School Closure Updates Due to Weather

Please be sure to check this website space for any district announcements on school closures due to inclement weather.

A Message from the Superintendent – Dec 3, 2020

Dear Parents / Guardians,

Here we are in December almost 4 months into the new school year.  It has certainly been a roller-coaster ride for everyone in our school system.  I want to thank parents and guardians for your continuing support as we navigate the changing landscape in our schools and communities.  Our strength is our resolve to find solutions when presented with the challenges before us and the amazing spirit of cooperation we have in our district.   I am writing to you today to provide you with an update on a number of district items:

Health & Safety

We continue to follow the recommendations from Dr. Bonnie Henry and her team at the Provincial Health Office (PHO) who work in conjunction with the BC Centre for Disease Control.  Our schools have enhanced safety protocols in place that include extensive cleaning and other safety measures such as hand-washing stations, mask protocols and student cohorts.  Our schools are some of the most controlled environments in the province and continue to be safe places to work and learn.  You can find more information about the latest information and guidelines at the following websites:

Communication Protocols

We will continue to keep parents and guardians informed in a timely manner on any significant updates with our school operations.  This will include things such as school schedules, any operational changes that may be required, as well as any Island Health notifications that need to be sent home.  Island Health remains the regional authority on all medical issues related to COVID-19 and will direct the school district should there be an exposure in a school.  We will work to ensure that this communication is efficient and transparent. 

Winter Break (Dec 21st – Jan 1st)

At this time, there is no indication that the provincial government is planning to extend the upcoming Winter Break.  This would be a provincial decision and not one controlled by the school district.  The decision would come from either the PHO or the Ministry of Education.  

The Holiday Season

This will be a very different holiday season for most families in our community.  It is normally a time for gathering and celebrating.  And while that may look quite different this year it can also be a time of rejuvenation and renewal.  I know from visiting schools and speaking with students, staff and parents there is a need for some time to recharge.  I want to take this time to wish everyone a wonderful upcoming holiday season – one that is filled with love and reconnection, however that might look.  I have posted a new blog entry on my professional blog The Power of Why and hope that you may take a few minutes to read it:  ‘Tis the Season for Hope

Season’s Greetings,

Dave Eberwein
Superintendent & CEO, Saanich Schools

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Saanich Schools StrongStart Restart Information

The Saanich School District would like to thank all families for their patience and support as we worked through the challenges and logistics of opening StrongStart.  We are very happy to announce that Strong Start is open for in-person programming for small groups of families.

These programs are conducted by qualified early childhood educators who lead a variety of learning activities designed to support children on their learning path before they enter school. 

The current schedule will be :

Brentwood Elementary

Tuesday/Thursday Mornings 9:30-10:30AM
Tuesday Afternoons 1:15-2:15PM

Brentwood Protocols
Lochside Elementary

Monday /Wednesday/Friday mornings 9:30-10:30 am

Lochside Protocols
Sidney Elementary Tuesday/Thursday 9:15-10:15AM Sidney Protocols

 

Registration and Application Information

Please read the details below carefully before applying:

  1. Families will only be able to apply to attend StrongStart for one day a week for the offered consecutive weeks.  **please note, that because of contact tracing students will need to attend each week on the same day (i.e. only Mondays)
  2. The current schedule for Strong Start sessions offered will be the three weeks from the week of November 30 - December 18.  
  3. Space will be limited.  Families that do not get in will be waitlisted for next sessions.
  4. All families who are accepted to attend a StrongStart must complete a District Registration Form.  Bring your completed registration form to the StrongStart Centre you are accepted to.  
  5. The Application to Attend is live and consistently added to any waitlists or contacted for spaces available.  Application to attend is per child.  If you are bringing two children, please fill out the Application to Attend again.

School Catchment Boundary Review

Following the completion of a catchment boundary review with community consultation, on November 18, 2020, the Board of Education approved the implementation of the following catchment boundary changes for the 2021/22 school year:

  • move study areas A1 and A2 to the Lochside Elementary catchment;
  • move study area C to the Brentwood Elementary catchment;
  • move study area D to the Cordova Bay Elementary catchment; and
  • move study area E to the Lochside Elementary catchment.

More information regarding the study areas and the catchment boundary review can be found in the attached materials. For additional information, enquiries can be sent to  .

Parkland Track 2021

Parkland Track 2021 is a community lead initiative to replace the running track at Parkland Secondary, which is at the end of its life, with a new 8 lane track and soccer field. For more information on this initiative to create a competition quality athletics facility for the community, please visit https://www.parklandtrack2021.com/.

Free Workshop: Parents as Education and Career Coaches - Virtual Zoom Session

The Saanich Career Education department invites you to attend a free seminar for parents! 

Please join us on Monday, November 9th, 2020 from 7 pm - 8:30 pm for an informative session to help parents and guardians navigate the new world of career options open to students!    

PLEASE NOTE Registration is required - click here for more information.

School Catchment Boundary Review

Saanich School District Seeks Community Input for School Catchment Boundary Review

The Saanich School District is seeking community input to inform a school catchment boundary review. The purpose of the review is to address imbalance between school capacities and catchment populations in the southern zone of the district, and to consider other catchment boundary issues that may exist in the district.

To balance school capacities with catchment populations, the district completed a study identifying options to add capacity where possible, and to adjust catchment boundaries where necessary

To participate in our survey, open until end of the day October 21, click here.

 

COVID-19 Testing Procedures for Children (Sept 18 2020)

Dear Parents/Guardians,

Today, Island Health provided school districts with a letter that we are sharing with all parents about the new gargle test for COVID-19.  It provides information about the new test, when to go for the test, as well as health checks and return-to-school protocols.  You can find the letter Taking Your Student For a Mouth Rinse & Gargle COVID-19 Test on our district website here.

Sincerely

Dave Eberwein
Superintendent of Schools

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