May/June News Items
Happy May and soon to be June; with hopes that this warming trend stays with us. Weather at this time of the year is most unpredictable in which storms can develop at any time, bringing the chance of tornadoes. We will be doing our last round of drills (fire, lockdown) and a tornado drill this month. Review the drills you would do as a family at home, especially going over a ‘fire escape.’ May is always an exciting month for many reasons, including Education Week, CAT-4 and EQAO testing, Track and Field, and for just being the second last month of the school year! The best advice for parents is to encourage your children to keep in routine by getting a good night’s sleep, exercising and eating healthy. This will ensure that students are cognitively alert to continue to focus on learning right up until the end of June. Thank you parents for the work you are doing in helping to guide your children to become better at managing conflict and resolution. They are doing an incredible job with support from our team of staff and students who are running programs to help students make good choices.
EQAO begins Wed May 23 for our juniors, grade 6’s! Our grade 3’s will be writing EQAO starting Tuesday May 29th. They have been working diligently and collaboratively with each other in their math blocks to become better mathematicians and stronger critical thinkers. With the support of our Numeracy teachers, math consultant and Spec Ed teachers, our team of educators are in prime mode to support improvement in how kids think proportionally.
Looking ahead to next year, we are planning some special events for our new community. We are excited that the entire student body at St. Francis is joining St. Vincent de Paul, which will result in a total enrolment of around 600 or more students. Everyone is excited to see the new school, and I expect to guide many tours this coming school year. We are planning to host a ‘Sneak Peek’ of the school in the afternoon of August 30, depending on the readiness of the school. Confirmation of this along with times will be posted through newswire and our school website. Opening day is Tuesday Sept 4. The bell rings at 9:00 to signify the start of our day, which will begin with our Morning Routine. For more details on this and other planned events, check our school website regularly.
With 600+ students attending St. Vincent de Paul come Sept, there is a concern around traffic. Although the school is bigger, the location is the same, and Faial Rd is a short street, with the same signage for vehicles. Parking during arrival time and dismissal time is not available for parents on the road in front of the school or in the parking lot at the side of the school. We have two handicapped parking spots right in front, with the rest of the spots for the Daycare. Other than that, vehicles at peak times will have to park either down further on Faial Rd closest to Elgin St (there are a few spots), or on side streets. The School Board is currently working with us to provide alternative solutions to make your children’s arrival to school easier and less congested. We are rallying to start a ‘Walking School Bus’ and ‘Drive to Five Campaign’ which means that children are dropped off a 5 minute walk from the school. One drop off we are suggesting is the entrance to the Catwalk on Elgin Street! These are a couple of options of getting your children safely to school without having to drive your children to the front door. This will take traffic off Faial Road and improve safety to our children. Lots will be shared on this topic of vehicle traffic at peak times on our school website and newswire. If you would like to help with the Walking School Bus or Drive to Five Campaign, please contact the school.
EQAO begins May 22 and finishes June 4. Our teachers have worked extremely hard all year to provide our students with many opportunities to explore critical thinking using cognitive press especially in numeracy. Beginning in January we met regularly to plan and prepare for EQAO type questioning. The students in both grades have been practicing questions from their very own booklets. Mr. Windsor, Ms. Huisman, Ms. Haman and Ms. Santos have been there through and through with their students, helping them to be independently successful in tackling problems. Gradual release and a growth mindset have been their focus to get kids to persevere. All we have to do now is encourage our children to do their best and know they are awesome!
The date for completion of the interior of the school is the end of June. There will be plenty of work yet to do in terms of cleaning, delivery and set up of furniture, interior details, and completion of the outside including the playground. Please obey the signage on the fence and do not enter the construction site. Follow the @SVDPTIGER twitter account for pictures and messages regarding the new build!
St. Vincent de Paul is excited to offer an updated 21st Century learning approach to classroom learning. The school will be outfitted with ‘flexible learning spaces’ that offer a variety of seating choices to students who learn in such varied ways. When you tour the new school, you will not see typical desks with the box attached for books. Instead, you will see tables of various shapes, on wheels for easy moving, with seating that is interchangeable and engaging. You will see teachers using more technology where students are accessing knowledge and information from the internet. Students can engage in interactive learning, connecting to the curriculum and learning alongside their peers, using Google Hangouts. Many of the previous resources such as text books will still be available, but more for the teachers to use as a resource back up as opposed to the primary source of information. Teachers will be using a Project Based/Inquiry Based learning approach so that students are motivated to discover, explore and map out their learning. When students take ownership of their learning, learning is engaging and meaningful.
Dates to Save
May 28th: School Council 6 p.m.
May 29th: Badminton Tournament
May 30th: Cross Country
May 31st: Spirit Assembly
June 1st: PD Day
June 13th : Picnic for St. Vincent and St. Francis Schools
June 21st : Year end Mass at 1:00
June 26th: Kindergarten graduation
June 27th: grade 8 graduation
June 29th: last day of school