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Welcome to Week 37!  Congratulations to all for getting through a very busy and emotionally-intense week.  Your patience, understanding, and candour with your students is appreciated by all.  I hope you found time for yourself amidst your marking at some point during the weekend.   
The Test Centre made it to Wednesday afternoon before another room was required.  Thursday and Friday saw the need for two additional rooms.  Thanks to the Business and Math Departments for your flexibility and willingness to accommodate the increased number.  Thanks also to Antonella, Wendy Jones, and Liz for lending a hand during peak times.  A total of 1 946 tests were written this week bringing the current yearly total to a record 21 140, 758 higher than the previous high of 20 382 set in 2005-2006.  We still have one more day to go and Lucy, Angela, and Anna are up for the challenge.  If you want to see a “well-oiled” machine at work, simply visit the test centre to see these ladies in action!
This time of year is also busy from a staffing perspective.  Thanks to Violet for the time, care, and dedication she is devoting to ensure all scheduling aspects are in place for September, the members of the LSSAC team including Mary-Lynn, Lynda, Mary Louise, Mike Kennedy, Susanna, Marion, and Maria Scarano for the time they gave to assist in the scheduling process, Paulette for taking the minutes, and all Department Heads who are working hard to ensure staff are given a balanced schedule.  All staff should soon be aware of their tentative schedule for 2010-11 through discussions with your Department Head.  We plan to have final schedules distributed to all staff within the next few weeks but keep in mind that sometimes changes are necessary over the summer.  Ideally, we would prefer to consult with you if changes are required, so please ensure you leave a contact number with Paulette. 
You have probably noticed the efforts undertaken by Keith, Peter Walther, and our Construction Tech. students who are working hard to get our new benches in place prior to the end of the school year.  They have also been working hard in the Construction Tech. area clearing out excess waste.  We will enjoy Peter’s expertise and friendly demeanour for another week before we say farewell on Friday.  Rumour has it, Peter is already booked for another construction job.  Thanks for giving of your time to return to your Ward family, Peter.  We enjoyed your four weeks with us.  Luckily, Keith is with us until June 30!
We also bid farewell to our special ladies in the cafeteria who will close off the kitchen until September after Thursday’s lunch.  Thanks to Esther, Sabina, and Lucia for all your work over the past school year.  We look forward to welcoming you back in September.  Enjoy your summer holiday!  Please inform your advisees that there will be no cafeteria service after June 10.
If you are interested in raising some funds for an event next year, please speak to Jen Hayes as FDR is not operating cafeteria service during summer school.  This is a good opportunity to get a head start on your fundraising for the 2010-11 school year.
The TCDSB welcomed back former Ward principal, Barb McMorrow this week in the position of Executive Corporate Secretary and Senior Board Liaison Officer.  Barb was the longest serving principal at Ward before being appointed Professional Learning Director of the Catholic Principals’ Council of Ontario in September 2004.  We are fortunate to have Barb back in the TCDSB as she will be closer to her Ward family.
We had more good news this week about two of our staff members, Marissa Largo and Kathy Saran.  Marissa was selected by the Ministry to write the Grade 10 Media Arts eLearning Curriculum.  Although the contract goes through December 10, 2010, in typical Marissa-fashion, she plans to make this a summer project.   Our very own, Kathy Saran was awarded the "Toronto Secondary Unit (TSU) Beginning Teacher of the Year Award."  Kathy will be honoured at the TSU Awards Dinner on June 8 at Fantasy Farms.  You are both most deserving, and we are extremely proud!
Thanks to all teachers who participated in the Grade 12 Promotion Meetings last week.  The meeting was well planned and effectively run, thanks to the hard work of our Guidance Department including Paul, Lynda, Lynn, Mary Louise, and Peter.  If any other graduation issues arise with your Grade 12 advisees, please alert your SBAT Counsellor as soon as possible.  Please also ensure that your advisees’ parents/guardians are kept up-to-date.  We want to avoid any unpleasant surprises.
This week’s rain slowed the paving of the sidewalks near the community centre.  Please inform your advisees that we need to continue to avoid using the south doors until this project is complete.
Please note that the Grade 9 students are writing the EQAO Math Assessment on June 11 and will only require the use of the Math and English resource areas, as well as the Test Centre and Special Programs (this is a change from the use of the whole 3rd floor).  We will cordon off the northern part of the 3rd floor, and keep the southern part open (CWS, Science, French, and Business using the western door near the Test
Centre).  We appreciate your accommodation of this Ministry requirement.
Thanks to Derek and Dan Somers of the Trillium Department who worked hard to devise our Final Exam schedule.  Department Heads are asked to advise Derek of any required revisions as the plan is to distribute the final schedule to students early this week.
It is that time of year again when all TCDSB employees must complete their 2010-11 Criminal Offence Declaration.  The entire process takes less than 10 minutes to complete, and although we have until September 1 to declare, I suggest you get this off your “to do” list prior to leaving for summer holidays.  It will be one less thing to do in September!
Members of Ward’s Track Team come home with some great results from the 3 day Ontario Championships in London, Ontario.   Ketura Mason placed 12/24 in the Midget Girls 100m and 6/24 in the Midget Girls 200m, Evander Cobbold placed 6/24 in the Junior Boys 100m and 7/24 in the Junior Boys 100m, and Claudine Palmer placed 6/24 in the Senior Girls 100m.
The highlight of the meet was the Senior Girls 4-by-100m relay who earned FIRST PLACE!  Congratulations to the Ontario Championship team members Sophie Angoh, Shereen Harris, Ketura Mason, Claudine Palmer, Olive Alleyne, and Erica Wright.  Congratulations also to Coaches D’Agostino and Davies on the time you put into training the team enabling them to achieve such great results.  Well Done!
Congratulations to the Girls’ Softball Team and Coaches Ireland and McAlpine who competed in the Tier II final tournament last week.  After a tough season, the girls were happy to qualify for the final four and even more excited when they captured the silver medal.  Way to go girls – we have high expectations for next year!
The members of our five Dragon Boat teams participated in their first competition of the season on Sunday during the Pickering Dragon Boat Festival.  Their hard work, dedication, and commitment were certainly put to the test in the wet conditions.  Stay tuned to next week’s Varia for results from Coaches Christa Hall, Joanna Morra, Peter Petrasek and head coach, Ryan Wong. 
We have an opportunity to celebrate the success of our 2009-10 Athletic Season at Friday’s 25th Annual Athletic Banquet.  Please ensure your advisees are aware of this monumental event, and that you consider attending to share in the recognition of the various teams and individual accomplishments earned this past season.   Seating will commence at 5:30 p.m. with the banquet beginning at 6:00 p.m. in our cafetorium. 
Thanks to Mary Louise, Violet, and Kara for their participation in the Student Success School Effectiveness Framework planning session last week.  During Extended TAs on Tuesday and Wednesday, your advisees will be given a Student Voice Survey to provide feedback that will form the basis of discussion for Ward’s School Effectiveness Framework (SEF).  A good part of our September 2 PA Day will be spent working on our SEF to support school improvement and student success.  We have many great systems in place already to address these issues, but we are anxious to hear our “student voices” in order to continue what we do well and learn where we need to improve.  You will receive one set of surveys in your mailbox on Tuesday to focus on Day A courses and a second set of surveys on Wednesday to focus on Day B courses.  Please return all surveys in the envelope provided to the office at 9:30 a.m. each day with your blue attendance sheet.  If you require further clarification, please contact Violet.
Monday, June 7 is Day 10.  Today marks the last day for students to submit units or write tests.  Good luck to Violet who continues the scheduling process at Our Lady of Mount Carmel, hopefully all will go smoothly and she will be able to “go final”.  The SAC Executive meets with the Administrative Team at lunch, and then Derek is off to conduct teacher interviews at the Catholic Education Centre.  The Special Education Department welcomes Isolina Varano for an afternoon workshop beginning at 1 p.m. 
Tuesday, June 8 is a Schedule A with an Extended TA.  Please ensure your advisees complete the Student Voice Survey for Day A classes and that you return all surveys to the main office with your attendance.  Only presentations and consultations will occur during scheduled classes.  We welcome Karen Tigani and 12 – 14 colleagues from Huron Perth Catholic District School Board for a morning information session facilitated by Derek and Mary Louise.  Patricia is at a K – 12 Principals’ Meeting, and Kathy Saran is awarded her TSU Beginning Teacher’s Award at the TSU year-end dinner.  
Wednesday, June 9 is a Schedule B with an Extended TA.  Please ensure your advisees complete the Student Voice Survey for Day B classes and that you return all surveys to the main office with your attendance.  Only presentations and consultations will occur during scheduled classes.  New staff will gather for their final Lunch ‘n Learn session in the Office Conference Room.     Halpern’s hosts a Uniform Sale from 3:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. in the cafetorium and incoming Grade 9s register for the Head Start Summer School Program.
Thursday, June 10 is a Modified Schedule as outlined below.  Take time to visit the café during your extended lunch to wish Esther, Sabina, and Lucia a great summer.  The OASIS student leaders for 2010-11 and staff depart for Woodland Trails at 4 p.m. for their overnight training session.  Enjoy your time!
Day A/B Schedule
TA Check-In   8:40 –  8:55 
Period 1A        9:00 –  9:35
Period 2A        9:35 – 10:10 
Period 3A      10:10 – 10:45
Period 4A      10:45 – 11:20
Lunch            11:20 – 12:30
Period 1B     12:30 –   1:05
Period 2B      1:05 –   1:40
Period 3B      1:40 –   2:15
Period 4B      2:15 –   2:50
*Schedule A = 1A – 4A; Schedule B = 1B – 4B
Friday, June 11 is a Tutorial Day.  We will follow our regular schedule using a Day 7 floor schedule.  The Grade 9 students will write the EQAO Math Assessment in the morning, the OASIS leaders and staff return at
2 p.m., and the Athletic Banquet begins in the cafetorium at 5:30 p.m.
That’s all folks. Enjoy your week!