Nov 23
Nov 20

Good Afternoon SJAMers,

We very much enjoyed the opportunity to speak with families for interviews this week. We appreciate your efforts to connect and together build a rich learning experience for your student.  Although it was virtual and not face to face, It was great seeing our parents and guardians faces and hearing their voices. We thank you for your participation and also your patience as we worked through some technical difficulties. If you were unable to sign up and you would still like to connect with teachers please feel free to contact them via email.  HUB families will have their interviews on Dec. 3 and 4.  Stay tuned for directions for signing up.

Spirit Day #2 will be happening on Friday, November 27th - Crazy Hair Day and Pajama Day.  Please ensure your crazy hair and pajamas are school appropriate. Everyone is encouraged to participate. 

Paying School Fees

Student and Parent / Legal Guardian Sign In       Use this link to set up your account to pay school fees, 

Bullying Awareness Week is November 16-20, 2020

This year’s theme, Where to Turn, encourages you to learn about resources and supports available if you see or experience bullying. Bullying can happen in-person or online and can have lasting effects on a person’s well-being. 

We all can make a difference in someone’s life. The following are ideas on how to help someone when you notice signs of bullying:
Check in and ask “Are you okay?” to show you are there for them
Lead with kindness and positive actions
Share awareness resources in-person and on social media
Follow us on Twitter @AlbertaCSS and raise awareness using #BullyingAwarenessWeek and #WhereToTurn

Food Drive for SJAM Families

This year for our Food Drive we have decided to do something different to support our community during this time. We will be collecting gift cards to Sobey’s and Walmart as well as cash donations, which will be turned into gift cards for SJAM families in need over the holiday season. There will be a donation box set up in the front office and the box will be locked up every evening. The Food Drive will run from November 23 – December 11. Thank you for supporting SJAM families.

Bullying HelpLine       Call 1-888-456-2323 toll-free
Available 24/7 | 170+ languages      8 am – 8 pm daily | English
Download and share resources to help prevent bullying
Community Resources 

Computers for Low Income Calgarians.   Please see application     Computers.pdf ​

Have a wonderful weekend.
Darren, Andrea and Chris

Nov 16
Nov 13

It has been another busy week at SJAM.  Many schools have been impacted by COVID19, so we feel very fortunate not to have the major disruptions that other schools are dealing with at the moment.  We are proud of our staff and students for properly adhering to protocols and procedures to keep everyone safe.  Below are some key updates that will help you and your students.

Parent-Teacher Interviews 

Parent-Teacher interviews will occur virtually next week from 4 - 8 pm on Thursday, Nov 19 evening and 9am - 1pm on Friday, Nov 20.  The opportunity to sign up for virtual interviews starts tomorrow, Saturday at noon.   Please go to the following link to sign up.    Student and Parent / Legal Guardian Sign In
We have developed 3 separate conferences that you may sign up for:
1. Academics - these will be 10 minute interviews with your student’s SMath (Science & Math) and Humanities (Language Arts & Social Studies) combined.  See Chart below for the correct green Homeroom selection 

2. PE / Options - these will be 5 minute interviews with your student’s option teacher.  Every student has 2 options per semester.  Please note that by the time of the conferences, the new option teacher will not know your student as new options start on Monday, Nov 16.

3. SPED - these will be 30 minute interviews with your student’s Special Education teacher in either ALP, PLP or TASC.

If you are having difficulty with the process of setting up your virtual interview please phone the office at 403-777-7670 for support.

This annual awareness week is a time to promote awareness and understanding of bullying and its impacts. Find bullying prevention resources on and

Food (Lunches and break)

We are encouraging all students to bring lunches to school.  We are discouraging our grade 8 and 9 students from leaving campus over the next two weeks.  We want to create a safe environment that will reduce the possibility of COVID19 transmission as much as possible.  This will require support from families to encourage students to prepare lunches.  Essentially we promote fruits, vegetables, whole grains and ask students NOT to bring energy drinks, drinks over 2L, slurpees and fountain drinks.  This supports our CBE Food and Beverage guidelines and more importantly contributes to better health outcomes.

Reminder | School Fees Due

Starting on Oct. 1, 2020 fees were posted to parent/guardian’s MyCBE/PowerSchool accounts. The CBE is introducing a new student supplies fee for the 2020-21 school year. This fee will apply to all students in kindergarten through Grade 9 (excluding HUB online learning students) to support in offsetting the cost to purchase school supplies for the year. For more information visit the Fees & Waivers webpage.

Métis Week – November 15-21 

Check out the Métis Nation of Alberta website for virtual events each day.  
SJAM Métis Week Art Contest
Students can use their artistic skills to create an image of their favourite thing about Métis culture. Check out the bulletin board outside the Learning Commons for more ideas. Or go to the Gabriel Dumont Institute to learn more about Métis culture and visit the virtual museum here. Please see Ms. Hackman for more details. The contest closes on November 19th.

sNOWAY 5K Virtual Winter Race and Fitness Challenge

Our innovative PE team has prepared a great opportunity for all SJAMers (Hub included) to participate in a virtual winter race.  Please look at the following link​ for more details.

School Council

Dear Parents/Guardians,
Please join us virtually for our 2nd School Council meeting of 2020/2021!  Hear from 2 of SJAM’s Learning Leaders as well as the School Admin on what is happening at the school and what’s ahead.  Get the inside scoop!! Hear the things your kids don’t tell you.  We are hoping that you can join us on Tuesday, November 17th at 630pm using  Microsoft Teams.  Whether you are in the HUB or have a student(s) in the school, it is a great place to connect with other parents.  If you were unable to attend our first Council meeting this year and would like to receive an invite to access this meeting, please send an email to  You can expect an invite to be sent to you by Tuesday with the Microsoft Teams link.  A membership or download is not required to use Teams; however, you will need to click on the link that will be sent to access the meeting.
Looking forward to having you join us!
Charlene and Jody (Co-Chairs)

Nov 09
Oct 6
Good Afternoon SJAMERs,

We were pleased to start our week with a visit from Chief Superintendent, Chris Usih.  He had an opportunity to tour our school and meet our wonderful SJAMers and school community.
We are currently collecting data from our students for our School Development Plan.  Over the next couple of weeks students will be doing surveys and assessments to provide baseline data.
Next week we will be having a virtual Remembrance Day Assembly.  Students will remain in their classrooms, with the assembly being streamed.  Hub families will be included in a Remembrance Day virtual assembly.  A school messenger will be sent with details to all Hub families on Monday.     

Please be mindful of the Daily COVID Screening Checklist.  It is important we all do our part to maintain the health of the SJAM community. With numbers increasing in Alberta, and some COVID fatigue setting in, we request your assistance to remind your child of the importance of arriving at school with a mask, proper wearing of a mask and maintaining a distance of 2 metres whenever possible. AHS has released new guidelines and symptoms for school aged children re: COVID-19.  Please see this regularly updated link below for details.
Appropriate Use of Technology

During the week we dealt with several issues with students misusing their phones.  We would like to remind you of the digital citizenship rules that we follow at SJAM:
As a student, your use of technology (school and student owned) must meet the following expectations: 
Your teacher has indicated or you have advocated that the use of technology is acceptable. 
Your use of technology supports your learning in relation to the Alberta Program of Studies. 
You are adhering to the terms of use and understand the privacy policy of the websites you are visiting. 
Your use of technology/websites (e.g. social media) will not be used to bully and/or intimidate others. 
Your parent/guardian is aware of what sites you have signed up for and discussed the risks of improper use (e.g. identity theft, legal implications). 
You respect other members of the learning community’s privacy by not recording or photographing others without explicit permission. 
Upcoming November Events

Nov 11 - Remembrance Day - no school
Nov 13 - Last day of current CTF (Complementary/ Option) Classes
Nov 16 - First day of Term 2 CTF (Complementary/ Option) Classes
Nov 19 & 20 - Parent / Student / Teacher Conferences for in-school learners (these will be online meetings)  (Conferences for our HUB students and teachers will be on Dec. 3rd & 4th).  Details for this virtual event will be shared next week.
Have a great weekend!

Nov 02
Oct 30

Good Afternoon SJAMERs,

This week we managed to have another successful fire drill and enjoyed a wonderful spirit day.  Thank you to students for their respectful costumes and enthusiasm for Spirit Day.  Our upcoming week is starting off with a visit from Chief Superintendent, Chris Usih and our Area Director, Teresa Martin.  This provides us with an opportunity to showcase the wonderful work happening at SJAM and to receive feedback for continuous improvement.  

PE Challenge

As you are all aware, physical activity can positively impact one's intellectual, social, and emotional well-being.  For many years, Sir John A Macdonald staff have happily facilitated Fit-Club.  It has always been an opportunity for students and staff to come together on Mondays after school and Friday mornings at 7am to develop new relationships, build school culture and most importantly, improve our individual physical fitness.  Sadly, Covid-19 has prevented us from running this club this year.  Nevertheless, we are still encouraging your children to do their best to be physically active as much as possible.  Fortunately, we have an opportunity to be involved in a fitness competition that can be completed by any Mustang student and staff (this includes HUB).  As we are promoting students participating in at least 60 minutes of physical activity per day, this challenge is a fantastic opportunity to be active beyond the school environment.  More information will be released in the coming weeks.  Stay tuned!  


AHS has released new guidelines and symptoms checklist for school aged children re: COVID-19.  Please see this regularly updated link for details.

Upcoming November Events

Nov 11 - Remembrance Day - no school
Nov 13 - Last day of current CTF (Complementary/ Option) Classes
Nov 16 - First day of Term 2 CTF (Complementary/ Option) Classes
Nov 19 & 20 - Parent / Student / Teacher Conferences for in-school learners (these will be online meetings)  (Conferences for our HUB students and teachers will be on Dec. 3rd & 4th).  Details for this virtual event will be shared closer to the date. 

School Council

Welcome to our new School Council executive: Cari Caldwell, Charlene Buenting, Dionne Thomas, Jennifer Schroder and Jody Caldwell.  Thank you for your commitment to the SJAM community.

School Council future virtual meeting dates:  Nov 17, Jan 19, Feb 23, Mar 16, Apr 20, & May 18 (meetings begin at 6:30 pm)

Casino dates - Feb 16 & 17   There will be a volunteer call for this event in the new year.

Enjoy your weekend, your extra hour of sleep on Saturday night, and we wish you a safe Halloween if you participate!

Darren, Andrea & Chris​

Oct 26
Oct 23
Good Afternoon SJAMERs,

There is a lot of information to share with you today after a very busy week at school. 

Covid19 Update

Currently, SJAM does not have a COVID19 case.  Students and staff have been excellent with following protocols and adapting to the necessary emergent changes.  We need to continue to be mindful of physical distancing, mask wearing, and avoiding large gatherings as much as possible to keep everyone safe.

Our School Survey (For Students)

We have asked our students to try and get over 60 minutes of moderate physical activity per day.  We are measuring this parameter with the Our School Survey over the next few weeks.  Our students have been doing a fantastic job in our Physical Education and Outdoor Education being active outside.  As winter sets in, please remind students to bring appropriate warm clothes.  At lunch, students will be expected to manage 20 minutes outside (unless -20 or colder) should they choose to leave the classroom.
We are also measuring “feeling safe” at school.  As COVID19 has created a disturbance with our mental well-being, we are focusing upon choosing kindness in addition to increasing physical activity.  Please ask your student how they are planning to choose kindness at school.  We have many wonderful examples of how students are looking after each other and want to expand our reach to others.


We are asking our students to bring lunch to school and discourage unnecessary trips to local restaurants and stores.  Our goal is to limit exposure to areas prone to large gatherings where physical distancing is not possible and risk for COVID19 transmission is higher. For the continuous safety of our Grade 7 students, we remind them that staying on campus is expected.


There are some students that are forgetting their masks each day.  We are asking for your support to help students remember their masks as the school supply of disposable masks is low.


Please be mindful of safe drop off / pick up of children.  It is important that families do not use the Diefenbaker High School”driveway” between Diefenbaker school and Diefenbaker portables for drop off / pick up.   It is getting dangerous in this area with a lot of vehicles making safety a concern.  This area can also become slippery in poor weather.

Next Week Reminders

Thursday, October 29th  is a full day of school (no early dismissal) and our first Spirit Day for this school year. Students can dress up for Halloween in school appropriate costumes.  Please be conscientious of cultural appropriation when making a costume selection.  Wearing orange and black is also a great way to participate in Halloween Spirit Day. Students must continue to use face coverings under their costumes. Costumes with attached masks or other “Halloween masks” may not be suitable for preventing the spread of airborne droplets. 
Friday, October 30th is a Professional Development Day for Staff.  There is no school for students.

School Council

Thank you to those who attended our recent School Council AGM and congratulations to our new executive.  We want to express our sincere gratitude to all of you who have stepped up and taken on / continued with executive roles.  Your support and hard work is appreciated and valued! Heartfelt thanks to our outgoing chair, Ms. Amanda Trudel for her 13 consecutive years of service to the School Council.  Her leadership will be missed.  Our next virtual school council meeting will be held November 17th at 6:30pm.  Details will be sent closer to that date.

Community Opportunity 

Canadian Safety Council Home Alone Safety Course       Youth Ages 9-12 
Come and learn the necessary skills to be safe and responsible when home alone for short periods of time.  This is a free 3 day online course. November 10, 17, 24 from 4-6pm 
Please contact the North Central Family Resource Network for registration details at (403) 543-0555 or

Stay safe. Stay warm.
Darren, Andrea, and Chris​

Oct 19
Oct 16

Good Afternoon SJAMMERs,

The weather is changing quickly.  It is important that students come dressed appropriately for outside PE activities.  Please have your student bring a bag or box to keep boots in near their desk in their homeroom classroom.  
Students have the choice to stay in their classrooms during lunchtime. We want to remind grade 7 students they are to remain on campus at lunchtime.

Upcoming School Council Meeting

The upcoming virtual AGM School Council meeting will be held on Tuesday, October 20th at 6:30PM.  See the messenger later this evening with more information and the meeting link.

Provincial Achievement Tests Cancelled

Due to the continued disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the CBE will not be administering Grade 6 and 9 Provincial Achievement Tests in the 2020-21 school year. Teachers will remain focused on delivering the programs of study for all courses and will continue to assess student achievement based on the grade level outcomes as determined by the Province of Alberta. 

COVID-19 Updates, Information & Resources

It can be confusing for families to understand when their child must stay home, when they need to isolate, if they need to be tested and when they can come back to school. Check out the new page on the CBE website - If a Student is Sick or has COVID-19 Symptoms​ . Another valuable document is COVID-19 Information: How long to stay home from school
Have a wonderful weekend. Stay safe. Stay warm.

Darren, Andrea and Chris​

Oct 13
Oct 9

School Council

In preparation for our AGM meeting on October 20th, we have prepared a FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) that we have been receiving from parents and students and can be found at this SJAM FAQs Oct 2020 .  School Council has also prepared a survey monkey for thoughts, questions, and concerns that do not appear on the FAQ’s to help mediate/facilitate our virtual meeting in the most productive, time efficient manner  If you wish to be sent an invite, please email 
OurSchool Survey

Sir John A Macdonald School will be participating in an online school perception survey for students called the OurSCHOOL Student Survey. Please find the details of the survey implementation below.
Who: Students in grades 7, 8, and 9 (Including our HUB students)
When: Oct 13-Nov 15, 2020
Where: Computer Lab at Sir John A Macdonald School (HUB students do it from home - details to be announced next week)
Why: to measure student engagement, increase student involvement & sense of belonging at school
About the OurSCHOOL Student Survey:
● Allows students to share their feedback anonymously on their experiences at school, school environment, and school improvement programs. 
● Based on their feedback, students have the opportunity to be involved in action plans fostering increased student engagement
● Participation in the survey is voluntary, however, all students are encouraged to participate.
● The time required to complete the survey may vary, but it is designed to be completed in approximately 35-40 minutes.
Survey measures include such topics as behaviours and attitudes linked to student success, emotional and social well-being and physical health. For more information about the OurSCHOOL Student Survey, please visit The Learning Bar’s website:​.
 If you have questions or would like to request more information about Sir John A Macdonald’s upcoming implementation of the OurSCHOOL Student Survey, please contact Chris Hooper at

2020 SJAM Yearbooks For Sale - Last Chance
We've been able to distribute almost all of our purchased yearbooks over the last couple weeks. If you still haven't received yours please email Mr. Boivin at to address any remaining concerns. If you missed your opportunity to buy one earlier, you're in luck. You can buy a yearbook by bringing cash to the Office. The cost is $35 and it will be first-come first-serve as we have a limited amount available.
Have a wonderful long weekend,
Darren, Andrea & Chris.

Oct 05
Oct 2

Good Afternoon SJAMERs,

We are at the end of another busy week and students are doing a fantastic job with their transition back to school (on campus or HUB).  Please see the following information regarding next week.

Next Week’s Schedule:

A long weekend is coming up.  Thursday, Oct 8th is a Noon Dismissal Day, Friday is a Non-Instructional Day (no classes) and Monday, Oct 12 is Thanksgiving Holiday.

School Immunization Program Message from AHS Nurses
The School Immunization Program was disrupted by COVID-19. Immunizations will begin again this year with some changes as school immunization teams attempt to “catch-up”.  Students in grade 6 in the 2019-2020 school year (now in grade 7) who did not complete their Hepatitis B (HBV) and/or Human Papillomavirus (HPV) and/or any outstanding routine vaccine series will be immunized within the school setting.
More information will be available in the coming weeks regarding school-based immunizations for our target grade 6 and 9 students. Public Health is developing strategies to address access to immunization for those students enrolled in alternative learning environments this school year. 
Visit for more information about which vaccines are offered to students in Alberta. During times of pandemic, such as COVID-19, we are reminded of how important it is to utilize the immunizations that protect us against vaccine-preventable diseases like measles and pertussis that are still present globally and locally. 

John Diefenbaker High School (JDHS) student parking lot

We kindly ask that parents do not drop off their students in the JDHS student parking lot.  JDHS has a high capacity of staff and students and this has caused significant disruption to traffic flow and their entry.  Given that there has been significant road repairs over the past few weeks, we suggest dropping off your children a block or two away (e.g. Superstore parking lot).  

School Council

In preparation for our AGM meeting on October 20th, we have prepared a survey monkey for thoughts, questions, concerns to help mediate/facilitate our virtual meeting in the most productive, time efficient manner.  The survey Monkey link will be sent out next week’s WAG.  We will be sending out the AGM meeting invite to all those who have requested it a week in advance that will include meeting protocols.  If you wish to be sent an invite, please email

Sep 28
Sept 25

Good Afternoon SJAMERs,

While students were enjoying the holiday today, teachers have been busy working on IPPs (Individual Program Plans) for students as well as collaborating and planning with colleagues. 

Thank you to parents/guardians for attending our Virtual Meet the Teacher.  The event was well attended, some parents commenting that they preferred that delivery method. If you do have any questions/concerns please feel free to contact your child’s teachers or school admin. Check 
 Sir John A. Macdonald School​ for contact information.

There will be another opportunity for parents/guardians to meet virtually at the School Council Annual General Meeting. This  will be a virtual meeting held on Tuesday, October 20th at 6:30PM.  To receive an invite to access this meeting, please send an email to and you will be sent an invite to join the Teams conference tool. A membership or download is not required to use Teams; however, you will need to click on the link that will be sent to access the meeting.  The preferred browsers are Chrome and Microsoft Edge (Safari does not work).

Orange Shirt Day – Wednesday September 30, 2020
Wear orange on Wednesday to honour Residential School Survivors and their families and communities. Orange shirt day was created in 2013 as a way to educate people and increase awareness about the residential school system that ran between the 1860’s until 1996. It is an event that runs across Canada with virtual live events, lessons and activities in school. Learn more about why orange shirt day was created here.
The theme for Orange Shirt Day is “Every Child Matters” and we will be exploring the legacies of Residential Schools and spending some time in October shifting the focus to highlight the resiliency of Indigenous people across Canada. 

HUB Classes
Our classes are up and running.  There have been some challenges and we appreciate your patience in this process.  Please contact your teacher if you have any questions and we are optimistic that it will be smooth sailing from this point on.
Have a great weekend

Darren, Andrea, Chris.

Sep 22
Sept 18


We want to thank all of our students and teachers for settling in to our new timetable this week and the different bell times. Most of our Hub students have now been logged onto their online classes and have had a chance to meet their new teacher as well. It was also great to meet them on Tuesday when they came in for pictures.

Upcoming events include:
A noon dismissal day on Thursday, Sept 24th
Meet the Teacher Event: Thursday, Sept 24th at 6:30 pm. Due to Covid restrictions this event will be an online presentation. More details will follow regarding accessing this event through Microsoft Teams.
A non-instructional day (No students) on Friday, Sept 25th. Teachers will be working on Individual Program plans for our students that require support and accommodations.
School Council Executive

The following message is from our School Council Executive:

We would like to take this opportunity to welcome our new SJAM families and students, and encourage everyone to attend the School Council meetings. They are held on the 3rd Tuesday of each month, with the exception of December and June where we do not meet. At a council meeting, one can expect to hear updates from the extraordinary SJAM Admin team, report from a Learning Leader regarding what is going on in individual departments around curriculum, and updates from Student Council (events going on in school such as Dances, Sports, Fundraiser, etc – when applicable). Meetings also include time for questions, concerns, and suggestions from parents – your voice is so important and we want you to be heard! Parents can also expect to hear from School Council Executive Members on topics such as financials, fundraisers, volunteer opportunities, and news from COSC (Council of School Councils).

It has been decided that we will hold a virtual School Council AGM meeting using the application Microsoft Teams as the online conference tool to facilitate this opportunity to gather. This virtual meeting will be held on Tuesday, October 20th at 6:30PM.

At this AGM meeting, we will be covering the School Council Executive Elections. All positions are available to be filled, but the two main positions that are highly important to elect are Chair and Treasurer (these roles have parents in them who have moved on to different schools). Please note that the Chair position can be shared in a Co-Chair role as two positions. Please consider taking on an executive role; you are important, your voice is valuable, and you are needed!! We will send out a detailed list of positions/roles and the time expected to fill these within the next couple weeks. Thanks in advance for your support!

To receive an invite to access this meeting, please send an email to and you will be sent an invite to join the Teams conference tool. A membership or download is not required to use Teams; however, you will need to click on the link that will be sent to access the meeting.

We will send out the list of protocols in a later message, that we will ask everyone to follow during our school council meeting.

SJAM Eats Lunch Program

The Brown Bagging for Calgary’s Kids Story

“For 30 years, BB4CK has been feeding hungry kids in our city.

Food nourishes us. Brings us together. Connects us. From enjoying a family meal to trading sandwiches in the cafeteria, some of the best memories are built over food. Hungry people can’t focus, can’t learn, can’t grow to be their best.”

If your child needs a lunch at SJAM they can come get one Monday – Thursday at lunch (12:45) in Student Services. There is no form to fill in and it’s free.


100% of the funding comes from people and groups who care about feeding hungry kids. They give $20 from their birthday money, and $50,000 grants. They drop off cheques for $100, and sign up as Hunger Heroes to give $40 each month. You can “be a hero for hungry kids.” Check out the website for more information​

Option Classes

We used this re-scheduling as an opportunity to provide all options to students throughout the year. Students will take 8 option classes. The year is divided into four quarters. Students take 2 option classes each quarter. This design also includes a cohorting process to enhance safety.

Have a great weekend!


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#Awesome! We see some beautiful #SJAMers in that bunch. ❤️ Thanks to all who volunteer their time and give their love to the beautification of #YYC. 👏🏽

#SJAM is so grateful to be a part of the #mookaaksin circle. ❤️ #WeAreCBE

RT @yyCBEdu: It’s the last weekend to pre-register for yellow school bus transportation for next year. Please log into your My CBE/PowerSchool account to apply before Friday, May 31. #yycbe #WeAreCBE

Our #SJAM musicians rocked the house tonight with their amazing talents! Our conductor #MrsArmstrong was in fine form, like always! 👏🏽 ❤️ The music was so good that our Trustee @AltheaGAdams & principal #MsLori were up busting some old school #YMCA moves. 😎 Y-M-C-A 😎 #WeAreCBE

Our #SJAM Drama Production was a huge success last week! Thank you #MrLancaster for giving so much of yourself to #SJAM students. We ❤️ you and we are grateful for your teaching and coaching. #Bravo 👏🏽 #WeAreCBE #LostThenFound #DrJekyllsSecret