Parent Newsletter

Macdonald Drive Junior High, April 2022

Dates to Remember

  • April 14 - Last day before Easter Break, dismissal is 1 hour early at 1:12pm
  • April 15-24 - Easter Break
  • April 25 - School starts again after Easter Break, Day 1
  • May 26 - Grade 9 Carnival - Thursday, 6:30-9:00.

Important Info

Early Dismissal for Easter!

On Thursday, April 14, we will be dismissing one hour early. Students will be dismissed at 1:12 PM with regular bus runs at that time. The Easter break will run from Friday, April 15 to Sunday, April 24. Classes will resume on Monday, April 25, and it will be Day 1 on the schedule.

Changes to COVID-19 Rapid Antigen Self-Testing Program

The following is a memorandum from Dr Janice Fitzgerald regarding changes to COVID-19 Rapid Antigen Self-Testing Program.


Please also read the attached information on the Rapid Testing Program for Students and Staff at Schools


Rapid Test Kits are available. Please contact the office.


To: Students and Staff at K-12 Schools

From: Dr. Janice Fitzgerald, Chief Medical Officer of Health

Subject: Changes to COVID-19 Rapid Antigen Self-Testing Program

Date: March 29, 2022


Based on emerging evidence regarding rapid antigen self-testing for COVID-19 (in the context of Omicron), we are recommending two changes to our existing protocols:


  1. The swab collection site will change from a nasal swab to a throat, cheeks, and nasal swab. Rapid antigen tests can more reliably detect infectious cases of the Omicron variant using combined oral-nasal samples as viral load peaks first in the throat and then in the nose. Please follow the instructions for the new throat, cheek and nasal swab collection technique here. We have also updated your test instruction sheets to reflect this new method (enclosed with the rapid tests).
  2. Participation in this program is not required for individuals who have recently had a COVID-19 infection. Current evidence suggests that reinfection is unlikely in the three months following an infection with Omicron. Therefore, individuals are not required to test or self-isolate for 90 days from symptom onset or the positive test date.

You are encouraged to share your rapid tests with others who require testing if you have extra kits available at home (for example, friends and family members).


Please do not waste rapid tests. These are a valuable and limited resource and should be used wisely and only when testing is indicated. If you are unsure of your testing requirements, please complete the online COVID-19 Assessment and Test Reporting tool at covidassessment.nlchi.nl.ca for direction.

PMF Survey Deadline Extended

As COVID continues to impact our school communities we have decided to extend the deadline for School Development survey completion.


The surveys will now close on Wednesday, April 13. https://www.research.net/r/SDFAMILY2122EN.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact patriciaemberley@gov.nl.ca.

General Updates

  • Respect in the community
    Owners of local restaurants and other businesses close to the school have been reporting that some of our students are using inappropriate language and being disrespectful towards their employees and other members in the community. Please speak to your child about their behaviour when visiting these places. We have advised the vendors to contact the RNC when they are concerned about safety.

  • Crosswalks
    Please remind your child to use the crosswalks during lunch, especially while crossing Macdonald Drive.

  • Help for Ukraine
    We would like to thank everyone who donated money to Ukraine. We have collected a donation of $1000 for the Red Cross!

  • Mask Wearing
    As you may have heard, mask wearing is mandatory in schools until at least Easter break. We will keep you posted if there are any changes to this directive from Public Health.

  • New Staff Welcome
    We would like to welcome Ms. Kerri Bungay and Ms. Randelle Roberts to our school. Ms. Bungay has been hired for the remainder of the school year to replace Ms. Laura Clemens-Brenton, and Ms. Roberts will be replacing Ms. Andrea Tilley.

Macdonald Drive Tutor Mentoring Program (MDTMP)

We are very happy to announce that this Spring, Macdonald Drive Junior High will be partnering with Gonzaga High School to provide a wonderful learning opportunity to our students. The ‘Tutoring for Tuition’ program allows high achieving, trained tutors from Gonzaga to work with MDJH students who would benefit from extra support and instruction. Students will receive instruction/tutoring in a supervised setting, and MDJH and Gonzaga staff will work to create the most effective pairings of student and tutor. This program is free for participants.


These sessions will tentatively take place at Gonzaga High School on Thursdays from 3:00 to 4:00 (with the possibility of additional sessions being added if requested). There will be no session on Thursday, April 14, as that is the last day before Easter Break, but then we will proceed every Thursday after the Easter Break up to and including Thursday, June 16. Parents/Guardians would be responsible for transporting their child(ren) to Gonzaga.


There will be an Orientation/Meet-and-Greet Session on Thursday, April 7, at Gonzaga. If you are interested in this opportunity, or have questions about the program, please email colettequann@nlesd.ca.


Tutoring can be for any subject! The tutors are equipped for just about anything! Some examples include:


  • math tutoring
  • multiplication facts review
  • fundamental math skills
  • word problems
  • anything language based - maybe even just spend the time reading
  • writing skills
  • study skills and organization
  • whatever the students need!!



Our Gonzaga student tutors are super stoked about this! We have some super-sweet, competent students who are very excited about the possibilities!

PowerSchool Login

Keep up to date with student attendance and marks! If you need your PowerSchool password, please contact the main office at (709) 753-8240.

What's Been Going On

Congratulations to the Participants of the “No Rules Writing Challenge”

During February, we held a writing challenge for MDJH students and put out a call for short submissions in any format.


Millie Janes, Abby Janes, Abigail Penney, Lanre Oluseun, Hannah Cameron, Eleanor Murray, Isabelle Green and Dylan Whitten all submitted original work. Dylan claimed first place with his entry “The Cleaveland Worm”.


The committee members were very impressed with the range of creativity, voice and style. Special thank you to Finn Stanley for the idea and student leadership!

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Coming Up...

School Leaving Carnival for Grade 9s

This year, MDJH will be hosting its Carnival on May 26, from 6:30 – 9:00 PM. All grade 9 students are invited to attend, as it will be one of the last times to come together as the senior class of MDJH.


To keep costs at a minimum, we will be looking for the donation of small prizes. If you would like to donate an item, feel free to drop it off at the office. Items that have been donated have included: gift certificates, movie passes, basketballs, caps, etc.


To help offset the costs, we are asking that each student bring in $20.00. If there are any concerns please let the office know.


Please see the attached for more information and the permission form that needs to be returned.


We are also looking for parents of Grade 8 students to volunteer to help supervise this event. In anticipation of your son/ daughter's participation next year, we thought it would be fitting for Grade 8 parents to participate. If you are able to volunteer for this event, please contact your son/daughter’s Homeroom teacher to let them know!

Summer Splash! 50/50 Draw!

Next month, we will be rolling out our second fundraiser for the school year. It is a 50/50 draw for Summer Splash Cash! The maximum Grand Prize could be a whopping $10,000! Tickets will be released in May, are $2 each, and the winner will be drawn on June 9. All proceeds will be used to add to our new outdoor classrooms and for technology in the school.


Students will be given a booklet of 10 tickets, contact the office for extras. We are offering a top seller’s prize - a $200.00 gift card from Best Buy! Sell your tickets and bring them back to the school early because your name will go into a weekly draw for gift card prizes. The earlier your tickets are back, the more chances you will have to win AND there will be ice cream treats for the top selling class! The ticket sale deadline is June 9, so please return any unsold tickets by then.


If you would like to make a monetary donation instead of selling tickets, that would be warmly welcomed.


We want to thank you for your help with this fundraiser and for all your wonderful support.

50 Year Celebration

September 2022 marks the 50th Anniversary of MDJH. We are planning a year full of events. In September, we will open the 25th anniversary time capsule and reveal its contents. In October, we are planning an Open House with MDE.

Please sign up here and stay tuned to find out what else is happening. By filling out this form, you will be added to a mailing list to receive updates.

If you know of any past alumni who would like to take part in our celebrations, please send them the link to sign up for updates.

At this time, we are asking for any past graduates/teachers/parents of MDJH to send along their contact information and a little info on where they are now and what they have been doing.

Other Info

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Goodbye Interns!

Goodbye to our three wonderful interns - Mr. Liam Kelly, was with Ms. G. Kelly, Mr. David Martin was with Ms. E Mills, and Mr. Michael O'Keefe was with Ms. D. Mills-Kilfoil. All are English majors and all are alumni of Macdonald Drive Junior High. Well done - thanks for all your work!
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Lost and Found

See something that you think (or know) belongs to a student in your home? Ask them to drop by the clothing rack outside the office! Smaller items (keys, glasses, headphones/earbuds) are kept inside the office itself. Please ask one of the secretaries if you are missing something.


All unclaimed items will be donated to charity in the near future.

Student Council News

Treat for your Peep! (BOGO Event)

The MDJH student council is selling candy to be delivered to homerooms Thursday, April 14. And it's BOGO! Buy 1 for $1, and get 1 free. One for yourself and one for your peep!


April 14 will also be Easter accessory day. Students and staff are encouraged to wear their best Easter swag.

School Clothing Order

Orders have arrived and been given out to students. This was the last clothing order for this year.

Grade 9 Baby Picture Slideshow

As part of our grade 9 leaving celebrations, we would like to show a slideshow of all of our grade 9 students and how much they have grown. We will display each student’s grade 9 school picture (we have copies of that) and a picture from you of them as a baby, (toddler or early school years is fine as well). Please select one picture only to email to colettequann@nlesd.ca.

2020-2021 Extra Yearbooks Available

We have received an extra shipment of 2020-2021 yearbooks. If you did not order, and are interested in purchasing one, please contact colettequann@nlesd.ca

Attention: Coaches and Parents Yearbook Photos

Any student, parent, or coach from our school can submit group photos for the yearbook. Please email a picture to colettequann@nlesd.ca. If you send a picture from your phone, please be sure to select the option “actual size” to ensure good quality when uploading to the yearbook site.

Celebrate Student Success

We want to acknowledge and celebrate the accomplishments of the students of MDJH. We have a wall of celebration where we place a certificate of acknowledgement highlighting participation and success in a variety of activities.


Please let us know if your child has participated in any plays, musicals or has been on a team that has won a title or has been recognized in any individual competition.


We need your help with this. Please let us know, so we can proudly display this on our wall. Please email colettequann@nlesd.ca with Celebrate YOUR CHILD’S NAME in the subject line.

MDJH Music

Updates from the Music Department

28-Day Challenge Winner

Students were challenged to practice their instruments for 10 minutes a day, every day, for 28 days. The names of students who completed all 28 days were put into a prize draw for a $50.00 gift card of their choice. Congratulations to our 28-Day Challenge Winner, Millie Janes in 7-6, who received a $50.00 Indigo gift card.


We're on Twitter!

See what our music students are up to, both inside and outside the band room. Follow us on Twitter @mdjhmusic.


April Band Schedule

Check out the monthly music schedule https://mdjh.info/band-schedule/

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MDJH Sports

Grade 7 Girls Basketball

The Grade 7 Girls Basketball team won the Grade 7 “A” Provincial Banner in March! They beat Mobile in the final 40-20 and were great representatives of the school.