December 2020. December in a year unlike any other year we, as a community and as a country, have ever experienced. Throughout the disruptions, school has continued, online and in-school. Students continue to learn with the support and guidance of their dedicated teachers and support staff.
Crossing Park School has not been immune to the impact of Covid-19. All of you have received the emails keeping you up-to-date on cases in the school. Be assured, the school is doing its utmost to ensure a safe and healthy learning environment that follows all the guidelines of Alberta Health Services.
On Monday, 30 November 2020, all students in grades 7-12 in Alberta moved to online learning. All students K-6 will join them for the week of 04-08 January 2021. All students are presently scheduled to return to in-school learning on Monday, 11 January 2020.
Our teachers in grades K-6 are busy preparing their students for this week of online learning. Please follow teacher blogs and Google Classroom for up to the minute information related to online learning. As we learned in April, this transition does not always go as smoothly as we would hope but, this time, we can more effectively prepare students for this transition.
Sadly, this year, safety requires us to treat the holiday season differently than in years past. It is not the year for large gatherings with family and friends. It is the year to recognize that sacrificing those gatherings means helping curb the spread of Covid-19. Be healthy, be safe, be part of the solution and take care of each other.
All the very best for the holiday season. See you in the New Year – in-class or online!
November already! Every year time seems to fly by faster and faster. As a school, we have survived Halloween and move forward into Remembrance Day – a time of year that holds much significance for me. As a veteran and a Canadian, I am aware of the significant sacrifices made by Canadians for Canada and the World throughout our nation’s history. It is not a pleasant story but it is part of our national identity.
Throughout Canada’s existence, men and women have been involved in conflict around the world. Many were wounded, both physically and mentally, and thousands have sacrificed their lives for principles they were willing to die for. They fought and died, with and alongside their friends. They fought against some things and for others. They fought against tyranny and for peace. They fought against oppression and fought for freedom.
November 11, Remembrance Day, is reminds Canadians to acknowledge and remember the sacrifice of those Canadians who were wounded or died in the service of our country and the world. A few moments on one day to recognize their sacrifices…
This year, however, will be different. Due to Covid-19 and the restrictions we are under trying to curb its spread, large gatherings are not permitted. The thousands of people who attend Remembrance Day events around Calgary are now being asked to watch this year’s ceremonies on television. Even those ceremonies are significantly smaller. None of this changes the importance of this day in the minds of Canadians.
On November 11, take time to remember. Whether at home or out, take two minutes to remember the sacrifices made by others on your behalf. Take time to visit the many sites in Calgary that honour the sacrifice of Canadians – statues, memorials and cenotaphs.
In Flanders Fields
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.
~ LCol Dr John McCrae
It is the beginning of October and Crossing Park School is in full “go forward” mode. Our first priority is the safety and health of our students. All protocols established by Alberta Health Services and the Calgary Board of Education. Thank you to all parents and guardians who walk their children through the mandatory COVID-19 checklist each and every morning! We will continue to be vigilant – they are all our children!
HUB Online is now in its third full week. Although there have been a few glitches, things are now flowing and students are connected and engaged in their learning. Please visit https://cbe.ab.ca/programs/hub/Pages/default.aspx for updates on HUB Online.
On Monday, 28 September 2020, Crossing Park School held the first School Council Meeting of the year. We connected electronically and were successfully able to conduct the School Council’s business. We would love to have more parent involvement in the council as some of the present members have stepped down as their children have moved on to high school. We are looking for a co-chair and a casino chair. Without these positions being filled, we could lose access to casino funds that earns thousands of dollars to support enrichment in our school.
On 29 and 30 October 2020, we will hold our first set of Parent Teacher Interviews. Parents and Guardians will not be coming into the school but rather will connect with teachers through electronic means. Stayed tuned for more details on how this will work. It will be the first time we try this method of conferences so please be patient if we hit some snags!
Thank you for all your support. It was an unusual start to the year but now that all the little bumps have been smoothed out. Our students are focussed on learning. The structures may have changed but teaching and learning have remained constant. It is what Crossing Park is all about!
We are in the final stages of completing our Crossing Park School Re-Entry plan that will contain information specific to our school. The complete Crossing Park Re-Entry plan will be emailed to you on Friday, August 28th
However, there is an important part of the re-entry plan that we wanted to share with you today because it will require child care arrangements and we wanted to give everyone a full week to plan for this change.
To support students with learning new routines and information, understanding the new safety precautions in place, getting to know their teacher, learning the changes in the daily schedule and working towards a safer, calmer first day we are implementing a grade 1 -4 Staggered Entry Plan.
Kindergarten Staggered Entry Plan
Tuesday Sept. 1st and Thursday Sept. 3rd: PM classes only
- • Students with last name A – M, attend 12:00 – 1:00 pm.
- • Students with last name N – Z, attend 1:30 – 2:30 pm.
Wednesday Sept. 2nd: AM classes only
- • Students with last name A – M, attend 8:15 – 9:15 am.
- • Students with last name N – Z, attend 9:45 – 10:45 am.
Friday Sept. 4th: AM classes only. All AM students attend 8:00 – 12:00.
Grade 1 -6 Staggered Entry Plan
•Tuesday Sept. 1st: Students with last name A-H ONLY will attend.
•Wednesday Sept. 2nd: Students with last name I - P ONLY will attend.
•Thursday Sept. 3rd: Students with last name Q - Z ONLY will attend.
•Friday Sept, 4th: ALL students attend 8:00 a.m. until 12:00 p.m.
Grade 7-9 Staggered Entry Plan
•Tuesday Sept. 1st: Grade 7 students ONLY will attend.
•Wednesday Sept. 2nd: Grade 8 students ONLY will attend.
•Thursday Sept. 3rd: Grade 9 students ONLY will attend.
•Friday Sept, 4th: ALL students attend 8:00 a.m. until 12:00 p.m.
These days will be regular school hours. We realize that parents will have to make child care arrangements but we are confident that this plan will ensure a safer, calmer, more welcoming return for families.
ENTRY AND EXIT DOORS
•To support contact tracing, and reduce possible exposure, ALL students are required to enter and exit through their designated door. Entry time will happen from 7:45 a.m. – 8:00 a.m. to allow for more time for parents to drop of several children, and to also reduce congestion at doors.
•PLEASE see attached map for designated door information.
•On every day beginning Sept. 1st enter through your designated door between 7:45 – 8:00. At 8:00 doors will be locked and students will be considered late. Students must go to the office to sign in late, and will be asked to wait outside to help maintain social distancing in the office as they do so.
•At 2:30 dismissal begins. Students will exit out their designated door in class by class in order to reduce crowding in doorways. Parents MUST be prompt at 2:30 to pick students up. All family meetings spots will be outside and students must exit designated doors. Please, parents do not wait in the courtyard area. Please meet your child at the end of this zone.
School Entry Map
LUNCHES AT THE OFFICE
We will not be able to accept lunch drop-offs in the office this year. Please send a lunch and a snack to school with your child in the morning. No microwaves or hot water will be provided.
Now that we have reached the end of a very unique school year, I wish to express my thanks and gratitude to the parents, students and staff of Crossing Park School for making learning possible under challenging circumstances. Enjoy the summer break. Please visit www.cbe.ab.ca over the summer for updates on the 2020-2021 school year.
Be kind to yourselves, be kind to those around you, be kind to the world we share!
June has arrived. It is another ‘non-normal’ month in what has been a ‘non-normal’ school year. The students and staff of Crossing Park School continue to live in a virtual world and Emergency Teaching is the norm. 2020 will certainly be a year that will have many pages in the history books of the future!
To the grade 9 students who are moving on to high school next year – you are, as a group, as unique as the times we find ourselves in. You have shown flexibility and resilience. In many ways, the uncertainties of this school year may have better prepared you for life in the future. You were starting to shine and make an impact on the school when the world changed. Take that energy and enthusiasm into high school and into your community. Don’t be satisfied with the way things are, strive to make them better. Be the living examples of what it means to be citizens of the world, push for equality, strive for equity and treat everyone with compassion and respect. That is my challenge to you and I know you can live up to it!
Although there have been many questions about next year, I do not have the answers. Schools in Alberta will follow the guidance of Alberta Health, Alberta Education and local school boards in shaping the 2020-2021 school year. For information related to school start up for the 2020-2021 school year, please visit https://www.cbe.ab.ca/Pages/default.aspx.
As the school year moves to a close, the question of report cards becomes a concern. The Calgary Board of Education, as a system, has decided that “all schools will use the online version of the report cards for parents/legal guardians/independent students.” This decision was made to best protect the health and safety of all during the present pandemic. Please do not request a paper copy of the report card from the office or classroom teachers.
To access the June report card, you will require a MyCBE/PowerSchool Parent Account. To create this account, if you do not have one, go to https://sis.cbe.ab.ca/public/home.html#create-parent-account to set an account up.
Monday, 29 June 2020, is designated as Appeals Day. If you have any questions about your child/children’s report card, please email the classroom/subject teacher between 0800hrs and 1200hrs. Teachers will respond to all emails sent before 1200hrs. Teacher emails are found at http://school.cbe.ab.ca/school/crossingpark/about-us/contact/staff/pages/default.aspx if you do not have them. Please do not call the school looking for teachers as we continue to be in “Work From Home” mode.
Wishing you a safe summer – be kind to yourself, be kind to each other, be kind to the world we share!
Our Crossing Park family is now into Week Four of Emergency Teaching. It has been a challenge for many and required a significant mindset shift. For many of our students, the change meant learning to share technology and resources with family members as well as remembering when they were supposed to Meet with their classes online. Thankfully, for most of our students, the adjustment was made and school, of a different sort, successfully progresses.
There is much speculation in the country and in the province about ‘opening up’. Please visit the Calgary Board of Education’s website (cbe.ab.ca) to view the most current information about the status of schools and education in our jurisdiction.
The staff of Crossing Park School are doing their best to keep contact with their students and to keep them engaged in learning. If you need information or your child is struggling, please do not hesitate to contact the teacher by email. Teachers are not working at the school at the present time but are available by email to support you and your child.
To support you and your technology questions, the CBE has established Technical Support for Students & Parents (https://cbe.ab.ca/support/Pages/Home.aspx) This service is available Monday-Friday from 0830-1630hrs. Please have your child’s student number, the child’s student email address and the child’s password nearby when to contact Technical Support for assistance.
As staff and students become more comfortable using the new platforms (Google Classroom and Google Meet), the work will evolve. Work will continue to follow the time parameters set by Alberta Education and the Calgary Board of Education. The major challenge will be keeping students engaged with learning and connected with school staff and their peers. Encourage your child to remain involved and remain connected. The staff look forward to working with each and every student every day whether face-to-face or through technology.
Be safe and stay at home when possible!
It is hard not to recognize the world has changed over the last few weeks. Today, students would normally be returning to school following Spring Break. The Covid-19 pandemic has made this impossible. Instead, students will be provided with learning opportunities at home facilitated by their classroom teachers. This will be a new experience for everyone – students, parents and school staff. Mistakes will be made, errors will happen but we will all work through this together.
Beginning tomorrow, you and/or your child will be contacted by the classroom/teacher advisor teacher. They will gather information to help facilitate this new learning experience. Please note: if you receive a call from a blocked number, this is likely a school staff member reaching out to you. Once students have been contacted, teachers will set up communication tools that will support student learning. If you think you are missing information, please email the teacher or check the teacher blog. Teacher contact information is available on our school website under “About Us”, “Our Staff.”
By Wednesday, students will start seeing learning materials roll out to them. The focus for Wednesday and Thursday will be to ensure all participants in learning (including school staff) can function within the selected platform. For those who do not have a computer or access to the internet, an alternative method of program delivery will be established shortly. Further details will follow.
The school is also in the process of setting up a system for students to come and pick up their personal belongings. With over 800 students who did not pick up their belongings before the break, this is a major task! Please do not just drop in, wait for further information.
In addition to the school website and teacher blogs, the Calgary Board of Education website (www.cbe.ab.ca) is an excellent source of information for ongoing learning and Covid-19.
This will be a new experience for all. We will need to keep the lines of communications open between the school, students and parents. We do not know what the future holds, but for now know that we care about our students, we care about their education and we care about you, the community we proudly serve!
Take good care!
March is here! In terms of school, it is a short month of only fourteen instructional days leading into Spring Break. Spring Break begins on Friday, 20 March 2020. Classes resume on Monday, 06 April 2020.
Over the last few weeks, there has been a noticeable increase in the number of “near misses” involving vehicles and students. The primary issues are drivers failing to follow traffic rules and cars parking or stopping when it unsafe to do so. As a result, students face the risk of accident and injury. The Calgary Police Service and the Calgary Parking Authority have been made aware of these concerns and will more actively patrol the school area.
Stopping to drop students off in the parking lots and in front of the school continue to be concerning issues. Please do not drive into the parking lots to drop students off – the parking lot layout and staff arriving in the morning make these unsafe drop off points. Calgary Police Service continues to monitor the road in from of the school. Please remember that Martindale Blvd in front of the school is a NO STOPPING zone except for school buses. The police have ticketed and will continue to ticket offending drivers.
Spring Break marks the transition into the last third of the school year. It is not the time to ease up or give up on learning. Over the Break, encourage your child or children to read, to watch the news and engage in discussion about world activities. I hope all students will use this time to relax and return refreshed and ready to finish the last three months of the 2019-2020 school year!
It is now the beginning of February and the second half of the school year is well under way. It is truly amazing to how the time has flown since the winter holiday! Our second round of Parent Teacher Student Interviews was held on 30-31 January 2020. Thank you to all parents/guardians who attended! Students achieve best when we all work together.
On 03 February 2020, Junior High School students begin their new complementary courses. Assessment and comments for Semester One courses will be available online shortly.
In a school this large, it is not unusual to have staff changes for a variety of reasons mid-year. Ms Chan will join our Junior High and will be teaching Math/Science. Ms Saifeddine (a Crossing Park alumni) will be team teaching in Grade 2 with Ms Tonsaker. Ms Nazerali has joined the Grade 4 team. Ms Kenney and Mrs Ashby have returned to Kindergarten, Mrs Moore to Grade 2 and Mrs Bui to Grade 5. Welcome to all our new and returning teachers.
During February, teachers participate in the annual Teachers’ Convention. This is an opportunity for all Calgary Board of Education teachers to attend sessions that allow them to improve their practice as well as explore new resources to support teaching and learning. Teachers’ Convention will be held 13-14 February 2020 and there will be no classes those two days. A reminder – Monday, 17 February 2020, is Family Day. There are no classes!
I am often asked by parents what they can do to support their children and their learning. One of the most significant things you can do is encourage your children to read. Daily reading can have a huge impact on school success. It doesn’t matter what is read or what language it is written in, it is reading that matters. If you do not have books at your child’s reading level, they can be signed out through the school library or the Calgary Public Library. Every child should be a reader!
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