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Weekly Update: September 13, 2021

Let your light shine so that they may see your good works and glorify your Father, which is in heaven.

~ Matthew 5:16

A BIG THANK YOU to all of our families for a great first week back!  We thank our staff for all of their hard work in preparing for a new school year.  We thank our students for your smiles, laughter and excitement. You did a great job learning new routines and protocols, helping to keep us all safe.  And finally we thank our parents for following our safety protocols at both drop off and pick up. Tomorrow we are a full house for the first time this year, as we welcome all of our Kindergarten students into the building.  We welcome you to our family and look forward to watching you grow and learn with us at St. Patrick School!

Return to School Plan Daily Self Screening

All staff and students must self-screen every day before attending school using the COVID-19 School Screening Tool.  Confirmation of this screening must be shown to your child’s classroom teacher up to and including September 17th in one of the following ways:

  • Show “pass” confirmation on a personal device; OR
  • Show printed copy of the screening tool indicating the current date and a “pass”; OR
  • Complete the Confirmation of School Screening log that was sent home with each child this week

Arrival and Dismissal Routines

In an effort to keep all our students and staff safe, we appreciate your assistance in our arrival and dismissal routines.  Supervision begins at 8:45 a.m. both inside and outside the school building. For the safety of your children we request that your child NOT be on school property until a supervisor is on duty outside. Students enter the building through their designated doors and walk directly to their classroom where they begin to prepare for their day.  Children arriving late for school (after 9:00 a.m.) must first report to the office using Door 1. 

We would like to remind parents and guardians of the following protocols from our Return to School Plan:

  • Only one parent or guardian will be permitted on school property to drop off and pick up children.  Please ensure that you are wearing masks, especially where social distancing cannot be maintained.
  • Parents and caregivers are asked to leave the school property as soon as they drop off their child(ren). No gathering or congregating will be allowed on school property.  

We are kindly asking that all families who are able to walk to school create this routine for our students. We would like to lessen the traffic in and around our school as well as the parking lot in the morning and after school. When your child arrives at school they must be wearing a mask.  

Catholic School Council Nominations

Role of Catholic School Council:  Ontario Regulation 612 states that every school must hold elections for the School Council within the first 30 days of each school year. The term of office is one year.  We want to encourage every parent to consider volunteering to sit on the Catholic School Council this year.  The school needs active and interested parents to maintain the quality of the school community we enjoy and to address the challenges the community will face in the future. Please email comitod@hcdsb.org and a nomination package will be sent to you electronically.

If Elections are required, then the names of candidates and a one-page information biography sheet, if available, will be posted on our school website. This year, if required, elections for our 2021/2022 Catholic School Council will take place in September according to the following timelines:

Nomination Forms Due: Friday September 24th

Profiles Due (if required): Tuesday September 28th

Council Elections (if needed): Thursday September 30th

First Council Meeting:  Monday October 4th at 7:00 pm

Meetings will be held “virtually” (using Teams). Dates & times will be posted on our school web page.  All parents are welcome to attend regular Council meetings.  The meetings will begin at 7:00 p.m. and will be held virtually via Teams online. 

Medical Perils

Please ensure you have returned the necessary forms for any medical perils (anaphylaxis, asthma, diabetes, etc.) to the office along with any medication needed so that we can update our files.  Please be aware that ALL HCDSB Schools strive to be a NUT FREE environments. We have students with life threatening allergies to nuts and other allergens. No peanut butter or other nut products are allowed. Please check labels before sending items in school lunches and for snacks. Even a trace of nut oil from one child’s fingers to a desk surface can cause a deadly reaction.

Please note that Wow Butter (soy product) is also not allowed since we cannot distinguish between it and peanut butter.

Communication

We will provide a weekly communication and any other information by posting to the school website and the link will be sent via email.  Please continue to check our school website for important information.

Return to School Plan Visitor Protocol

This school year we will continue to limit visitor access to our school to minimize contacts and help prevent the potential spread of COVID-19. We are hopeful that we will be able to revisit and once again and have our valued volunteers back in our school building. If you are interested in being a volunteer please note that a police check with vulnerable sector screening is required. If you have not submitted one to the school, you can explore the Halton Police Services website for more information. The school is in the process of updating our records for those previously on file.

All visitors, including parents and HCDSB staff who are not assigned to our school, will require approval from the Principal and pre-screening before entering our building. Only visits that are deemed absolutely essential will be approved. Where possible, meetings or visits will be conducted virtually.

Visitors who are granted approval will be required to complete an online screening form prior to arriving at our school. Once inside, all visitors will be required to wear masks.

We appreciate your patience and understanding as we do all we can to ensure a safe and healthy return to school for all.

Lunch Protocols

For the health and safety of our students and school community, it is strongly recommended that all elementary students remain at school for the full duration of their lunch periods.

We are working through the health and safety protocols and may be able to offer a lunch program this year. More details will be shared when available.

As we are limiting visitors to our school, lunch drop offs will not be permitted during the school day. This includes vendors such as Uber Eats, Skip the Dishes, etc. Parents and guardians are asked to provide their children with lunch and snacks in the morning before students enter the school building.

Considerations for lunch preparations:

  • Lunches should be prepared as individual meals and snacks.
  • Sharing food items will not be permitted.
  • Each student is required to bring their own drinking bottle to school that is labeled, kept with them during the day, and not shared with other students. All water fountains will continue to be closed. Bottle filling stations will be available for all students and staff to use.

If Your Child Feels Unwell at School

It is important for your son or daughter to let their teacher know if they are feeling unwell at school. Students who show signs/symptoms of COVID-19 during the school day will be taken to our school’s designated isolation room where they will be cared for and supervised until a parent or guardian can pick them up.

It is very important that we have current contact information for all our families so that we can get in touch with you quickly. Please contact our school office if there have been any recent changes to your contact information.

Student Accident Insurance

We all know that accidents can, and do, happen. While your provincial coverage or your employee benefits plan may cover some medical, dental or other expenses related to these accidents, they may not cover all of them. Student Accident Insurance helps to protect your family from these unexpected costs if your child is injured on school property or during school-sponsored activities.

Since the Halton Catholic District School Board does not offer student accident insurance, you, as a parent/guardian, have the option to buy this coverage for your child or children. While participation is voluntary, it is highly recommended. All students, up to 26 years of age, are accepted.

Coverage is available in three affordable plan options, for as low as $13/year (that’s just over 3 cents a day!) in Lite, Plus and Premium. Benefits include:

•            Dental treatment

•            Damage to eyeglasses or contact lenses

•            Ambulance transportation

•            Braces, casts, crutches, hearing aids, prosthetics and splints

•            Counselling, physiotherapy and tutoring

•            Prescription drugs

•            Accidental death, total and permanent disability

•            NEW! Hospital cash allowance for costs associated with extended hospital stays such as parking, television or Wi-Fi in your room, parking, cafeteria meals or babysitting expenses for family members.

Discounts are available for families with 3 or more children, with additional savings for multi-year plans of three and five years when buying online. For more policy details or to buy a plan, please visit www.studyinsuredstudentaccident.com or call 1-833-560-0527 (toll-free) or 416-916-1588 (local).

Please note that the insurance agreement is between you and Student Accident Insurance.

School Uniforms

As you know, our uniform provider again this year will be McCarthy.  Please visit their website if you require more information regarding uniforms – https://www.mccarthyuniforms.ca/.

As of January 1, 2021, for elementary school uniforms, parents and guardians no longer have to purchase bottoms from the Board authorized school uniform vendor. All bottoms, regardless of where they are purchased, must be navy blue.

Thank you for your support and patience, we look forward to seeing your child back at school next week.

Reporting Your Child’s Absence

The safety and wellbeing of our students is our highest priority, and SafeArrival will enhance our existing student attendance procedure by making it more convenient for parents to report a child’s absence, and more efficient for our school office staff to follow up sooner on unexplained absences.

If a child is absent and the office has not been notified the SchoolMessenger system will begin automatic calls to you, if there is still no answer we are required by law to call the police.  

Please click here for additional information on how to sign up for SchoolMessenger and how the report your child’s absence.

Concussion Protocol

Recent research shows that a concussion can have very serious implications on a child`s cognitive and physical abilities. Parents and guardians are reminded that a comprehensive protocol, based on current research and best practices, has been developed to help parents, students, and staff prevent, recognize, and respond to a concussion. More information, including a Parent Fact Sheet, can be found on the Board’s website at: https://www.hcdsb.org/Parents/safeandhealthy/Medical/Documents/Concussion Fact Sheet for Parents.pdf

NEED TO CONTACT YOUR CHILD’S TEACHER?

The staff of St. Patrick will be reaching out to parents over the next couple of weeks. If you wish to speak to your child’s teacher an appointment is necessary. The classroom teachers’ first responsibility is the teaching of the children during the regular school hours. Please leave a message for your child’s teacher and they will return your call in a timely manner ~ within 48 hours.

It is essential to take care of yourself, not just for your own well-being, but also for those you care about and support. Caring for yourself improves your energy, focus, ability to cope with challenges and your overall life
experience. When you take care of yourself, you inspire and model for others to do the same.

For additional information, please click on the Tip Sheet below.

www.smho-smso.ca

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Comito, DianaWeekly Update: September 13, 2021