Thank you to our students and families for your efforts & energy during the period of remote learning ~ We are excited to see our students on Monday morning and welcome them all back in person!
St. Matthew Catholic Parish News
From the Pastor’s Desk…
With the conclusion of this weekend’s Masses, we pass from Christmastide into the liturgical season that occupies most of the church’s year—Ordinary Time. We’ve all heard the quip that there’s nothing ordinary about it, a ‘preaching joke’ rooted in the many meanings of the word ordinary. There’s certainly some truth to the observation that spending the year focused less on Christ’s Nativity or Passion and more generally on our need to journey through life with him as pattern and guide is never mundane or uneventful. It’s easier to find time for matters of faith at Christmas and Easter, when reminders and religious observances are all around us. Much harder is living each other day of the year still caught up in the realities celebrated during festive seasons. The Nativity we’re just finishing celebrating—God’s coming to us—happens, in a sense, daily through his offerings of grace, the promptings of his Spirit, the opportunities we receive to witness. It’s for us to remind ourselves, constantly, of this fact. The careful, methodical journey through the events of Jesus’ ministry which will shape the Liturgy of the Word at Sunday Masses will help us glimpse the many facets of life in Christ. Since the very beginning, the world has never been without struggle or difficulty, but neither has it been without the love and help of God our Father. The miracles and words of preaching that make up the life of Jesus Christ teach us where and how to find him at work in our own lives. Let’s stay tuned!~Father Allen Varlaki
Follow St. Matthew Catholic Church on Social Media and keep up to date with all that is happening in our parish! There are four ways to connect to the parish:
· Website – https://www.saintmatthew.ca/
· FaceBook – https://www.facebook.com/saintmtoakville
· Twitter – @saintmtoakville
· YouTube – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC2Af1hB7O-VS5PB1gYvTJhA
UPDATED COVID-19 Safety Measures
As was the case in September, the Ministry of Education has directed all schools to implement daily confirmation of COVID self-screening for all elementary students attending school in person. This will be in place upon return on Monday until further notice under the direction of 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 printed copy of the screening tool indicating the current date and a “pass”; OR
- Initial Confirmation of Daily COVID-19 Student Screening Log, which your child(ren) bring back and forth to school each day in their agenda. The log is attached here. A copy will also go home with every child on Monday.
- Show “pass” confirmation on a personal device;
For the safety and well-being of all students and staff, parents and guardians must perform daily screening of their child(ren) for COVID-19 symptoms BEFORE leaving for school using the COVID-19 Self-Assessment.
- Check your child’s temperature to ensure they do not have a fever (temperature greater than 37.8C)
- Monitor for signs and symptoms (including atypical symptoms) of COVID-19
- Individuals experiencing symptoms consistent with COVID-19 as identified in the screening tool, must not attend school and should follow the guidance provided in the screening tool
We truly appreciate your diligence in making this a part of your morning routine in order to help alleviate any phone calls the school will have to make to parents who have not confirmed screening. We thank you in advance.
Return of School Devices
If you currently have a school device on loan, please return it to the school on Monday. You can bring it to the office any time between 8:30 AM and 3:30 PM. Alternatively, your child can return it to their classroom teacher on Monday. Please return the device clearly labelled with your child’s name. Don’t forget the charger!
If you are keeping your child at home for the next 2-3 weeks, and you need to keep the device to access online learning materials, please email Mrs. Choma at email@example.com
If your child is moving to the Virtual School, please return your SJPII device. A new device will be provided to you by St. Clare of Assissi School.
We appreciate your cooperation in returning the devices as soon as you are able as they are used regularly in our classrooms.
Attendance will be taken both in the morning and after lunch. In the event that your child must be absent for any reason, please continue to use SchoolMessenger to communicate their absence. If your child is logging on late for any reason, please indicate this via SchoolMessenger as well.
Parents are reminded to report both full-day and partial-day absences using our automated student attendance management SafeArrival system prior to 9 a.m.. The student attendance management system is available 24/7 and will allow you to report your child’s absence in one of three ways:
- using the SchoolMessenger® mobile app
- by logging into the SchoolMessenger® website
- by calling into an interactive toll-free phone line: 1-844-445-4505
Lunch and Milk Program Updates
Pizza Day pizza will be Friday for this week only. Mark your calendars! Given the school closures and missed pizza days we have extended all pizza orders through to February.
Pita Pit lunch days will resume in February. Ordering information will be sent our shortly
Milk will resume tomorrow and through the week
Kernels Popcorn will begin in February. Ordering information will be posted on school cash online soon.
Parents are reminded to please send in a refillable water bottle to school with your child. Water filling stations are available for all students to access throughout the day. Although we have a limited amount of paper cups in the office they can create a safety concern in the hallways and classroom should they spill.
Ontario Catholic Graduate Expectation
Throughout the month of January, we will focus on what it means to be a reflective, creative and holistic thinker:
We invite you to continue these conversations at home, emphasizing the value of this expectation for all of our students.
Save the Date ~ Grandmother Moon Paint Night
Tuesday, January 18th, 2022
6:00 PM – 8:00 PM
A link to the live event will be available on the scheduled time and day of the presentation on the Grandmother’s Voice YouTube Channel: Grandmother’s Voice YouTube Channel
HCDSB families, students and staff are invited to participate in a virtual family paint night to get creative at home and learn about Indigenous art!
The online session will be hosted by Indigenous Artist, Moses Lunham, who will provide step-by-step instructions on how to create a painting at home. No prior artistic experience is necessary to get involved. However, those interested in participating can prepare for the art session(s) by collecting the following art supplies.
If you have any questions, please contact Sherry Saevil, Indigenous Education Advisor at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Coming Soon ~ Student Census 2022
In February 2022, HCDSB will be collecting identity-based student data through a board-wide Student Census. This census will help our school board better understand and support our students and their experiences in school and will help promote equitable and inclusive learning environments.
NOTE: Parents of students in Kindergarten to Grade 8 will be invited to complete the online survey on behalf of their child. For more information about the Student Census, please visit the HCDSB website: https://hcdsb.info/StudentCensus2022
Dressing for Winter Weather
Please ensure your child is dressed each day to play outside at recess. Students are outside for all regular outside activities when it is warmer than -15°C. When temperatures range between -15°C to -20°C, students may remain outside for no longer than 20-minute intervals, once temperatures are colder than -20°C students must remain inside.
As winter weather is fast approaching, parents are reminded to visit our website for important information and reminders regarding our Inclement Weather procedures and the Inclement Weather Transportation Zones map: http://bit.ly/HCDSBInclementWeather
Looking for notifications on bus delays and cancellations?
Halton Student Transportation Services (HSTS) provides important information for parents and students who ride the bus to and from school. Bus delays and cancellation information can be found directly on the Delays & Cancellations page.
Sleep: Benefits and recommended amounts
Learn how sleep improves brain function and mental health and how much sleep your child needs each night.
- Lack of sleep causes irritability, increased stress, forgetfulness, difficulties with learning and low motivation. Over time, it can contribute to anxiety and depression.
- Sleep time guidelines depend on a child’s age. Every child is different, so take time to figure out what works best for your child.
- If your child’s sleep routine is disrupted, return them to a healthy sleep schedule as soon as possible.
- See your doctor if you have concerns about your child’s sleep patterns.
Sleep is a very important part of your child’s mental and physical health because it allows your child’s mind and body to rest and recover. There are many things you can do to help your child or teen get good quality sleep as often as possible.
Benefits of sleep for mental health
Your child’s brain needs sleep to restore resources that were used up during the day. A well-rested brain can solve problems, learn new information and enjoy the day a lot more than a tired brain. Some areas of your child’s brain are even more active while they sleep.
Children who consistently get a good night’s sleep:
- are more creative
- can concentrate on tasks for longer
- have better problem-solving abilities
- are better able to make positive decisions
- are more able to learn and remember new things
- have more energy during the day
- can create and maintain good relations with others.