Sep 15
What's New this Year?

Soft Entry 8:20-8:30

This year we will begin each day with what we call a soft entry. The goal of the soft entry is to ensure that students are able to come into the school with proper distancing and to ensure they are ready to begin the day at 8:30. We ask that students arrive at school no earlier than 8:20 and that they arrive in time to be at their spot in their classroom by 8:30. When they get to school, students should immediately come inside through their classroom door as there is no supervision outside. Different children need different amounts of time to get ready for the day, and you can use your knowledge of your child to judge when you need to arrive or you can ask your classroom teacher how it is going.

Students who arrive after 8:30 will need to come in through the main doors and they will be marked as late. If you escort your child to school, please be aware of others and ensure you are allowing for physical distancing.

Masking

As we began the school year, many, if not all of us wondered how our students would do with masking inside. One of our best surprises has been how well it has gone! Frankly, students have been keeping them on, and fidgeting with them much less than we had anticipated. In fact, many of them have been

Much has been made of masking policies from the CBE and the provincial government. In the end, our goal has been to establish a culture of mask wearing at Altadore School. In general, students and staff are wearing their masks inside except for when they are eating, drinking, or when phys. ed. is inside. This has been for a number of reasons.

Primarily, in our classrooms we are not able to maintain physical distancing of 2 metres, regardless of whether students are in classrooms with tables or desks. We also believed it would be easier to relax expectations than ramp them up should changes be required later on in the school year. Finally, we are also cognisant of the fact many families and some of

our staff chose in-school learning based on the understanding masks would be worn most of the time. Teachers are using their discretion and professional judgement to make individual accommodations as required. We will also continue to review and adjust our practice as we move forward and as we have more information.

Outside Learning

At Altadore, we have always had quite a focus on outside learning, accessing our gardens, and connecting to nature. Learning that COVID - 19 is transmitted less readily outside has prompted us to increase that focus. Right now, teachers are working to have students outside about four times a day - recess, lunch, physical education, as well as one other time. Sometimes it will happen more often, and sometimes less. All of the work that has been done over the summer to make our school grounds great places for learning is already appreciated. We are also in the process of buying things such as more clipboards and stools that students will be able to use outside.

As parents you can help! Please send your child to school dressed for the weather! We want to be able to be outside even when it is not as beautiful as it was last week! Layers are a good idea! If it looks like rain, don’t assume they will be inside all day. Drizzle and steady showers will not automatically mean there is an inside recess. Putting names on outside gear is essential. It won’t be long before a thin pair of gloves will be welcomed in the morning.​


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