South Oaks School

A Great Place to Learn! Sept 2017

Principal's Message

Welcome back! I hope you all had an excellent summer. We had a beautiful summer in Manitoba! Our staff has been working hard to prepare for the start of school. We are looking forward to another great year together.

We are excited about a number of new initiatives in our school this year. This includes the addition of a counsellor and a social worker on our staff. Our counsellor is Susanne Funk and our social worker is Brigitte Hildebrand (who starts in October). We are also beginning the implementation of a positive school wide behaviour program. You will hear more about this as the year progresses and you will begin to see evidence of this in the school through signage, updated behaviour slips, citizenship awards, and a focus on character education.

We want to welcome Randy Fender and Carissa Lucier to our Phys. Ed department. They are each working half time to provide the high quality program that you have come to expect from us. We also welcome Cyndy Jones back to our Resource department! We are also reinstating our Reading Recovery lessons for grade 1 and continuing our Math support program for grade 1-4. Both of these initiatives will be run by Lisa Johnson. We also welcome Carolyn Enns back to grade 2! Elena Cornelson is a new teacher to South Oaks and she is teaching grade 3. We also welcome Carrie Reimer who will be teaching in grade 4 half time with Joanne Lefreniere. We also welcome Kathleen Johnson and Margaret Beaudry, who are new EA's at South Oaks. As well, we welcome Jen Reimer as she returns from a year away from our school. Otherwise, the rest of the staff should be familiar to you.

There is a lot of information for parents at the beginning of the year. Please let us know if you need help sorting it out. Please see our website for the current parent handbook and other information.

I look forward to a great year of learning together. Let's work together to make our school the best it can be for our awesome kids. They are worth all the effort.

Dale Martens


Dates to Remember:

Sept. 8, 11 - Kindergarten Staggered Entry

Sept. 15, 18 - "Strong Connections"

Sept. 21 - Picture Day - KDR 246, Grades 1-2

Sept. 22 - Picture Day - KDR 135, KR 135, Grade 3-4; 3/4HB

Sept. 27 - Assembly @ 9:15am

Sept. 28 - Terry Fox Run in A.M. for Grade 1-4's

*Pizza Days starting Friday, September 8th 2017 - Please refer to the website for the Pizza Days Schedule.*

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The HSD Parent Portal Information page is now available at

Stay connected and informed. The new HSD Parent Portal is a communications tool designed to enhance and increase parent/guardian involvement in the education of their children, by providing secure online access to their child’s student information.

The required Access ID, along with account setup instructions, will be sent to all eligible parents/guardians via email on Monday, Sept. 4, 2017. If you do not receive an email by Tuesday, Sept. 5, please contact your school office to request account setup assistance. You can also see our website for further details.

Strong Connections at South Oaks School

On Friday, September 15th and Monday, September 18th South Oaks will be implementing the Hanover School Division Strong Connections program with our grade 1-4 students. Strong Connections is designed to enhance the beginning of the year with each student. Strong Connections activities are not tests, but rather tasks to help teachers get to better know our students and how they learn in order to best plan for instruction early in the school year that will effectively address unique learning needs. The format for Strong Connections also provides an opportunity for teachers to extend and consolidate their understanding of each child through the one-on-one interview/assessment times, and help build a strong foundation for a positive relationship between the child and the teacher. For further information please see the blue or orange notes that were sent home earlier in this regard.

From the Health Nurse

Head Lice - As mentioned in the Parent Handbook, it is requested that children's heads be checked periodically. If at all suspicious, call the school immediately, so we can take necessary precautions to prevent the lice from spreading. If live lice are found, children must be kept out of school until treated and are gone. Remember that lice are not a cleanliness issue. Anyone can be in contact with lice, either at school, at a sports complex, or even trying on headgear in a store. If you have any questions or concerns, call the Public Health Nurse at 204-346-7013.

Terry Fox Run

The South Oaks 2017 Terry Fox Run will take place on Thursday, September 28th at 11:00am. Children in Grades 1-4 will join with the Green Valley students in a run around town. The route will be clearly marked and supervised. Our students will do a shorter run than the Green Valley students, and end on the South Oaks playground. If students want to contribute to the South Oaks Terry Fox Run Fund, they may bring a loonie or toonie to school before then. Cheques made out to the Terry Fox Foundation will be receipted by the Foundation.

Visiting the School

At South Oaks we value the presence of parents in our school, and want people to feel comfortable when they volunteer, or meet with a teacher. It is important, though, that adults report to the office when arriving at school. Visitors and Volunteers will be given their respective badges to wear around their necks. If picking up a child for an appointment, please again report to the office, and the secretary will inform the classroom teacher via the intercom. We want to keep our school safe for everyone, and reporting to the office both reduces classroom interruptions as well as enables staff members to be confident that an adult they may not recognize does, in fact, belong in the school. Similarly, please don't take offence if you are asked if we can be of help when meeting you in the hall - we just want to ensure everyone's safety.

No Child Without

South Oaks School is involved in the Canadian MedicAlert Foundation's No Child Without, a program that identifies personal medical conditions, allergies or special needs that emergency medical personnel should be aware of in crisis situations. There is no cost for students who attend South Oaks. If a child has a medical condition, allergy or is required to take medication on a regular basis, then s/he should be considered for this program. A child's MedicAlert identification can alert school staff, friends, coaches and others about the child's medical condition should an emergency occur.

MedicAlert membership:

* Gives emergency first responders immediate access to your child's medical information on their MedicAlert bracelet or necklet.

* Enables first responders to quickly obtain up to date medical information by means of the child's Electronic Health Record through the 24 Hour Emergency Hotline.

* Communicates with the parent or emergency contact upon activation of the Hotline.

* Allows free updates of the child's medical record as needed.

For further information, brochures are available in the office, or parents can go to To register a child parents will need a No Child Without brochure from the office. If a child is already part of the No Child Without program and there have been changes to their medical condition, medications or emergency contact information, call MedicAlert at 1-800-668-1507 to update the child's file.

Hanover Parent and Child Community Program

The Hanover Parent and Child Community Program would like to invite South Oaks School parents and their preschool children (1 to 4 years) to attend free parent-child programming. This program is being provided by the Hanover School Division to promote the development of school readiness skills. Children will have the opportunity to play, learn, create, sing and develop skills to prepare them for Kindergarten. Parents will be able to visit with other parents, learn new skills and participate in activities with their children. Snacks will be provided.

When: Monday and Wednesday mornings from 9:30-11:30a.m.. This will begin September 2017 and run into June 2018. Families can attend twice weekly or just drop in on the days that are suitable.

Where: Hut #1 South Oaks School

Notes: The program will follow the division school calendar in regards to school closure days. Also, indoor footwear should be brought along for the children.

Picture Days are Coming!

Thursday, September 21st and Friday, September 22nd are Picture Days at South Oaks:

Sept. 21 - Picture Day - KDR 246, Grades 1-2

Sept. 22 - Picture Day - KDR 135, KR 135, Grade 3-4; 3/4HB

This year Lifetouch is continuing with their photography program that has online ordering capabilities. There are various looks and backgrounds to choose from. For this prepay program, each student will receive a flyer, and parents have the ability to view and order from all of these different looks, online at Parents may order up to 48 hours after their child's picture day online, but the online site will open and be available to accept orders 2 weeks prior to the photo day. Orders can also be placed using the paper flyer on photo day. To do that, either exact cash payment or a cheque (payable to Lifetouch) must be inserted into the envelope portion of the flyer and given to the school photographer on the child's appropriate Picture Day.

For Tips on preparing for photo day visit if you have questions, please call Lifetouch at 1-866-457-8212.

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School Notes:

* During Strong Connections, parents are reminded that only half of the grade 1-4 students will be at school each day. Because some parents make arrangements for their child(ren) to regularly walk/bike to or from school with friends, alternate measures may need to be taken on those days; the students regularly accompanying the children may not be in school for Strong Connections on the same day.

* If students are late coming to school they are asked to first go to the office and report to the school secretary before heading to their classrooms. She is then able to change their attendance record for that morning or afternoon from "absent" to "tardy."

* The Accident Insurance brochures that were sent home on the First day of school are for round the clock insurance coverage. Hanover School Division has student insurance coverage for accidents that occur at school during school hours or at school sponsored events. If interested, parents should deal directly with the company. Money is not to be sent to the school.

* Due to Strong Connections, Pizza Day for the second week of school will be Thursday, September 14th, rather than Friday, September 15th.

* Cost for Pizza - $1.75 per slice / booklet of 12 coupons for $21.00 (Pizza schedule posted on South Oaks Website)

* Due to allergies and other eating issues which are carefully monitored, food is only eaten in classrooms at South Oaks. Further, food is not traded or shared with students in other classrooms. In this regard please also see the accompanying school letter as well as the newsletter from Southern Health.

* If your child is normally a bus student or walker, but you will be picking him/her up in a vehicle on a certain day, please send a note or call before 2:00pm., so s/he can be brought by the classroom teacher to the "pick-up exit." It is necessary that adequate time is given in order for the messages to get to the various classrooms in the building.

Religious Exercises and Instruction at South Oaks

The following outlines the practice of Religious Exercises and Religious Instruction at South Oaks for the 2017-2018 school year. Please see also the website for further information.

Religious Exercises, which consist of a reading from the Bible or a Bible Story book and the saying of the Lord's Prayer, will take place prior to the start of the school day in common areas for those students who parents have indicated they wish their children to attend. Students who opt out will be provided with character education.

Religious Instruction, which is called Discovery Time, will continue to take place in classrooms from October to November and January to March for those students whose parents have indicated they wish their children to attend.

Religious Exercises and Religious Instructions are distinct activities, and if parents wish their children to participate in one or both, they need to indicate their wishes by means of a signed note or notes indicating the child's name and grade level. Participation in both activities would require two signatures.

Meet the Teacher Night!

Please join us for our Meet the Teacher event on Tuesday, Sept. 5 from 4:30 - 6:00 pm. See you there!