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Important Update

Hello Thunderbird Families:

We hope that you and yours are well and have been enjoying some sunshine! Please find below a message from our Director of Education, Loretta Notten. As more information becomes available and as plans are solidified we will continue to share with you via Newswire and Twitter. Finally, we value your input and respectfully ask that you take a moment to fill out the very important survey link in the following message. Take good care!

July 31st, 2020

Dear Waterloo Catholic Community –

We hope that you are well and finding ways to enjoy the summer, albeit a very different one.  At Waterloo Catholic we have missed seeing our staff and students in our schools – and we think that you would agree.  We also know however, that all of us feel very strongly that if we are to return to our schools, we have to do so in a very safe and thoughtful manner.  In the attached package, you will find a high-level introduction to all of the factors that we have been considering as we plan for the return of students.  We know that we all want good learning to happen, but we are equally motivated to ensure that all our staff and students are feeling both safe and healthy, in mind, body and spirit.

There are some discussions that are ongoing and which may cause minor adjustments to our models or plans, but in the main, the attached document should give you a solid start in understanding our plans for the fall.  Our new collective reality under COVID has tested all of us, and we know that things are evolving daily and understanding about best practices and the disease itself also continues to grow.  Our commitment is to be informed by new knowledge and learning as it is presented.

In June we outlined that there were three possible scenarios under which a return to school might happen, and yesterday the Premier of Ontario and the Minister of Education declared that all students of the province would be returning to schools for face to face learning.  The provincial decision has been informed by the Chief Medical Officer of Health, as well as the leading medical and health experts in the province.  At Waterloo Catholic we have been preparing for this announcement and have engaged in thoughtful planning to ensure that health and safety of our staff and students remains a top priority.  We are also prepared to “pivot” to any of the three scenarios, if we have to and remain confident that learning continuity will be possible.

We know that for elementary aged students the provincial announcement signaled a “conventional return”, which means attending school 5 days a week, full time.  To the extent possible, “cohorting” will be observed, which means that every effort will be made to limit the number of contacts any one staff person or student comes into contact with, in the course of their day.  Similarly – masks will be worn by students in grades 4 to 8, and remain an option for students in JK to grade 3, and to the extent possible physical distancing of 1 meter will be observed.

For secondary aged students, the province has indicated that all Waterloo Region schools will open under an “adapted return”, which means that students will attend face to face classes 50% of the time.  Waterloo Catholic has committed to a “quadmester model” which means carrying only 2 courses at a time (it is a 4 term model instead of a 2 semester model).  We have devised a model where students only see one cohort of students face to face on a given day, and access their second class remotely – from home.  We have built this model to ensure both 300 minutes of instruction per week, while still giving maximum consideration to the health and safety of our staff and students.  The attached document will provide you with more information.  https://www.wcdsb.ca/plan-for-re-opening-schools/

It is currently the end of July and we are all heading into a long weekend.  We still have five full weeks until the start of school and our planning will continue – at the board level and at the school level.  We want to offer our assurances that we will be prioritizing health and safety, learning continuity and equity of access for all our students.  Nonetheless, for some of our families, you may choose to have your child learn from home.  That is an option for you.  Please read the attached document carefully and then complete the survey that follows.  We need EVERY family to complete the survey for EACH child, as that is how we will prepare properly for the fall.  Please complete this SURVEY

Finally – as we have said before, we do encourage you to closely follow any and all directives from our governments and Waterloo Region Public Health.  This has been a year and a summer unlike any other – and one we will all remember for some time to come.  Continue to enjoy a restful and rejuvenating summer, but let’s stay safe and healthy.  May our faith that grounds us as people of love and people of hope give you strength in these times.  We remain grateful for your trust in us to provide quality, faith-based, inclusive education.

Please reach out to us if you need help or guidance, and remain confident that we are here to support you, as we walk together as a hope-filled community.  #WCDSBTogether.

Sincerely,

Loretta Notten

Director of Education

September 2020 Update

Hello Thunderbird Families:

We hope that you have been enjoying the summer sun together as a family!

Details of the Ministry’s September 2020 Opening Plan will be finalized and released in the coming days and, as we receive information, we will be sending out updates to our school community.

Until this time, we have been asked to share the following message with all families in our school community:

As we prepare for our return to school in September we are recommending that if your child is medically fragile, immune compromised or has chronic or persistent health conditions that you speak with your health care provider(s) to determine what mode of delivery is most appropriate for your child and what, if any, accommodations for your child’s health needs might be required. 

Whether your child’s return to school is conventional or adapted, it is important that your child’s health care provider(s) is consulted to ensure your child’s physical health needs are considered as we plan for a return to school during the COVID Pandemic.

Take good care of each other.

June Update-Thank You!

Hello Thunderbird Community:

As we wrap up the school year it is with sincere gratitude and appreciation that we thank our students, families and staff for the tremendous work that has been done over the past few months. We overcame many obstacles together and worked to do what is best for our kids. We know that this year was challenging for you as parents and guardians especially as you navigated the pandemic as it related to careers, childcare, supporting distance learning, staying healthy, and the overall safety of your family. We could not be more proud of you … our Thunderbird community, for helping our students finish out the year strong. This experience will no doubt help teach our students the “grit” that it takes to succeed in tough times. So, congratulations to you and our students for making it until the end of the year!

Congratulations are in order for our 8th Graders! The class of 2020 will be remembered as the graduates who sacrificed their rites of passage for the safety of their community. Thank you for your understanding during this difficult time. We acknowledge that this has not been easy to accept and impacts you deeply. We hope that you take some time to celebrate your accomplishments with your families and appreciate the gifts that you have! Although this has been challenging, we know that you will move forward as a true Thunderbird and soar with strength and spirit. We will miss everyone and when it is safe to do so please come back to visit the Thunderbird Nest … once a Thunderbird always a Thunderbird!

While much is to be decided about what school may look like in the Fall, know that we are all in this together and that moving forward, our top priority will remain the safety of our Thunderbird community. To keep in the loop with important updates and what September will look like be sure to check out our school website via Newswire and our Twitter feed @StDanielTBirds.

We wish you a healthy and relaxing summer and thank you again for all of your support this year!

Grade 8 Celebrities! 

Congratulations to our Grade 8 Valedictorians, Helayna and Philip! Their beautiful valedictorian speech was featured on CTV News. Be sure to check out the link to the clip that was featured! Way to go Helayna and Philip! 

Link to CTV News Clip: Valedictorian Speech

To view the full speech please follow the link: https://kitchener.ctvnews.ca/video?clipId=1984623

Parent Survey:

We want to hear from you! Please take a moment to fill out the survey in the link below. This is the same survey we shared with you last week so if you have not had a chance, please take some time to complete. This survey will be open until June 30th and only one survey should be completed per family. Link to the Parent Survey:  School Re-Opening Survey June 2020  

Calling all New Thunderbirds:

If you have new neighbours or know of families in your neighbourhood looking to register for school, please feel free to share with them that registration is open for K-8.

If you want to register at St. Daniel School, please call: 519-893-8801 or visit the register for school tab at the top of our website. We can’t wait to meet you!

Special Message from our Director:

In the link below you will find a very special message to our WCDSB community from our Director, Loretta Notten.

Link to: Director’s End of Year Message

 

~Nurturing~Encouraging~Successful~Thunderbirds~

Important Update

Hello Thunderbird Families:

On Friday June 19th, the Premier and Minister of Education released Ontario’s plan for re-opening schools. There are three possible scenarios for next year – a decision that will be made in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and the Government. To that end, there are two letters attached below – one from the Minister of Education and one from our Director of Education, Loretta Notten.

In addition to this, we want to hear from you. In the second link below you will find a parent survey. While not fully binding – the WCDSB will use the results to assist in planning for the fall.  The information shared in this form will be kept confidential.

This survey will be open until June 30th and only one survey should be completed per family.

If you have any questions about the survey or need assistance completing it, please contact the research department: WCDSBResearch@wcdsb.ca
  1. Link to the letter from Loretta Notten, WCDSB Director of Education:
    https://drive.google.com/file/d/1iSE-HGrFmhLr3zyQXc_LzBSOHuAN-OF8/view?usp=sharing
  2. Link to the Parent Survey:  School Re-Opening Survey June 2020  
  3. Link to the letter from, The Honourable Stephen Lecce Minister of Education:  https://drive.google.com/file/d/1rLeUZz7IVVX_6F7i74LR8Vfo1A5p7rzK/view?usp=sharing

 

Reminder: Pick Up of Student Items Begins Tomorrow (Monday, June 22nd)

Hello Thunderbird Families:

It is our sincere hope that you and your families are healthy, safe and well. The staff at St. Daniel School continues to miss our students greatly and are sincerely grateful for your support of Distance Learning. Please continue to review our school newswire messages throughout the summer for updated information as it becomes available.

During the last week of June, we will be inviting families to school for the retrieval of students’ personal belongings. Our WCDSB has outlined parameters that have been directed by the Ministry of Education and approved by Waterloo Region Public Health. Please see the information below for instructions and protocols to be carefully followed. Your cooperation and understanding is truly appreciated.

So we can keep everyone safe, manage the volume, and adhere to physical distancing guidelines, we ask that families carefully read and follow the schedule and guidelines listed below:

Guidelines:

  • Parents/guardians must complete the self-assessment tool in the link provided prior to arrival: https://covid-19.ontario.ca/self-assessment/. If you are experiencing any symptoms, please do not come into the school.
  • One Parent/guardian will line up at the front of the school using the markers provided to ensure that there are 2 metres between each person. 
  • Parents/guardians are encouraged to bring their own masks and disposable gloves. 
  • To maintain a safe distance we ask that you please park in the large church lot, our front parking lot will be closed. An exception will be made for those students and parents/guardians that need accessible parking and have a city of Kitchener accessible parking permit.
  • If you can walk to the school, this would alleviate any parking issues.
  • There will be no more than 7 families in the school at a time. 
  • Students are to be supervised by a parent/guardian.
  • All people entering the school are asked to use the hand sanitizer provided upon entry and exit. 
  • The playground/blacktop area remains closed.
  • Once you have all your items you are respectfully asked to leave the school grounds.
  • No social gatherings in the parking lot or school yard with other families or students during pick up/drop off times.

What to expect when you arrive at the school:

  • When you arrive please choose the appropriate line, we will have staff to support you with this process.
  • There will be a line for families with students in a portable and for families that have students in the school. If you have a student in the school and the portable you are asked to visit the portable line first and then head to the school line.

When entering the school: 

  • You will be asked your child’s name and teacher’s name, we will radio ahead and have your items ready to pick up upon entry. 
  • You will come in through the front doors and leave through the front doors. 
  • All student desk items/school work/shoes will be in a bag and labelled with your child’s name. 
  • If your child has medications at school please pick them up at the office. 
  • Once you have the bag we respectfully ask that you proceed to leave the school grounds.

When in a portable:

  • No more than one family will be in a portable at a time. 
  • All student desk items, school work will be in a bag and labelled with your child’s name. The bag will be at the back of the portable. Please do not go past the row of desks.
  • If your child has medications that are stored at school please pick them up at the office. 
  • Additionally, you will need to do a quick search of the coat rack area to retrieve any outdoor items (i.e. shoes, sweater) that belong to your child. 
  • Once you have the bag we respectfully ask that you proceed to leave the school grounds, the same way you entered so we can monitor and move the lines quickly. 

Library Books, Textbooks, and other School Materials:

  • If you have any library books, home readers, math textbooks, or other school materials you are asked to return them at this time. There will be a large bin in the foyer for you to drop off at.
  • You will also receive a call or email from your child’s teacher indicating what library books/textbooks need to be returned to school.

Chromebook Return:

  • If you borrowed a device for your child to participate in distance learning DO NOT return it at this time

UNLESS you meet this criteria …. 

  • If you are moving to another school board

OR, 

  • If wish to return the chromebook for the summer

Report Cards:

  • Will be mailed to your home the last week of June. If you have moved please provide the office with your new address.

Yearbooks:

  • If your student is in Grade 1-8 their yearbook will be available for pickup in September.
  • If your child is in Grade 8 they will get their yearbook on our Graduation pickup day.

Please Note: Unclaimed items will be donated to charity after the final pick-up day, other than in very unique circumstances.

Pick up Schedule: 

In order to accommodate the number of families that need to pick up items and maintain safety guidelines, we will be following an alphabetical order for our pick up:

Last name beginning with A – Bo:  Monday June 22nd from 9am – 12pm

Last name beginning with Br – Fe:  Monday June 22nd from 12pm – 3pm

 

Last name beginning with Fi – Kh:  Tuesday June 23rd from 9am – 12pm

Last name beginning with Ki – Mo:  Tuesday June 23rd from 12pm – 3pm

 

Last name beginning with Mu – So:  Wednesday June 24th from 9am – 12pm

Last name beginning with Sp – Z:  Wednesday June 24th from 12pm – 3pm

 

We truly appreciate that this is a very complex time and that there are many details that you have to read and adhere to. We will do our best to make this as smooth as possible and will have staff available to support with this process. If you have any questions please feel free to call the office and we will get back to as soon as possible.

Thank you for your continued support. Together we’ve got this!

~Nurturing~Encouraging~Successful~Thunderbirds~

Community Resource Program Bulletins

Hi Thunderbirds:

Please find below links to Community Resource Program Bulletins created by Carizon staff.

They contain many helpful resources and strategies on topics including positive parenting, growth mindset, resiliency, meditation, and even some good jokes!

CRP Bulletin Template.Issue 1.May 2020

CRP Bulletin Template.Issue 2.May 2020

CRP Bulletin Template.Issue 3

CRP Bulletin Template.Issue 4

Take care, Thunderbirds!

~Nurturing~Encouraging~Successful~Thunderbirds~

Summer Boost Program

Summer Boost Program – June 29 – July 20, 2020

Free Online Literacy and Numeracy Programs

for Students currently in SK to Grade 7

Beginning June 29th, the WCDSB is offering 15 mornings of FREE literacy and numeracy online learning support for students currently in SK to Grade 7 inclusive through the Summer Boost program.  If you are interested in making new friends online, honing your literacy and numeracy skills through fun and engaging stories, games, activities and weekly STEM challenges then Summer Boost is for YOU!

Here are the details:  https://www.wcdsb.ca/programs-and-services/summer-boost-program/

  • Timelines: June 29 – July 20 (inclusive, excluding July 1st)
    • 9:00 – 11:00 am Monday to Friday (15 days)
  • Online Resources
    • Google Classroom
    • Lexia, Knowledgehook, Coding, MathUp
    • Math  & STEM  Learn@Home kits
  • Cost: FREE
    Student Acceptance: Based on school site, learning profile and time of registration. Maximum of 15 students per class
  • Contact: pat.runstedler@wcdsb.ca
  • Registration –  REGISTER ONLINE –- Register Early!

Pick-Up of Student Items

Hello Thunderbird Families:

It is our sincere hope that you and your families are healthy, safe and well. The staff at St. Daniel School continues to miss our students greatly and are sincerely grateful for your support of Distance Learning. Please continue to review our school newswire messages throughout the summer for updated information as it becomes available.

During the last week of June, we will be inviting families to school for the retrieval of students’ personal belongings. Our WCDSB has outlined parameters that have been directed by the Ministry of Education and approved by Waterloo Region Public Health. Please see the information below for instructions and protocols to be carefully followed. Your cooperation and understanding is truly appreciated.

So we can keep everyone safe, manage the volume, and adhere to physical distancing guidelines, we ask that families carefully read and follow the schedule and guidelines listed below:

Guidelines:

  • Parents/guardians must complete the self-assessment tool in the link provided prior to arrival: https://covid-19.ontario.ca/self-assessment/. If you are experiencing any symptoms, please do not come into the school.
  • One Parent/guardian will line up at the front of the school using the markers provided to ensure that there are 2 metres between each person. 
  • Parents/guardians are encouraged to bring their own masks and disposable gloves. 
  • To maintain a safe distance we ask that you please park in the large church lot, our front parking lot will be closed. An exception will be made for those students and parents/guardians that need accessible parking and have a city of Kitchener accessible parking permit.
  • If you can walk to the school, this would alleviate any parking issues.
  • There will be no more than 7 families in the school at a time. 
  • Students are to be supervised by a parent/guardian.
  • All people entering the school are asked to use the hand sanitizer provided upon entry and exit. 
  • The playground/blacktop area remains closed.
  • Once you have all your items you are respectfully asked to leave the school grounds.
  • No social gatherings in the parking lot or school yard with other families or students during pick up/drop off times.

What to expect when you arrive at the school:

  • When you arrive please choose the appropriate line, we will have staff to support you with this process.
  • There will be a line for families with students in a portable and for families that have students in the school. If you have a student in the school and the portable you are asked to visit the portable line first and then head to the school line. 

When entering the school: 

  • You will be asked your child’s name and teacher’s name, we will radio ahead and have your items ready to pick up upon entry. 
  • You will come in through the front doors and leave through the front doors. 
  • All student desk items/school work/shoes will be in a bag and labelled with your child’s name. 
  • If your child has medications at school please pick them up at the office. 
  • Once you have the bag we respectfully ask that you proceed to leave the school grounds.

When in a portable:

  • No more than one family will be in a portable at a time. 
  • All student desk items, school work will be in a bag and labelled with your child’s name. The bag will be at the back of the portable. Please do not go past the row of desks.
  • If your child has medications that are stored at school please pick them up at the office. 
  • Additionally, you will need to do a quick search of the coat rack area to retrieve any outdoor items (i.e. shoes, sweater) that belong to your child. 
  • Once you have the bag we respectfully ask that you proceed to leave the school grounds, the same way you entered so we can monitor and move the lines quickly. 

Library Books, Textbooks, and other School Materials:

  • If you have any library books, home readers, math textbooks, or other school materials you are asked to return them at this time. There will be a large bin in the foyer for you to drop off at.
  • You will also receive a call or email from your child’s teacher indicating what library books/textbooks need to be returned to school.

Chromebook Return:

  • If you borrowed a device for your child to participate in distance learning DO NOT return it at this time

UNLESS you meet this criteria …. 

  • If you are moving to another school board

OR, 

  • If wish to return the chromebook for the summer

Report Cards:

  • Will be mailed to your home the last week of June. If you have moved please provide the office with your new address.

Yearbooks:

  • If your student is in Grade 1-8 their yearbook will be available for pickup in September.
  • If your child is in Grade 8 they will get their yearbook on our Graduation pickup day.

Please Note: Unclaimed items will be donated to charity after the final pick-up day, other than in very unique circumstances.

Pick up Schedule: 

In order to accommodate the number of families that need to pick up items and maintain safety guidelines, we will be following an alphabetical order for our pick up:

Last name beginning with A – Bo:  Monday June 22nd from 9am – 12pm

Last name beginning with Br – Fe:  Monday June 22nd from 12pm – 3pm

 

Last name beginning with Fi – Kh:  Tuesday June 23rd from 9am – 12pm

Last name beginning with Ki – Mo:  Tuesday June 23rd from 12pm – 3pm

 

Last name beginning with Mu – So:  Wednesday June 24th from 9am – 12pm

Last name beginning with Sp – Z:  Wednesday June 24th from 12pm – 3pm

 

We truly appreciate that this is a very complex time and that there are many details that you have to read and adhere to. We will do our best to make this as smooth as possible and will have staff available to support with this process. If you have any questions please feel free to call the office and we will get back to as soon as possible.

Thank you for your continued support. Together we’ve got this!

~Nurturing~Encouraging~Successful~Thunderbirds~