December 2023 Newsletter

Principal Message

With cooler weather approaching, we are writing to provide you with information on how decisions are made on days of inclement weather. If your child is bused to school, please ensure you know which transportation zone you are located in.  We encourage all families to review the HDSB Inclement Weather Reminders. A printable version of this information is also available.  

In addition, we wanted to remind families to continue to use active transport when coming to the school such as walking or riding a school bus if eligible.  This helps keep our streets more safe with less cars at entry and dismissal.  If you must drive your child(ren) to school, please park on a side street and walk the rest of the way and obey all posted traffic signs on our roads.  Thank you for your diligence in helping to keep our students safe as they come to and from school.

Please see below for a plethora of announcements about what is happening at Tuck this month.  Have a delightful December!

Mr. G. DonaldsonPrincipalJohn T. Tuck P.S.

Early Dismissal Day

On Friday December 22, 2023 all elementary and secondary schools will dismiss 90 minutes early prior to the Winter Break. We are scheduled to return after the break on Monday, January 8th. Our schedule on December 22nd will be as follows:

9:05-9:20 - Entry

9:20-10:30 - Learning Block 1

10:30-11:10 - Lunch

11:10-12:20 - Learning Block 2

12:20-1:00 - Nutrition Break

1:00-2:10 - Learning Block 3

Movie Night - Super Mario Bros

John T Tuck PS has organized a movie night for our Tuck Community on Thursday, December 7 in our school Gym. We will be showing the recent hit Super Mario Bros.  Please come for a 6:30pm start, with a blanket and a pillow to get comfy and watch the movie with us. You are welcome to wear your PJs and comfy clothes if you wish too!  We will start right at 6:30pm.  

All students who attend the movie MUST come and watch with his/her parent for supervision.  If a student comes without his/her parent, they will not be admitted to the school movie night.  We respectfully ask that if families decide to come, that they make every effort to stay in the gym during the whole showing so that they do not disrupt those watching the movie.  We also ask that parents ensure that their own children are not being disruptive or loud while watching. The running time of  Super Mario Bros is 92 minutes, so we expect to be done the movie just after 8:00pm.

For more information on the movie, please click here. We look forward to a great community event together.

Spirit Week- Mark your calendars!

As we finish up the month and head into a two-week break, we plan on having some fun with a Spirit Week.  Mark your calendars, and join in the fun:

Grade 7 & 8 Ski Trip

On Jan 19th our Grade 7 & 8's will be heading out to Horseshoe Resort for a fun day of skiing! This is our second annual trip, and once again it promises to be a great day for skiers and non skiers alike!

Last week permission forms were sent home containing a HDSB permission slip, along with a consent form from the resort itself. Please ensure you sign both forms, as consent is required to ski on the hills. Once again, students will not have access to the terrain park.

All skiers and boarders are required to bring a helmet. If your child requires one, please indicate it on the form. If your child will be renting equipment, please ensure you share their height in cm and weight in kg. Additionally, only those bringing their own snowboard will be permitted to snowboard, as renting a board is not an option again this year.

As Horseshoe Resort is 2 hours away, we will be leaving early. Students are expected to be at school between 6 & 6:15am as we need to be at the resort by 8:30 am. We leave the hills around 4, and should be back at Tuck around 6pm. As in previous years we will keep parents updated with our progress, so please check instagram for updates.

If you have any questions about this trip, please connect with Miss Simmelink ( before December 21 (last day for forms & payment).

Holiday Giving Collection

For our Holiday Giving Collection this year, we have decided to support local charities that aim to build diverse and inclusive communities to support shared dignity and well-being. We have decided to support two specific local charities: The first is the Community Food Programs in Burlington. This program provides food support to friends in our community. This charity will be collecting $10 Tim Hortons gift cards to bring holiday cheer to families in need. These gift cards will be packaged along with a chocolate treat. The second charity is Open Doors which is a volunteer-driven organization located in Burlington, that offers a gift-giving program over the holidays. They tend to get a lot of gifts for very young children, but they feel that they need more for teens and could use our support in this area. This involves a collection of $25 gift cards for places that teens might like to shop, such as Dollarama, Walmart, Shopper’s Drug Mart, Sephora, Old Navy, Sport Chek, Cineplex, Amazon, Garage, American Eagle, H&M, Indigo, and more.

As a school, Tuck will be collecting gift cards and will divide the donations accordingly.  We will collect on the following dates:

We ask that students bring their gift cards to school on these mornings and grade 5 students will come around to each classroom to collect them. It is very important that you write the value of the gift card on the back or attach a receipt. This allows the organizations to distribute the gifts fairly. Thank you for your generosity and for supporting those in need this holiday season.

Senior Boys Volleyball

Congratulations to the Senior Boys Volleyball team for their amazing season.  After placing third in regular season play, the boys went on to beat Frontenac in the semi-finals and then in a huge upset victory in the Regional Finals, they were able to take down a strong undefeated Rolling Meadows.  That win sent the boys to the all Halton finals on Nov 28th. This tournament style playoff had them facing off against some tough competition. Overall, the boys had a great night, had lots of fun, and ended the evening finishing in third place.  The boys should be very proud of their accomplishments this year. The following boys represented the team this year: Sam K, Laz B, Jeremy E, Noah H, Bennett T, Colten S, Kaden R, Knowl B, Josh K, Jordan C, Marko R, Liam E and Luka R.

JTT’s Winter Concert Showcase 

This year we will have three different show times for a variety of grades on Wednesday, December 13th and Thursday December 14th to share some Winter Concert fun with parents and guardians. 


Our Kindergarten students have been working hard to rehearse 2 songs for JTT’s Winter Concert. Kindergarten parents/guardians are invited to join us at 9:30am on Thursday December 14th, to pull up a seat and watch our youngest Tuck students take the stage! 

Grades 1-3

We are excited to also invite you to attend our Primary Winter Concert on Thursday December 14th at 12:00pm. Our Grades 1-3 students are looking forward to sharing their musical talents with you!

Grades 7-8

Tuck students will be hosting an evening of music in the large gym on Wednesday December 13 at 7:00pm.  The concert will include performances from the concert band, rock and roll club, and intermediate French ensembles.  All are welcome to attend.

Grade 8 to 9 transitions

In November each student was given a Nelson Grade 9 option sheet, all students should fill this out as it is a tool that will be used when we do course selection in January. If you have not already done so, please sit down with your child to discuss what their grade 9 year will look like, as well as talking about what they may want to do beyond that. If you need any support with this conversation please feel free to contact Ms Simmelink. As a reminder, option sheets are due back to school by December 8th.

Additionally, over the next month Ms Simmelink will be connecting with families that may want to consider a GLE or GLS course for their children. As a reminder this is a learning skill and support class that will replace a course in your child's schedule, however it is important to know that any course that is replaced by the GLE/GLS, will need to be fulfilled later in their high school career. For example, if the Arts are replaced by the GLE/GLS in grade 9, the student will need to take an alternate arts class in grade 10/11 such as Photography or drama.

Finally, if you and your child are discussing going to an alternate school other than Nelson, please connect with me as soon as possible. When it comes to speciality programs like ISTEM and AP/IB, applications are due (in HDSB) on Monday Dec. 4, 2023. As we prepare paperwork for transitions, it is important to be aware of all student plans. If you need support with any grade 9 transitions, please connect with Ms Simmielink as soon as possible. 

Grade 2 French Immersion

In the Halton District School Board, the entry point for the French Immersion program is Grade 2, where 100% of the instructional day is taught in French. Students from John T. Tuck can enrol for Grade 2 French Immersion at Pineland PS if they wish. In the Halton District School Board, the entry point for the French Immersion program is Grade 2, where 100% of the instructional day is taught in French. To help address any questions you may have before registering your Grade 1 child(ren) for the French Immersion program, we have posted information about the French Immersion program on the HDSB website, along with the following resources for your perusal.

Registration opens Dec. 1, 2023 and can be completed through the Google Form. The deadline for submitting the registration form is Jan. 31, 2024. No registrations will be accepted after this date.

Calling all 3-year-olds!

Starting school is a big step for children and parents/guardians, and we want to make that transition as smooth as possible. This fall, the HDSB is welcoming future students and their families to a virtual Kindergarten experience at to learn more about making the first school experience a happy one. Due to current public health restrictions, traditional in-person Kindergarten Open Houses are not possible this year. Instead, we have created a virtual experience for three-year olds and their families.

At, three-year olds can explore a Kindergarten classroom to see what their future classroom might look like next September. There are videos to watch, pictures to view and fun activities for kids. Parents/guardians can learn about the Kindergarten program at the HDSB, play-based learning, community resources in Halton and before-and-after school care. Families can also sign-up to receive a welcome package from the HDSB including a free children’s book. 

Registration for Kindergarten begins in January 2024 through our school office. Further information will be shared in the new year. To begin Kindergarten in September 2024, children must be four years old by Dec. 31, 2024 for Junior Kindergarten (Year 1) and must be five years old by Dec. 31, 2024 for Senior Kindergarten (Year 2). 

Out of Area Requests

Halton students seeking placement at schools other than their home schools, do so by way of Out of Area transfer requests. Applications for other schools are being accepted at your home school from December 1, 2023 - January 31, 2024. Not all schools are open to Optional Attendance.  John T Tuck is a closed school to optional attendance. For a list of schools open to Optional Attendance and to obtain a copy of the registration form you can go to the HDSB website at and view the Transfer Schools within Halton page. For an up to date listing, you can put your address in the HDSB School Finder

4 th Annual Fill the Tuck Truck

On December 13, Fill the Tuck Truck is back! Look for the trucks on the blacktop from 8:50- 9:30 am. Last year, we collected just over 1,300 lbs in donations. This year’s donations will go to the Burlington Food Bank. More than 1,500 Burlington residents rely on the food bank each month – 34% are children. In addition to diapers, toiletries and cleaning supplies and non-perishable food, the10 most needed items are:

Junk Drawer Races

Mrs. Hyslop’s and Mrs. Shaw’s classes are participating in the Junk Drawer Races - a fun and engaging virtual STEM contest to develop new skills and to learn about the opportunities in the skilled trade and technologies. This program promotes sustainability by re-using common items found at home or in a classroom, along with recyclables or low-cost materials of $10 or under. These challenges endorse teamwork along with safety, and teams have the chance to win medals at the regional level, and the opportunity to continue to the Championship level!

Celebrating Our Intermediate Student Leadership and Well-Being Team

Our commitment to Equity and Well-being remains a cornerstone of our school improvement plan. We take pride in celebrating the dedicated work of our Intermediate Student Leadership and Well-being team. This passionate group has been instrumental in supporting both staff and students in our bullying prevention and intervention initiatives. During Bullying Prevention Week in November, our student leaders crafted engaging presentations for K-8 classes, contributing to creating a positive school culture. The team has also introduced new posters from Student Mental Health Ontario in Grades 4-8 to help support the HDSB Harmful Language Protocol that we are committed to upholding. The impact of our student leaders is profound, inspiring a safer and more inclusive school environment.

Save the Date: HDSB Human Rights Symposium

Mark your calendars! The fifth annual HDSB Human Rights Symposium will be held virtually on December 11, 2023, from 9:30-10:30 a.m. This year's theme, "Holistic Health: Our voices, our stories, our calls to action," focuses on holistic health as a human right across all dimensions. Led and designed by students, the symposium promises vital conversations, educational resources, and activities challenging our thinking. Grade 7 and 8 students will be participating in this inspiring event.

Equity and Well-Being Staff and Parent Team Meetings

In December, our JTT Equity and Well-being staff team will gather to work on our Healthy Schools Certification goals. This collaborative effort allows us to assess how we support mental health and well-being as a school, setting inclusive goals for all stakeholders. Simultaneously, our Parent JTT Equity and Well-Being Team will meet to explore ways to further engage parents and guardians in fostering a safe and healthy school environment.

Days of Significance

As you may have noticed last month, our newsletter will now include all days of significance listed in our HDSB calendar at the bottom of each month's issue. We encourage families to share your traditions and celebrations with your child's classroom teacher, fostering a rich tapestry of learning, celebration and understanding.

2 - International Day for the Abolition of Slavery

3 - Advent Begins

3 - International Day of Persons with Disabilities

6 - National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women

7-15 - Hanukkah 

10 - International Human Rights Day

13 - Birthday of Imam Aga Khan

22 -Jan 1 - Yule – Winter Solstice

25 - Christmas Day

26 - Jan 1 - Kwanzaa

26 - Zarathosht Diso (Death of Prophet Zarathushtra)

26 - Boxing Day