September 5, 2021
We welcome all our new and returning students (from in-person and virtual school) to a new school year. A year filled with hope and excitement yet compounded with uncertainty and anxiety. As we return to a new school year, we’ve included some important information to begin the year.
Last week, we met with school staff to review how the school will function this year. With the return of most students who attended the Virtual school last year, our student population has nearly doubled to 800+ students. With the school returning to full capacity, a number of routines from last year will need to change to ensure the safety of our students and staff.
We recognize the concerns and apprehension we are all managing with the return to school. Our collective focus to begin the school year over the next days and weeks will be based on the following priorities (in order of priority):
Being safe (physically/emotionally)
Building connections (relationships and community through inclusion, acceptance, belonging)
Being/staying self-regulated (identifying stressors, managing stress, feeling calm and ready to learn)
As the Government has allowed for some changes this year, we will not be moving forward with all of them to start (i.e. no lockers or use of the gym yet). We have opted to take a more conservative approach in some areas and will keep some routines from last year still in place for the time being. We will review this approach as students develop good routines and we have time to evaluate how best to implement these changes safely.
Parents wishing to switch to a remote learning class (or return to in-person) will have the opportunity to select a change from Sept 9 - 16 only. Students switching models will be effective October 12. At this time, if your child is unable to attend school, you’ll need to confirm with the school that your child will not be attending in-person. Your child will be able to participate in asynchronous (non-live) activities until Oct 12 from the in-person class teacher through the Google Classroom while at home.
Please review the attached information carefully so our students, staff, and you can begin the year in the safest way possible.
Pilgrim Wood PS
Pilgrim Wood School Start Details
Daily Covid tracking form
Covid-19 Guidelines for parents
2021-22 School Year Start Details
It is mandatory for all JK-8 students to wear face masks on school grounds and on a school bus. Students will have the opportunity to remove their mask when outside for recess, Phys Ed, and Music (while maintaining social distancing) and when eating. We also ask that every student bring at least one extra mask in case they need it.
Parents on school grounds are required to wear masks also at all times during arrival, dismissal, and appointments in the school building.
Daily COVID Self-Assessment - A must do for every student (and staff member), every day.
In order to help slow the spread of COVID-19, parents/guardians/students must complete the Ontario School Screening Tool each morning on behalf of each student:
The screening will indicate one of two results:
Students only attend school if a “✅” is obtained.
Students with COVID-like symptoms who receive an “X” must remain home and isolate as instructed.
Parents/guardians/students are required to confirm a “pass” of the School Screening tool for students learning in-person for the first two weeks of the school year. Each child requires separate verification.
First day of school:
AND Choose one of the following:
Download the attached verification tracking form to complete each day OR
Older students with a phone may complete screening and show teacher passed status on phone/device, OR
Write a note to the teacher to be shown by your child with following wording:
Student Name : ______________________________________________________
Class : ______________________
Parent/Guardian Name : _______________________________________________
Date : ______________________
Verify in writing:
I/we confirm that we understand the requirement to use the COVID
School Screening Tool daily AND child was ok to attend school today.
After the first day of school:
Complete the morning screening with your child(ren) and follow instructions to come to school or not AND
Use verification tracking form to complete each day (we will send home copies the first day of school) OR
Older student with a phone may complete screening and show teacher passed status on phone/device
After September 17 (unless changed):
COVID-19 Guidelines for Parents/Guardians:
General Drop-off and Pick-up - Parking Lot Closed
In an effort to reduce crowding, the parking lot is closed to parents and is a staff-only parking lot unless a specific exemption has been approved by the principal. This will also ensure our busses can enter and exit unobstructed.
With the exception of Kindergarten parent/guardian(s), parent/guardian(s) of students in Gr 1-8 are asked not to be on school grounds when dropping off or picking up students in the morning and after school. With advance notice during the day, parents may pick up their child for appointments during the school day at the front doors.
See below for further guidance for drop-off (arrival) and pick-up (dismissal) depending on the grade level of the child.
Kindergarten (JK/SK) - Drop Off - Arrival
Beginning at 8:35 am (- 8:50 am), Kindergarten parent/guardian(s) are the only parent/guardian(s) allowed on the blacktop to start dropping their child(ren) off at the Kindergarten Pen (Green Zone). Please walk down the right side of the laneway. Students will be greeted at the gate of the Kindergarten Pen (do not enter the fenced-in area) by an educator (in a duty vest) and escorted to their corresponding lines to wait for the entry bell. We request that parents leave the property once your child has been dropped off, as this will help with social distancing. Also please note, no adult will be allowed on the property without a mask.
Kindergarten (JK/SK) - Pick Up - Dismissal
Beginning at 3:10 pm (10 minutes prior to Gr 1-8 dismissal), parent/guardian(s) may enter the Kindergarten Pen and proceed to their corresponding classroom doors (KF1- Door 16, KF2- Door 15 and KF3- Door 14). Your child will be dismissed at their respective classroom door directly to the parent/guardian picking them up. Please respect social distancing while waiting for your child. Again, adults will need to wear a mask while on school grounds. Once you have picked up your child, we ask that you please proceed off of the property or make your way directly to the Gr 1-8 student pick up (dismissal) area (see below) if picking up other children.
Grade 1 - 8 - Drop Off - Arrival
Each class will have a designated “section” of the outdoor space for arrival and to play in during recess times. In the morning beginning at 8:35 am, your child will line up with their class in their assigned section. Some sections may have 2 classes assigned which will only be occupied together in the morning. Classes should not interact with other classes. At recesses, only 1 class will be in each section. This is considered their play area for the duration of recess.
In the morning, please say farewell to your child from the designated zone for parent/guardian(s) and your child should walk to their outdoor section to be greeted by their teacher just prior to the start of the day @ 8:50 am. Their classroom teacher will bring them into the school and to their classroom.
For the first day, we recognize you may need to help them find their outdoor section and classroom teacher. Afterwards, we would expect you to say goodbye and have them walk independently to the outdoor section.
Please see the map at the end for more information about class section locations and parent/guardian drop off/pick up designated areas.
Grade 1 - 8 Pick Up - Dismissal
Students in Gr 1 - 3 (including Gr 3/4 classes) will leave the school building beginning at 3:15 pm (5 mins early) with their classroom teacher and meet parent/guardian(s) on the field closest to the pathway leading to past the playground equipment (this is a change from last year). Each class will have a designated “tree” to wait at for parent/guardian(s). Please ensure you social distance with a mask on while you wait. See the end for more information about specific locations.
Students in Gr 4 - 8 will be dismissed at their classroom door at 3:20 pm, one class at a time, by their classroom teacher. Students in Gr 4 - 8 will be expected to social distance with a mask on while they leave the school building/property and/or meet a parent on the dismissal location for Gr 1-3 students.
Students MUST wear their mask while lining up for their bus and while on the bus
Students who take the bus will have a seating plan that MUST be followed
Bus seating plans will be created by Transportation Department, we will adjust seating as possible to take into consideration other factors as needed
When students arrive at school, they will exit the bus and will go directly to their Outdoor Classroom Sections
At the end of the school day, bus students will line up according to their seating plan, on the blacktop beside the parking lot (the wall where the gym is)
Any students who participate in other programs (i.e., Tae Kwon Do) will have a designated line on the blacktop beside the parking lot
Halton Student Transportation Services (HSTS) has advised us that there may be potential delays (pick up and drop off) in school bus transportation during the first week of school due to construction on Dundas Street.
Recess breaks will be split this year because of the size of the school
Zone 1 classes (all classes on the first floor) will eat first and then go outside to play for second half of the recess
Zone 2 classes (all classes on the second floor and the portables) will play outside first and then eat second half of each recess
Each class can only play with their own class, so having the same grades outside at the same time is irrelevant for now
Staff and students will be allowed to take off their masks during outdoor nutrition break as long as physical distancing can be maintained
Students will remain in their Outdoor Classroom section and only interact with students from their class (cohort)
Each Zone will have specific doors to enter and exit in order not to interact with each other (cross paths)
COVID routines including sanitization, mask removal, storage of masks and replacement, and lining up, will be practised thoroughly and repeatedly and with extra time allocated for students to learn and practise these routines. Staff will spend a lot of time practicing these routines and expectations for the first two weeks.
Students will sanitize their hands on the way in the building
No student is permitted to leave the school during Nutrition Breaks if staying for lunch unless picked up by an adult.
What to Bring to School
Lockers will not be used to start the school year
Students must only bring what is needed to school (i.e. no extra toys, books, etc.)
Until further notice, students will only be required to bring and wear one pair of shoes (i.e. no indoor/outdoor shoes). Boots can be worn on inclement weather days.
Boomerang lunch; everything that comes from home must return to home
Water bottle; stations are available for students to refill thought fountains for direct drinking fountains are closed
Extra clothing and extra shoes must stay in the bottom of the student’s backpack in a ziplock bag and return home each day
Extra masks are to be kept in a backpack or other storage container kept on the student’s body (belt/waist bag)
Students are encouraged to bring their own personal hand sanitizer to be kept in their backpack or on their person; however, we will provide board approved hand sanitizer to each student each time they enter or exit the building
Label all clothing and items coming to school; there will be no lost and found
Personal pencil case for crayons, pencil crayons, markers, pencil, eraser, etc will be permitted this year.
Students must dress appropriately each day and be prepared to be outside during transition times (e.g., rain or snow), nutrition breaks and during regular class times
All physical education classes will take place outside to begin the school year
School Schedule and FI Changes
We have changed from 60 minute periods to 50 minutes (with some 40 and 60 minutes). As a result, our recess break times have been adjusted. Lunch break is considered Break 2 beginning at 12:50 pm.
We have also restructured our Gr 4 -8 French Immersion program so that students receive an equal amount of English and French instruction each day. Students will begin each morning either in English or French instruction and then switch at the end of Period 3. With the hiring of a French and Instrumental Music qualified teacher (Ms. Macfarlane) this year, we are shifting Music to be taught in French. Phys Ed will switch to English with Health being taught in French for most classes.
For all classes, teachers will continue to move physically throughout the school for period/subject changes instead of students with the exception of Phys Ed and in some cases Music.
School Schedule 2021-22
Before School Supervision: 8:35 - 8:50
Period 1: 8:50 - 9:40
Period 2: 9:40 - 10:30
Break 1 (20 min): 10:30 - 10:50
Break 1 (20 min): 10:50 - 11:10
Period 3: 11:10 - 12:00
Period 4: 12:00 - 12:50
Break 2 (25 min): 12:50 - 1:15
Break 2 (25 min): 1:15 - 1:40
Period 5: 1:40 - 2:30
Period 6: 2:30 - 3:20
After School Supervision: 3:20 - 3:35
Students are encouraged to use their bikes. Students must get off the bikes as soon as they come to the school property line. Students will also dismount their bikes and put on their mask before entering school property. Once bikes are locked, students will walk to their outdoor classroom section in the morning. At dismissal, students will need to walk their bike off property while maintaining their mask on.
General Health Information:
Student Forms & Administrative Procedures:
Forgotten Items and Student Lunches
We request that families make every effort to ensure their children bring all necessary materials to school in the morning. If a non-essential item is forgotten (e.g., pencil case, binder, school project etc.) we request that your child bring it the following day. Please DO NOT drop these types of things off at the school for your child. We also request that all children bring their own lunch and snacks to school each day, as we will not be able to easily accommodate lunch drop offs. In the rare instance that a lunch is forgotten, there will be a table placed outside of the school front doors for you to drop off the lunch. Please clearly label the lunch with your child’s name prior to bringing it to the school, and use the intercom system to buzz into the office to let us know that you have left an item on the table.
Students will take a blank sticky note with them from their classroom to go to the washroom. They will place the sticky note on the whiteboard outside of the washroom to indicate the amount of students in the washroom. There will be a maximum of 2 students in primary, 2 students in junior and 3 students in intermediate washrooms (#s are based on space available in the washrooms). Once the students leave the washroom they will remove their sticky note and place it in the recycling bin below.