The new 2020-2021 School Year is almost here! We have a little more than a week to go and the staff at CTK are really looking forward to seeing our students and hearing their voices in our hallways and classrooms! The Covid-19 pandemic has certainly brought about some challenging times as well as a wide range of emotions for our students, families, and staff, but we are taking every important step to be safe. We are working hard to prepare classrooms and we are implementing the necessary safety protocols to return to school.
Below you will find some very important information about start dates, health and safety protocols, and other important information. We apologize in advance for the lengthy communication but it is important that you carefully read the information.
Construction Update: Over the summer, our school underwent some renovations. The student bathrooms have been totally renovated from floor to ceiling, new flooring has been installed in our Learning Commons and main office, and a new accessible bathroom has been added. New cupboards and countertops with sinks have been installed in every single classroom and a new washing station/sink added in the hallway. By November, all interior doors will be replaced and a feature wall in our foyer will be added. We can’t wait for our students to see the exciting changes to our school and look forward to the work that will be completed by the fall!
Staggered Start: This year, we will be using a staggered entry to school. Below are the respective dates for each grade:
- Students in Grades 1 and 2: The first day of school is Tuesday, September 8th
- Students in Grades 3 and 4: The first day of school is Wednesday, September 9th
- Students in Grades 5 and 6: The first day of school is Thursday, September 10th
- Students in Grades 7 and 8: The first day of school is Friday, September 11th
First and Second Year Kindergarten: You will have already received your time for your group visit on Tuesday, September 8th, and your start date has also been provided.
School begins at 8:30 am and parents/caregivers are welcomed to drop off their child starting at 8:15 a.m. Due to our health and safety protocols, parents and caregivers are not permitted on our blacktop at any time. Kindergarten parents may drop off their child at the Kindergarten gate where they will be greeted by a staff member but cannot remain on the blacktop.
Who Will Be My Child’s Teacher? We will once again be using School Cash Online to let you know who your child’s teacher will be for the new school year. This information will be sent on Friday, September 4, 2020. Please note that classes are not finalized until the end of the first week and there is a possibility for changes and moves during the first week depending on enrolment.
School Supplies: Each student will be given an individual kit with some supplies that they will need for school. Items included in this kit will vary by division but include basic school supplies such as pencils, erasers, pencil crayons, etc.. This kit will remain in the student’s desk and is for their own personal use. Students must bring a water bottle (preferably filled) with their child’s name clearly labeled.
Masks: All students in JK-8 are required to wear a mask. Please know that this is an effort to keep everyone safe. We would ask that you help us and acquire a reusable mask for your children now and practice wearing it with them. It takes some getting used to, but they WILL get used to it. Students are to bring their mask to school and wear their mask at all times when they are in the building and when they cannot maintain safe social distance. They will be provided breaks from their masks when they head outside for recess. Teachers will also be taking their class outside as much as possible for instruction. All staff will be required to wear a mask when working with students. Although you can’t see our faces, trust me, we are all smiling under the mask!
Daily Self-Assessment for Students and Staff: All students and staff are required to take the COVID-19 self-assessment daily before coming to school: https://covid-19.ontario.ca/self-assessment/ If your child has any cold or flu-like symptoms, please do not send them to school. If your child presents symptoms during the school day, s/he will be sent to the office and parents will be called and must pick up their child immediately. Parents are then encouraged to contact Public Health, have their child tested and follow Public Health
Handwashing and Hand Sanitizer: Hand sanitizer dispensers have been installed at each of the entrances and will be available in each classroom. We are encouraging students and staff to wash hands frequently and sanitize often. We also want to encourage them to be very aware of “touchpoints” throughout the day, and if they find they are touching a lot of surfaces, to sanitize afterward. Families may choose to provide their child(ren) with their own small individual use (travel size) of hand sanitizer.
New Signage: New signage has been installed throughout the school to direct staff and students regarding physical distancing, masking, and directional flow. Students and staff will be asked to follow the arrows and teachers will be reviewing this with students.
Visitors to the School: Parents are valued members of school communities but given the many increased steps that are being taken to minimize contacts in our school buildings, parents should refrain from entering the school unless they have prior approval to do so. Please call the school first as all parents and visitors must have approval prior to entering the school. Parents who do have permission to enter the building should always be masked and must follow all protocols regarding physical distancing and hand hygiene. All parents who enter the school building must sign in and must have completed the self-assessment checklist before entering the school building.
Recess and Physical Education: We will continue to separate students on the yard by “zones” (Primary, Junior and Intermediate) and students will continue to be supervised as per past practice. Students will leave their mask at their desk during recess and teachers will lead their class outside, one class at a time. When the recess bell rings, students will be asked to go to their class’ designated spot and will be expected to physically distance themselves while waiting in line. Teachers will then lead them back into the school one class at a time. For Phys. Ed., students will not be permitted to use the change room or change into gym clothes. All students should dress for indoor or outdoor physical activity every day. Masks will be left on students’ desks during indoor or outdoor physical education classes. There will be restrictions on the types of equipment used during physical education classes (i.e., equipment used by hand).
Safety Protocols: Below is a list of other strategies that we are using to ensure the safety of all:
- Physical Distancing (1m apart with masks indoors, 2m apart without masks outdoors)
- Classrooms are set up with students’ desks 1 metre apart and facing forward.
- Classes will have scheduled washroom times in an effort to keep each cohort together and to minimize
traffic in hallways. No child will be denied access if they need to use the washroom outside of their class’s
- Drinking fountains will not be available. Water bottle filling stations will still be available.
- Students will wipe down Chromebooks before and after use. Students are encouraged to bring their own
devices if possible.
- Students will eat lunch at their own desks. They will be responsible for cleaning their own desks after they eat.
- Student agendas will be used for each student’s own personal use, remaining at school, not traveling back and forth between home and school. Teachers will use Google Classroom for communication.
- Pizza days and LunchBox Orders are suspended for now. Students will continue to have access to the Nutrition for Learning Program. The program will start September 14th.
- There will be enhanced cleaning/sanitizing in the school throughout the day.