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Weekly Update: January 18, 2021

If you are going down a road and don’t like what’s in front of you and look behind you and don’t like what you see, get off the road. Create a new path!”  

Maya Angelou

Thank you!

A most sincere thank you to all of our amazing staff, students and families for all of your continued support during remote learning! We know how challenging the move to online learning is for everyone.  To our Staff ~ we thank you for the many hours of work needed to creating engaging and relevant content for the online environment. To our students ~ we thank you for showing up everyday and adapting wonderfully to a new learning environment.  To all of our families ~ we thank you for all you do to support your children during this time!

Remote Learning Continues

As announced last week, the period of teacher-led remote learning has been extended until January 22nd, 2021.  Elementary schools will continue to be closed for in-person learning during this time, meaning that all elementary students will learn remotely from home. In-person instruction for elementary school students will resume on Monday, January 25th, 2021.

Student Attendance

During this period of remote learning, we continue to promote regular attendance, as it is important for students to remain engaged in their learning so they can stay on top of the curriculum and feel more connected to their peers while our school is closed. 

As noted in PPM 164: Requirements for Remote Learning, schools are required to take daily student attendance throughout the period of remote learning.

Attendance will be taken twice daily, once in the morning and again after lunch. If your child is not able to attend or participate in remote learning on any given day, please report his or her absence, as you typically would during in-person learning through the SchoolMessenger Safe Arrival System: https://www.hcdsb.org/parents/report-your-childs-absence/.

We will be following our usual process of contacting parents and guardians when student absences are not reported. 

Thank you for your continued support and partnership. Now, more than ever, ongoing communication between home and school is key to your child’s success and well-being. 

Advanced New Registrations for 2021-2022 School Year

To facilitate planning for the 2021-2022 school year, we encourage all families intending to register new children at St. Patrick School (including Kindergarten registrations) by following the guideline posted on the front page of our website: New Registrations 2021-22 School Year. Online registrations are now open. In-person registrations (bringing in your documents) will take place once schools re-open. 

Originally, Advanced Kindergarten Registration was to take place from Monday, January 18 through Thursday, February 4, 2021. Due to the extension of the remote learning period, Part 2 of Advanced Kindergarten Registration will be rescheduled after schools reopen for in-person learning.

Parents are still encouraged to complete Part 1 of the registration process, which can be done online. Once signed in, parents will need to fill out an online registration form for their child. Following the completion of online registration (Part 1), parents will be contacted directly through email. We will contact you to complete Part 2 of your child’s Kindergarten registration when schools re-open for in-person learning. To complete part 2 of the registration process, parents must bring the following required documents:

  • ​Birth Certificate (required for Year 1 and Year 2) 
  • ​Year 1 children are required to be 4 years of age on or before December 31, 2021.
  • Year 2 children (new to the school) are required to be 5 years of age on or before December 31, 2021.​
  • Roman or Eastern Rite Catholic baptismal certificate. If your child has no Roman/Eastern Rite Catholic baptismal ​certificate, your child may be admitted if one parent can provide a Roman/Eastern Rite Catholic baptismal ​certificate. Please refer to the ​Board’s Operating Policy I-22 for more information.
  • Proof of address

If you have a child who will be attending St. Patrick in September, 2021, we hope you will take advantage of the Advanced Registration process. Please feel free to pass this information along to friends or neighbours with children entering Kindergarten next year. 

Please note: Children currently registered in the Year 1 Kindergarten program are not required to register for the Year 2 program. Placement in the Year 2 program will be processed by the school, unless otherwise stated.

For more information on HCDSB’s Kindergarten program and the advanced registration process, please visit: http://bit.ly/Kindergarten-Program

Promoting Well-Being

Your Child’s Mental Wellness and Remote Learning

Attending school remotely is a new experience for all of us. That means that there will be some inevitable road bumps and curveballs for parents, teachers, and students to manage. And while it may feel like everything about learning has changed, what hasn’t changed is the importance of relationships. What follows are some tips on working through the tech challenges and nurturing that all-important connection between your child and their teacher.

Read More: Four Tips to Ease Frustration in Remote Learning

Help your child to understand that there will be challenges.

Mastering new tech tools means working through some inevitable hiccups and frustrations. It’s simply not realistic to expect everything to work like clockwork every single day—not when the technology is new to all of us and our Internet infrastructure is carrying such a heavy load.

You can work to minimize any tech anxiety your child may be experiencing by helping them come up with a plan for dealing with any unexpected glitches. It’s a good idea to come up with this plan ahead of time, as opposed to trying to brainstorm solutions in the moment when everyone’s feeling stressed.

  • Find out what kinds of supports are available to you and your child through your child’s school or school board.
  • Consider what additional forms of support might be available to your child: for example, the ability to seek help from a friend or family member who is particularly tech savvy.
  • Help your child to familiarize themselves with the features and functions of their learning platform. If age appropriate, ensure that they know how to perform basic tasks like submitting their work, uploading a file, sharing a photo, and so on. It’s much easier to master these skills when you’re able to practice them at a relaxed pace. You might also consider creating a tip sheet or checklist to guide your child through any tasks that they find particularly complicated or confusing.

Remind your child that they aren’t the only one finding this hard.

You don’t want your child to assume that everyone else in the class is finding this easy and that they are the only one who is struggling. Odds are that’s simply not the case. Encourage your child to compare notes with some of their classmates and share some of your own experiences working through frustrating situations involving technology. You were frustrated, you persevered, and suddenly it wasn’t that hard any more….

  • Help your child to figure out what is and isn’t working: what they’ve figured out and what they’re still finding hard about remote learning.
  • Encourage your child to communicate with their teacher. The teacher needs to know what is and isn’t working for your child. Your child might find it easier to open up about their struggles if you let them know that other kids are experiencing these same kinds of challenges; and that the more everyone communicates with the teacher about their struggles, the easier it will be for the teacher to make things better for everyone.
  • Don’t expect your child to work through these kinds of tech challenges quickly, easily, or on their own. Have realistic expectations of your child—and be ready to step in with the necessary support.

Recognize that there’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all approach to online learning.

Not only does every child engage with learning in their own unique way. Teachers are having to develop a whole new set of skills in order to engage students in online learning. The situation is really challenging for everyone. The good news is that you, as the parent, have an important opportunity to support this learning behind the scenes.

  • Help your child’s teacher to get a sense of who your child is as a person. Knowing what types of topics, activities, and subjects are particularly interesting for your child may make it easier for the teacher to engage your child remotely.
  • Let your child’s teacher know if you have concerns about your child’s level of engagement. Look for opportunities to both identify the source of the problem and to propose some possible solutions.

 Read More: Four Tips to Ease Frustration in Remote Learning

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Comito, DianaWeekly Update: January 18, 2021