The Rideau Report

February 2020

Principal's Message

"Teaching kids to count is fine, but teaching them what counts is best." Bob Talbert

January seemed to fly by, and we are now halfway through the school year. It is hard to believe how much growth and learning we have seen from all our students, and how they continue to work hard and persevere every day. Our educators continue to work on French and English reading and writing skills, math concepts, and other important subjects, meeting learning goals and setting new, challenging expectations for all our students.

It has been a challenging month in terms of our current labour situation, which looks as though it will continue into February. Our teachers are committed to their students' learning, growth, and success, and work in the classroom continues unaffected by job action. We appreciate families' support as we work through this difficult time together in the best interests of our children.

We try to make our communications with families as effective as possible. All email communication will be done through School Messenger this year, so please ensure that we have your correct email address on file at school. Our website: also has our newsletters, a school calendar, and other useful information. Twitter is another way to keep up with what's happening at Rideau. Follow us @RideauPS_LDSB . You don't even need a Twitter account to follow us! Just Google @RideauPS_LDSB and you can see our Twitter feed. You can always get in touch with us through email at or by calling the school at 613-546-5901. Thank you for your continued support of the work we do every day!

G. Seiveright, Principal

Labour Update

Our labour situation continues to change in Limestone as job action continues by our teacher members of the Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario. We try to keep parents up to date with the most current information through emails, Tweets, and our website, along with the monthly newsletter. The Limestone DSB Website will always contain the most up-to-date information, so families are encouraged to check there regularly for updates. We are hopeful that the parties at the central table are able to reach an agreement soon. We thank you for your ongoing patience and understanding as we respond to these events.

brave workshops

Thanks to a contribution from our School Council, we are excited to share that we will be running BRAVE workshops for all our classes on Feb. 24/25. The focus of BRAVE is on helping kids learn the difference between bullying and conflict and on providing students with an opportunity to practice diffusing strategies with interactive role play. The great news is that the workshops are provided in FRENCH (with some English for the early primary classes). There will also be a PARENT WORKSHOP Monday Feb. 24, at 6:30 p.m. If you are interested in attending the workshop, please call the school at 613-546-5901, so that we can share numbers with presenters. Child care will be provided if needed.
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Dental screening

Dental Screening will take place this year on Feb. 10 & 11. This is done in accordance with the Health Protection and Promotion Act, and involves students in kindergarten, grade 2, and a few other students previously identified as having a dental problem. Please see the notice from KFLA Public Health below.
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Kindergarten registration

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If your child turns 4 in 2020, they are ready for Kindergarten in September! Kindergarten is an exciting milestone for every family, and we want to make your child's transition to school a happy and smooth one.

Registration for Kindergarten is done online through the board website. You can find out more about kindergarten at Rideau on our website , or phone the school if you have any questions.

Vanier Grade 6 info night

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free books!

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We are giving away some gently used books! You may have seen the bookshelf in the front foyer inviting you to help yourself to a book for your family. Please have a look; most books are in English, and are great for primary aged children. Feel free to help yourself!

School Year Calendar Survey

The Limestone District School Board School-Year Calendar Committee is seeking input on options for next year's school calendar. Your feedback will be shared with the Committee, made up of various employee groups, parent representatives, students and community members, as it makes its recommendations.

It is important to note that the late placement of Labour Day (September 7, 2020) will require a start date prior to Labour Day this calendar year. We are seeking input on whether to start the school year on Monday, August 31, 2020 or Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2020. In either case, the first day will be a Professional Activity (PA) Day for staff. Students would begin the school year the day immediately following the PA Day.

Option 1: PA Day on Monday, August 31, 2020. Students begin school Tuesday, September 1, 2020.

Option 2: PA Day on Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2020. Students begin school Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2020.

Complete the online survey.

The Limestone School-Year Calendar is created in partnership with the Hastings & Prince Edward and the Algonquin & Lakeshore Catholic district school boards. All three Boards must agree on the calendar presented to the Ministry of Education for final approval due to shared busing considerations.

The survey closes February 7, 2020.

Thank you for taking the time to complete this survey. Your feedback is important.

safety reminder

Staff have recently been asking children and parents not to cross MacDonnell St. between buses at the beginning and end of the day. We would kindly ask everyone to cross at the intersections of Dundas or Park St. A student at KCVI was recently struck by a bus pulling out, as the driver could not see the student. Bus drivers have a blind spot directly in front of them, and cars driving on MacDonnell can not see students tucked around the buses. We realize that parking is difficult around the school, and that families are often in a hurry, but we are trying to keep everyone safe, and trust we can count on our community's support.

Attendance on Inclement Weather Days

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In past years when school buses have been cancelled due to inclement weather, parents/guardians of bused students were not required to report their absence. Only parents/guardians of walkers who chose not to come to school were to report absences.

New for 2019-2020: All parents/guardians are asked to report their student’s absence regardless of the reason including during bus cancellations. Often, bused students find alternative ways to school and we want to ensure we know the whereabouts of every student to ensure their safety and well-being. Knowing who is supposed to be at school will allow school office staff to best ensure all students are accounted for.


  • Bus cancellation as the reason for absence if your student is bused
  • Inclement weather as the reason for the absence if your student walks but chooses not to attend

If your student is marked absent and the absence hasn’t been reported in advance, our new SafeArrival system will attempt to reach the student’s priority contact (parents/guardians) by telephone to confirm the absence. If you receive a call regarding your student’s absence, you can enter the reason for the absence (bus cancellation or inclement weather) during that call.

The new SafeArrival system makes it easier for you to report your student’s absence, reduces the time it takes for our school staff to verify student attendance, and responds to unexpected or unplanned student absences. This time savings makes it faster and more efficient to account for all students and their safety.

On inclement weather days, sometimes the daily plan is amended but learning continues as many students can, and do find alternative ways to school (Kingston Transit, family drop off, walking). In schools where there are significant walk-to populations, an inclement weather day doesn’t usually affect the curriculum plan. In others, almost all students might be bused. In these cases, educators make the necessary adjustments to their lesson plans for who is in attendance.

More information is available on the Board website.

We recognize this is a change in practice but one we are making to ensure student safety and well-being. Thank you for your support and understanding.

Be cold-weather ready!

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Following KFLA Public Health guidelines, students are outside for recess except in cases of extreme cold (-25 temp and/or -28 windchill). Please remember to send students with snowpants, hats and warm mittens. It is a good idea to send extra mittens and socks in case one pair gets wet at first recess. Recess is a great chance for students to get fresh air and move around, and we want everyone to be safe and comfortable outside all winter long!

Spirit Days

Lost and found

Our lost and found box is constantly overflowing with sweaters, snowpants, mittens and other wonderful, new, expensive clothing. Please come and take a look to see if you can find anything your children have lost. It will be displayed next week, and unclaimed items will be donated to a local shelter. Please label all your child's belongings. You can use a sharpie on the tag, or go to . You can order labels and support our school.

School Council News

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Thank you for your ongoing support of our School Council initiatives. Our School Council meetings for 2020 are all on Wednesdays: Feb. 12, Mar. 11, Apr. 8, and May 13, from 6:30 - 8:00 in the staff room. Child care is available in the gym. Hope to see you there!

Parent Volunteer list

Our School Council maintains a volunteer list that is called upon to help with various special events throughout the year. Signing up for the list does not commit you to volunteer, but is a way for us to send out requests. If you would like to sign up for the volunteer list, please go to . Thanks!

Safe Arrival

Please remember to report absences through the Safe Arrival Website/App, or by phoning

1-855-257-9349. Even if your child is just going to be late due to an appointment, please report them absent for the day, and we will change it when they arrive. Thanks for your support!

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Upcoming events

  • February 10-11 - Dental screening - kindergarten/grade 2
  • February 12 - School Council Meeting 6:30 p.m.
  • February 14 - Red, White and Pink Day
  • February 17 - Family Day
  • February 24-25 - BRAVE classroom workshops
  • February 24 - BRAVE Parent Workshop - 6:30 p.m.
  • February 28 - Spirit Wear/School Colours Spirit Day

Check our school calendar on our website for the most current listing of events!