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Communication Bulletin #13

Preparing the Way for the Lord

Advent prepares us for celebrating Christ’s coming in history; it calls us to consider his presence with us now in mystery, and his coming at the end of time in majesty. But what does this mean for us in our daily lives? When we think of the word “Advent”, perhaps it’s wreaths, candles, little sacrifices or special prayers that come to mind. It might also mean Christmas cards, shopping for gifts, and festive gatherings.

It’s helpful to remember that Advent is really about getting ready to receive God, who comes to us as a newborn baby, in the vulnerability of our human flesh. He is the long-awaited One whose presence brings the tranquility and order of peace.

Resources from Mary Mother of God Parish:

Mary Mother of God has graciously prepared and shared with us a page of resources compiled for kids and families for Advent this year. https://mmogp.ca/advent-resources

Peace Light from Bethlehem– Cancelled

PEACE LIGHT FROM BETHLEHEM to Halton Region event at our parish has been cancelled. The Diocesan protocols have changed, therefore events beyond the sacraments are not allowed at this time. We are very disappointed, but we trust in the Lord and focus now on the true “light”, Jesus in the manger. Thanks for all of your support.

Keeping Our School Community Healthy & Safe

As you may know, Halton Region is in the Red Level (Control) of the Provincial COVID-19 Response Framework. It is strongly recommended that residents in the red control zone limit trips outside of their home:

  • Stay home, except for essential purposes such as going to work or school, buying essentials such as groceries, and attending medical appointments.
  • Maintain a physical distance of two metres (six feet) from those outside their household. Those that live alone may join one designated household.
  • Avoid all social gatherings such as play dates, birthday parties, and dinner parties with friends or family.

Checking for Signs & Symptoms of COVID-19

Please continue to check for symptoms of COVID-19 in your children, and remember to conduct a self-assessment for each child every day before sending your children to school: https://covid-19.ontario.ca/school-screening/

NEW! Halton Region Public Health is now asking students to conduct a daily self-assessment EVERY day, even on weekends. Please follow the instructions on the school screening tool. 

COVID-19 Test Results

  • If your child has been tested for COVID-19, they must stay home and self-isolate until the test results are received. Please do NOT send your children to school while you are awaiting their test results.
  • Ifany member of your immediate family tests positive for COVID-19, all members of the family must stay home and self-isolate, even if they have no symptoms.

Update Contact Information:

If there have been any recent changes to your contact information, please update your contact information with the school office.

Up-to-date contact information is important if your child becomes ill at school and needs to be picked up, or in the case that COVID-19 contact tracing needs to occur.

Not Receiving Emails from us or HCDSB?
If you have not been receiving emails from our school or HCDSB, please first check with the school office to ensure your email contact information is correct.

If your contact information is correct, your email provider is marking emails from us as spam/junk. To correct this, please follow these instructions: https://www.hcdsb.org/DropOffLibrary/2019-11-EmailInstructions.pdf

Locker Protocols:

Elementary Student Lockers

As the winter months are quickly approaching, here are a few reminders about locker use and protocols in place this year:

  • Students can use lockers to store OUTERWEAR ONLY. 
  • Personal items such as backpacks, textbooks, writing tools, lunches, etc., will continue to be kept in the classroom at all times.
  • To ensure students spend minimal time at their locker, locks are NOT PERMITTED on student lockers.
  • Students are assigned an individual locker. Students are not to share a locker unless they live in the same household and are in the same class.
  • Physical distancing protocols are in place at each school to avoid congregating in the hallways.

Kindly review the protocols and ensure that your child has a pair of indoor shoes to keep at school in their locker.

International Day of People with Disabilities Board-Wide Recognition:

Many people live with some form of disability or know someone who lives with a disability. The United Nations has proclaimed December 3rd as the International Day of Person with Disabilities, and beginning this year, HCDSB will recognize and celebrate board-wide an annual weeklong initiative to build system awareness and education. HCDSB is fully committed to initiatives that promote equity and inclusion in keeping with our Catholic values and fostering welcoming environments for all.

The international theme for this year is “Not All Disabilities are Visible”. For each day of the week, there has been a theme established.

Monday – Acceptance and Inclusion

Tuesday – Visible and Invisible Disabilities

Wednesday – Seeing Abilities

Thursday – Celebrating Differences

Friday – Removing Systemic Barriers

St. Vincent DePaul Christmas Drive:

Like last year, the major Christmas giving event for our school will be the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul (SSVP).  The SSVP at Mary Mother of God serves 107 families and 151 children in need that live within our parish boundary

This Christmas more than ever our most vulnerable neighbours are in need. Together we can make a big difference by sharing our Christmas to bring some joy into their homes.  For many of these families your donation may be the only gift they receive.

We are asking the students and families to support these neighbours in two ways: 

1.     Monetary Online Donation

o   Canada Helps – https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/society-of-st-vincent-de-paul-mary-mother-of-god-parish/

o   Monetary donations will all be used to bulk purchase gift cards from Wal-Mart for the families. 

2.     A special daily prayer of protection for all of the families SSVP serves which we will share on our morning announcements.

The SSVP donations will be gratefully received from Monday, November 30th to Monday, December 7th.  However, for your convenience the link to donate is active, so please donate now if it’s easier for you. 

Flip-Give – Fundraiser:

As the Christmas Season draws near, we know that more and more families are shopping on-line this year, especially given the current restrictions.  St. Gregory the Great has recently teamed up with “Flip-give”.  Flip-give is an app/ website that receives a commission when used and shares the profits with the school.  Many sports teams have used this service and several HCDSB schools are beginning to use this program, and it has proven to be quite successful.  Please consider downloading the app for Flip-give, inputting our code, and supporting the school, each time you make an on-line purchase. 

We earn cash back on every purchase we make all year long! All you have to do is shop anytime with the brands you already love, like Home Depot, Walmart, Amazon, Sport Chek, Indigo, Old Navy, Apple, Esso, and Loblaws. It’s completely virtual and contactless.

Join our team now and you’ll get a $5 bonus the first time you shop: https://flipgive.app.link/teams/join?fundraiser_name=St.&joincode=T5KQNG

Or enter this code: T5KQNG

If you would like to learn more, check out this 2 minute video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5vTO_Qg4n80

Peacemakers Food Drive:

As we prepare for the season of Advent, Mrs. Baker’s Grade 2 class has organized the Peacemakers Food Drive. We are asking each class to collect canned food donations to help those in need. Donations will be collected from November 23- December 7. Most needed items are canned soup, canned meat canned pasta, pasta sauce, hot and cold cereal, jam, nut free cereal bars, pudding/fruit cups and rice. All donations will be given to the Fare Share Food Bank after the Peace candle is lit this Advent season. Thank you for helping us be Peacemakers and help those in need. 

ISW Black Friday Week Sale:

Dress for the Weather:

The cold weather has arrived! The best way to stay warm is to dress in layers, but when layers are removed, they often get lost! Please make sure that all of your children’s clothing is clearly labeled so that if it is lost, it can be returned to them. Also, we are outside for all recesses unless the temperature drops below -20 degrees Celsius, so make sure your children have dressed appropriately with mittens, hats, scarves, boots, and snow pants if necessary! Please note any information regarding bus cancellations or school closures will be posted on the Board Website: www.HCDSB.org.

Christmas Break:

Friday, December 18, 2020 is the final day of school before Christmas Break. The school board has confirmed that this will be an early release day for students.  St. Gregory students will be released 90 minutes early this day, dismissal time will be 2:10pm.  Bus drop off times will be adjusted accordingly.  Please ensure that your family has a plan in place for after school care for your child.

Weekly Wellness Tip:

You matter. Your mental health matters. It’s okay to put yourself first. These times can feel overwhelming but make sure to take care of yourself and do what is best for you. Listen to your body. Make your mental health a priority.

Upcoming Events and Activities at St. Gregory the Great

Jan
20
Wed
Grade 7 – Confirmation Retreat
Jan 20 – Jan 21 all day
Feb
1
Mon
Catholic School Council Meeting
Feb 1 @ 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Feb
5
Fri
P.A. Day – No School for Students
Feb 5 all day
Feb
15
Mon
Family Day – Schools are Closed
Feb 15 all day
Feb
24
Wed
Catholic Council of Chairs – Oakville
Feb 24 @ 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Mar
15
Mon
March Break
Mar 15 – Mar 19 all day
Apr
12
Mon
Catholic School Council Meeting
Apr 12 @ 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm
May
19
Wed
Catholic School Council Meeting
May 19 @ 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Melchionna, Ann-MarieCommunication Bulletin #13