For safety reasons, proper attire is expected to be worn in the gym, i.e., running shoes with non-marking soles (no outdoor shoes), short sleeves, shorts. Items such as a belt or scarf, must not dangle. Long hair must be tied back. Earrings, watches, and rings, must be removed.
A note from a parent is required to temporarily exclude a student from regular Physical Education classes. Exclusion from this part of the school program for an extended period requires a note from the family physician as Physical Education is a curricular requirement that is reported on the Provincial Report Card.
Board policy states that school staff cannot administer medication without the form Request and Consent for Administration of Medication, completed and signed by a parent. Responsibility for administering the medications rests with the parents until the completed form is returned to the Principal. Parents must provide a properly labelled container, including the instructions and conditions that are to be followed for the safe administration of the medication. The school will not dispense Aspirin, Tylenol, Advil, etc., to students. For safety reasons, no student should have medication at school without following the above outlined procedures.
Parents of children with life threatening medical concerns/allergies are responsible for notifying the school and must complete an Emergency Medications Protocol each September.
Please keep us informed of any potential risk of injury to your child. Let us know of a previous concussion, a condition which might affect safe participation in school programs, or any condition which might affect the provision of first aid.
This word describes a serious type of reaction someone may have when allergic to something. These reactions can be fatal to the person who is severely allergic. The most common allergic reaction we experience in school has to do with allergy to food – especially nut products – and to bee stings.
As you may be aware, a number of our students have a potentially life-threatening allergy. We ask that you join the St. Matthew staff in taking care to ensure the safety of all students in the school. We ask your cooperation by not sending to school with your child any snacks or lunches containing peanuts or nuts or a product that says,"May contain traces of nuts". Other allergens will be dealt with, on an as needed basis. The following guidelines must be strictly adhered to by all the students in the school:
• Snacks are not to be shared with other students.
• Utensils are not to be shared with other students.
• Parents are asked to read labels carefully for the following products that may contain nut products: granola bars, crackers, chocolate bars and cookies, some cereals, store baked goods or snacks.
• We realize that this request may pose somewhat of a challenge for you when packing your child’s snack and lunch, however, we wish to express sincere appreciation for your support and understanding.
Birthday celebrations in the younger grades are common and parents are asked to observe our request for non-food treats. We have had success in the last several years in shifting to small treat items such as pencils, stickers, rulers, small Dollar Store toys or donations to the class library in the birthday student's name.
Working together, we can help keep all children safe.
PUBLIC HEALTH NURSE
The primary role of the Public Health Nurse is to work with the school community to promote health. As a secondary role, the Public Health Nurse is a consultant to individuals or groups regarding specific health related issues. For more information, or if you would like to be involved in promoting healthy school communities, please call the Public Health Nurse at 905-825-6000 extension 2550.
STUDENT ACCIDENT / LIFE INSURANCE
Student Accident Insurance is available to each student from an insurance company approved by the Board. The school will send home one form per family when they arrive at school in September. If you desire this insurance coverage, complete the enrolment card and mail it, along with payment, directly to the company. Envelopes are not to be returned to the school. Please note that different coverage options may be offered, (e.g., coverage of your child 24 hours a day, 365 days a year). Please read the policy applications thoroughly and select options carefully.
ILLNESS OR INJURY AT SCHOOL
Our facilities are not conducive to having students remain at school if they are injured or ill. We will call parents or the emergency contact to make arrangements for your child to go home if ill. We strongly urge that your emergency contact person be one who lives locally. Please advise the school of any changes to phone numbers and emergency contacts as soon as possible. As mentioned earlier, recess breaks are an important part of the daily school routine. Except in medical circumstances, all students are required to go outside for recess. If a student cannot go outside for fresh air and exercise because of a heavy cough or cold, then that student is likely too contagious with the cold virus to be sitting in the classroom with other children and should be cared for at home. Viruses and bacteria can travel very quickly from person to person. Help us to keep our school a healthy place.
If your child feels unwell early in the morning, make arrangements for her/him to be cared for at home or at a sitter’s. Do not send your child back to school until s/he is well enough to actively participate. Our school days are full and require a healthy energy level.
First Aid on our school site is provided by trained and certified First Aid providers. A First Aid Action Plan has been developed to manage emergencies with immediate contact to medical aid when appropriate. Students are informed as to who the First Aid providers are, the location of the First Aid station and procedures to follow when injured or ill.
GRADE 7 HEPATITIS B IMMUNIZATION PROGRAM
The Halton Regional Health Department will provide Hepatitis B immunization. The free Hepatitis B vaccine will be offered to all Grade 7 students not previously immunized against Hepatitis B. Immunization will be through school-based clinics and administered by the Health Department staff.
DENTAL HEALTH SERVICES
Dental screening is provided for all children in Kindergarten, Grades 2, and 8. Targeted schools will also receive screening services for grades 4 and 6. Children identified at dental risk during the screening will receive dental/nutritional education and oral hygiene instruction. Education services are also available for other grades. Parents requesting eligibility into CINOT(Children in Need Of Treatment-funding for essential dental treatment) can call for a screening appointment to the Regions’ Dental Health Services at 905-825-6060, extension 7809.
PEDICULOSIS / HEAD LICE
Head lice are tiny, wingless, greyish insects that live and breed on human hair. They move quickly and are hard to see. The eggs are pinhead-sized and are the colour of the person’s scalp. Live eggs are laid at the root of the hair and are ‘glued’ on, so that they will not move. The warmth of the scalp will hatch them in about seven to ten days. The nits are empty shells of the eggs that have hatched. These can be found one centimetre from the scalp, and continue to grow out with the hair. The nit is white and distracts attention away from the live egg. A nit can show how long head lice have been present. Hair grows about one centimetre a month. For example, if the nit is three centimetres from the scalp, the egg was hatched three months ago.
You can help to prevent head lice by:
§ brushing or combing hair vigorously every night;
§ checking hair weekly, especially after group activities;
§ teaching children to tell you if their scalp is itchy;
§ encouraging your child to not exchange hats or head gear.
At Home: If the parent discovers that her/his child has head lice, s/he should notify the school. The school will access a private nursing agency to come to the school and check siblings and classmates. The parent should visit a pharmacist, who can suggest products for appropriate treatment. Check the heads of all family members and contacts over the last six months. Clean and launder bedding, hats, and other head gear. An authorized note is required from the Health Department prior to student’s re-entry into the school.
At School: If a case of head lice is suspected at school, the Principal/Vice Principal/designate will report the suspected/confirmed case of head lice to the private nursing agency to request rapid screening of classroom and siblings. The school will then notify the parent of her/his child’s identified infestation and request that the child is picked up. The nurse will inform parents about the recommended method of treatment. Children may not return to school until they have been rechecked and cleared by the Health Department. An authorized note is required prior to re-admission to school.
The Health Protection and Promotion Act, 1983, Chapter 10, Section 28 requires that children with certain communicable diseases be kept away from other children during the period when the disease may be spread. The following chart defines what some of the more common childhood diseases are and the periods of exclusion for these diseases.
Children with the disease should remain at home until:
… the child is well enough to participate in all activities regardless of the state of the rash.
… diarrhea stops.
… the antibiotic prescribed by a doctor has been taken for at least 1 full day.
… at least 4 days after the rash begins.
… at least 9 days after the swollen glands first appear.
… the antibiotic prescribed by a doctor has been taken for at least 1 full day.
… treatment has started.
Rubella (German Measles)
… at least 7 days after the rash first appears.
… antibiotic treatment has been taken for 1 full day.
… antibiotic treatment has been taken for 1 full day.
Whooping Cough (Pertussis)
… antibiotic treatment has been taken for at least 5 days.
If no treatment is given, then child stays home for 3 weeks from when the cough began.
If you suspect your child has a communicable disease :
§ Keep your child at home and away from others.
§ Contact your family doctor for a diagnosis. Your doctor will advise you regarding care and treatment when a communicable disease is diagnosed.
§ Contact the school.
§ Contact the Halton Regional Health Department, Communicable Disease Program with any questions you may have at 905-825-6060, 905-853-0501, 905-878-8113, or TTY 827-9833 extension 2550.
Ontario law requires students attending school in Ontario be up-to-date with diphtheria, tetanus, polio, mumps, measles (2 doses) and rubella immunization. Students who are not up-to-date can be barred from school by order of the Halton Region Health Department.
FREEDOM OF INFORMATION
In compliance with the Freedom of Information and Privacy Act, we cannot give out the names, addresses, or phone numbers, of families without their knowledge and consent. Please do not ask school staff to provide this information for birthday parties or other social engagements.
CUSTODY OF CHILDREN
We are all aware that single-parent families are increasingly common in modern society. On rare occasions, we are faced with difficult situations when a non-custodial parent arrives at school asking to visit with, or take home aftr school, a child. We are best able to serve and protect the child when we are made aware of:
§ Visitation rights
§ Special instructions
If these circumstances apply to your family, please ensure that the school office and classroom teachers are aware of current legal agreements between separated or divorced parents. Proof will be kept on file stating joint or single custody.
Please notify the school if someone other than the usual person is picking up your child.
We will not intentionally release a student to anyone who is not the usual caregiver unless we have been informed, in writing, ahead of time.
CHILDREN IN NEED OF PROTECTION – OBLIGATION TO REPORT
Halton Catholic District School Board policy requires all employees to comply with the reporting requirements of the Child and Family Services Act. This Act requires that teachers and other professionals report any suspicion that a child is in need of protection. Steps followed if is suspected that a child needs protection:
§ An initial phone consultation is made, where no identifying information is shared.
§ It is the role of the Children’s Aid Society (CAS) to decide whether the concern shared is to be investigated.
§ Once the CAS has decided to investigate, they terminate consultation and the school personnel are required, by law, to provide all of the specific information asked for by the CAS.
§ The CAS will then investigate whether the child is in need of protection.
§ It is customary for the CAS social worker to interview the child in school, sometimes in the company of a police officer from the Halton Region Police.
§ The CAS assumes the responsibility for communicating with parents.
Should a report be made to the Children’s Aid Society, please understand that we are complying with the law and the policy of the Halton Catholic District School Board in the best interests of the children in our care.
If your child is bruised or marked from an accident or bicycle spill, please let the teacher know the circumstances.
CRISIS AT HOME
If there is a crisis at home, such as a death or illness in the family or of friends who are close to you and your child, please let us know so that we can provide support for your child upon her/his return to school. Death or illness of family pets can also be upsetting to children and affect their ability to learn.
Please review the following regularly with your children:
§ Play safely and play together. Do not play in remote areas of a park or a wooded area, or take short cuts through the woods.
§ Do not loiter on the way to/from school.
§ Do not go anywhere with a stranger.
§ Do not accept rides for any reason.
§ Stay well beyond the reach of people you do not know.
§ Do not be afraid to say ‘NO’ to any request and run away quickly.
§ Do not accept any treats, i.e., candies, toys or money from a stranger, for any reason.
§ Always notify your parents about where you are going, especially if it is a change of routine.
§ Look for Block Parent signs between home and school so that you know where they are in advance.
§ If a stranger approaches you, you must notify an adult, parent, guardian, or teacher immediately.
§ When someone you don’t recognize uses your name or the name of a family member, be on your guard.
§ Don’t wear shirts with your name printed on the back.
FIRE DRILLS AND EVACUATION
Fire drills will be held at regular intervals throughout the year. Students will be instructed as to the proper procedures for evacuation. Students must wear footwear at all times while in school so their feet will be protected should the school require evacuation. Should the fire alarm sound, the students must exit immediately. They cannot stop to put on shoes. Students are asked to have an extra pair of indoor shoes at the school, particularly during the winter months.
Lockdown drills will be held at regular intervals throughout the school year, to prepare students should an emergency require that students move into a safe environment within the school.
EMERGENCY SCHOOL CLOSURE
When emergency conditions exist, such as inclement weather, school plant shutdown due to heating failure, etc., the health and safety of our children are our prime consideration. Notification of school closure and/or bus cancellation can be heard on the stations:
AM Stations FM Stations
Prime Time AM 740 WAVE 94.7
CHAM 820 CHFI 98.1
CHML 900 CBC 99.1
CFRB 1010 CKFM 99.9
CKOC 1150 K-LITE 102.9
CJOY 1460 CIMJ 106.1
And also on CHCH tv channel 11 .
If for some reason, there is an early school closing, the following system has been established:
· The walkers, for whom we have received written permission, will automatically be dismissed.
· Bus children, for whom we have received written permission, will be dismissed when the bus arrives.
· Parents, who have so indicated, will be contacted by phone, and their children will be held at a specified location until we have been able to contact you. Parents must come promptly and pick up their children at the specified location.
TRANSPORTATION CANCELLED BUT SCHOOL REMAINS OPEN
There may be times when school bus transportation is cancelled due to inclement weather, but the school is open to receive students. Parents who drive children to school on these days are responsible for picking them at dismissal time. We ask you to keep in mind that with adverse driving conditions, conditions may also be treacherous for students walking; as always, it is the responsibility of the parent/guardian to decide if conditions are safe for a child to walk to and from school.
If busses are cancelled in the morning, they will not run in the afternoon.