pass”; OR 
  • Complete Confirmation of Daily COVID-19 Student Screening Log, which students will bring back and forth to school each day. 

Please note, the school will provide a Confirmation of Daily COVID-19 Student Screening Log, which will be sent home with each student. We kindly ask that you sign off daily. On your child’s first day of school, please provide written confirmation that your child has passed the daily screening, or you are welcome to print and complete the daily screening log here:

Please also note that the log is the preferred means for both teaching and office staff of confirming the screening process is passed for each student.

Wearing of Masks at School 

Medical masks will be worn by all school staff.   

All HCDSB students (K- 12) are required to wear non-medical masks/ face coverings at school. All considerations for mask exemptions must be reviewed and discussed with the school principal.

Students will have ‘Mask Breaks’ during outdoor time and lunch. Students will be permitted to take their masks off in class while eating and when they go outside for recess/lunch and for outdoor class time. Please note, that students must wear their face masks in the hallway, while heading outside for recess and lunch. Please discuss and practice a routine with your child regarding where they will keep their mask when they are outside (ie. pocket, pouch, Ziploc bag) Upon entering the building, after outside recess & lunch, students will sanitize their hands and then place their mask on before entering the hallway. All students must have their masks in place when entering the school building in the morning and for dismissal.

We ask that parents take some time to review and practice this routine with your child.

Staggered Entry
Parents are reminded of the staggered entry for students in Grade 1-8 the first two days of the school year. The following schedule will apply for all schools in HCDSB

Tuesday, September 7th        All in-person learners with surnames beginning with the letters A-K will come to school. 
Wednesday, September 8th          All in-person learners with surnames beginning with the letters 
L-Z will come to school. 
Thursday, September 9th                ALL in-person learners (Grades 1 – 8) will come to school. 

Where does my child meet his/her teacher on the first day of school?
Beginning at 8:05 am, all teaching staff will be outside in their designated “Zone” on September 7th & 8th to greet their students. Please note the attached map to find your child’s area.

That meeting place will become the student’s designated “Zone” for the school year.

Parents are reminded to please wear a mask when on school property as 2M of social distancing cannot always be maintained.

We recognize that many of our younger students may have reservations about returning to school. School staff will be outside wearing orange vests to assist with finding teachers and Zones. Parents are kindly asked to not step onto the schoolyard area in the interest of safety. Please seek out a staff member if assistance is required.  

Daily Entry Plan & School Yard Layout

To access our Daily Entrance procedures, parents are asked to click on the following website link:

Please note that these procedures will come into effect on Thursday, September 9th, 2021.

New to Kindergarten Interviews
Communication and instructions on booking Entrance Interviews for all Junior Kindergarten students and any Senior Kindergarten students new to St. Gabriel were emailed to families on August 15th, 2021. Instructions on booking an interview via are below. If any parent is unaware of their child’s Teacher/ECE placement, please contact the main office.

Parents will be contacted via email by their Classroom Teacher/ECE and emailed a link to conduct a “Virtual Meeting” via Microsoft Teams on either Tuesday, September 7th, or Wednesday, September 8th. If parents do not receive a Microsoft Teams Link by noon on Wednesday, September 1st, they are encouraged to contact the main office.

All Senior Kindergarten students will begin school on Thursday, September 9th, 2021.

Parents of Students with Medical Conditions

If your child has a medical condition, the existing Student Plan of Care will be sent for you to review and update if necessary, during the first week of school. If your child has an epi-pen, please ensure that you provide one to the school on or before the first day of school.
If your child has a change in their condition over the summer, please inform the school in the week prior to students returning. Please contact the main office in this case.

Duty to Report
Within our school board, every person who has reason to believe that a child is or may be abused or neglected must report his/her suspicions directly to the Halton Children’s Aid Society. You can learn more about this responsibility here:

Visitor Protocol
This school year we will continue to limit visitor access to our school in an effort to minimize contacts and help prevent the potential spread of COVID-19.

All visitors, including parents and HCDSB staff who are not assigned to our school, will require approval and pre-screening before entering our building. Only visits that are deemed absolutely essential will be approved – e.g. visits by the Fire Marshal’s office or by public health. Where possible, meetings or visits will be conducted virtually.

Visitors who are granted approval will be required to complete an online screening form prior to arriving at our school. Once inside, all visitors will be required to wear masks.

We appreciate your patience and understanding as we do all we can to ensure a safe and healthy return to school for all.

Lunch Protocols
For the health and safety of our students and school community, it is strongly recommended that all elementary students remain at school for the full duration of their lunch periods.

In consultation with our Catholic School Council, we will work through the health and safety protocols and may be able to offer a lunch program this year through LunchBox Orders this year. The possibility of running a safe pizza program will also be considered. More details will be shared when available.

As we are limiting visitors to our school, lunch drop offs will not be permitted during the school day. This includes vendors such as Uber Eats, Skip the Dishes, etc.

Parents and guardians are asked to provide their child(ren) with lunch and snacks in the morning before students enter the school building.

Considerations for lunch preparations:

  • Lunches should be prepared as individual meals and snacks.
  • Sharing food items will not be permitted.

Each student is required to bring their own drinking bottle to school that is labeled, kept with them during the day, and not shared with other students. All water fountains will continue to be wrapped and/or made inoperable. Although bottle filling stations will be in use, students and staff are not advised to touch any filling station apparatus.

If Your Child Feels Unwell At School
It is important for your son or daughter to let their teacher know if they are feeling unwell at school.

Students who show signs/symptoms of COVID-19 during the school day will be taken to our school’s designated isolation room where they will be cared for and supervised until a parent or guardian can pick them up.

It is very important that we have current contact information for all our families so that we can get in touch with you quickly. Please contact our school office if there have been any recent changes to your contact information.

Student Insurance
The Halton Catholic District School Board does not provide accident insurance coverage for student injuries that occur on school premises or during school activities. Since accidents can happen, and some injuries result in medical, dental or other expenses that are not covered by provincial health care or employer group plans, as a parent, you may wish to consider purchasing student accident insurance. Student accident insurance can provide you with financial peace of mind against the possible expenses that can be incurred if a child is injured at school.

The Board makes an Accident and Life Insurance Program for students exclusively through Old Republic/Reliable Life Insurance Company available on a yearly basis. Participation is voluntary and the costs for the program are paid by the parent or guardian. The program offers a variety of plans and benefits, which can be tailored to suit your needs. The coverage provided by the policy is comprehensive and reasonably priced.

The insurance agreement is between the parent/guardian and the insurance company. If you wish to subscribe or for more information, please visit: or call 1-800-463-KIDS (5437).

Bus Transportation
If your child qualifies for bus transportation, you can now review their bus details through the Halton Student Transportation Services online Parent Portal at

You will need your child’s 9-digit Ontario Education Number (OEN) to access the parent portal.  This can be found on a copy of any of their report cards.

If your child has not yet been assigned an OEN (ie. Kindergarten student) and is eligible for transportation, you will receive a phone call with busing information from Halton Student Transportation Services between August 23 and 27. If you do not receive a phone call, please contact Halton Student Transportation Services between 8:00am and 4:30pm at 905-637-4009 or Toll-Free: 1-888-803-8660.

For specific information about COVID-19 Safety Protocols that are in place for students while travelling on the bus, please visit

School Items & Lockers
Lockers will be available for use by students this year for outerwear only. Please note, lockers will not be in use the first week. Lockers will be assigned to individual students once we have reviewed our routines. Students are encouraged to bring MINIMAL items with them to school daily to reduce the clutter in the classrooms.  Less clutter means more space to distance our students apart from one another.  Backpacks will be kept by the student’s desk. 

Even though we are encouraging minimal items at school, there may be some items that you may want to ensure that your child has. Your classroom teacher can provide you with some suggestions during the first week of school. 

Gymnasium & Library
We are very excited as we will be able to utilize both our school gym and library this year! We will have a gradual and safe transition in using both these spaces.

Water Bottles
Students and staff will be able to bring reusable water bottles and refill them at designated refill stations in our school. For the health and safety of our students and school community, the use of water fountains for drinking will not be permitted.  

Safe and Caring School Assemblies
School staff will review the school routines and expectations with your child. Please know that these expectations are to help keep everyone safe and learning at St. Gabriel Catholic School. The Code of Conduct is in the front of the student agenda. We would ask you to review and discuss this with your children during the first week of school. Safe School Divisional Virtual Assemblies will be held the second week of school for students in gr. 1-8.

School Communication
We will provide a Weekly Update, which will be posted to the school website and the link will be emailed each weekend. The website will be updated frequently, including the Announcements page, where we will share news stories. The calendar on the website can be subscribed to, so notifications can be received as dates are added.

Promoting Well Being

Subscribe to Our Online Calendar

Want to see what’s coming up? Subscribe to our online calendar here:

Social Media

Follow us on Instagram st.gabrielhcdsb

Follow us on Twitter @stgabrielhcdsb

Labour Day – No Classes Held
Sep 6 all day
First Day of Instruction – Grades 1-8 (Last Names A-K Attend)
Sep 7 all day
JK and new to SK at St. Gabriel CES Interviews
Sep 7 – Sep 8 all day
First Day of Instruction – Grades 1-8 (Last Names L-Z Attend)
Sep 8 all day
1/2 of JK (Year 1) First Day of Instruction
Sep 9 – Sep 10 all day
SK First Day of Instruction
Sep 9 all day
All JK & SK Students Attend Together Effective Today
Sep 13 all day
Fire Drill #1
Sep 14 all day
Safe Schools Assemblies
Sep 15 all day
Fire Drill #2
Sep 16 all day
Grade 3 First Reconciliation
Sep 21 @ 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Virtual Prayers/Opening Exercises
Sep 24 all day
Grade 3 Rehearsal for First Communion
Sep 24 @ 9:00 am – 10:00 am
Grade 3 First Communion
Sep 25 @ 11:00 am – 12:00 pm
Feast Day of St. Gabriel
Sep 29 all day

Tilley, ChristopherWeekly Update – September 7 – 10