Simcoe Alternative Secondary School

February Newsletter 2018

Principal Message

“What you do today can improve all your tomorrows" Ralph Marston

Welcome to 2018! Simcoe Alternative Secondary School prides itself on delivering creative, caring and quality education to all students. Our school goals include focusing on developing 21st Century Learning skills for students to be successful in a global world. Through effective practices, timely intervention, advocacy for students, and honoring traditions, we hope to develop well rounded students ready for their next step past secondary school.

We are happy to answer any questions regarding the Semester 2 report card. Please review the report card with your student, call the school to meet with your student’s teacher - all the teachers are happy to explain and update you with your student’s progress in greater detail.

As some of you may remember our school has participated in a review process with the SCDSB. The review report has now been received by our senior administrative team and there is a plan to work through the information that was collected.


February 1 & 2: PA Days
February 5: First day of Semester 2

February 5: Alt school intake day - No School

February 14: Valentines Day ♥

February 16: Report cards for Semester 2 goes home

February 19: Transition Planning Grade 8 & 9 - Special Education workshop

February 19: Family Day - No School
February 28: Pink Shirt Day
Big picture

Mark Your Calendars!

March 12-16: March Break - No School

March 17: St. Patrick's Day ♣

March 19: Accessing Support in the Community - Special Education workshop

March 22: Bradford Open House 6-7pm

March 30: Good Friday - No School

In the month of February campus' participating in Open Houses in the month of March will receive an email reminder with specific dates and times - based on the campus.

SAVE THE DATE! - June 28, 2018 - SASS Graduation - Ferndale Banquet Hall - Barrie ~ 6PM

School’s in for summer at the SCDSB

Are you and your child planning their courses for next school year? Looking for a way to create flexibility in their timetable and earn a credit? Consider summer school! Each year, the SCDSB offers a variety of summer programs to over 2,000 students. Summer school options include open, college and university level courses from Grades 9 to 12. Courses are offered in-person or online. Interested students can also travel and earn credits with the summer EduTravel program.

Summer school program details can be found on the Learning Centres website at Current SCDSB students should speak to their guidance counsellor for information and to register. Register now so that your summer school choices align with course selection for next year!

2017-2018 Secondary School Climate Survey

The Simcoe County District School Board (SCDSB) aims to provide a safe, supportive learning environment that supports all students in being successful. Between February 12 and March 5, all students in grades 9 to 12 will be asked to complete a confidential on-line survey about how they feel about their school. Teachers will supervise the class during the survey’s completion and can answer any questions or concerns your child may have.

This year, parents/guardians of students in grades 9 to 12 will also be asked to complete an anonymous on-line survey about how they feel about their child’s school.

The survey results will provide valuable feedback to staff related to our SCDSB Strategic Priorities and will help schools to develop and refine their School Action Plans.

Students, parents/guardians and staff will not be asked to provide their names and all responses will be combined to ensure confidentiality.

Similar to prior SCDSB school climate surveys, the questions cover a range of topics, such as:

• the overall tone of the school, often referred to as school climate;

• mental health and well-being;

• equity, diversity and inclusion;

• experiences of school safety and bullying or harassment; and

• questions to assist the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit in their Healthy Schools Initiative.

Student Survey

A sample version of the student survey is available at A paper copy of the student survey is also available in your school’s office. Please call your school if you have questions about how the student survey will be administered.


To complete the SCDSB 2017-2018 School Climate Survey for parents/guardians please go to and click on the link to the survey. If you do not have access to the internet and/or prefer to complete a paper version of the survey, copies of the parent/guardian survey are available in your school’s office. Questions about the parent/guardian survey can be directed to SCDSB’s Research and Decision Support Services team at

The information that is collected will be used to help guide our school in creating and maintaining safe and supportive learning environments for all students.

Thank you for your support!

Simcoe Alternative Secondary School

The Simcoe Alternative Secondary School offers students in Simcoe County who are experiencing difficulty in the regular school system the opportunity to earn credits in a smaller more intimate setting.

Main Office - Central Team

Laura-Lee Millard-Smith - Principal

Jo-Anne Wilton - Student Success Teacher

Christina Fernandez - Guidance/Special Education Teacher

Lyanne Rouse - Guidance/Special Education Teacher

Angela Davis - Senior Administrative Support

Ashley Vantol - Operations Assistant

SCDSB online tool for reporting bullying, drug use or vandalism

The SCDSB has an online Safe Schools Reporting Tool, which is available on our school website homepage,, as a Quick Access button. Students and parents can use this tool to submit a report online if they witness a student engaged in inappropriate behaviour such as bullying, drug use or vandalism. Students are still encouraged to speak to a trusted adult at school or home if they have any concerns. This form isn’t a substitute for having a discussion with your teacher or principal. Student safety and well-being is our top priority. For more information, visit

Walking to school is great for students

Walking to school is a great way for your child to get the 60 minutes of daily physical activity that’s needed for good mental and physical health. It also builds responsibility and independence, and helps them feel more connected to the community. More walkers means less traffic around our school, which helps keep students safe and improve outdoor air quality. Even one day a week of walking to school can make a big difference! To find out more about how to support active and safe routes to school through School Travel Planning, visit

Information provided by the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit

Register now for Night School (Semester Two) to complete high school, prepare for post-secondary education

Night school at the Barrie Learning Centre offers secondary school credits in a variety of subjects for students completing their Ontario Secondary School Diploma and for students who are preparing for post-secondary education. Subjects include math, english, chemistry, biology, physics, social science and history.

All night school courses are offered in a blended format where students attend in-class sessions once a week and complete the remainder of their assigned weekly work online. Students are welcome to access computer resources and meet with their classroom teacher during the office hours of their online night class. Learn more and register at:

OHIP+ provides free prescription drug coverage for children- Effective January 1, 2018

Beginning Jan. 1, 2018, the province will provide free prescription drug coverage for children and youth aged 24 and under, regardless of family income. Under OHIP+, Ontario children and youth will have access to over 4,400 medications and other drug products. Enrollment in OHIP+ will be automatic, based on age. There are no upfront costs, no co-payment and no annual deductible. Those who are eligible for OHIP+ will only need their health card number and a valid prescription from their doctor or nurse practitioner when they visit their pharmacist. For more information, visit:

Parents invited to information sessions about special education

The SCDSB is hosting a series of information sessions for parents and guardians to learn about special education in the SCDSB, and how to support students with special education needs.

Feb. 19

Transition Planning Grade 8 to 9

March 19

Accessing Supports in the Community

April 16

Understanding Alternative/Non-Academic IEP Goals

All sessions take place from 6 to 7 p.m. at the SCDSB Education Centre, located at 1170 Highway 26 in Midhurst. No registration required.

OSAP applications for 2018-19 now available

Going to college or university next year? The 2018-19 Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP) is now accepting applications for full-time students. Apply early to get an estimate of the amount of grants and loans you could receive. Apply now at:

Update your child’s immunization record

The Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit is required to keep up-to-date immunization records for all students who attend elementary or secondary school in the County of Simcoe and the District of Muskoka. Parents are responsible for reporting immunizations to the health unit each time their child receives a vaccine from their health care provider. The immunizations that the health unit requires records for include: diphtheria, tetanus, polio, measles, mumps, rubella, meningococcal, pertussis and varicella (chickenpox) for those born in 2010 or later.

It’s easy to update your child’s immunization status. Go to to update your child’s record or call Health Connection at 705-721-7520 or 1-877-721-7520 (toll free).

Information provided by the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit

Three healthy lifestyle changes you and your family can make today

More and more research is showing that the key to lifelong good health is lifestyle choices starting at a young age. Making simple changes in diet, exercise and stress management is key to achieving good mental and physical health for adults and children. Here are some easy tips to start making those changes today.

  • Drink more water – Your body is made up of about 60% water. A mere 5% drop in water levels in the body causes 25 to 30% loss of energy and can cause your metabolism to slow down. Some effects of dehydration include hunger, poor digestion, bloating, joint pain and high blood pressure. Make sure to drink a minimum of eight glasses of water each day. Kids should be drinking five to seven glasses of water each day.
  • Exercise daily – Did you know that Health Canada recommends adults get 150 minutes of exercise per week and kids should accumulate at least 60 minutes of exercise each day? If you want to live well and live longer, you must exercise. Studies show that even 10 minutes of exercise will make a difference!
  • Practice relaxation – The relationship between the mind and the body is strong. Providing yourself and your kids with a small amount of relaxation or “time-out” every day – even just 15 minutes – can improve your health dramatically. Try taking a yoga class to reduce stress and clear the mind and make sure to sleep at least seven hours per night (kids and teens should get more than that).

The YMCA of Simcoe/Muskoka offers many opportunities to get healthy as a family, For more information, please visit

Information provided by the YMCA of Simcoe/Muskoka (

Campus Information

Alliston Campus - South Zone

Lindsey Williamson - Teacher
Laura Hope - Teacher

Campus Communication: on Remind

Bradford Campus - South Zone

Angela Ferris - Teacher
Tanya Elizondo - Education Assistant

Campus Communication:
follow us on Facebook

Collingwood Campus - West Zone

Melissa Bader - Teacher
Angela Bosco - Teacher

Campus Communication:
follow us on Facebook

Essa Campus - Central Zone

Frank Cunsolo - Teacher
Shelly Horan - Educational Assistant

Innisfil Campus - Central Zone

Wes McCarthy - Teacher
Karen deBoer - Teacher

Campus Communication:
follow us on Facebook

Midland Campus - North Zone

Monika Milek-Hopkins - Teacher
Mary Jeffries - Teacher

Campus Communication:
rmd/at/midlandan or 289-204-1170 text: @midlandan on Remind

North Barrie Campus - Central Zone

Graham Sharpe - Teacher
Greg Taylor - Teacher
Nathan Beer - Teacher
Shelley Rose - Education Assistant

Campus Communication:
follow us on Facebook
289-217-0203 text: @e9a2g on Remind

Orillia Campus - North Zone

Sonja Hillis-Burnie - Teacher
Steve Willms - Teacher

Campus Communication:
follow us on Facebook

South Barrie Campus - Central Zone

Sean Rogers - Teacher
Samantha Williamson - Teacher
Jaclynn Fisher - Teacher
Helena Broad - Teacher

Campus Communication: on Remind

Simcoe Alternative Transportation by Campus

Big picture