St. Ambrose Catholic Elementary School
"Igniting the Spirit"
Our school motto "Igniting the Spirit" originates from our team name the Flames. Like the apostles who were filled with the Holy Spirit during Pentecost, our students will feel the spirit of Christ in the prayer, studies, games and most importantly, the personal relationships they experience in this Catholic school. The symbol of the dove depicts our pursuit of peace in relationships. Our staff is proud to provide a faith-filled learning experience that is well balanced with opportunities to enrich the mind, body and soul. Please use this handbook to assist your child(ren) in their daily studies. Information about the rules and routines of the school and a calendar of school events are included here. We ask that parents take time to review the rules and expectations of the school and to sign the last page of the information section. The most significant support we can give our children is to co-operate in their learning about the responsibilities that lead to successful lives as Christian adults. Please call your child's teacher if you have a question or concern. The spirit of respectful communication is the most important modeling we can provide to our children. We hope to have a chance to meet with each of you many times the year. Our first community event is the school barbeque in the second week of September; hope to see you there!
St. Ambrose Staff
8:35-9:00 students assemble in yard 9:00 supervised entry
9:00-10:10 instructional time
10:35-12:50 instructional time
12:05-12:50 lunch recess
12:50-2:10 instructional time
2:25-3:25 instructional time
Pastor: Father D. Bester
Mon., September 5th Labour Day
Tues., September 6th First Day of Class
Fri., September 23rd PD Day
Mon., October 10th Thanksgiving Holiday
Fri., November 4th PD Day
Fri., December 2nd PD Day
Dec. 26th to Jan. 6th Christmas Holidays
Thurs., February 2nd PD Day
Mon., February 20th Family Day
Mar. 13th to Mar. 17th March Break
Fri., April 14th Good Friday
Mon., April 17th Easter Monday
Mon., May 8th P.D Day
Mon., May 22nd Victoria Day Holiday
Fri., June 9th PD Day
Thurs., June 29th Last Day of classes
Fri., June 30th PD Day
It is the parent(s)/guardian(s) responsibility to ensure the safe arrival of their children. Please do not send your children before 8:35 am. Our yard supervision begins at 8:35 am. At 9 a.m. each morning, the classroom teacher records student absence. If for any reason, your child is going to be late/absent, please call the school before 9:00 and leave a message in the attendance message recorder. If a child arrives late, he/she must report to the office before heading to the classroom. We have a Safe Arrival Policy at St. Ambrose. Unexplained absences are responded to by a telephone call to the parent/guardian (please be sure that we have accurate information regarding home, employment and cell phone numbers). Our answering machine is in operation each night so messages may be left concerning absences or lateness.
Dismissal is at 3:25 p.m. Bussed students will depart first followed by the walkers. For younger students please be sure there is an adult to meet them every day at the bus stop. For walkers, kindly inform the office who will be meeting your child if they are walking home with an adult. Children walking home must go directly home.
Do not send your child to school if they are feeling ill. Students showing any of the following symptoms should be kept comfortable and resting at home; Earache, vomitting, diarrhea, fever, severe cough, runny nose, etc.
In all cases of serious accident, the parents/ guardians will be notified immediately.
Our school is a "peanut sensitive school." Please let us know if your son/daughter has an allergy (e.g., peanuts, bees, citrus fruit, etc) or medical need. We keep up-to-date, detailed records on hand for all staff. Your co-operation in this area is most appreciated.
The school will administer prescription medication providing all requirements of the Board policy are met. Medication must be in the original container supplied by the pharmacist, and written authorization from the parent/guardian and physician must be on file at the school (forms are available through the office). All prescription medication will be kept locked up when on site. At no time are school personnel allowed to distribute non-prescription drugs (e.g., Tylenol, Aspirin, etc) without written parent consent.
The closing of the school due to inclement weather conditions is determined by the Board of Education. Generally speaking, our buses may be cancelled but St. Ambrose remains open to those staff and students who can get to and from school safely. For those students who come on one of our First Student buses, please check for cancellations on our Board's website: http://www.ourschoolbuses.ca/delaysandcancellations.htm. A message is posted to this web address after receiving the information from First Student, our bus carrier. Please be sure to check your email as well as an email blast will be sent.
We ask that labeled lunches, book bags, clothing etc., be brought into the office for delivery to the students. This really helps to minimize interruptions in the classrooms and to maximize the learning time. We really appre- ciate your co-operation.
All parents must register. If you do not have the technology to do so, please drop by the school and use one of the library computers to register your child. All orders must be submitted on-line. There will be no more paper copies and payment must be made using the SchoolCashOnline ordering system.
Log in to https://huronperthcdsb.schoolcashonline.com and select the "GET STARTED TODAY" Option.
Parents/guardians are asked to contact the school if your child has a communicable disease (e.g., head lice, pink eye, measles, and chicken pox). This will assist us in taking prompt action to control the spread.
Our goal is to build a community through the celebration of our faith. Liturgical worship is an essential element in our Catholic Schools. We observe regular school masses and liturgies. The students help to plan these masses. As well, students in grade 2 receive the Sacraments of Reconciliation and First Holy Communion. Grade 7 students receive the Sacrament of Confirmation. You will receive our Liturgical Calendar in September.
Visitors to St. Ambrose are welcome! Note that the safety and well being of your child(ren) are of foremost importance to us. As a result, we ask that all visitors report to the office upon arrival. You will be asked to sign in, indicate the purpose of your visit and wear a School Visitor Badge.
All students from grades 1 to 8 should anticipate having homework on a regular basis. The purpose of homework is to reinforce and enrich concepts taught in class and to complete unfinished assignments. The classroom teacher assigns homework to their students as they see fit. A general rule of thumb for assigning homework is 10 minutes per grade level (e.g., grade three - thirty minutes). These times may vary.
-The school wants children to have sufficient time for sleep, play or the time to participate in home activities. Homework takes the form of practice from the day's lessons. It is a reasonable expectation that as children grow in age and grade, the length of time spent on homework will increase, but should take no more than one hour at the elementary level. New material will not be introduced as homework. Projects that are assigned at school, will be completed and evaluated at school. There may be times when research or parts of a larger task must be completed at home, but this should be a rare occurrence.
-We ask that parents check the Student Planners daily and encourage their child(ren) to complete all homework assignments to the best of their ability in a quiet area where the student can concentrate on the task.
Some successful strategies for success with homework include:
-Agree on a regular time
-Have a regular place without distraction
-Turn off the TV and radio
-Talk about homework
-Review student planners on a daily basis
-Parents are asked to sign the planners nightly after viewing the completed homework.
Children should also be encouraged to read for enjoyment on a daily basis at home. Your interest and positive support will give your child the message that their schoolwork is important and coming to school prepared for the next day shows responsibility and ownership in one's learning.
It is the shared responsibility of the teacher, pupil and parents/guardians to see that textbooks and school materials are treated with respect and care to maximize lifespan. The teacher numbers and tracks the texts that are assigned to each student. Teachers will instruct pupils not to write in or deface the text in any manner. Parents/guardians are asked to reinforce this with their children. Replacement of lost and damaged texts and/or library books will be the responsibility of the student and parent/guardian.
Internet access through our school network is a privilege and will be granted only to students who follow our guidelines. At no time are students permitted to transmit unacceptable material, use offensive language, download or display inappropriate material, or provide personal information about themselves or others through the internet.
Throughout the year, classes plan excursions outside the school environment to extend and enrich units of study. The Ontario Curriculum encourages and supports this practice. Educational research shows learning is more meaningful when reinforced by a variety of experiences. Teachers review community programs and select ones that offer an excellent learning experience at a reasonable cost. Students/parents/Guardians shall be advised of the trip's objectives and made aware of the expectations prior to leaving the school. For safety reasons, it is understood that the Principal may refuse participation in a field trip because of a student's prior or anticipated risk. In such a case, the Principal will notify the student's parent/ guardian of the decision. In the event of serious student misconduct during a field trip, the teacher in charge shall have the authority to contact the parent/guardian who will be responsible for picking up their son/daughter at the field trip site.
We will be using the Provincial format for reporting. Initial progress will be reported in the Fall using the Elementary Progress Report Card. Following this, all achievement will be reported using the Elementary Provincial Report Card. Please note that the classroom teacher can be contacted at any time. Direct contact with the appropriate staff member is the proper approach. Teachers want to hear your ideas, concerns and answer your questions. They can only provide you proper attention when they are aware of any needs, suggestions or concerns regarding our students. Should you need to discuss matters of a short duration, the best time to do that is at the end of the school day. If you wish to visit your child's classroom, for any reason, please schedule a time to do so with the teacher. REMINDER: Checking into the main office is required before going into any classroom.
The following suggestions are made to encourage you to help your child (ren) do their school work.
No student will be left unsupervised in any room. All students need to go outside for the recess break. During recess periods, house league activities are designed to foster co-operation and co-ordination skills.
Students are asked to go to the washroom prior to leaving the building for recess. Re-entry is discouraged. If a student needed to use the washroom they must ask the monitor for a hall clip. For safety and environmental reasons, eating outside is not permitted. When the bell rings, students are asked to come inside promptly, holding on to all play apparatus. Students must play in their grade designated zone. Classroom teachers meet their students at designated entrance points. Our school is a: NO CONTACT ZONE Remember – recess is a time to have fun outside! BE SAFE
Students are expected to dress in a manner appropriate for our Catholic school. Clothing should be neat, comfortable and modest. Clothing should allow the student to participate safely in the full range of activities during a typical school day. In warm weather, clothing should protect the child from harmful ultraviolet radiation. On special occasions (e.g., sacraments and school celebrations) students are encouraged to dress in fitting attire.
Some examples of unacceptable clothing are:
We ask that students use the playground equipment in the way that it was designed to be used. Sit while sliding, feet first; no walking up the slide; no playing on the top of the slide; before sliding, be sure that the landing area is clear; respect the rights and space of others playing on the equipment; avoid unsafe behaviour (pushing, running, perching) while on the equipment; do not throw stones, sticks or other objects; leave the gravel on the ground. Do not hang upside down on any school equipment. Reminders: Long scarves and clothing with drawstrings must not be worn on the play equipment. The playground equipment is inspected regularly. Damaged equipment should be reported to the yard supervisor or principal immediately. Equipment may be off limits in rainy, snowy or icy weather. Students who ignore safe practices on the play equipment will lose the privilege to use.
Encourage your child to ride his/her bike safely when traveling to and from school. Although we offer supervision in the schoolyard at specific times during the day, we cannot ensure the safety of the bicycles while they are parked. Helmets must be worn for all students riding a bike. We strongly recommend a bicycle lock and chain to secure the bike. For the safety of all, roller blades, bikes, scooters and skateboards are not to be ridden on school premises. During the instructional day, we cannot ensure the safety of the bicycles while they are parked. Helmets must be worn for all students riding a bike. We strongly recommend a bicycle lock and chain to secure the bike. For the safety of all, roller blades, bikes, scooters and skateboards are not to be ridden on school premises.
CATHOLIC SCHOOL ADVISORY COUNCIL
The Catholic School Advisory Council (formerly the Parent Council) is a vital part of our school family. Members assist with home/school communication. One of the primary goals of this council is to support school improvement. They work with the staff to make your child's experience at school a very positive one. Fundraising through hot lunch and a variety of drives results in resources that benefit our children. In addition, involvement in CSAC can provide opportunities for networking, socialization and good citizenship. Everyone welcome!
Volunteers are always needed for school activities and fundraising events (i.e. Hot Lunches). New volunteers will require a Police Background Check which includes a Vulnerable Sector Screening. Please contact the office if you are interested in volunteering in our school. Many hands make light work!
Work done by students are regularly displayed in the school, local buildings, Board Office, etc. As well, school staff, parents and community media personnel, using both still, digital and video cameras periodically take pictures. Please notify the principal if you do not wish your child to be photographed or identified in these types of displays.
Our Code of Conduct
"This is what Yahweh asks of you: only this, to act justly, to love tenderly, and to walk humbly with your God."Micah 6
St. Ambrose Catholic Elementary School is committed to working with families, parishes, and community partners in maintaining safe and orderly Christ-centered learning environments. We believe that safe schools are a prerequisite for student achievement and that students should feel safe and be safe in school and on school grounds.
St. Ambrose School promotes a positive school climate where all members of the school community feel safe, included, and accepted, and actively promote positive behaviours and appropriate interactions among all members of the school community. A whole-school
approach, which involves all members of the home-school-parish community, is necessary to ensure that schools are safe, inclusive, and accepting. Building and sustaining a positive school climate is a complex challenge requiring evidence-informed solutions. We embrace the diversity of our school which includes, but is not limited to: (staff or) pupil of any race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, creed, physical and intellectual ability, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, marital status, family status. With this right to be safe and feel safe comes the responsibility to contribute to a positive school climate and:
Principals, under the direction of their school boards, take a leadership role in the daily operation of a school. They provide this leadership by:
Teachers and Other School Staff, under the leadership of their principals, teachers and other school staff maintain order in the school and are expected to hold everyone to the highest standard of respectful and responsible behaviour. As role models, teachers and other school staff uphold these high standards when they:
Students are to be treated with respect and dignity. In return, they must demonstrate respect for themselves, for others and for the responsibilities of citizenship through acceptable behaviour. Respect and responsibility are demonstrated when a student:
Parents play an important role in the education of their children and can support the efforts of school staff in maintaining a safe and respectful learning environment for all students. Parents fulfill this responsibility when they:
Definition of Progressive Discipline (adapted From Board Police 3D:10)
Student & Parent Agreement
Student: I have read the information and rules in the student planner and I agree to follow the rules. I understand it is my responsibility as a student to follow the direction of my teacher, principal and all staff at St. Ambrose.
Parent: My child and I have reviewed this information and agree that these guidelines will be followed during the coming school year.
Signed: Parent email address:
Progressive Discipline is a whole-school approach that utilizes a continuum of interventions, supports, and consequences to address inappropriate student behaviour and to build upon strategies that promote positive behaviours. In everything we do in our school, we are led by our Faith and a conscious effort to model the Beatitudes while responding as a caring Catholic community. It includes a response to misbehaviour which shifts the focus from punitive to corrective and supportive. It also includes a range of responses that include learning opportunities for reinforcing positive behaviour while helping students make good choices in the future.
The components of an in-school progressive dis- cipline continuum include but are not limited to:
On an annual basis, the principal will review the School Code of Conduct with the School Advisory Council members and with all staff members. Annually, the Code of Conduct will be communicated to all students, parents and staff. All staff, in dealing with incidents of student misbehavior, will act in accordance with the definition of progressive discipline and its range of responses. As a staff, we believe that home and school must share the responsibility for teaching our young adults appropriate behaviour.