September 2019 Newsletter

Principal’s Message

Welcome back to another school year at John T Tuck! We trust that you have had an enjoyable summer, and we look forward to seeing our students on Tuesday, September 3rd. In our newsletter below, you will find valuable information that you will need for the first days of school. We typically will send out newsletters, such as this one, at the beginning of each month and we assume all parents find the time to read through each item. Please note that our School Calendar is also posted on our website - http:/jtt.hdsb.ca - for important dates to remember.

For those who are also active on social media, please follow our school accounts on Instagram and Twitter (Click links, or go to @JohnTTuckPS). We will post pictures and reminders about what is happening at our great school throughout the year.

We look forward to seeing everyone on Tuesday on our first day of school.


Mr. G. DonaldsonPrincipalJohn T Tuck PSdonaldsong@hdsb.ca 905-637-3881

Class Lists & First Day of School

New this year, the name of your child’s homeroom teacher for 2019-20 will be emailed to parents by Saturday, August 31st, along with a room or portable number. There will also be staff members with clipboards and class lists on the blacktop on the first day of school to help direct you to your child's teacher and their class line up, so it is not necessary to know in advance of Tuesday if there is a problem with the email.


This year, we had an overwhelming amount of written requests for consideration when building our classes. As a staff, we worked very hard to accommodate as many requests as we could, while keeping a balance within our classes between gender, social groupings, and academic ability. In the event that you or your child are not initially pleased with the class placement, we respectfully ask that you resist the temptation to call or e-mail school staff to request a change. We believe we have created classrooms where our students can be successful in building new friendships, while building on past peer relationships. Our staff will not be considering any changes to our classrooms, however, we are committed to helping each student transition into a new grade. Class rosters for the 2019-20 school year will only be revised if we are forced to go through a September reorganization. This news would be communicated to all parents during the second week of school.


On the first day of school, all students in grades 1-8 will meet their teachers on the blacktop area behind the school. FDK Students will meet in the Kindergarten Pens. For Grades 1-6, Teacher names will be on signs at the area where the class will line up, or students will meet outside their Portable. Kindergarten students will meet their teachers in the Kindergarten play area at the front of the school. Grade 7 and 8 students will meet outside Door #8 and when the 9:10 bells goes off, the intermediate students will enter Door #8 and go to the Large Gym to meet their class and teacher and have an assembly.

New to Tuck?

If you are new to the Tuck Community, we will have a group School Tour on Wednesday, August 28th at 1:00pm. We will be walking through the school to check out different classrooms, as well as show students the important things for the first day like where to go in the morning and where the bathrooms are! New students and family members are welcome to attend, and we will begin the tour in the Library at the front of the school. You do not need to register to attend the tour.


School Hours

9:00 Supervision Begins

9:10 Entry Bell

10:55-11:45 Nutrition Break #1

1:25-2:05 Nutrition Break #2

3:45 Dismissal

4:00 Supervision Ends


Parent Council Meeting

Our first School Council meeting is on Monday, October 7th at 7:00pm. Nomination Forms and Volunteer forms will be coming home in the first week of school from our council, via email. You can also access these on our school website, under the School Council tab. Please consider volunteering your time with our many events and services at John T Tuck, and also consider being a part of our School Council as a parent representative.


Welcome Back BBQ

Please mark your calendars for Wednesday, September 25th for a Welcome Back BBQ and Open House. You will have the opportunity to purchase a meal between 5:15pm and 6:30pm, and enjoy some community time together at the back of our school. At 6:30pm, classroom doors and the school will be open for students to show their parents their classrooms and meet this year’s teachers. The evening will wrap up no later than 7:30pm.


Grade 8 Trip

Thank you to those parents of students heading into Grade 8 for filling out the survey last Spring about this year's Grade 8 trip. We will be continuing with the timing of the Grade 8 trip in May this year, as in previous years. The main reason for this is due to the fact that there have not been ski trips in past years to teach our students this skill, which is one of the days on the itinerary of the trip in the Winter. Moving forward, we plan to hold ski trips each winter for students from Grades 4 through 8 to help teach this valuable Canadian skill with the plan of a Grade 8 trip in February of 2021, after successful ski trips in the Winter of 2020. More information will follow to grade 8 families over the fall as we plan for the Quebec 2020 trip.


Police Checks

Please remember that if you wish to volunteer in the school during the day, you must have a police check on file at the office. If you had one last year, then it is ok for you to volunteer this year as well, however, you will need to fill out an offence declaration sheet. These sheets will come home in the first days of school. If you are not sure if you already have a police check on file, please contact the office. When handing in a police check to the school for the first time, it must be from within the last six months. The police station is usually busy with these requests in September, and it can take a few weeks for the police check to arrive. You can also order your police check online. Thank you for adhering to this school expectation in the interest of student safety.


SchoolCashOnline

Please remember that all items purchased through the school (e.g., field trips, pizza lunch, etc) will be available online. Please ensure you are registered at https://hdsb.schoolcashonline.com/ before the school year begins. If you need assistance, please contact the office. Many times, there will not be forms sent home and registration and payment are done solely online.


Bikes, Scooters, Skateboards

We encourage our students to find alternate ways of transport to and from school. To aid in this, we have purchased racks outdoors for bicycles, scooters and skateboards. Students will need a padlock or combination lock for their scooters and skateboards to lock them up in the racks outside once all of the racks are installed. These modes of transport will not be allowed in the school or portables. Segways/hoverboards are not allowed on school property. As with all personal items brought to school, the school is not responsible for lost, stolen or damaged items. These racks will be installed within the first few weeks of school.


Code of Conduct

We spent some time last spring consulting students, staff and parent council on our school Code of Conduct. We have updated it, and you can read it on our school website at http://jtt.hdsb.ca/code-of-conduct. We thank you, in advance, for reviewing these policies with your children as school begins.


Spirit Days

Throughout the year, we like to have some fun at John T Tuck! We encourage all staff and students to participate in our school spirit days, about once per month. Please mark your calendars and show your spirit. Please visit http://jtt.hdsb.ca/spirit-days to see the dates and themes of each Spirit Day! We look forward to seeing all of the neon colours on Friday September 13th!


Parking Lot

As with most schools, parking is at a premium at John T Tuck. Elementary schools are typically built with only enough parking for the staff. Of course, we always encourage other modes of transportation first; walking, bicycles, and using our bus service (if eligible). In addition, we will be asking all students who are walking to walk along Spruce to the back of the school rather than come near the parking lot. If you are driving to school, we ask that you drop off on a side street and walk your children to/from class, as there will be no room in the parking lot for parents to park. Thank you for helping keep our kids safe as they arrive and depart from school.


Intermediate Volleyball

Intermediate girls and boys volleyball tryouts will begin during the week of September 9th. Consent forms will be sent home during the first week back at school and must be returned before the first tryout in order to participate. All coaches are looking forward to a great season. Students will be required to listen carefully to announcements for meeting and tryout times.

Student Medical Needs

The Ministry of Education released Policy Program Memorandum 161: Supporting Students with Prevalent Medical Conditions. School Boards across Ontario are expected to implement PPM 161 by September 2018. As a result, the HDSB has updated several Administrative Procedures to better support students who have Anaphylaxis, Asthma, Diabetes, Epilepsy and Seizure Disorders. With the revised HDSB procedures, students who have any of the listed prevalent medical conditions must have a Plan of Care in place. This Plan of Care must be co-created by the student, parent and school staff and must be accompanied by a physician’s signature. As well, all medications require a physician’s signature to be self-administered or administered by school staff (e.g., epipen, ventolin, benadryl etc.). Please keep the school up-to-date regarding any changes in your child's medical health. You can contact Mrs. de Ridder at deriddera@hdsb.ca with any questions regarding these procedures or to update your child's plan.

Anaphylaxis Protocol

The intent of the Anaphylaxis Protocol is to create a safe learning and working environment for all persons with severe allergy conditions. We have students and staff who have life-threatening allergies to peanuts, tree nuts and peanut/nuts products, fish, shellfish, legumes, bananas and eggs in our school. We request that our families refrain from sending any food with peanut or nut products to school.


Appointments for Students

As students and their families get back into the swing of school routines please be aware when making appointments/activities to try to schedule them outside school hours when possible. We do understand that this is sometimes unavoidable. We can have an unusually large number of students coming and going during our school day which causes constant interruptions in the classrooms. If you are unable to schedule outside school hours please note that we do have scheduled class breaks during our day. Signing out in between scheduled periods causes fewer disruptions to all of the students at school. Please check our school website (http://jtt.hdsb.ca) for our school hours and break times. If a student is being picked up, please let the teacher know in advance so that they are waiting at the office for you. This will eliminate the need to disrupt classes further. Thank you for helping us to provide less distractions in the learning environment for all of our students.


School Bus Transportation

Families can check school bus routes for their students on the Halton Bus Website, using their OEN number. Please be aware that Halton Student Transportation Services (HSTS) advises that a shortage of school bus drivers may impact school bus operations in the Burlington and Oakville areas this September. To address this shortage, we encourage you or anyone you know to think about applying to become a bus driver. Contact information can be found below.

HSTS is working with the local bus companies to try to minimize the impact on students. Parents are encouraged to sign up for delays and cancellation notifications on the HSTS website (haltonbus.ca) before school starts. School bus delays will be posted on the HSTS website starting the first day of school.

It is anticipated that the bus driver shortage will predominantly impact the Oakville area and to a lesser extent, the Burlington area. Interested applicants are encouraged to contact the following bus companies about job requirements:

First Student Canada, Burlington and Oakville - 905-335-7010

Attridge Transportation Inc. - 905-333-4047