School Community Check-In/Update

Good Afternoon Samuel Hearne MS Community,

On behalf of the Staff of Samuel Hearne Middle School, we would like to thank our Students and Families for a fantastic first week of school!

During our first week of school, our Students did a wonderful job in beginning to learn about and adapt to new routines and expectations, including following our Health and Safety Protocols which have been designed to keep us all safe. 

We also would like to thank our Parents/Guardians for your continued support and patience as we begin our academic year with many changes and new information. Together, with Parents/Guardians as Partners, we will continue to best support Students and our School Community.

As we look ahead to the weeks ahead, this School Community Check-In/Update contains important information.

Please see the sections below for our latest School Community Check-In and Update:

A. Overview:


B. Daily Health Screening:

  • Please continue to ensure that Students bring their TDSB Health Screening Paper Pass duo-tang/folder to School each morning, after conducting their active Health Screening Self-Assessment together with Parents/Guardians each morning
  • Before coming to school each day, all Students and Staff must conduct an active Health Screening Self-Assessment
  • Based on directions that we have received from Toronto Public Health, there is an expectation that for the first 2 to four 4 of the 2020 – 2021 school year, a verification of a self-assessment for each Student, Staff Member and Visitor is to be completed at the school
  • Once Students and Staff arrive at school, Students enter through the designated doors where a Staff Member will verify each Student’s health screening information using the TDSB Health Screening Paper Pass or TDSB Health Screening App:
    • Verifying each Student’s self-assessment can happen in two ways:
      • TDSB Health Screening Paper Pass:
        • A Parent/Guardian signs the TDSB Health Screening Paper Pass daily and the Student shows it to School Staff at their Entry Door
        • The TDSB Health Screening Paper Pass will be printed and provided to Staff/Students and Visitors
      • TDSB Health Screening App:
        • A Parent/Guardian completes the assessment on the TDSB Health Screening App, which generates a QR code that a Student can scan at the Entry Door (if the Student has a mobile device)
        • Or, the Student can present their name to a screener who can verify their entry status
    • If a Student does not have a verification to show a self-assessment was completed (the TDSB Health Screening Paper Pass or TDSB Health Screening App QR Code) by Parent/Guardian, they will be asked if they are feeling well:
      • If the Student answers YES:
        • The Student will be allowed to go into the classroom with a mask/face covering while maintaining physical distancing
        • A Parent/Guardian will be contacted to conduct the full assessment by telephone (this is why it is critical that all Parents/Guardians complete the TDSB Health Pass and sign daily to avoid unnecessary telephone calls)
      • If the Student answers NO:
        • The Student will need to go to our Wellness Room (Health Room) with a mask/face covering while maintaining physical distancing
        • A Parent/Guardian will be contacted to come to the School to pick-up the Student
  • Please visit the TDSB Daily Health Screening webpage to learn more/for full details, including a Questions and Answers document

C. Students Who Exhibit Symptoms Of COVID-19:

  • For Students who exhibit symptoms of COVID-19, or confirm that they have symptoms, will go to our Wellness Room (Health Room)
  • Parents/Guardians will be contacted and will need to come to the School to pick-up their Child
  • Please note that symptoms are similar to the common cold, so students with those symptoms are required to stay home

D. School Times – Recess/Lunch Break/Student Outdoor Play & Class/Cohort Zones:

  • Please see below for our School Times for each of our Cohort Groupings/Divisions:
    • Grade 5 & Grade 6 – Junior Division/Cohort Grouping A:
      • Supervision Begins @ Paved Area/Field: 8:35 AM
      • Entry Bell: 8:40 AM
      • Instructional Time Begins: 8:50 AM
      • AM Recess: 9:50 AM – 10:00 AM
      • Lunch Break/Student Outdoor Play: 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
      • PM Recess: 1:35 PM – 1:45 PM
      • Dismissal: 3:15 PM
    • Grade 7 & Grade 8 – Intermediate Division/Cohort Grouping B:
      • Supervision Begins @ Paved Area/Field: 8:35 AM
      • Entry Bell: 8:40 AM
      • Instructional Time Begins: 8:50 AM
      • AM Recess: 10:20 AM – 10:30 AM
      • Lunch Break/Student Outdoor Play: 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
      • PM Recess: 2:05 PM – 2:15 PM
      • Dismissal: 3:15 PM
         
  • During the Recess and Lunch Break/Student Outdoor Play times noted above, Students will be playing/engaging in activities outside while being Supervised 
  • The School Yard/Field and Paved Area will be divided into 4 designated Zones and each Class/Cohort will be assigned to a Zone
  • All Cohorts/Classes will remain in the designated Zones noted above during both Lunch Breaks/Student Outdoor Play and during Recesses
  • Each Classroom will have a bin of equipment provided for Students to use in their Zone that will be cleaned/sanitized for the following Recess and Lunch Break/Student Outdoor Play Time
  • After each Recess and Lunch Break/Student Outdoor Play time, Students will line-up in their designated line and wait for their Teacher to enter the School where they will maintain physical distancing, put their masks back on and sanitize/wash their hands
  • Students in Grade 5 and Grade 6 will line-up by Class/Cohort alphabetically on the Paved Area/Basketball Court which is closest to the Community Centre, and will Enter and Exit the building using Door 4
  • Students in Grade 7 and Grade 8 will line-up by Class/Cohort alphabetically on the Paved Area/Basketball Court which is closest to our School Yard/Field, and will Enter and Exit the building using Door 3

E. Lunch Breaks/Student Outdoor Play & Water Bottles:

  • All Students are highly encouraged to stay at School for lunch each day and not to leave the school to have lunch at home or to go out for lunch:
    • This request is being made to continue to ensure the Health and Safety of all as it avoids unnecessary Student movement and entry/exit from our School
    • Once Students arrive at School for the day, the expectation is that they are to remain at School until dismissal (unless a Student is ill and will need to be picked-up by a Parents/Guardian to go home)
  • Students will eat their lunch in their Classrooms, while supervised by their Teacher:
    • All Students are expected to pack a lunch that has as little litter (a “Litterless Lunch”) as possible
    • All items brought for lunch are to be returned home
  • In order to maintain appropriate physical distancing between Students and Cohort Groupings, our Lunch Hour has changed to now include 2 Lunch Breaks/time for Student Outdoor Play (1 per Cohort Grouping/Division): 
    • All Grade 5 & Grade 6 (Junior Cohort Grouping): 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
    • All Grade 7 & Grade 8 (Intermediate Cohort Grouping): 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
  • All Cohorts/Classes will remain in the designated Zones noted above during both Lunch Breaks/Student Outdoor Play and during Recesses
  • Students are to bring labeled water bottles to stay hydrated, filled from home:
    • Students are not to drink from the water fountains
    • Students are able to use our Water Fill Stations (we have one on the 1st/Main Floor and one on the 2ndfloor) to fill their Water Bottles

F. Student Entry Into Classrooms, Attendance Procedures & Late Students:

  • All Students will wash/sanitize their hands as they enter/exit the Classroom (using School-provided or their own 70% – 90% alcohol-based hand sanitizer hand sanitizer)
  • Students will sit at their assigned seat (a seating plan will be in place in each Classroom) and place their backpack underneath their desk/chair, hanging up their coat on the back of their chair
  • There will be no lockers for any Students
  • Teachers take attendance in the Classroom, which will be collected by an adult to bring to the Main Office
  • Students who are late to school (Students who arrive after 8:50 AM) will:
    • Line-up at the School through the Main/Front Door (Door 1)
    • Stand physically distanced in line while waiting to be “buzzed in” (Main/Front Door opened by Main Office Staff) one at a time
    • Enter the School and proceed directly to the Main Office where a Staff Member will verify each Student’s health screening information using the TDSB Health Screening Paper Pass or TDSB Health Screening App and to get a late slip
    • Proceed directly to class
  • Please ensure that Students arrive at School on time
  • If your child is going to be absent or late, please be sure to call the School and leave a message on our Safe Arrival Line at (416) 396 6555:
  • Please understand that there will be minimal movement of Students through the building, except for use of the washroom, water bottle filling, outdoor breaks for fresh air and outdoor classroom learning time

G. Mask & Face Covering Requirements For TDSB Students & Staff:

  • For the health and safety of our Students and Staff, masks or face coverings are required indoors on school property
  • Students are required to wear non-medical masks or face coverings indoors on school property and on school buses – Students may wear their own mask or face covering, or use a non-medical mask provided by our School
  • This decision is informed by, and consistent with, the City of Toronto requirement that anyone over the age of two wears a mask/face covering in indoor public spaces — with exemptions and accommodations
  • The requirement for all school board Staff to wear medical masks follows the direction of the Ministry of Education
  • Parents/Guardians and Students should remember:
    • To pack multiple snug and comfortable masks/face coverings each day
    • That schools and buses will have extra masks on hand for those who forget
    • Remember to bring a breathable bag (paper or cloth) to store soiled masks, as well as a bag to store masks during outdoor breaks
    • That staff will ensure regular outdoor breaks throughout the school day to take a break from wearing masks/face coverings
    • Please visit the TDSB “Mask and Face Covering Requirements For TDSB Students and Staff” webpage for further information/details

H. Entering From or Returning to In-Person Learning:

  • We recognize that Parents/Guardians and/or Students may want to switch between In-Person Learning and Virtual School
  • It is important to note that, for health and safety reasons, and because of the impact switching would have on staffing, physical distancing and space allocation, it will not be possible to immediately transition between the two models
  • As a result, an opportunity to enter the Virtual School or to return to In-Person Learning will be provided at three key dates during the school year, as outlined below:

Screen Shot 2020-09-19 at 3.03.02 PM

  • Information about movement from one model to another will be shared via email with Parents/Guardians as soon as possible
  • If a switch is required outside of the designated times, a limited number of exceptions may be made and will be reviewed by Principals on a case-by-case basis
  • Please visit the TDSB Virtual School webpage for more information and details

I. School Forms & TDSB Online Forms:

  • Next week, our School will be sending home School Forms for Parents/Guardians to complete which Students will submit to their Teachers
  • In the near future, Parents/Guardians can expect to receive an email communication from the TDSB regarding TDSB Online Forms to complete (please continue to check your email for this information)

J. Returning To School Resources:

  • Returning to School after so many months away may be a challenging experience
  • To help all Students and Families be ready for our Return To School, the TDSB has put together some resources to help with the transition, which are suggested to review as a Family prior to the start of School
  • Specifically, Students and Families may find the “Daily Checklist For Elementary School” helpful
  • It may also be helpful to visit the TDSB’s Returning To School Question & Answers webpage


Thank you for your continued patience and support.

Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the school at (416) 396 6555.

Stay Well & Take Care,
Mr. J. Romano, Principal & Ms. N. Blackwood-Fuller, Vice Principal