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Return to School Update

“Let go of yesterday. Let today be a new beginning and be the best that you can, and you’ll get to where God wants you to be.”

Joel Osteen

Welcome back St. Mark Families! We hope that everyone enjoyed a wonderful summer.  We are looking forward to re-connecting with our students, whether in-person or through remote learning.  We know that this year will present us with various challenges; however, we remain optimistic, that with the grace of our Lord, we will find many creative and innovative ways to work through this “new normal.”  We thank you in advance for your continued partnership in Catholic education.

Preparing for a Safe and Healthy Return to School

We have been working diligently at St. Mark Catholic School to ensure that Board directives, as outlined in the https://learnathome.hcdsb.org/return-to-school-2/ are implemented. More information will be made available prior to the start of this new school year, so please be sure to check your emails!

One suggestion for parents is to consider having children try on their masks to gradually get used to wearing them for an extended period of time.  As per the Return to School Plan, masks are required, and it should be noted that face shields are not a substitution. 

Our staff have received extensive training on infection control measures such as hand washing, respiratory etiquette, social distancing and the use of medical and non-medical face masks. We are also developing plans to ensure that each of our students who are returning to school will have a smooth and positive transition back. We miss all of our students and are very much looking forward to being together again!

Last week, parents would have received an e-mail from the Board (HCDSB) regarding a “gradual” return to school.  Please note that no students will be at school on Tuesday, September 8th.    We will be easing into the new school year by bringing students into school in smaller groups, on September 9, 10 and 11.

For Grades 1-8, the following schedule will apply for all elementary schools:

Wednesday, September 9th Only students in Grades 1-8 with surnames beginning with letters A-F will come to school

Thursday, September 10th– Only students in Grades 1-8 with surnames beginning with letters G-N will come to school

Friday, September 11th– Only students in Grades 1-8 with surnames O-Z will come to school

Monday, September 14th– All students in Grade 1-8 attending in-class instruction will come to school. Remote learning will begin for students learning from home.

For parents of children attending Kindergarten (Year 1 and 2), please note the following:

Tuesday, September 8th– Virtual Kindergarten Orientation interviews with parents and children by scheduled appointments

Wednesday, September 9th– Virtual Kindergarten Orientation interviews with parents and children by scheduled appointments

Thursday, September 10th– All Year2 (“Senior” Kindergarten, or “SK”) students will attend- NO Year1 students will come to school.

Friday, September 11th– All Year2 (“Senior” Kindergarten, or “SK”) students and staggered Year 1 (“Junior” Kindergarten, or “JK”) will attend

Monday, September 14th– All Year2 (“Senior” Kindergarten, or “SK”) students and staggered Year 1 (“Junior” Kindergarten, or “JK”) will attend

Tuesday, September 15th– ALL Kindergarten students will begin instruction with their full class.

Parents of Kindergarten students will receive updated communication directly from their Kindergarten Educator Team. 

New to the Community or Leaving?

If you are registering or moving out of our school community, please let our office know as soon as possible so we can ensure our class lists are accurate.

Bussing

Transportation information for eligible bus students is available at www.haltonbus.caTo access this information, you will need your child’s Ontario Education Number (OEN). Please note that there will be no option for Courtesy Seats this year. Due to the changes in the school schedules, as well as the enhanced health and safety protocols that will have to be in place on school buses, HSTS will require some additional time to finalize the transportation arrangements. In light of this, the start of school bus routes will be delayed this year.  School bus transportation to and from school will be available to Kindergarten to Grade 12 students beginning Monday, September 14, 2020.

Medical Concerns

If your child has a medical condition, the existing Student Plan of Care will be sent home for you to review and update, if necessary, during the first week of school. The Office will connect with families of children with medical conditions, who are intending to physically attend school, regarding their plans for this year. If your child has an epi-pen, please ensure that you provide two to the school, one for the student to carry and the second to be stored in the Office. If your child has had a change in their medical condition over the summer, please inform the school as soon as possible.

Peanut / Tree Nuts Allergies

Please remember that St. Mark School is an ALLERGEN REDUCED environment. For the safety of all students, please refrain from sending any peanut/tree-nut/nut products with your child, including Wow Butter. Please understand that TIM HORTONS and McDONALD’S advises that ALL their food products may have come in contact with these allergens. Please refrain from bringing any Tim Horton’s / McDonald’s food products into the school. Please check labels before sending items in school lunches and for snacks.

Uniforms

A reminder that students are expected to be in full uniform for their first day of school. For more information, please visit: https://www.iswuniforms.com/

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On behalf of the St. Mark Catholic School staff we wish you every blessing for a wonderful school year filled with new discoveries and the joy of praying, learning and serving one another in Jesus’ name.

Enjoy your time with your family, this weekend!

God bless,

Ms. Pasceri – Principal

Elementary PrincipalReturn to School Update