Together in Education Family Update
Week of April 6-10
Dear Lancaster Families,
Your Lancaster staff has been working hard this past week to set up on-line classrooms, learn new platforms, collaborate with and share with colleagues, and determine the next best steps to engage students in some learning at home. A lot of new learning is happening which is exciting and also requires endless digging into resources and building our capacity as educators as we recreate, enhance, and juggle a new role as educators. We also know that families at home will be juggling many changes and new learning as we all settle into a new normal and discover different ways to shape our days through this experience. We have much appreciation for the challenges this can present and share with you some of those same realities in our homes. I encourage all of us to offer grace and patience to ourselves and to others as we understand that everyone is trying their best in this very complex time. Navigating remote learning will be an ongoing process and we will continue to grow together.
We extend this same appreciation and gratitude to the senior staff and various departments at the LDSB as they guide us through this new path. We also have parents who are currently working as essential workers and front line staff. We thank them for all that they are doing both locally in their current roles, in their homes, and perhaps even globally as they reach out in helping ways.
As we head into this week a reminder to families to check school messenger and classroom platforms to help your child keep in communication and contact with the learning. We miss you, and we miss our students. Please see in this newsletter instructions about how to join a Google classroom and access Google Read and Write. We have also included a staff contact list for any families who still need to connect with staff, including Ms.Fox firstname.lastname@example.org or Ms. Moore. email@example.com
We all look forward to getting back to routine and to those we love, but for now, it is imperative that we all do our part in keeping our physical distance to help stop the spread of COVID19. It is difficult for kids to understand, however, it is a necessity at this time to follow the advice of health officials. Although heartbreaking, please do not let your children congregate, have playdates, or stop at playgrounds to play - including the Lancaster playground, basketball hoops, and soccer fields. Walkthrough access is permitted.
Learning is always a priority for our students, however, we also recognize that the COVID-19 situation is a stressful time for families and children/youth. The personal and mental well-being of our students remains our top priority and we understand that focusing on your family must be a priority. Please access the mental health supports that are offered in this newsletter, on the LDSB website, and through our school Twitter account.
As parents and family members, the best thing you can do at this time is maintain communication with your children and be patient and understanding. Try and focus on establishing a regular, but relaxed, routine. While it's important for children to keep learning, in these exceptional times there is no expectation that a "normal" school day be replicated at home. We recognize that each family situation is unique and that each family will determine what works best for them as we move forward. Take advantage of new opportunities to connect with your child during the day. Watch for those natural moments when you can just be together and follow your child’s lead. Providing your child with reassurance and calm during this time will prepare their minds and bodies to engage in learning when the time is right.
Take good care : )
Your leaders in learning,
Lani Fox and Carrie Moore
See the latest letter from Limestone's Director, Deb Rantz, by clicking this button
PARENT COUNCIL MESSAGE
Dear Lancaster Parents,
I hope this message finds you in the best of health and spirits. I wanted to reach out to you during these challenging times and wish everyone sound health, resilience and patience. Please remember that we are together in this, and I am confident that slowly but surely, we will get through this. Stay safe, stay home except for essential needs, but use technology to stay in touch with your loved ones.
I understand that this has also been an extremely difficult period for our amazing teachers as they all eagerly wait to be amongst their students again. I am thankful to all of them for keeping us up to date with online learning resources. Remote learning using various platforms is kicking off today. I think it’s a great initiative and I am sure all the students are very much looking forward to it.
Please remeber that Parents Council is your voice, please feel free to reach out to us if you have any suggestions or If we could be of help in anyway.
Chair, Parents Council LDPS
SCHOOL ANNOUNCEMENT BIRTHDAY MESSAGES!
FOOD BANK CONTRIBUTIONS
We have been focusing as a staff on looking at the opportunities this time will present both in our work life, home life and our perspective on the world. One way that you can make a difference is by reaching out to others in your life. Also, as you know, during this time there is a greater need to help those community members who are in more dire circumstances. We encourage families to purchase one or two extra items of non perishable groceries and place them in one of the Food Bank bins at your local grocery store during your next grocery run. Please participate if you are able. During this time, your donation can make a large difference in our community as we come together and support one another. As this situation continues, our Food Bank services will be the difference that helps keep many children and families fed and a little safer.
LANCASTER DRIVE STAFF CONTACT PAGE
See below contact information for Lancaster staff. This is a good way to make contact if your child’s teacher was not able to connect in another way. Teachers may direct you to their preferred form of contact through another learning platform.
PRIMARY GRADES K-3
Karen Heagle-McQuillan/Lori Farelley JK/SK
Jackie McCullough/Jill Elliot-Kish JK/SK
Lindsay Dowker/Maria McDougall SK/1
Michelle Sidlauskas Gr. 1
Kelly Boriotis Gr. 2
Mary Ann Jarbeau Gr. 2
Linda Powers DAP
Nathan Bruder Gr. 3
Leah Dowdell Gr. 3
Virginia Sheriff/Michelle Kenyon Gr. 3/4
Lisa Walsh P/J Core French
JUNIOR GRADES 4-6
Virginia Sheriff/Michelle Kenyon Gr. 3/4
Jen Hamilton/Sandra Short-Hawley Gr. 4/5
Cindy Greenlees Gr. 5
Connect on Google Classroom
Catherine Dudley Gr. 5/6
Erik Vreeken Gr. 6
Lisa Walsh P/J Core French
Kelly Take J/I Core French
Lindsay Dowker Music
INTERMEDIATE GRADES 7-8
Deb Cancian Gr. 6/7
Cara Metzger Gr. 7/8
Diane Smith Gr. 8
Kelly Take Core French
Lindsay Dowker Music
Lani Fox, Principal
Carrie Moore, VP/SST
Donna Jackson, Office Manager
School Communication Tools - Reminders for Families
Our Board and school use several electronic tools to help communicate need-to-know information to families in a timely and efficient way. The tools are part of the SchoolMessenger app which allows us to share important school information with families via text, phone or email message. Registered parents/guardians receive these messages through contact information that is collected in our student information system.
Parents/guardians may choose how to receive these alerts by text message, email or phone call. The easiest way to have access to all these tools is to set up a SchoolMessenger account. We encourage you to create a SchoolMessenger account on your desktop, laptop, tablet and/or download the SchoolMessenger app. While an account is not required to use these new tools, it will allow you to review your contact information and communication preferences, and it stores all of your messages in one place.
Learn how to:
- Set up a SchoolMessenger App account: set up your account, review your contact information and communication preferences, join teacher-instant messaging groups, and view all your alerts and messages in one place. Watch the video tutorial.
- Use the Communicate broadcast tool: choose how you will receive alerts including how to opt-in for text messaging. Watch the video tutorial.
- Use the Board mobile app: how to choose your schools, see your messages and report and review student absences. Watch the video tutorial.
Subscribe to school calendars: receive email alerts or download calendars or individual events to your personal calendar
Justin Trudeau Answers Kid’s Questions about COVID-19
Please follow the link to the Ministry of Education Learn at home resource page
Login Change for Student Accounts Office 365 & Google Suite
Please note there is a login change for Office 365 and Google Suite web services affecting myo365.limestone.on.ca and docs.gapps.limestone.on.ca .
Students will need to use their full email address for the username (e.g. firstname.lastname@example.org), then your Active Directory password for the password in order to login.
See resources here for supporting your child's mental health