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Welcome to the 2022-23 School Year!!!

Dear Summit Heights Families,

On behalf of our entire staff, we sincerely hope that you and your family had a fantastic, memorable, fun and safe summer!  We hope that your child(ren) are excited to start school next week!  Unlike the last two years, this year thankfully resembles a normal start-up to our school year (but please continue to read below for details related to health & safe and Covid).  Rest assured, on your child’s first day at school, specific information will be shared about timetables, materials to bring to school, routines and expectations by your child’s teacher.

All students from SK to Grade 8 will begin classes on Wednesday, September 7th.  New to kindergarten students will have a specific start date, communicated by their teacher at the orientation on Tues. Aug 30th.  If you are a parent of a child new to our kindergarten program (JK or SK) that hasn’t received an invitation to the orientation on Tuesday, unless you’ve already been in touch with the Principal (who will get back to you on Monday August 29), please contact me at bill.mah@tdsb.on.ca

General information about Summit Heights

Please visit our school web site, summitheightspublicschool.com for details on our school.  Please also consider following us on Twitter (@SummitHeightsPS).

Reporting Student Absences:  Please ensure you call the school’s absence phone line to report your child’s absence at 416-395-2923, option 1.  This line is available 24hrs, 7 days a week.  

For your convenience, the bell times are as follows:

8:55 am – staff on supervision duty outdoors (Gr 1-8 students may be dropped off)

9:08 am – first bell (students should line up at the designated entry doors)

9:10 am – entry, school day begins

10:20 am – 10:35 am – Gr 1-8 AM recess

11:55 am – 12:53 pm – Lunch

12:53 pm – pm line-up bell

12:55 pm – pm – entry, afternoon program begins

2:15 pm – 2:30 pm – Gr 1-8 PM recess

3:40 pm – dismissal

Morning of the First Day of School
(Wednesday, September 7)

-Please see below for details on what time and which entry is for your child(ren) on the first day of school

-Each school exit is numbered by a sign above the door

-We will have rotary teachers and support staff on hand with a school roster list to assist any students who need guidance

Kindergarten

Kindergarten students should wait with a parent/caregiver on our front lawn area by our front doors (exit #1).  At the 9:08am bell, students should line up in their classes and be ready to enter the building when our staff come to greet them at 9:10am.  These routines (and others) will be discussed at the orientation on August 30).

Grade 1-3

At 9:08am, students in Grade 1 should gather near the primary doors (Exit #2, overlooking the large pavement area), followed by Grade 2 students and finally Grade 3 students.

At 9:10am, primary teachers will invite these students into the school and accompany them into the school gym.  Guided by our staff, Grade 1 students will sit together, followed by Grade 2 students and then Grade 3 students.  Once organized and settled, our staff will call out their classes, then accompany their new class to their classroom.

Grade 4-6 (regular)

At 9:08 am, students in Grade 4 should gather closest to the junior doors (exit 3, overlooking the playscape), followed by Grade 5 students, and finally grade 6 students.

At 9:10am, Grade 4-6 teachers will invite these students into the building, first starting with Grade 4 students.  As they enter into the junior hall, students will be informed about which class/teacher they have and make their way directly to the classroom.  Once the Grade 4 students are sorted, Grade 5 students will be invited into the school, and when they are sorted, Grade 6 students will be invited in.

Grade 7 & 8

Grade 7 & 8 students are asked to arrive by 9:15am.  Once the Grade 4-6 regular program students are sorted, at approximately 9:15am, the grade 7 students will be invited in, followed by the grade 8 students.  They will be accompanied by the teachers to their new classrooms.

Grade 4-6 Gifted

At 9:08 am, students in the gifted program (all grades) should gather near Exit 4 (this exit is behind the school, nearest the “gym entry”, and towards Portable 4 & 5).  Students in grade 4 gifted should gather closest to Exit 4, followed by Grade 5 students (toward the playscape) and then the Grade 6 students (toward the playscape).

At 9:10am, teachers of our gifted classes will organize their classes by calling out names and then accompany their students to the classrooms.

In the case of inclement weather, the staff will organize their classes indoors in the library and hallway just outside of the library

The following routines/rules and protocols (and many others) will be reviewed in class with your child by their teacher. 

COVID-19 Health and Safety Measures and Practices

Screening – Students and staff should continue to do a daily self-assessment before entering school or Board buildings and stay home if they are sick. An updated screening tool from the Ministry and will be shared as soon as it is available. 

Masks – The TDSB continues to be a mask-friendly environment inclusive of all staff, students and visitors. While the Ministry of Education and public health officials are not mandating the use of masks, Toronto Public Health strongly recommends wearing a well-fitting, high quality mask, especially in indoor public settings. The TDSB will continue to provide medical masks for staff and students who request them.

Testing – Rapid Antigen Test kits will continue to be available to both staff and students and are to be provided to staff/students upon their request (parents request test kits on behalf of their children by communicating with the classroom teacher or with Mr. Mah).

Cohorting – cohorting of classes is no longer required for health and safety reasons.

Ventilation – We have at least one TDSB approved air purification machine in every occupied classroom.  Our caretakers will continue to increase ventilation in our school via our mechanical systems by adjusting the air exchanges and running them before and after class as well as increase natural ventilation by opening windows for short periods of time.

Enhanced Cleaning – Caretaking staff will continue to perform routine cleaning of general facilities throughout the day and enhanced cleaning of high touch surfaces such as light switches, handrails, door handles, etc.

Before School/Arriving in the Morning

We will have staff to supervise Gifted students who are dropped off by a TDSB bus in the morning.  These students should remain on the front lawn area until 8:55am, then make their way to the school yard at that time.

Staff supervise the school yard starting at 8:55am, Grade 1-8 students may be dropped off at that time.  

Please note, due to the structure of our staff supervision schedule, the playscapes (including the kindergarten playscape) and the field/track are closed before school.

Riding a bicycle, scooter, skateboard etc. to school is a healthy practice and we encourage it!  Due to safety reasons, once students (and adults) are on our property, we ask that bicycles, scooters, rollerblades, skateboards (etc) are dismounted and walked to our bicycle racks (to be locked up).  Please do not ride these items on our school grounds during school hours.

If you are dropping off your child from your car, you may do so in our parking lot near the yellow drop-off sign.  Please treat this as a “kiss-and-ride” drop off.  If you wish to park and walk your child onto our property, we ask that you find street parking (to ensure that our staff, including facility staff, have spots to park their vehicles).

If you drop off your child from our Delhi Ave entrance (and are parking or stopping your car), please ensure you legally park/stop your vehicle in the same direction as the flow of traffic.  Likewise, please ensure you do not park or stop in the intersection of Delhi and Northmount for the safety of students and parents crossing the street.

In the case of inclement weather, the principal (or designate) will decide on whether the conditions warrant students waiting indoors for the day to start (and for recesses).  On rainy days, please send your child to school with raingear.

Personal Devices
(including Smart/cell phones)

In general, when your child enters our school, their phone (if they have one) should be placed on silent.  Phones should not be accessed until they are dismissed to leave the school (lunch or end of day).  Phones are not to be used at recess on our property. 

No students (parents and visitors included) should be taking photographs or video of anyone on our school grounds (e.g., before or after school), nor while indoors (unless specifically permitted by the classroom teacher for academic purposes).  Parents will be receiving an electronic consent form (amongst other forms) regarding photos and recordings.

Your child’s teacher may allow their students to use their personal devices during class time, this is a case-by-case situation.

Should your child need to contact you using their device, they should get permission from their teacher.  Otherwise, students may use the phone in the main office to contact their parent/caregiver.

Students may use their own personal devices at school (tablets, notebooks, laptops), particularly when guided by their teacher.  Please note, the school and TDSB will not be responsible for the care for these devices, nor any damage or if the device goes missing – the responsibility is of the student, so please be mindful of this stipulation.

Student Transportation
(for students in the gifted program)

As the school year begins, the TDSB transportation department will once again implement a phased-in start for student transportation to provide a more consistent service for families and to ensure that students with special education needs are prioritized to receive bus service beginning the first week of school. Both the TDSB and TCDSB will be following this phased-in start. 

  • From September 7 to 9 –students with special education needs (excluding those in the gifted program) who travel to school on minibuses, minivans, taxis and wheelchair-accessible vehicles will be provided with student transportation.
  • From September 7 to 9 – students at relocation schools, specific buses for new Canadians, The Island Public school, and those at Wandering Spirit will also be provided with transportation services.  
  • From September 12 – all other eligible students (including students in the SHPS gifted program for grade 4 and 5 only) will be provided with student transportation unless there are concerns with driver availability

Empty Seat Policy

  • Applications for empty seats can be submitted to the school at any time but Transportation staff will not start allocating seats until mid October once most eligible students have been assigned to bus routes. 
  • Our Grade 6 Gifted teachers will hand out hard copies of the application form during the first week of school, please have your child return these forms to the main office

Lunch

We encourage students to go home for lunch (if possible).  For those who remain at school, they will be supervised while they eat and during lunch recess.  Students who go home for lunch are asked to return close to the 12:53pm bell.

During the first week of school, teachers will record which students stay, and which go home for lunch.  If your child stays for lunch, then they will continue to for the rest of the year (and vice versa for students who go home for lunch).  If there is a change to this routine, please send a written & signed note to your child’s teacher in the morning indicating the change. 

Students will eat from 11:55am to 12:10pm.  While most students will eat in the gym, some classes eat in their classrooms (due to limits in space of our gym), this routine will be explained by the classroom teachers.   Students who need a few more minutes to finish their meal will be able to continue to eat as others prepare to go out for recess. Students will then be dismissed orderly for recess from 12:10pm to 12:53pm.

Recesses

Safety, inclusion, fair-play and fun, while getting fresh air and a break from the classroom, is the goal of recess.

Students in Grades 1-3 may use the playscape during the morning/am recess, and students in grades 4-8 may use the playscape during the pm recess.  Students in grade 1-8 may use the playscape at lunch.

Students are expected to encourage (and allow) others to play with them (e.g., in their organized games at recess), they are not to exclude others*. 

Sometimes, we find that some students might not play by the rules, or there is a disagreement.

If a student is not playing by the rules of the game, then they should be given a chance after given an explanation about how to “play properly”.  If the same student then continues to not play by the rules, this particular student may be asked to leave the game.  If there’s a disagreement, students can “re-play” the point/play, use their words to solve the disagreement, choose to play a different game (or with others) or seek the help of a staff member to resolve the situation.

*Please note, we have a long standing “plus or minus one grade” rule during recess.  Students may only play games/sports with students in the same grade or one grade older or one grade younger. This is a rule based on the safety for students.  Of course, students of any grade can speak with students of any grade at our school during recess (this rule applies to physical games/sports etc).

Hard (official) baseballs, softballs (the large ‘hard’ baseball-like balls), hockey sticks, and baseball bats are NOT permitted during recess for safety reasons.  Teachers may permit the use of these items during PE and DPA periods, but they are not allowed to be used at our school at recess or before/after school.

To be continued

More specific classroom-based routines, expectations and information will be shared by your child’s teacher with your child/you early during our school year.

Thank you for reading this memo/email!  We hope with this information, and with more to come, your child will have a smooth start to the 2022-2023 school year.

Looking forward to seeing your child succeed,

Mr. B. Mah

Principal,
Summit Heights PS.