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Weekly Update: September 7-10, 2021

“The love of Christ, welcomed with an open heart, changes us, transforms us, and makes us able to love.” ~Pope Francis

Gradual Return to School for In-Person Learning

We are looking forward to welcoming our students back this week, starting with small groups on Tuesday and Wednesday.   The following schedule will apply for allschools

Tuesday, September 7th        All in-person Grade 1-8 learners with surnames beginning with the letters A-K will come to school. 
Wednesday, September 8th          All in-person Grade 1-8 learners with surnames beginning with the letters L-Z will come to school. 
Thursday, September 9th                ALL in-person learners (Grades 1 – 8) will come to school. 

As you know, the Ministry of Education has directed all schools to implement daily confirmation of COVID-19 School Screening Tool for all students attending school in person. This will be in place for the first two weeks of the school year, unless otherwise directed by the Ministry of Education. 

What will these first few days look like?

St. Timothy, like every school in the HCDSB, is working to implement the directives and recommendations in the HCDSB Return to School Plan, which, of course, was shaped by direction from Public Health.  To that end, some changes to our routines have been planned.  Practices that may have worked or been accepted in the past will need to adapt.  Adjusting to these new routines will take some time and training for staff, students, and parents.  Further, plans that are prepared before the arrival of students may require tweaking, once they are played out in “real time”.  It is imperative that we work together, as partners, to achieve the common goal of safety for all.   Patience, collaboration and mutual support are essential now more than ever.

Please review the following plan, which is specific to our school site:

This plan outlines our specific protocols and procedures, highlights the COVID Confirmation of Screening,  and includes a map of the school to support our new families. 

First Day Procedures: Drop offs and Pick ups

We are excited and prepared to welcome our students back in person!  Supervising staff wearing bright vests will direct students towards the appropriate doors and guide them into their classrooms.  Only one parent or guardian will be permitted on school property to drop off and pick up children. Parents and guardians will remain outside and will not be permitted to enter the school (unless there is an extenuating need, and prior approval has been obtained as per the Visitor Protocol). 

Please note that parents must wear a mask when on school property. Parents are reminded to MODEL and encourage social distancing expectations by not congregating on the fence, and must leave the school property immediately after their child has been directed into the correct doors.  We have been reminded by Public Health to ensure we do not have large groups of parents congregating.  We appreciate that many of our families may not have seen each other for a long time, however, we want to ensure that we do our part to keep all students, staff AND parents healthy. 

Morning Yard Supervision begins at 8:35 am. Our instructional day begins at 8:50. For the safety of your child(ren) we request that your child NOT be on school property until a supervisor is on duty. Children arriving late for school must first report to the office using Door 1.  All bus students will enter Door 1 upon arrival and go directly to their class.

School Parking Lot

Please be advised, that the main entrance is for BUS pick up and drop off only. We ask parents/caregivers to use the north parking lot only (closest to KDG area.) for dropping off and picking up students or entering the school when parking a vehicle. During “pick up and drop off”, we ask all parents/caregivers to be mindful of our students’ safety and to remain behind the gate and not enter the playground area. Please do not bring pets on to school property, either before or after school. Please note that this is a Board Directive. Thank you for your attention & cooperation with this matter!

Please consider walking your child if possible, as the first few weeks of school are typically very busy in all school parking lots. We would ask for your patience & smiles as we all begin a new and very different school year.

Busing

Student transportation will begin on Tuesday, September 7, 2021 for students with a last name starting with A-K.  Access to student transportation schedules is now available through the Halton Student Transportation Services (HSTS) Parent Portal.

Once you have an account, you will need to add your student using their 9-digit Ontario Education Number (OEN). Students will be assigned seats for the 2021-2022 school year. Seat assignment information are available through the parent portal, and bus drivers will have copies of seating charts available for confirmation. For Parent Portal instructions, please click here.

Please note that the initial seating assignments may change, and that, initially, the afternoon seating may not mirror the morning seating.  Please be patient as we confirm dismissal plans, and do ensure that you have filled out the OPT-out form if you are not planning to use the bus this year: OPT-out form

 It is important to note that non-medical/cloth masks or face coverings are mandatory for all students while on the bus. As the Ministry of Education recommends reducing the number of students on the bus where possible, courtesy seats will not be offered at this time for the 2021-2022 school year. 

We encourage families of elementary students to view the following videos to learn about school bus safety during COVID-19:

Kindergarten – Grade 3 students 

Grade 4-8 students

For more information and resources related to COVID-19 and transportation, please see COVID-19 Transportation Information.  For all other transportation information, please visit Haltonbus.ca. Halton Student Transportation Services (HSTS) transportation@haltonbus.ca.

Medical apparatus and updated paperwork

Thank you to those parents who dropped off their verified Student Plan of Care and medical apparatus this past week.  Please be reminded that we must have both the forms and the is updated medication in a Ziploc® bag that is clearly labeled with your child’s name. 

Please understand that at the beginning of the school year, parents assume complete responsibility for the administration of the medications their child(ren) require until such time as all requirements of the Student’s Plan of Care are satisfied in full. Thank you in advance for your cooperation regarding the safe provision of medication and the information pertaining to your child.  Their safety, and the safety of all other students, is our first priority. 

Bringing electronic devices to school

In accordance with HCDSB Policy I-43 and Procedure VI-62, students may bring an electronic device for use in their classroom under the supervision and direction of their teacher for educational purposes. Expectations for appropriate use of devices and digital citizenship will be reviewed with students. Family support of these expectations at home is greatly appreciated.

Please be reminded that changes to dismissal routines and family emergencies should be communicated adult-to-adult (not via text to students). When students feel unwell, they are to report to the office where the supervising adults can record and communicate with parents.  Thank you in advance, for your cooperation with these protocols.

St. Paul the Apostle Parish Update – Elementary Schools

The parish welcomes all staff and students back to school and our prayers are with all of you as you enter another year of learning. We are hopeful that in time the Pastoral Team can visit the classrooms and celebrate masses at school and at the church with your community.

We have had some changes over the summer at the parish:

  • Fr. John Schnurr, who had served as Associate Pastor for 2 years, was made Pastor and is now overseeing our large and busy parish.
  • Fr. Gregory Ogorzalek has joined the parish as Associate Pastor. Fr. Gregory has moved from Lublin, Poland to be with us and we are very excited to have him in our parish. He has much experience working with schools and is looking forward to meeting staff and students in the coming months.

Masses have resumed on a regular basis. We require everyone who enters to wear masks, maintain a physical distance and follow all required Covid protocol.

In the coming months we will be reintroducing some liturgical ministries, the weekly bulletin as well as other parish groups and ministries.  Altar Servers are needed at all masses. If your child is in Gr 4 or up and wants to be part of this ministry, please contact the parish office or see the website for information. Training for this ministry starts in October. 

Please pray for the students who missed First Communion and Confirmation last year as their sacrament make up dates are scheduled for the fall. We pray that the do not get cancelled again!

Students in Grade 2 this year will be eligible to receive the sacrament of First Communion and those in Grade 7 can receive the sacrament of Confirmation. Information about the sacrament program for 2021-22 will be sent to parents via the school in the coming weeks and posted on the parish website. Please be patient as we are focusing our attention on the missed sacraments from last year and will then turn our attention to this year’s planning.

For more information on the parish and what is currently happening please check out our website: https://www.stpaultheapostleburlington.com/

Have a safe and joyful final weekend of the summer break!

The Parish Team:

Fr. John Schnurr, Pastor

Fr. Gregory Ogorzalek, Associate Pastor

Mrs. Arden Ouellette, Lay Parish Minister

Thank you!

Thank you to our AMAZING staff who have been in all week preparing a safe & special learning space for your child(ren)!  A special shout out to our custodial team and office staff.  Our veteran staff have extended a warm welcome to new colleagues joining us this year:

Mrs. Jane Davoren – Secretary (LTO – Mrs. Griffoen)

Mrs. Kerr – Kindergarten Teacher

Mrs. Scopino – Kindergarten DECE

Mr. Rogers – Kindergarten Teacher

Ms. Giannotti – Kindergarten DECE

Mrs. Habachi – Grade 2-3

Ms. Matto – Grade 3 (LTO – Mrs. Donald)

Mrs. Fiorillo – Grade 3

Ms. Shaw – Grade 4 (LTO – Mrs. Eathorne)

Ms. Orrico – Grade 4-5

Mrs. Valerio – Grade 7-8

Mrs. Varas – PTM (a.m.)

Mrs. Traina – PTM (p.m.)

Ms. Phelon – EA

Thank you to ALL of our St. Timothy families who have been extremely patient & supportive as we begin a new & another different school year!   Please continue to keep abreast of school news by reading the Weekly Update, which will be emailed to you using the School Messenger system every Sunday morning, and posted to the school website. The website will be updated frequently, including the Announcements page, where we will share good news stories. Consider bookmarking our website and subscribing to the calendar, so notifications can be received as dates are added. St. Timothy Catholic Elementary School | Burlington, ON (hcdsb.org)

St. Timothy Tips:

Mental health and well-being are core elements of our Return to School Plan 2021-2022.  We will continue to collaborate with community agencies to effectively access resources and support for students and families, and to highlight them to you in our “St. Timothy Tips”:

How to Support a Mentally Healthy Back to School for Your Child (smho-smso.ca)

On behalf of the 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.

Anna Marie Toltl/ Susan Jack
Principal/Vice Principal

Twitter:

Please follow us @StTimothyHCDSB, to view learning in our community as well as some great community and parent information.

Toltl, Anna MarieWeekly Update: September 7-10, 2021