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Weekly Update November 15-19

Make peace, create peace, be the example of peace. We need peace in the world.“– Pope Francis

Reports and Interviews

At the Halton Catholic District School Board, school communities exist to foster and exemplify Catholic values. Educational programs, facilitated in the context of faith, promote the intellectual, physical, social and spiritual development of students. On November 24, 2021 the Progress Reports for Grades 1 – 8, and Kindergarten Communication of Learning: Initial Observations, will be sent home electronically to all families.

Parents / Guardians have the right and responsibility to participate actively in your child’s education.  As such, interviews with your child’s teacher(s) will be offered Thursday, November 25, 2021 during the afternoon/evening, and Friday, November 26, 2021 during the school day as this is designated Professional Development Day.

In order to adhere to our safety protocols, interviews will be scheduled using an online scheduling program to limit the use of paper. Communication with a link and information on how to schedule your interviews was emailed to you on Friday November 12. Please complete the online interview request form by Friday, November 19th, 11:00 AM.

Vacation Notifications

We know that families may be eager to travel and visit family. While we certainly understand, please note that you will need to complete an Extended Absence Form (available from the office) and that any absence longer than 15 consecutive days may result in your child being demitted from our register and having to re-enroll upon your return.

Families should also consider any quarantine requirements when planning for their children to be absent from school.

While educators are happy to help support student learning, please note that they are not required to provide your child with work for the length of the absence.

Civvies Day

On Friday November 19, we will holding a dress down day where students can donate $2 to Movember, all proceeds go to chairity. Movember is an annual event involving the growing of moustaches during the month of November to raise awareness of men’s health issues, such as prostate cancer, testicular cancer, and men’s suicide. The Movember Foundation runs the Movember charity event, housed at


St. Mary’s pizza lunches are back, starting on Tuesday November 16 (Cheese) and Thursday (Pepperoni) November 18 for all of those families who have pre-ordered!

Masks on School Property

We thank all parents who wear their masks on school property while picking up their children and while in the parking lot.

St. Matthew Catholic Parish News –


Pope Francis has declared November 14th, 2021 the fifth World Day of the Poor, a day in which we are encouraged to consider those less fortunate than ourselves and to give generously what we can.

As stated by Pope Francis in his address this year, “The poor are not people ‘outside’ our communities, but brothers and sisters whose sufferings we should share, in an effort to alleviate their difficulties and marginalization, restore their lost dignity and ensure their necessary social inclusion.”

We are slowly seeing the light at the end of the very long tunnel of this pandemic. As we emerge into better times, let us not forget those whose struggles continue. According to the Food Banks Canada latest report, “low and stagnant incomes, rising food costs, and an unrelenting housing market driving up market rents across the country have created a level of need not seen since the aftermath of the 2008 recession.” Sadly, one third of food bank users are children (Hunger Count 2021: A Tale of Two Trends).

In the coming weeks, the SSVP invites you to consider your own good fortune and how this good fortune allows you to assist persons in need. We hope that you will consider donating and volunteering not just in honour of the World Day of the Poor, but year-round to help your friends and neighbours in need.

To make a donation, volunteer, or learn more contact us at or leave a message at (905) 825-0219 press 2. To make an online donation directly to our conference, visit our donation portal at Cash and cheque donations addressed to Society of Saint Vincent de Paul – St Matthew may be dropped off in the parish office.

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:

COVID-19 Safety Measures

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.

The Government of Ontario daily self-screening tool can be accessed here:

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:

Dressing for Winter Weather

With the arrival of winter like weather, we kindly request that parents ensure your child is dressed each day to play outside at recess. Students are able to be outside for all regular outside activities when it is warmer than -15 C. When temperatures range between -15C to -20C, students may remain outside for no longer than 20-minute intervals, once temperatures are colder than -20C students must remain inside ~thank you for your support with this!

Bullying Prevention and Awareness Week

Friday November 12- Friday November 19.

Bullying Prevention and Awareness week begin on Friday November 12- Friday November 19.

  • Bullying is defined as a form of repeated, persistent and aggressive behaviour directed at an individual or individuals that is intended to cause (or should be known to cause) fear and distress and/or harm to another person’s body, feelings, self-esteem or reputation. Bullying occurs in a context where there is a real or perceived power imbalance – Pepler & Craig (2014)

Types of Bullying:

  • CYBER: The targeting of someone using technology, it is quickly outpacing the traditional forms of bullying.
  • SOCIAL: Sometimes referred to as Relational Bullying. This involves hurting someone’s reputation or relationship.
  • VERBAL: Saying or writing mean things
  • PHYSICAL: Involves hurting someone’s body or possessions
Critical QuestionTeasingAggressionBullying
Is this behaviour reciprocated?Usually The teasing is shared equallyUsually Not There is usually only one aggressorNo There is a person who bullies and a person who is victimized
Do both people look like they are having a good time?Usually It takes place within a strong, positive, relationshipNo One person is the aggressorNo One person is in distress or being harmed
Is the behaviour fun?Usually Both people enjoy the banterUsually Not It can alienate and be embarrassingNo The person bullying intends to cause fear
Has this happened before with these individuals?Yes It occurs when there is a familiarityPossibly It may be a one-time eventYes Bullying is typically repeated behaviour
Is there a power differential?No It illustrates closeness and affectionPossibly It can happen within a weak relationshipYes There is always a power imbalance

Throughout this week, we as a school community, will be discussing strategies to promote a safe school environment!

Promoting Well-Being – Anxiety 101: What You and Your Child Need to Know About Anxiety

  1. Anxiety is normal. Everyone experiences anxiety from time to time. It alerts us to threats, protects us from danger and helps us reach important goals. For example, it is normal to feel anxious when encountering a bear on a hike, or before taking an important exam.
  • Anxiety is not dangerous. Although anxiety feels uncomfortable, it is temporary and will eventually decrease. The sensations we experience in an anxious situation are designed to alert and activate us. They are normal and part of our body’s natural response mechanism. Our body is smart enough to know when to “amp up” and when to “calm down.”
  • Anxiety is adaptive. Anxiety helps us prepare for real danger, such as crossing a busy street. It can also help us perform at our best and motivate us to study for an exam or practice for a big game. When we experience anxiety, it triggers our “fight-flight-freeze” response, and prepares our body to react. For instance, our heart beats faster to pump blood to our muscles, so we have the energy to run away or fight off danger. Without it, we would not survive. We need some anxiety.
  • Anxiety is part of life. Trying to eliminate anxiety from your child’s life is almost impossible, and even if it were possible, we are not sure you will have created a life worth living for your child. As a result, this website has been designed to provide you and your child with information, tools, resources, and more, to help your child become an expert on coping with anxiety. Since anxiety is everywhere, one of the greatest gifts you can give your anxious child or teen is the confidence and skill to tolerate anxiety whenever it occurs, and to continue living his/her life anyway!
  • Anxiety can become a problem. Small doses of anxiety in certain situations are useful. However, when your child is worrying much of the time, avoiding fun activities, or refusing to go to school because s/he is scared or worried, anxiety has become a problem. Think of anxiety like fog: if it covers everything, makes it hard to see, stops you from doing what you usually do, and generally gets in the way, then it has likely become a problem.

For more information on how to explain anxiety to your child, see “How to talk to your Child about Anxiety”


Cascone-Brown, KellyWeekly Update November 15-19