September 2021 Newsletter

Message for JTT Families - September 19

Principal's Message

It has been great to see our students back in our building over the first two weeks of school. They are settling in well, learning (and re-learning) our covid protocols to help keep them safe at school. We also need your assistance, as the adults, to help keep our kids safe at school and ask that you read through the reminders below and adhere to the protocols each day. Several of these protocols have not been followed by all of our parents so far this year, therefore we are sharing them with you again.

Thank you, and enjoy your week.

Mr. G. Donaldson

Principal

John T. Tuck P.S.


Drop off/Pick up

Grades 1-8 Parents, please plan to meet your children off property. For our primary students requiring pick up, please choose a meeting spot on the grass area away from others, rather than the blacktop as it will be crowded with students as they exit.​ We are doing our best to avoid congregating and ask that no parents other than our Kindergarten parents go on the blacktop before or after school.​ While waiting on the grass area after school, we ask that parents also wear their mask. During drop off, please say your goodbyes by the bike racks, or on the grass. Thank you for helping to keep our community safe by not congregating.


Dogs on School Property

While we are asking that adults remain off property, if possible, during pick up and drop off we do recognize that many parents find the walk to and from school to be a good time to also walk the family dog. If this is the case, please keep your dog on the grass areas and do not bring the dog onto the blacktop, as some students are allergic and/or fearful. It is also difficult to predict a dog’s behaviour when confronted with a large group of excited children. As students will be entering the school when they arrive, there is no need to remain on the property with your pet.


Updating Student Information

It is necessary to notify the School Office of student information changes (e.g., address, phone number, contacts in case of emergency). It is most important to ensure that the school does have a number for at least one emergency contact. It is essential that the school is able to make contact with a parent or designate at all times. Please contact the office if you have new contact information at any point throughout the school year. We have sent home the electronic start up forms which were due last week. If you did not get to them, please complete them ASAP - https://forms.gle/bpoVc23tjUN3agYt6.


Active Transport

We always encourage our students to come to and from school with an active transport route each day. including walking, biking, scooter, or skateboarding. Bicycle, scooter, and skateboard racks and storage are provided at the school for those who choose to ride to school. All bicycles, scooters, and skateboards must be placed in the racks or storage unit and must be locked. For safety reasons, students are not allowed to ride bicycles, skateboards, long-boards or scooters on school grounds and should never be inside the school. Bicycle helmets are now required by law and should be worn at all times. The school cannot accept responsibility for damaged, lost or stolen transport. For safety and storage reasons, students should not use rollerblades or hoverboards to get to and from school. Students should use hand sanitizer when entering the building after locking up their mode of transportation, without touching their face in between.


School Creative Playground

The Creative Playground equipment is closed to students before and after school. We are not able to contact-trace these mixed cohorts, and also are not able to supervise the playground. We ask that students and families head straight home after school to avoid congregating on the property. The climber equipment will be used by one cohort at a time, once per week at break for Grades 1-4.


Student Item Drop Off

If a parent wishes to drop off an item for a student at the school, they must use the buzzer system at the office to let the office staff know there is an item for pick up. The item must be clearly labelled and left outside the front door and the student will be called down to pick up the item from outside. Parents are not able to enter the school to drop off items.


​School Screening​

The parent/guardian of each elementary student is still required to complete a daily self-assessment using the COVID-19 school screening tool for each child. While it is not being collected by the classroom teacher, it is still an expectation that it is done at home. Please keep your child at home when feeling unwell, and get a red result on the screening. Also, ensure you have a plan to pick-up their child(ren) promptly if symptoms develop during the day. Daily screening should be done BEFORE leaving for school and we ask that all parents report the absence with the reason “illness” via SchoolMessenger or call 1-877-409-6310.


Using the screening tool, if your child has any symptom new, worsening, and not related to other known causes or conditions they must remain home until they receive a negative COVID-19 test result or an alternative diagnosis by a health care professional AND symptoms have improved for at least 24 hours (if symptoms included nausea/vomiting/diarrhea, these symptoms should be resolved for at least 48 hours) or it has been 10 days since the symptom occurred and they are feeling better.


When a member of the household has symptoms of COVID-19, asymptomatic students who are fully immunized (or were previously positive within the past 90 days and have since been cleared) may attend school. ​If these conditions have not been met, household members (e.g., siblings) must also self-isolate.


Public health officials will determine any additional steps required, including but not limited to the declaration of an outbreak and closure of classes and/or schools. We will communicate with the school community consistent with ministry guidance and relevant privacy legislation. Public Health will track confirmed COVID-19 cases throughout the region and conduct thorough contact tracing for all confirmed cases and the school/board will be contacted by Public Health in the event of contact tracing related to a confirmed COVID-19 case in the school. If you have any questions, please reach out to Mr. Donaldson at the school.


Parent Council

Parent Council will be meeting on October 4th, If you are interested in joining parent council, please fill out this nomination form by September 20th.


Extracurriculars

We have started extracurriculars at Tuck. Due to strict contact tracing requirements, there is to be no parent spectators at these events, even if before or after school. ​For more information on the offered extra curriculars so far, please connect with the coaches:

Grade 3-8 Cross Country - Mr. Donaldson, Ms Shaw, Ms Ward, Ms Brausewetter, Mrs Hunt

Grade 7-8 Volleyball - Girls - Mr. Henderson, Boys - Mr. Donaldson

Grade 7-8 Basketball Club - Mr. Collinson & Mr. Fitzsimmons


Virtual Open House

While we can not have parents on-site, we do want to give you an opportunity to meet the teacher and see the classroom. Our teachers will be hosting a virtual open house on Thursday, September 23rd from 6:15pm-8:00pm. Each homeroom teacher will reach out to families with the timing of their sessions. We look forward to meeting with you!


National Truth and Reconciliation Day

On September 30th, we are asking all students to wear orange to recognize National Truth and Reconciliation Day. The day has been created to give everyone an opportunity to recognize and commemorate the legacy of residential schools, which more than 150,000 First Nations, Metis and Inuit children were forced to attend between the 1870s and 1997. Our students will also go through some learning within their classrooms about this day.


September 2021 Newsletter

Principal Message

We thank our parents and community for a smooth entry this morning on our first day back at school.  As a reminder, we ask that parents do not congregate on school property and say their goodbyes to their children at the sidewalk or on the grass to keep our blacktop area less populated.  If you are a parent of a Kindergarten student, you most certainly can walk your child to their door or pen area for drop off/pick up and we respectfully ask that you wear a mask while on property.

At the end of the day, grades 6 and 8 will come out of Door #7. Grades 5 and 7 will come out of Door #6, and Grades 1, 2 and 3 will come out of dorr #2, with portable students leaving directly from the portable.  FDK students are dropped off and picked up at the same place each day.  At dismissal, parents are asked to make a meeting spot off of school property, or on the grass area past the playground to ensure there is not congregating on the blacktop.

We thank you for your diligence as we continue to follow Covid protocols here at school.  We look forward to a great year together.  Please see below for more updates in our "welcome back" newsletter.


Mr. G. DonaldsonPrincipalJohn T Tuck PS

​Daily Screening

​You are reminded that each day, you must use the School Screening before sending your child to school - https://covid-19.ontario.ca/school-screening/​. Y​ou must also share this screening with your child's teacher each day either by printing a copy of the screening each day, showing it on a personal device, or by initial​l​ing on this form.​ ​Thank you for your diligence in keeping our school a safe place for learning.


Should a student be asked to self-isolate through Public Health, or receive a red check mark on the daily screening, please contact Mrs. Lukasik at the office (lukasika@hdsb.ca)


​School Council

Please see this welcome back letter from our School Council.​

we hope you will consider being involved in the JTT School Parent Council. The nomination form is now online, and located under the School Council Tab on our school website http://jtt..hdsb.ca. Our first School Council meeting is tentatively scheduled for Monday October 4, 2021 at 7:00 p.m. via Google Meet. If you are interested in joining as a voting member, be sure to complete the nomination form by September 20, 2021 . All non-voting parents are always welcome to attend these meetings as well.


Volunteers in School

At this time, we are not accepting volunteers in the school. Once we start programs, such as Pizza Day, we will require volunteers. At this time, all volunteers will be required to fill out the Offence Declaration form if we have a Police Check/Offence Declartation form on file from 2019-20, otherwise a new Vulnerable Sector Screening is required. Volunteers will also be required to show proof of vaccination.


School Supplies

There is no requirement to purchase anything for your child for school supplies. However, we know that many kids enjoy a small set of pencil crayons and a couple of pencils that are “their own” to use during the day. Items that are brought to school must also be returned home each day so please keep that in mind with how much needs to go into the backpack. This is so that classrooms are clear of anything for easier cleaning and disinfecting.

While we appreciate the offer from many of you, the school is not able to accept disinfectant wipes, sanitizer or PPE donations, as the school board does not have the capacity to ensure their safety for use with children. You are welcome to send your own child with a small bottle of hand sanitizer in their backpack. We are accepting donations of tissue boxes for use and each child is welcome to bring a box in to their homeroom teacher.


Masks

  • Students in Kindergarten to Grade 8 will be required to wear non-medical or cloth masks indoors in school, including entry from outside, in hallways, and during classes

  • Outdoor times like recess and learning outdoors will be used as opportunities to provide students with breaks from wearing masks.

  • When students are outside they will need a strategy for keeping their mask safe from getting lost or dirty as they will need to put it back on before entering the building (pocket, lanyard, etc.)

  • We suggest that each child comes to school with multiple masks in case one is lost throughout the day, or to change a mask for comfort

  • Students may never share masks with others


Hand Hygiene

Hand sanitizer stations will be placed at all school designated entrances for student and staff use as they enter and exit the building. All classrooms and portables without a sink will have hand sanitizer supplied. Regular hand hygiene breaks will occur throughout the day for students (e.g., regular time intervals throughout the day, before/after eating food, after using washroom, before/after outdoor play). We ask that all parents partner in promotion of hand hygiene practices with your child(ren) outside of school


Lockers

Students will be able to access lockers and cubbies this year, but will not be allowed to use a lock. This will ensure that there is less time accessing the locker areas.


Lost & Found

Please label your clothes and lunch bags so that they may be returned to you. Expensive or important items should not be brought to school, as the possibility of theft or damage exists. There will be no lost & found this year, as we can not have multiple touch points.


School Entry/Exit

  • Supervision of the school playground begins at 9:05 a.m. Parents should be aware that students arriving before this time cannot be assured of the safety that such supervision provides. Please encourage your children to arrive before 9:15 a.m.

  • The Playground Equipment is closed as we do not have the ability to supervise it in a way that it is only accessed by one cohort at a time, so we ask that you do not allow your children on the playground equipment before (or after) school.

  • Upon arrival at school at 9:05 each day, students will have “Free Entry” and may not wait in lines on the blacktop. They will go directly to class and entry will be from 9:05am to 9:15am. No parents should be waiting on the blacktop. Only Grade 1 will meet in their designated spot on the second day.

  • We will be using Doors 2, 6 and 7 for free entry, and we will share which door your child(ren) should enter in our first day procedures (to come next week).

  • If a student is late, please sign in at the office. Students are deemed late if they do not make it to class before the playing of O’Canada at 9:20 a.m. Otherwise, students are not to use the front door as entry so that our staff can monitor those coming in and out of our building.

  • Students will exit the same door each day, and we ask that parents of our smaller children adhere to physical distancing and remain away from the doors and other parents waiting.

  • Schools will be closed to visitors; parents may not enter the building.

  • If a parent is deemed an “essential visitor”, they must have an appointment to enter the school and will be given a medical mask to wear while indoors.


Lunchroom Routines

Students will eat in their classroom at their desks, sitting down in their own chairs. Classes are supervised by a combination of paid lunch supervisors and teachers. The two nutrition breaks will be from 11:00 to 11:40 and from 1:20 to 2:00 and students will be inside for 20mins of the break. Students must eat in their own classroom and food will not be permitted outside. Students will be required to "boomerang" the contents of their lunch so that there is no need to get up from their own desk to throw things in the garbage or compost. On inclement weather days, students will need to come prepared with an individual activity to do.

Permission will be granted to those students whose parents have completed the "Permission to go home for Lunch" form, which will be sent home at the beginning of the year (additional forms can be sent home through the office). These students will sign out and in at the office on the days they go home. Students are not permitted to leave the school to go anywhere but their own home unless they are accompanied by their parent who signs them out at the office. Students are also not permitted to go to a friend’s house for lunch, or the plaza. It is expected that students go to their own home, or stay at school. No students are allowed to leave school at second break. Thank you for helping us to keep our students safe, and appropriately supervised. Please be reminded that our lunch break is only 40 minutes this year, and if a student wishes to go home, they need to be back on time.


Outdoor Breaks

Half the students will be outside for the first half of break and the other half will go out for the 2nd half of the break. This will allow students to have some space and freedom on the playground and be able to maintain a safe distance from their peers. They will be given “zones” to play in with their cohort/class to minimize contact across the school. While there may be more than one cohort in a zone, we will ask that students do their best to only play with peers in their cohort.


Drinking Water

  • All drinking fountain faucets will be disabled.

  • Students are able to bring in a refillable water container, with a lid and their name on it.

  • Water bottle filling fixtures will remain and will be flushed daily as per Regulation 243/07.

  • Sinks that are designated for hand-washing only will remain as hand washing only fixtures and sign-posted accordingly.


Close contacts living in the same home (e.g, siblings) of the ill child must:

  • Remain at home, even if they are in another school

  • Wait for the results of the COVID-19 test for the ill child and follow the orders of Public Health; OR

  • In the absence of a COVID-19 test for the ill child, self-isolate for 10 days even if symptom-free or, if symptoms develop, 10 days from the onset of symptoms and 24 hours symptom-free prior to returning to school

  • Alternatively, if documentation from a primary care provider confirms the illness is not COVID-19, close contacts may return to school

  • Also, if the close contact is not sympotmatic and is fully vaccinated, they can return to school.


Physical Distancing in the Classroom

Classes will be built with the same number of students as in years past (e.g., 20 in Primary, Average of 25 in J/I). The desks have been set up and chairs will be spread apart by 1m as per the Ministry of Education guidelines and will remain set up this way. Students will be assigned a seat and while in the classroom they will be expected to stay in their seats. Seating plans can only change on a Monday, when there has been 2 days with no students in the classroom as per Public Health guidelines on contact tracing. Students will learn in their classroom and when weather permits, they will be learning outside so they can spread out more. They will have a homeroom teacher as well as one coverage teacher per day (e.g., French, Music and/or Phys Ed). There will be no rotary this year in any of our grades.


Thank you!

We thank you for taking the time to read through these protocols and reviewing them with your child(ren). We hope this helps with some questions you may have. Please recognize that some of these plans may change as we get more information. As always, please feel free to reach out to us through email or by phone if you have any further questions. For more information about the routines of our school, please visit our Code of Conduct on our school website, and for new FDK students, please review the New to FDK section on our Website,


  • For questions about registrations or school transfers, please contact one of our secretarial staff members, Mrs. Lukasik (lukasika@hdsb.ca) or Ms Laurenza (laurenzaj@hdsb.ca).

  • For questions about Student Health or Transportation (Bussing), please contact our Vice-Principal, Mrs de Ridder (deriddera@hdsb.ca).

  • For questions about School Operations or the Return to School Plan, please contact our Principal, Mr. Donaldson (donaldsong@hdsb.ca).