James R. Henderson Start Up 2021

September 1st, 2021

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École James R. Henderson Start Up 2021

Dear Families,

Happy September! We are so excited to be back in the building preparing for our return to school! We are working as a staff to create a supportive plan for students and families to enter the new school year in a positive and safe way, under the health and safety guidelines provided by LDSB and the KFL&A Public Health Unit. We will plan to navigate unforeseen challenges as they come our way. Health and safety, along with wellness and mental health of our school community, is our number one priority as plan for our September start up. Please continue to make your own wellness and the wellness of your family a priority.

Below you will find some general information about what to expect on the first day of school (and beyond!) as well as information for families of children who require Medical Plans of Care, information for students who arrive and/or depart on a school bus, parent drop-off/pick up, COVID safety protocols and how to stay connected using a variety of communication tools used by the school and by the LDSB.

There is a lot of information here, but we also wanted to give everyone a sense of the excitement and positive energy that is already filling our hallways! Since we have not been able to do in-person Open Houses or family visits to the school, we have also included a virtual tour of our school....you may see some familiar faces along the way! We hope you enjoy it. Looking forward to seeing everyone in person soon; please do not hesitate to connect with the school should we be able to support your child's back to school transition...we are here to help :)


Mme Peart (Principal) and Ms. Reid (Vice Principal) and the James R. Henderson Staff

Welcome Back 2021

School Hours

Our school day schedule is as follows:

1st learning block - 9:15-10:55- 100 mins

10:55-11:35 - Recess & Nutrition Breaks

2nd learning block - 11:35 -1:15 - 100 mins

1:15 - 1:55 - Recess & Nutrition Breaks

3rd learning block - 1:55 -3:35 - 100 mins

Arriving/Departing on the Bus

Students who arrive/depart on the bus will need to follow the guidelines set out for wearing masks and sitting with family units in designated seats. This is not an option for students and they will need to listen carefully to their bus driver. Our buses will continue to disembark and load in the designated bus loading zone. The protocol below will be reviewed and tweaked as needed in the first week to ensure the safest and most efficient plan:

Arriving on the bus:

  • As students are welcomed off the bus by a staff member, they will walk directly to their designated class cohort line up spot (below). Staff will be present to support students in finding their line up and to supervise the lines. Kindergarten students and students with special needs will be accompanied by a staff member. Students will wait in their class cohort line until the bell rings at 9:15 and then be escorted by their teacher into the school directly to their classroom.
  • Class locations will be marked for easy identification
  • Students are asked to respect physical distancing guidelines

Departing on the bus:

  • Students will be escorted by their teacher to their bus line (each bus cohort will be physically distanced from the others) and supervised by a staff member as they wait to board the bus
  • Once buses have parked, individual bus cohorts will be called to board the bus to allow for distancing and departure in an organized manner
  • Kindergarten students will wait in a separate area, and board their bus prior to Grades 1-8

Parent Drop off & Pick Up

Grades 1-8

  • On the first day of school, we will have a large number of staff members outside, circulating to help students find their classroom teacher and line up: teacher's names will be posted on the walls of the school in front of where their students line up, and homeroom teachers will carry large, colourful signs to identify themselves and their grade level. Staff will be wearing yellow or orange vests, so that you can easily spot them: please don't hesitate to ask for help to help your child find their teacher and line.
  • Parents are asked to drop students off independently where possible. For younger/new students, parents may come on to the school yard to drop off/pick up their child, but must leave immediately and may not congregate. Social distancing will be expected.
  • Drop off as close to 9:15 as possible. Supervision does not begin until 8:55.
  • Students will walk directly to their class cohort line up: during the staggered entry, each classroom teacher will be at the line and additional staff will be visible (wearing yellow/orange vests) to help direct kids. All returning students should be aware of their teacher, as this was shared with June Report Cards; students who forget or are not sure need to go to a staff member and we will remind them and show them where to line up. First period teachers will meet their class at the line up at 9:15, and will do an orderly entry into the school, one cohort at a time, maintaining physical distancing.
  • Students with special education needs will be met and supervised by staff as per tradition
  • At the end of the day, bussed students will be walked to the bus line-ups by their teacher (until they are able to walk independently, with other bused students from their class). Students who walk or are picked up will walk with their teacher to their line up. Students will be dismissed at 3:35 when the bell rings.


  • During our "Staggered Entry" from Sept. 7-10, Kindergarten children who are walked or driven to school will be met at the front of the building next to the South parking lot by Kindergarten staff; children who arrive by bus will be escorted by staff to the Kindergarten yard.
  • After the first week of school, Kindergarten families are asked to walk their child down the sidewalk next to the South Parking Lot, where a staff member will greet each child and help them line up with their cohort. The end of this parking lot will be chained off, to allow us to have more room to line up our Kindergarten children with physical distancing. We request that families adhere to social distancing protocols.
  • At the end of the day, parents and caregivers will need to line up on the sidewalk next to the South Parking Lot, and pick up their child from the class cohort line.

Medical Plans of Care

This message is intended for the families of students with prevalent medical conditions where documentation is needed by the school:

Parents/guardians of students with known medical plans of care were mailed documents in July. If you are new to the school, or did not receive the package, to help us gather important medical information about your child, we ask that you select the correct Plan of Care form below, complete it and return it to the school as soon as possible. If you require us to administer daily medication, you will also need to complete the necessary paperwork for us to be able to do this. Completed forms can be faxed to 613-354-5632 or scanned and emailed to jrhen@limestone.on.ca

Daily medication will need to be dropped off by a parent/caregiver at the school and will be stored at the office. Students can not carry medications in their backpack, at any time. You may drop of labelled medication this week, or on the first day of school.

**Be sure to also include the supplementary forms if medication may need to be administered by school staff.

Health and safety of our kids is our first priority. Thank you for helping us stay informed on your child's medical conditions and Plan of Care.

Click below for necessary suplementary forms needed including:

Recess Cohorts

As we did last year, in order to be able to provide class cohorts with lots of space during outdoor recess, we are doing a "staggered" recess/nutrition break. Students in Grades 4-8 will go out for recess first, while students in Grades 1-3 will have their nutrition break. After a 20-minute recess/nutrition break, the students will switch. Class cohorts will use designated exterior doors, so that no one is exiting/entering at the same time. Classes will eventually rotate areas, but to start the year and ensure safety, classes will remain in their designated area during supervised outdoor breaks and learning time. Staff will practice this carefully during the smaller groupings during the first weeks of school.

Kindergarten students will maintain their traditional staggered recess/nutrition break, and each class cohort will each have a designated section of the Kindergarten yard.

Hallway Traffic Flow

We will continue to have signage throughout the school supporting students with reminders on how to travel through the hallways safely. Some of the signage examples are below for you to share with your children.
  • Staff will practice this during their first few days in the building.
  • Class cohorts will have a designated entry/exit door. Sanitizer will be at every door.
  • Handwashing breaks will be ongoing throughout the day
  • Educators will be taking their class outside as often as they can to allow for a masking break and to do outdoor learning activities
  • Bathrooms will have a maximum occupancy capacity based on the square footage of the bathroom. Students will always be allowed to use the bathroom, but may need to wait to ensure physical distancing in the smaller space

What to Bring

Along with their excitement, creativity, imagination and positive energy, students may to wish to bring a few other items in their backpacks. We ask that all toys remain at home and only necessary items are brought to school. At this time, students will be required to keep their belongings with them in the classroom. Lockers will not be in use. This is to avoid hallway congestion and congregation areas.

  • Refillable water bottle. Fountains are closed, but water refill stations are open
  • Masks are mandatory for students in Grades 1- 8, and encouraged for Kindergarten students. We encourage students to bring several masks each day, if possible (if a student forgets to bring a mask, or needs a fresh one, we will provide one)
  • Hand sanitizer is provided in each classroom and at each door, but students may wish to bring their own
  • School supplies are provided (pencils, erasers, crayons etc)
  • Bring a healthy lunch and snacks for two eating times
  • Wear appropriate shoes for running and playing (no flip flops). Students should bring indoor shoes, although while the weather is nice, they may not be required to change shoes.
  • Appropriate clothing wear for outdoor play or waiting to safely enter the building


If you are new to our school, please take the time to download the School Messenger App to stay connected and report student absences. If you wish to receive our weekly family updates, please follow the instructions for selecting email as one of your preferences. We have provided a video below to assist you.
LDSB SchoolMessenger App Tutorial: How to Sign Up & Log In

Stay up to date! Please check the following on a regular basis:

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