St. Kateri Parents…
We sincerely hope everyone has enjoyed a safe and fun-filled summer! We are also looking forward to welcoming back our returning students, and welcoming students new to our school, on the first day of the 2021-2022 school year, Tuesday, September 7th! Below, we are sharing some important Back to School information as we head into the final week of summer break.
- Teachers will either call or email parents of children in their respective classes the week of August 30-September 3 and provide first day of school information (e.g., room/portable number, entry/exit doors, safety protocol reminders, what to bring)
- Don’t forget – our Bell Times have moved forward 10 min. this year (8:35 start, 11:20-12:20 lunch, and 3:05 dismissal)
- If you don’t currently subscribe to ‘St. Kateri Newswire’ please sign up (scroll down to the bottom of the webpage https://stkateri.wcdsb.ca/ and type in your email address). Newswire is our primary mode of communication with the school community – weekly bulletins and other important information will be sent directly to the email you provide.
- If you have a Twitter account, please consider following us on that platform too! You can find us @Saint_Kateri
- Phase 1 of our school renovation project is coming to a close. Please note there will still be some work taking place once school begins; however, contractors will only work in the school outside of school hours (evenings and weekends).
- The Waterloo Catholic DSB released its revised ‘Operational Guidelines: Protocols for Working in Schools During the COVID-19 Pandemic’ on Thursday. If you missed it, here is a link to the guidelines: https://www.wcdsb.ca/operational-guidelines/ . A summary of some of the protocols is listed below:
On August 17th the Government of Ontario announced that they (and we by extension) will implement an immunization disclosure policy for all publicly funded school board employees and licensed child cares. For those staff who cannot attest that they are fully vaccinated, they will be completing regular testing before reporting to their school or workplace. The Chief Medical Officer of Health and Waterloo Region Public Health also strongly endorse all students ages 12 and older to access vaccination.
Students from K to 12 will continue to wear masks. An exemption form is required for any student in grades 1 to 12 who is unable to wear a mask. We will be strongly supporting this precaution, as Public Health and provincial guidance suggests that outside of vaccination, it is our best strategy to promote a healthy and safe environment for all. We ask you to work with us to support students in understanding why we wear a mask and how to do so safely. Those requesting an accommodation under the Human Rights Code should submit their exemption request to their school Principal.
Hand Hygiene and Distancing
We are pleased to share that there will be more access to resources and learning materials. We will take a cautious approach but students will be sharing more objects within their classroom and have access to our learning commons spaces (libraries), so hand hygiene and distancing will remain important practices. School staff will work with students to reinforce the strong habits that ensure a robust and safe learning environment for all.
All staff and students are still required to complete daily screening, using the Ontario School Screener. The tool is being updated to reflect the new protocols and we will share it and post it in our Operational Guidelines as soon as it is available. This request is extremely important. Any individual who is symptomatic should not come to school, even if they believe it is not COVID-19.
Lunches and Recess
The use of cubbies will be permitted this year. Once again hand hygiene will be critical, students must be masked at all times in these areas.
Students in K-8 benefit from their breaks, activity and social time at recess. Masks do not have to be worn outside for recess, but it is always an option to do so.
We will be providing students and families from grades JK – 12 with WCDSB Learning Kits. It is a small way to ensure health and safety, while saying to you that you matter to us! We value your faith in WCDSB and we cannot wait to welcome you back!
- Should you have any questions, our office hours are 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. beginning Monday, August 30th.