Panther Peek @ the Week
Week of 06/09/2021
Welcome Back Panthers!
Let me be the first to welcome back all of our Perth Road Panthers and extend a warm welcome to our new students! We are so excited for the start of the school year and can't wait to see you next week. Staff have been busy arranging and organizing their classrooms and the school has been cleaned and is shining! We are ready to go on Tuesday September 7th!
At this time I would like to highlight some important updates, some of which you may already be aware.
- Students will return to in-person learning daily for the full school day. Elementary school students in Kindergarten through Grade 8 will remain in one cohort for the full day.
- The LDSB Virtual School is an option for students who learn best in the online environment, or require a virtual environment due to underlying medical conditions for themselves or their family members. We are currently finalizing plans for the virtual school based on information collected from families in June. If you would like more information on the LDSB Virtual School or changing your student’s model of learning for 2021-2022, please visit the board website.
Our school's ventilation system has been checked and all classrooms will have filtered, mechanical ventilation. In addition, all Kindergarten classrooms will also be equipped with HEPA units. Families can access information on school ventilation systems on the board website .
- All students and staff must continue to perform daily screening for COVID-19 symptoms prior to attending school or work. If ill or symptomatic, students and staff must remain home.
- Staff and students in Grades 1-12 will still be required to wear masks while indoors and on student transportation, and students in Kindergarten are encouraged and expected to wear masks. Masks are not currently required outdoors.
- Physical distancing will be encouraged as much as possible between cohorts.
- While the updated guidance indicates students do not need to stay within their cohort during recess and outdoors at this time, as a precaution, elementary cohorts will start the year on the yard in cohorts. Spacing will continue to be emphasized because masking outdoors is not required.
- Music, arts, physical education, field trips, assemblies, school nutrition programs and cafeteria use may gradually resume, with some modifications and in consultation with local public health.
- Extra-curricular and sport training will be permitted with some modifications and will roll out gradually starting with our Grade 7 & 8 students.
There is a new frequently asked questions section on the board website. If you have a question that you do not see included, please email us and we will try to get answers for you as quickly as possible. You may also wish to review the Return-to-School Guide for families to consolidate information and resources. We hope this will help you prepare your student(s) for back to school.
I know our Perth Road PS community will continue to work together to keep our schools safe. The best indicator for the health of our schools is the health of our community. Staff will be required to provide proof of full vaccination, a documented medical reason for not being vaccinated, or participate in rapid testing at least once per week. Provincial and local health authorities continue to urge all Ontarians ages 12 and up to obtain both vaccinations as soon as possible. They have indicated this is one of the best protections against COVID-19 and helps to protect those who are most vulnerable, or who are unable to be vaccinated. Based on statements from local public health authorities related to local vaccination rates and low case counts, we are well positioned to open schools safely.
Finally, classroom teachers were able to contact families today in order to let them know about their students' class placements. If you did not receive a phone call or an email, please check you junk mail or clutter as we are using a new emailing system and it may have been filed there.
As many of our families have experienced in the past, the school organization remains tentative and classes may shift or change during the first few weeks of school. This complicated annual process is often needed as we accommodate new registrations and movement in and out of our area. While we will limit movement to protect class cohorts as much as possible per COVID-19 guidelines, it may be required that some students move if we must add or remove classes based on actual student enrolment in a school.
As we prepare to start the school year, it is important for us to remind ourselves that schools are much more than buildings, and learning is much more than the curriculum. Schools are places for connecting with friends, building relationships and community, interacting with those who are different from us, and sharing a spirit of caring and collaboration. The mental health and well-being of our students, staff and families remains a priority even though our structures and building has changed.
Please reach out to our staff if you have questions, concerns or need support. We must continue to work together to ensure the safe and successful re-opening of our school.
More important information is shared below in this newsletter. Please review it carefully with your family. Looking forward to seeing our students soon~ 5 more sleeps Panthers!
Perth Road PS
Staggered Start for Kindergarten Students
Our Kindergarten students will be starting the school year following a staggered entry to support the teaching of health and safety protocols to youngest learners and to ensure a smooth transition into school. All SK students will start on Monday September 7th and will attend everyday. Half of our Junior Kindergarten Students will attend on the Wednesday and the other half on Thursday. All Kindergarten students will attend on Friday September 10th. This information has been shared directly with the families of our Kindergarten students.
These staggered days are an opportunity for staff to work with small groups of students on the following:
o Teach and orient students to safety practices; ex. hand hygiene, moving through the school, bathroom practices, etc.
o Initiating and building relationships to support a mentally healthy return to school
o Practice routines for outdoor learning; what to wear, using equipment / materials outdoors, etc.
If you have questions regarding the staggered entry, please contact the school.
Screening & school protocols: The province released a revised COVID-19 screening tool last week. All students and staff must screen daily before they come to school. If you have any symptoms of COVID-19, or are feeling ill at all, you must stay home. School-based protocols on what to do if students have symptoms of COVID-19 at school, return to school following a positive case or isolation, and when an outbreak is declared are being finalized by public health. These will be shared on the LDSB website as soon as they are available.
Message from the PRPS Office
The school office is open between 8AM and 4PM. Please call or email if you need assistance with a matter. Access to the school for students and families, is by appointment only at this time. At your appointment you must wear a mask, use the hand sanitizer, sign in and indicate that you have self screened for symptoms of COVID-19.This is a busy time of year for us, and we thank you in advance for your patience and understanding.
Document Verification for New Registrations
Junior Kindergarten students and students new to Ontario schools need to provide some documentation to the school. Please plan on bringing the required documents to school on your child's first day. There will be a table set up by the front doors where we can confirm we have seen these documents.
Class placement information will be share in the next few days. Please don't call us~ we'll call you:) We are not accepting class placement requests at this time.
Medical Plans of Care & Medication at School
If your child requires special care for a medical condition or takes medication while at school, please notify the school's office so that the appropriate arrangements and paperwork can be completed or updated. If you have already informed the school of your child's medical condition, you will be contacted, if needed, to establish or update a Plan of Care for your child while at school.
If your child needs to take prescription medication while at school there are forms that need to be completed and returned to the school each year before the medication can be administered. Please click on the links to access those forms. Also, please check the expiry dates on all medications (ie. Epipens, Inhalers) to ensure they are current before sending them to school.
Please let us know if you have any questions. We are always happy to help clarify information. We look forward to having your students back in our classrooms and to seeing you all soon!
How can we get ready for school?
Students will keep all of their belongings in their work space. We recommend that you limit the amount of belongings brought to school each day. Students should bring:
- a mask (or a couple) and a bag to put the mask in during outdoor times. Public Health recommends that students use a fabric or paper bag or another alternative that does not create moisture. A fanny pack or something similar to carry masks when at recess and any other supplies parents may deem appropriate (small hand sanitizer, kleenex etc.).
- a litter-less lunch (all containers and packaging brought to school need to be taken home)
- a refillable water bottle (water fountains have been turned off)
- Indoor shoes are not required at this time. Physical education will take place outside initially. When we begin using the gym, proper footwear will be required.
- outdoor clothing (students could be outside for a significant amount of time each day. Ensuring proper outdoor clothing is essential (sweater, raincoat, boots, hat, extra socks etc.)
- Students are able to bring their own school supplies (pencil crayons, scissors, glue stick, etc.) but this is not required
- Students are able to bring their own device (Chromebook, tablet, etc,) but this is not required. (The school is not responsible for lost, stolen or damaged devices).
- Students should not bring toys or sports equipment from home.
How can families prepare?
Getting ready for this school year will be a little different:
- Provide your child(ren) with opportunities to wear a mask for gradually increasing amounts of time. Have your children try school related tasks such as reading with their mask on so that it feels familiar.
- Explain and practice what physical distancing means and looks like.
- Practice proper hand-washing and establish this as a routine. We are going to be washing our hands a lot at school!
- Allow yourself extra time in the mornings to assess your child for symptoms of COVID-19 and complete the screening checklist.
- Establish plans in advance, for picking up your child from school should they be unwell. Students will need to be picked up as soon as possible if they become ill while at school.
- Talk to your children about school and what will be the same and what may be different. Take a minute to view some posted videos on our website shared by our staff.
- Re-assure your child that the grownups (at home and at school) are working together to keep them safe. Do your best to share positive messaging about the challenges ahead and be mindful of your personal worries and concerns.
Reach out to other families to share ideas and strategies for preparing students for the new normal of school.
Access community resources to support your child's mental health and well-being or to access support for yourself. Our school team is ready to help you!
We are all in this together!
* Families who may require financial support to purchase items should contact Mrs. Croth via email to arrange.
Watch the video below for helpful tips to assist your child with transitioning back to school.
School Parking Lot & Bus Loading Zone
We continue to need your help. Since the safety of our students is a priority for all of us, parents are requested to use the Student Drop off & Pick up parking (to the right at the entrance) when driving children to and from school.
The school driveways and the bus loading zone in front of the school need to remain clear of traffic and parked cars.
Finally, if you are parking along Walsh Road, please be mindful when parking that the buses need room to navigate the narrow roadway. We would hate to see anyone’s vehicle get damaged by accident. Thanks again for your attention to this matter.
Please physically distance at all times when you are picking up your children.
Precautions & Requirements for a Safe School Start Up this Fall
Below is information about the precautions and requirements for our return to school this September. Ensuring the safety of all of our students and staff is our primary concern as we transition back to our classrooms.
Precautions we have taken:
Self screening of students and staff will take place before coming to school/work.
Masks are required for staff and students.
Hand washing practices will be taught and take place regularly.
Sanitizer will placed throughout the school.
Students will stay with their class cohort throughout the day.
An Isolation Room remains designated should a student exhibit symptoms.
Visitors are not permitted entry into the school. Drop offs and Pick ups will take place through the buzzer system.
Students are required to use a water bottle (labelled with their name), drinking from the fountain will not be permitted.
Enhanced cleaning protocols have been established.
A Log is kept of those entering the school.
Field trips and assemblies may occur with modifications and reduced attendance.
Masks are required for all students.
Family grouping will be seated together as much as possible.
A seating chart will be created.
For more information, please visit the Triboard Transportation Website.
Students will get off one bus at a time.
Students will be greeted by a staff member and make their way to their designated entrance. We are fortunate to have multiple doors that enter directly in to classrooms. The classroom teacher will meet them there.
Students be able to hang their coats in the hallways but will bring their backpack and lunch kit to their personal workspace. Teachers will share their plans for the storage of these materials (ie. backpacks hung on the back of chairs, individualized bins, etc.)
Hand Hygiene practices will occur when entering the building.
All classes will be in their classrooms at the end of the school day.
Students will be dismissed by classroom and move directly to buses or the designated student pick up/drop off area.
Dismissal will be staggered starting with the oldest students.
Recess (gr. 1-8)
Students will remain in their cohort (classroom)
Half the classes will go out for recess while the other half stay indoors for nutrition break, then they will switch, those that had nutrition break will go outdoors and those that were outside will come into the classrooms.
While outside the students will have a designated area to play in while remaining with their cohort. These areas will rotate weekly.
***Kindergarten classes will remain in their cohorts and have an alternate recesses schedule.
Seating Charts will be used throughout the school.
All non-essential furniture has been removed.
Plush toys and furniture has been removed.
The classroom will be set up so all students are facing one direction.
Classroom tools will be individualized (eg. pencils, scissors, glue, etc.). Students are able to bring their own and keep them in their designated workspace.
Students are able to bring their own device (ie. Chromebook, iPad)
- Visiting the school will be restricted.
- Access to the school will be by appointment only.
- Drop offs and pick ups will happen outside.
- Families should ring the buzzer located at the front doors of the school. Our Office Administrator, Mrs. Morris will be able to talk with you through the speaker to find out your needs and provide instructions as to how to proceed.
- Families can contact their child's teacher through their online classroom, phone or email.
What Happens if My Child is Sick?
- All students and staff must self-screen every day before attending school
- If a student or staff member is experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19, they must stay home and should seek testing and appropriate medical attention.
- If a student or staff member feels sick, or develops symptoms while at school, schools will follow the following protocol:
- Students or staff who develop COVID-19 symptoms will immediately be separated from others, and the family will be contacted to arrange pick-up.
- Staff and families will be directed to consult their health-care provider based on the information in the COVID-19 Screening Tool.
Please click on the link for information regarding returning to school, when a school has a positive test and when an outbreak is declared. We recognize that change of routine is often difficult and will work diligently to ensure that the transitions are smooth.
Mask Exemption Process
As per the Ministry of Education guidance document (COVID-19: Health, safety and operational guidance for schools (2021-2022), students in Grades 1 to 12 are required to wear masks indoors in school, including in hallways and during classes and on transportation beginning in September 2021. Students in kindergarten are encouraged but not required to wear a mask in indoor spaces. The Limestone District School Board recognizes that there are students with medical restrictions (severe breathing difficulties, unable to remove mask on their own, severe cognitive impairment, etc.) that may require the student to attend school without the use of a mask.
Families or students aged 18+ should submit any student mask exemption request to the site administrator at the start of the school year.
In accordance with the Ontario Human Rights Code, students who cannot comply with this requirement because of a disability or for another Code-based ground, may request an accommodation, which may include exemption from wearing a mask for some or all of the day.
To initiate an accommodation request, families should contact the school administration to complete the Mask Exemption request form, and submit it to the principal, along with evidence to support the request, which may include a note from a treating physician or other health-care practitioner confirming that a disability interferes with the student’s ability to wear a mask, or information already existing in the student’s Individualized Education Plan (IEP) or Ontario Student Record (OSR).
The principal will consult with the family or adult student in consideration of the request. This will be done on a case-by-case basis, and if accommodations are provided, the principal will inform all parties.
We STILL Need More Break Supervisors!
2021-2022 PRPS Staff
Principal- Allison Croth
Office Administrator- Heather Morris
Head Custodian- Josh Sauve
Evening Care Taker- Russ Elmer
JK/SK- Ms. Amanda Aylesworth, Pennie Hilliard
JK/SK- Ms. Amanda Burns, Tara Shire
JK/SK- Ms. Jessamyn Samson, Ms. Jackie Martin (filling in)
Grade 1- Mr. Jeff Lloyd
Grade 1/2- Ms. Madison Vezina
Grade 2- Mr. Steve Dobiech & Ms. Lindsey Brooks
Grade 3- Ms. Sarah Andre
Grade 3/4- Ms. Jannah Rines
Grade 4/5- Ms. Christina Aylesworth
Grade 5- Mr. Mike Depew
Grade 5/6- Ms. Kelly Graham
Grade 6/7- Mr. Brendon Robb
Grade 8- Mr. Scott Martin
Primary/Junior French- Mme. Jenny Hollinsworth
Junior/Intermediate French- M. Philippe LeBlanc
Student Support/Planning Time- Ms. Charlene Hendricks
Planning Time- Ms.Lindsey Brooks, Mr. Steve Dobiech