Parent Newsletter

Macdonald Drive Junior High, September 2020

Dates to Remember

  • September 9 to November 27 - Term 1
  • October 12 - Thanksgiving Day
  • November 11 - Remembrance Day
  • November 30 to March 12 - Term 2
  • December 11 - Virtual Parent Teacher Meetings
  • December 23 to January 3 - Christmas Break
  • January 4 - School Reopens
  • April 2 to 11 - Easter Break
  • April 12 - School reopens
  • March 15 to June 24 - Term 3
  • May 24 - Victoria Day
  • June 24 - Last day for students

Back to school!

Welcome new students and returning students!

Check out our school web page for all the latest info on what is going on at MDJH!

Google Classroom

Many new procedures have been put in place to keep our staff and students safe. In order to cut down on paper handling, many teachers are putting all of their class materials online in Google Classroom. Please familiarize yourself with how this works. Parents can sign up to get notifications of due dates and teacher announcements... Just drop your child's subject teacher a note.

Network User Accounts

Students should all have their Google account information. In order to be able to log on to computers within the school, all students need to submit this Network Access User Form. If you have a printer at home, print it, fill it out, sign it, and return to the school - you can either take a picture or scan it and email to your homeroom teacher, or bring in the paper version.

Please see Ms. Power in the library to reset Google passwords.

MDJH Staff

You can find contact information for all staff members on our website under staff list.

We would also like to introduce you to our new staff members.

New teachers/New positions:

  • Terrilyn Pickett - Music/English
  • Cindy Hicks - Math
  • Laura Clemens-Brenton - Math Department Head
  • Phil Smith - Science Department Head
  • Tracy Reardon - PASS (Positive Action for Student Success)
  • Barbara Hancock - Special Services Department Head
  • Colette Quann - French Department Head
  • Shane Lambert - Math
  • Katie Breen - English Language Arts, Socials, Instructional Resource Teacher
  • Leslie Tucker - 0.50 Math
  • Courtney Petten - French/ English Language Arts
  • Erin Etchegary - Instructional Resource Teacher
  • Kara Langdon - Instructional Resource Teacher
  • Kerri Mallard - Instructional Resource Teacher

New Student Assistants:

  • Jody Evoy
  • Allan Chubbs

New Custodians

  • Amanda Horlick
  • Tom Winsor

Welcome new staff members! Have a great year everyone!

Updated Mask Protocols for K-12 Students

Based on the current low prevalence of COVID-19 in Newfoundland and Labrador, the province’s Chief Medical Officer of Health has advised that Grade K-6 students do not need to wear a mask while seated in classrooms, although students and staff may choose to wear them at their own discretion. Masks will be required on school buses for all riders. K-6 students who arrive by bus must wear their mask until they are seated in their classroom, at which point they can be removed and stored, after which hand hygiene can be completed. Masks are not required to be worn by K-6 students in common areas during the school day. K-6 students will also be required to put their masks on again in their classrooms at the end of the day prior to making their way to the bus. Mask wearing will not be required of K-6 students who do not take the bus.

The Provincial Government has recently announced Grade 7-12 students will be required to wear masks in all common areas of schools (including hallways), and if seated in classrooms where a one-metre physical distance (face-to-face) cannot be achieved. Public health guidelines indicate this will be closely monitored and if there is a change in epidemiology or evidence regarding COVID-19, the recommendation may change.

Please note, students are not required to wear masks if, for medical reasons, they cannot tolerate them.

Cafeteria reopening

Chartwells will begin cafeteria service on Monday, September 14, 2020.

NEW! Online ordering!

All ordering and payment will now be done online. To access online ordering parents/ guardians need to sign up for CafZone. The link is HERE. Orders will be accepted until 7:45 the morning of the order day. There will be NO in-person ordering. Students are now eating lunch in their classrooms and not the cafeteria so class reps will pick up class orders and bring them back to the Homeroom, where students can either eat their lunch with their cohort in class, or bring their lunch outside, weather permitting.

A copy of the cafeteria menu is available HERE.

Chartwells has new safety practices. Click HERE to view.

All information is available on our web page at Search Chartwells.

Please keep in mind that all of our local food establishments are operating (due Public Health restrictions) at 50% capacity.

MDJH Bus Announcement

We have completed our distribution of emails to individual families regarding transportation eligibility. If you have not received an individual email notifying you of your child’s transportation eligibility, then unfortunately you are not able to avail of service for the beginning of the school year. If you did receive an email and are not going to avail of the bus seat, please contact the school so we can reassign the seat to another student.

Fortunately, the School District was recently advised that some funding will be available to secure transportation service to the remaining “normally” eligible students (based on Government policy). In order to implement this additional service safely, it was not possible for the District to complete all of the required implementation steps in time for school opening. The goal is to have this additional service in place by the end of September.

The School District understands that this places some families in a difficult situation to start the school year. We ask for your patience during these very unusual times. Meanwhile, we hope that employers will understand parents’ circumstances and work with them in the spirit of accommodation and cooperation.

If you have any student transportation inquiries, please go to the School District’s Busing website and submit an Inquiry Form for your region (Avalon, Central, Labrador, Western).

Safety during Drop-off and Pick-up times

Due to congestion in the parking lot during commute times before and after school, we have instituted some policies to help ensure the safety of students and staff.

Please adhere to the following:

  • Before school and after school, students will use the Student Entrance EXCLUSIVELY. The entrance on the LEFT is for bus students. The entrance on the RIGHT is for vehicle drop offs and walkers.

  • Drivers please note that when entering the parking lot, there are TWO lanes off of Toronto Street:

    • The left lane, closest to the field, is to be used for student drop-off and pick-up. Students MUST be dropped off at the Student Entrance. They cannot be dropped off at or use the Main Office Entrance.

    • The right lane that runs alongside the sidewalk is for Busses, Staff, and Special Transportation ONLY.

  • School Busses have the right of way at all times.

    • At 2:20 ALL traffic must stop in ALL directions to allow the busses to exit the parking lot.

    • Please do not pull out in front of a bus under any circumstance.

    • Please ensure you stop at the STOP sign (at the end of drop-off area) to allow busses the right of way.

  • Cars coming off of Macdonald Drive onto Toronto Street and those coming down Toronto Street in the opposite direction should use the “zipper method” and allow one car at a time from each direction to enter the lanes. Busses still have the right of way.

  • Once in the Drop-off lane in front of the school, cars should move as far forward as possible in a line all the way up to the STOP sign. This procedure ensures that traffic is continuously moving efficiently, and alleviates a lot of the congestion on Toronto Street. Please do not stop directly in front of the door and let your child out.

  • Doors open at 7:45 am; dismissal is at 2:10 pm. Parents are asked to park their vehicles in the parking lot for MDJH or MDE if they arrive before the doors open or before students are dismissed. Parents should NOT park and wait in front of the bus lane or across either of the two crosswalks. This causes a lot of congestion.

  • When exiting the Drop-off lane, please wait for the car in front of you to move before you pull out. Do NOT pull out around other vehicles once you have picked up or dropped off your child.

  • Other

    • During the school day, including recess and lunch, students MUST use the Main Office Entrance (the Student Entrance is locked at this time).

    • Students are to use the crosswalks, and NOT cross in between busses.

    • Students are NOT to walk along the median or wait on the median to be picked up.

    • Students who have medical reasons (ie. using crutches) may also use the bus lane around the building to the Main Office Entrance.

    • There is no right turn onto the parking lot after the Drop-off lane STOP Sign.

Let’s all work together to ensure that MDJH is a safe place to be! Thanks for your cooperation.

Math Department News

The Math Problem of the Week will be resuming in a few weeks so keep your eyes peeled!

MDJH Music

Welcome Bach!

Ms. Comerford and Ms. Pickett are super excited to be back and we are ready to make some music! We would like to welcome our music intern, Mr. Cleary Maddigan, who will be working with our students until December.

Sign-up sheets for music ensembles have been placed in all Grade 7 homerooms. Students who sign up will receive a registration form which should be returned by Friday, September 18. For returning band, string, and choir students, registration forms are available outside the music room or on the MDJH music website.

For more information about the music program and available ensembles, check out our website and video at