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School Update Dec 13– Dec 17

The Advent Journey: Hope becomes peace. Peace becomes joy. Joy becomes love. Love becomes Christ.

Bobby Schuller

Advent

Sunday, December 12th is the third Sunday of Advent. On this day we celebrate that our waiting for the birth of Jesus on Christmas day is almost over. Rose is a liturgical color that is used to signify Joy, so we light the single pink candle on the third Sunday of Advent. This candle is also known as the “Shepherd’s Candle” reminding us of the Joy the world experienced at the coming birth of Jesus. (Hamilton Diocese Website)

With Sincere Thanks & A Warm Welcome

We offer many thanks to Ms. Araman for her dedication to her Grade 4/5 students and to our school community as a whole. We wish Ms. Araman all the best as she embarks on new endeavours and hope she returns to our school soon. We also welcome Mrs. Adams back, returning from her maternity leave and look forward to her rejoining our St. Joseph School Team on January 3, 2022.

Reminder: Please continue to complete the Daily COVID Screening

We thank you for your support and ask you to continue to be vigilant in screening your children for symptoms of Covid each day.

Parents/guardians/students must complete the Ontario School Screening Tool each morning prior to or upon arrival for each student.

The Screening Tool can be accessed using this link: https://covid-19.ontario.ca/school-screening/

Students only attend school if a “✅” is obtained.   Students with COVID-like symptoms or who receive an “X” indicating “Do not go to school” must remain home and isolate as instructed.

Rapid Antigen Test Kits

Winter Break Rapid Antigen Screening Kits for In-Person Students

On Wednesday, December 15th, your child will be taking home a Rapid Antigen Screening Kit for voluntary use over the Christmas holiday.   

The rapid antigen screening kits have been provided by the Government of Ontario for every student who attends in-person learning at a publicly funded school.  These kits may be used by any student, regardless of their vaccination status, however, should only be used when a child is asymptomatic (does not have any symptoms of COVID-19) and has not had any exposure to a confirmed case of COVID-19.  

Please note, your child’s participation in this rapid antigen screening is voluntary and is not a required action for return to school after the Christmas break.  

Thank you for your ongoing support as we work closely with the Ministry of Education and Halton Public Health to help keep our community safe and healthy for all.

Advent Initiatives

A heartfelt thanks to all for the generous donations to our Angel Tree, Online Food Drive and Christmas Cards for the Canadian Armed Forces, to support those in need and to bring joy to those away from home this Christmas season. Your thoughtfulness was amazing and will truly help make a difference!

2021 Christmas Spirit Week

The time has come, and we are super excited to celebrate a festive Christmas Spirit Week, starting this Monday, December 13th. From our Advent Liturgy, Door Decorating Contest and Annual School-Wide Joy Day, there are many fun-filled activities planned. Please view our Christmas Spirit Week flyer to see the activities taking place each day this week.

Early Dismissal and Christmas Break

Please note that students will be dismissed at 2:00 PM on Friday, December 17th.  Buses have been notified and will pick students up at that time.   We return to school on Monday, January 3, 2021.

Winter Break Travel

With the holiday season approaching, it is anticipated that many staff, students, and families will choose to make travel plans over the break. Families who travel internationally during the Christmas Break must follow federal testing and quarantine requirements upon their return. Please be reminded that although unvaccinated children under the age of 12 who travel internationally with a fully vaccinated adult are exempt from federal quarantine, they are not permitted to attend school or child care for 14 days following their return.

Daily Screening Verification

Following the Christmas Break, students (K-Grade 12) will once again be required to provide confirmation that they have taken and passed the daily COVID-19 school screening upon arrival at school. This confirmation of a “pass” screening result can be the green checkmark from the online screening, or a parent/guardian signature on the attestation calendar. Screening verification will begin on Monday, January 3, 2022, and will be in effect for a minimum of two weeks. Screening verification will be required any time there is a pause in learning, e.g., March Break, as an added measure to protect our students and staff from COVID-19.

Vaccines for 5-11 Year Olds

First dose COVID-19 vaccination appointments for 5-11 year olds can now be booked through Halton Region’s online booking system for children five to 11 years of age (or turning five in 2021). Second doses can be booked at a date closer to the recommended eight week interval. Appointments are dependent on paediatric vaccine supply and will be added to the Region’s booking system as supply is confirmed. Please keep checking Halton’s website and booking form as more appointments are added.

Appointments are available at the Region’s new paediatric child-friendly clinics (similar to a doctor’s office) and their four existing community clinics, featuring the Halton Heroes. Appointments are also available at select pharmacies and primary care providers & paediatric offices in Halton. Parents can decide which setting is best for their child, based on age and other personal factors. Information to assist with the decision is available on halton.ca/COVIDvaccines4kids.

Book an appointment

Inclement Weather Information

With the winter weather upon us it is imperative that students come appropriately dressed to go outside for 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.

Emergency School Closure and Bus Cancellations

Another result of winter weather is the potential for school closure during storms, etc. All information regarding closure will be sent out on the Halton Catholic District School Board website, the HCDSB Twitter account and by television/radio commencing at 6:30 a.m. Information will also be available from Halton Student Transportation Services at www.haltonbus.ca

Looking forward to working in partnership to ensure a safe and successful school year for all members of our St. Joseph School Community.

We continue to draw on our faith to guide us as we navigate these challenging times.

S. MacLeod

Follow us on Twitter @StJoesActon

MacLeod, StephanieSchool Update Dec 13– Dec 17