Bel Ayr Elementary School

September 2022 Newsletter


Dear families,

We would like to thank you for helping us with a smooth start-up last week. Please check your inboxes for an important message regarding the allocation of a new homeroom at our school. We are very excited to be beginning a new school year with you and your children. As a staff, we take pride in our school community and we know that children learn at higher levels when families, staff, and students are all working together as a team. If you have any questions or concerns this year please do not wait at home wondering or worrying about the answers. Phone us right away and we will get to work helping you and your child(ren).


Shawn Marsh



  • September 14 - Curriculum Night - Postponed until September 28th

  • September 19 - No Classes (Holiday) - NEW

  • September 21 - SAC Meeting - 6 PM / Home & School - 7 PM

  • September 23 - Terry Fox Run/Walk - 10:45 am

  • September 28 - Curriculum Night 6-7 PM NEW

  • September 29 - Orange Shirt Day

  • September 30 - Truth and Reconciliation Day (No classes)

  • October 1 - First Day of Mi'Kmaq History Month

  • October 4 - Grade 6 (RWM6) - Reading/Writing Assessment Day 1

  • October 6 - Grade 6 (RWM6) - Reading/Writing Assessment Day 2

  • October 10 - Thanksgiving Day (No classes)

  • October 11 - Grade 6 (RWM6) - Math Assessment

  • October 13 - Grade 6 (RWM6) - Math Assessment

  • October 19 - SAC Meeting - 6 PM / Home & School - 7 PM

  • October 21- Picture Day (Retakes on Nov 3rd - proofs due on Nov. 10th) -NEW

  • October 27 - Family Halloween Dance

  • October 28 - Provincial Conference Day PP-12 (No classes)

2022-23 Staff


N. MacLeod - Administrative Assistant (902-435-8353/0) -

S. Marsh - Principal (902-435-8353/1) -

R. Rossi - Vice Principal/Grade 6 (902-435-8353/2) -

Classroom Teachers (please note that we are in the process of hiring an extra teacher)

  • J. Schlegel
  • K. Cummings
  • P. Gibson and A. Gavel
  • M. Wallin
  • K. L' Esperance and K. Banks
  • D. MacKenzie
  • R. Rossi and A. Gavel

Learning Support Teachers

G. Chafe (Learning Center)

C. Johnson (Learning Support)

L. Jenkins (Learning Suport)


J. Beuckx (Library)

M. Cherny (Core French)

M. Hartery (Music and Band)

L. Gabriel (Educational Psychologist)

W. Johnson (Guidance)

L. Kelly (Speech/Language)

T. Stiner (Phys Ed)

TBA (School Social Worker)

Support Staff

Educational Program Assistants

N. Bilhete - EPA

S. Higgins - EPA

N. Imlay - EPA

B. David-Roslin - EPA

D. Melanson - EPA

L. Steele - EPA

Building Management/Cleaning

R. Colley - Lead Caretaker

L. Murphy - Evening Caretaker


A. Sait - Pre-primary ECE Lead

C.Stroud - Pre-Primary ECE Support


E. Garf - Excel Lead (September Only)

K. Greene - Excel Support

K. Nash - Excel Support

A. Menon - Excel Support

Lunch Monitors

R. Alonso - Lunch Monitor

T. Conohan - Lunch Monitor

L. Hall - Lunch Monitor

C. MacDonald - Lunch Monitor

L. Scanlin-Pollard - Lunch Monior

Schools Plus

M. Tobin - Schools Plus Assistant Lead

Collective Health

The 2022-23 school year brings much excitement about returning to many of the routines and practices we enjoyed prior to the pandemic. However, we recognize that schools are a unique environment where larger groups of people stay in close contact for much of the day. Please be diligent in monitoring your child(ren)'s health when it comes to illnesses. Students with cold or flu-like symptoms should be kept home until they are feeling better. We also encourage all families to seek out vaccines and boosters as they become available. We will continue to teach students about hand hygiene and how to properly cover their faces when coughing or sneezing. We will phone home to let you know if your child exhibits new or worsening symptoms during the school day.

Important - Drop-off Times and Play Areas

Please note that the drop-off time in the morning for pre-primary students is 8:50 am. Pre-primary staff are not available until this time. The drop-off time for all grade primary to grade 6 students is 8:30 am. Staff will not be on duty until 8:30 am so it is important for students not to be dropped off beforehand as there will be no supervision.

Family members who drop off students in the morning should do so near the entrance at the fence by the soccer field or on either side of our building out front. It becomes confusing for staff on duty when a lot of adults are hanging around in our play areas. It is also important for us to monitor these areas safely for intruders and for students to be able to quickly identify any supervising staff.

Lunch Monitors

We are looking to hire new lunch monitors. If this interests you please phone the main office at 902-435-8353

Important News and Events

Paper Newsletters - If you wish to receive paper copies of our newsletter, please fill out this form or send in a note to your homeroom teacher.

Curriculum Night (Grades P-6) - Curriculum Night will be held in person at the school on Wednesday, September 28th (6-7 PM). Our teachers will share information about their routines, procedures, modes of communication, and their curricula in the form of presentations and hand-outs. Please note that Curriculum Night is not a forum for talking about individual student needs or achievement. This should be done over the phone or by booking a separate meeting with a teacher. We originally planned to have Curriculum Night on the 14th but thouight it would make more sense to wait until after our new class configurations are complete.

Terry Fox Run - On September 23rd, at 10:45 am, our students and staff will participate in a Terry Fox run/walk on the soccer field. If you are interested in making a donation on behalf of our school please click on the link below:

Orange Shirt Day - Our school will recognize Orange Shirt Day on Thursday, September 29th. This is a day for all people in Canada to remember and acknowledge the pain and suffering of Indigenous families resulting from the residential schooling system. The following day is a national holiday to honor Truth and Reconciliation nation-wide on September 30th (no school). We will extend our conversations about Indigenous history and culture throughout the year and especially during the month of October for Mi'Kmaq History Month.

School Insurance Program (SIP) - Your child is automatically covered for accidents and injuries that happen during the school day. If you want to have 24/7 coverage including the summer months it only costs $14.00/year for a gold plan.

Fire Drill/Lockdowns/Hold and Secure - This week we will have our first fire drill. We will hold five more of these before the end of the school year. Please read this letter to learn about Lockdown and Hold and Secure drills. Our first lockdown drill will be held next week.

Allergy Alert

Please be reminded that we have students who have life threatening allergies to peanuts, tree nuts, sesame seeds, and eggs (ingestion only). We would ask that you do not send food items in lunch bags containing peanuts, tree nuts and sesame seeds as these can contaminate surfaces.

Forms Sent Home

Last week we sent home important forms with your child(ren). Please review and fill out the Media Release, Emergency Contact, Milk Order, and Registration (verification) forms and send them back with your child(ren) so their homeroom teacher(s) can forward them to the main office. Please check to make sure that all fields are filled out on the registration form. This is a process we conduct annually to make sure all contact information is up to date.

School Pictures

The school photographer has scheduled our school for Friday, October 21st. Background selection cards will be sent home with students. Families are asked to have their son/daughter return the background selection card to their teacher showing their name & grade and the selection of one of the six background options by November 10th. Our picture retake day will be Thursday, November 3rd in the morning. Students should bring their previous picture proofs with them if they were present on the first picture day.

Electronic Devices

Please remind your children that electronic devices such as phones, ipods, ipads,

Nintendos, etc are not permitted at school unless a teacher sends home a note to bring them on a particular day for educational purposes. Students who have chrome books or laptops can bring these devices to school for educational purposes with the permission of a classroom teacher. The school will not be responsible for any theft or damages to devices brought from home.

Student Technology and the Provincial Network Access and Use Policy

It is important for all of our students to have access to technology. We know from the previous two years that being ready to continue your child's education even in the event of school closures is extremely important. In Nova Scotia we use Google Apps for Education (GAFE) to help students access the tools needed to create and save digital work. All staff and students are bound by the Provincial Network Access and Use Policy. We would encourage you to review this document and to talk to your children about their responsibilities for demonstrating proper digital citizenship.

School Cash

Our school will post items for purchase and assign school fees relevant to your child (eg. milk orders). You can make all purchases and payments from your phone, tablet or computer.

We would like families to register as soon as possible.

To get started, please register for SchoolCash Online. It’s free and takes less than two minutes. You will receive an email once items are posted for purchase.

Visit and click Register to get started.

Need support? Connect with the SchoolCash Online help desk at

We hope that SchoolCash Online makes paying school-related fees more convenient!

Head Lice Prevention

Not only can colds and flu bugs be spread at school, so can head lice. Head lice are tiny insects that live on the head. They lay eggs (called nits) close to the scalp. Head lice spread through direct contact among children (head-to-head), or indirectly on items such as hats, combs, hairbrushes, headbands, helmets, or toques. Head lice do not jump, fly, or hop but they crawl very quickly. We encourage you to remind your children not to share anything that could cause a transfer of head lice. Check your child’s head regularly for either live lice or nits (eggs), once a week as part of your routine and after every sleepover. Keep long hair tied back or braided. Head lice spread easily, so if one person in the household has lice, others may have it too. Check everyone in the household on the same day.

If your child has contracted head lice, we ask that you contact the school and treat your child with a medicated lice treatment such as Nix. Once your child has been treated, he/she may return to school if there are no live lice. It is important to carefully follow the directions on the treatment package so that re-infestation does not occur. All family members should be checked and treated as required. For more information, please click the link below to read the pamphlet “How to Prevent, Find & Treat Head Lice”. This pamphlet was written and reviewed by Public Health Services, Nova Scotia Health Authority

Community News


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