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Weekly Update- November 23- 27, 2020

“God’s Love is unbounded: it has No Limits”

Pope Francis

We are grateful to our families for the care and support you have demonstrated  as we experienced our third positive COVID-19 case in our St. Mary school community.

This is a very stressful time as we live through a global pandemic, and as parents, you naturally have concerns when it comes to the health and safety of your children and your family. We want to assure you that we are working very closely with our Public Health officials. We have a very comprehensive plan in place in our school that was developed by our school board in consultation with Halton Region Public Health and we are doing everything we can to make sure all health and safety protocols are maintained.

This includes working with our staff and students to ensure:

  • enhanced cleaning and disinfecting measures are followed
  • physical distancing is maintained in the school AND outside in the school yard
  • staff and students are wearing masks at all times, except while eating or during scheduled mask breaks
  • washing hands regularly throughout the day

As parents and guardians, you can help us by:

  • monitoring your children for symptoms of COVID-19 and keeping them home from school when they do not feel well
  • remembering to complete the daily screening tool EACH DAY before sending your children to school
  • reminding your older children of the importance of following public health guidelines when they are out and about in the community, outside of the school day

We also ask that parents and caregivers wear a mask and ensure physical distancing is in place when you are picking up or dropping off your children.

As noted in our emails sent to families and staff, there are very strict privacy protocols in place when dealing with health information, and very few (if any) details are shared by Public Health. Please know that Halton Public Health are working diligently to conduct thorough investigations that ensure our community is safe in a manner that also protects the privacy of families and individuals.

You have our commitment that we will continue to be transparent in our communications and share whatever information we can. We will provide updates by email as soon as they become available. As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to us directly.

Thank you for your ongoing support.  Working together, we can help keep our school community safe.

When Should I Keep My Child Home?

Each morning, you must use the updated Daily School Tool with your child(ren). You will be asked to monitor any of the following symptoms:

  • Fever and/or chills
  • New or worsening cough (not related to other known causes/conditions)
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing (not related to other known causes such as asthma)
  • Sore throat
  • Runny or stuffy nose (not related to other known causes such as seasonal allergies)
  • Decrease or loss of sense of smell or taste
  • Headache that’s unusual or long-lasting
  • Nausea, vomiting and/or diarrhea
  • Fatigue, lethargy, muscle aches or malaise (not related to other known causes such as insomnia, anemia)

As always, the health and safety of our students, staff and families is our highest priority, and we will continue to take direction from the Ministry of Education and Halton Region Public Health to ensure all protocols are in place and followed in our school.

The school board will continue to communicate regularly with public health and we will update you as we receive new information.  Halton Public Health have also updated their Return to School and Child Care Protocol for Individuals for COVID-19 Symptoms, and you can review that information in the flow chart attached below.

HE-return-to-school-and-child-care-protocol-for-individuals-with-covid-19-symptoms-16-Oct-2020Download

Parent-Teacher Interview Communication- Nov. 26 & 27

Communication with a link and information on how to schedule your interviews using our online system was emailed to parents. A reminder that the interview scheduling process closes Wednesday, November 25th at 11:00 PM. It is a first come first serve scheduling process so be sure to book in your preferred times early! Interviews will take place on November 26th (evening) and November 27th (daytime) through Microsoft TEAMs. Teachers will be emailing parents a link to their Microsoft TEAMs meeting closer to the interview dates.

Angel Tree- Nov. 30th

As we approach the beginning of the Season of Advent, our parish representatives have invited us to participate in their community outreach project, The St. Matthew Angel Tree. In partnership with  St. Vincent de Paul at St. Matthew’s Parish, the students at St. Mary Catholic School will have the opportunity to act as Christmas angels to those less fortunate by donating gift cards in $25.00 denominations for on of the following: Wal-Mart, Metro, President’s Choice, Shopper’s Drug Mart, Dollarama, Tim Horton’s and Sobey’s/FreshCo. These gift cards will be used to purchase winter clothing and groceries to assist those less fortunate. This project will serve as our only Christmas charitable outreach for the season.  Alternatively, there is also an online donation portal that you may choose to access: https://www.ssvpsaintmatthew.org/Donate.asp. We kindly ask that all gift cards are sent into school by November 30th.Thank you to all our families who have already sent in gift cards to support those in need during these challenging times.

Dress for the Weather

The cold weather will be arriving soon! 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 Celcius, 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.

Fundraising Update

Many thanks to all our families for their contributions to date. Through your generosity, we have been able to raise $9, 156 so far. This will greatly benefit our students in continuing to support their learning and achievement. Our primary focus this year is to enhance technology by purchasing Ipads, Laptops and Smartboards. In previous years, our traditional Halloween Dance-a-thon has raised approximately $22, 000.  Our goal is to try our best to raise the equivalent amount this year.

To aid in fulfilling this goal, we rely on our major fundraiser, where 100% of your donation goes directly to programs and tools for your child. Continuing to make St. Mary one of the top elementary schools in the province is a priority for us.

Any donation amount is welcome! Even the smallest donation makes a difference, and all donation amounts are confidential.

As the focus of St. Mary Catholic School is on developing the whole child, your participation enables us to focus on two main objectives:

In the past years, your generous donations have allowed the school to fund many school initiatives across all grade levels. Your support has enabled our school to purchase technology, physical education equipment, materials for clubs, and other school initiatives. This year’s fundraiser will focus on purchasing technology for the school (for example: IPads, Laptops, Smartboards), and Virtual Assemblies for our students that will focus on well-being and new educational experiences or needs that may arise during this uncertain year.

         Donating is easy! Simply login to your School Cash Online Account:

  1. http://hcdsb.schoolcashonline.com/

Donations made before December 1, 2020 will allow us to plan activities and purchase materials for the school year; however, all donations will gladly be received throughout the year and the link will remain open. Thank you in advance for your contribution!

St. Mary Tips

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Thank you for your ongoing support.  Working together, we can help keep our school community safe.

K. Dobbie & D. Comito

Principal/Vice Principal

Follow us on Twitter @StMaryOakville

Dobbie, KarenWeekly Update- November 23- 27, 2020