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Toronto Catholic District School Board

School Newsletter - November 2017

 

Principal’s Message

 

There were numerous activities and successes this past month. Br. Joseph celebrated our school’s Thanksgiving liturgy with us, there were two 3R’s assemblies, grade 3’s went to the Toronto Botanical Gardens as the grade 2’s went to the zoo and Mad Science, LEGO and Woduko began this month. In addition, the boys volleyball team with Ms. Vrapi competed well in two tournaments and the cross country team represented the school well at City’s. As a whole St. Conrad’s came 17 out of 131 schools which included Jada Egidi’s 8th place finish putting St. Conrad’s in 2nd place in the grade 4 girl’s division. Of course, the month ended with our famous Halloween Spirit Challenge, haunted house, Halloween dance and Halloween prizes! Thank you to Ms. Iannozzi’s class and leadership team, CSPC, parents and teacher volunteers for all the organizing of a fun Halloween Day!
 
This Month we celebrate All Saint’s and All Soul’s Day  Day on the heals of Halloween. We also somberly remember those fallen in our defense on November 11th. It is a month where we may reflect on the living all those who have passed; whether they are loved one’s, people we knew, people in the news around the world, soldiers who fought for our freedom or saints we remember. It is healthy to remember in fondness and the good times they experienced, the good they brought to this earth or the times we spent with them. Here is a brief reflection for when you have a moment to spare.
 
The Good shepherd
 
Many sheep do not recognize the presence of the Good Shepherd in the Church today and insist on wandering off on their own, expecting to enjoy the false freedom of living independently. They allow themselves to be deaf to the voice of the Shepherd. Soon, without realizing it, they grow weak without the nourishing food in the Shepherd’s pasture and grow thirsty as they drift farther away from the springs of living water in the Spirit. The Good Shepherd wanders day and night throughout the whole world, seeking out the lost, the bruised, and the troubled sheep. In ways we can never comprehend, he touches their lives and comforts and heals and strengthens their troubled and anguished spirits, broken bodies, and minds. The Good Shepherd will never abandon his flock.
from the book, “Stories of Jesus”, by Joseph F. Girzone
 
EQAO and the School’s PLF
 
A common trend in Ontario, and one we have not escaped at St. Conrad, is the declining performance of students in Grade 6 on the EQAO assessment in mathematics.  Where our participating students in Reading and Writing for the most part out-perform or meet Board and Provincial levels of achievement, mathematics in Grade 6 in our school has been below the Provincial and Board average.  Conversely, since 2011 there has been a steady increase in both Reading and Writing and Grade 3 mathematics in our school.  Over the past two years, our Professional Learning Plan (or PLF) has focused on achievement in mathematics.  We have made significant instructional changes over the past years and adopted new, more effective mathematics programs for our younger students.  This year, we continue to focus on mathematics but, more specifically, the transition from Grade 3 to Grade 6.  We know that the curriculum is more demanding in Grade 6 in the area of mathematical problem solving, using mathematical knowledge to solve grade appropriate and relevant mathematical problems.  We have purchased an additional mathematical problem solving guide for each student in Grade 4 to 6. As a staff we will monitor student skills,  their attitudes and beliefs about mathematics, and the environment we provide to learn mathematics, in order to improve our collective achievement in this area. The principal and vice-principal will be sharing more information and data at our next CSPC meeting on November 22.  Please plan to attend.
 
Well-Being Corner—Focus on Anxiety
Adapted from Fr. Joseph Esper
 
 Some saints were as prone to worry and anxiety as the rest of us are. But, by placing their trust in the Lord's presence and care, they were able to overcome their fears. Some of these fears were relatively minor ones, as faced by Blessed Helen of Udine, who, during a period of distress, was terrified even of loud noises. It's said that the words "Be not afraid" appear in Scripture 366 times one for each day of the year (leap years included). Certainly we need this sort of ongoing reminder and encouragement; life can be difficult and is often filled with anxieties, great and small. Jesus told St. Martha that, unlike her sister Mary, she was "anxious and troubled about many things." Martha took this correction to heart and learned to trust in the Lord so much so that later, even as she grieved the death of her brother Lazarus, she was able to acknowledge Jesus as the Resurrection and the life. There's a saying that "Courage is fear that has said its prayers." Prayer is indeed the key to overcoming or coping with anxiety, for it reassures us of God's presence and reminds us of our need to rely on His strength, not on our own.
 
Parent-Teacher Interviews
 
We will be holding Parent-Teacher Interviews at the school on Wednesday, November 15th from 5:30—8:30 pm and Thursday, November 16th from 5:30— 8:30 pm. This year, once again, you must schedule your Parent-Teacher Interviews online. If you wish to schedule a meeting with any of your child's teachers, please follow the instructions printed further down the page. You will be able to make appointments from November 8th at 8:00 am to November 15th at 11:00 am.
Instructions
 
1. Go to the St Conrad scheduling webpage at https://stconrad.parentinterview.com
2. Enter the Parent Code (conrad17), click "Sign In"
3. Fill in your contact information and click "Continue to Make Appointments"
4. Click on the name of a teacher with whom you wish to schedule an appointment
5. Click on "Available" for a time at which you wish to meet to have your meeting
6. Repeat Steps 4 and 5 until you have scheduled all the teachers you wish to meet
7. Click on "My Schedule" (top left of the page)
8. Print out, email or copy down your schedule and bring it with you
 
Should you wish to delete an appointment you have made, click on "Delete" beside the meeting you wish to have removed from your schedule. 
 
If you do not have access to the internet at home or in the workplace, please call parentInterview toll-free at 1-866-810-0076, and someone will be happy to make your appointments with you. We look forward to seeing you on one of our two evenings for Parent-Teacher interviews.
 
Faith In Action @ St. Conrad
  October was a month of living out our Gospel values and giving back. At the beginning of October St. Conrad’s had a Thanksgiving Food Drive collecting over 1000 food items. The Saint Vincent de Paul Team at St. Philip Neri Church extended their sincere gratitude as they were able to re-stock their empty food bank shelves. “We are grateful that you continue to remember the poor in  our midst.” - Carla Zucchero Sarracini. During the second week of October St. Conrad’s hosted a walk to raise funds for Leukemia research, “Look Out Leukemia, St. Conrad’s Fights Back”. From cash, cheque and online donations the St. Conrad’s community raised a whopping $6,184.46! Thank you to all the staff, students, parents, community and Ms. Iannozzi’s leadership students and class for such a job well done with St. Conrad’s Food Drive and Walk-a-Thon! It was a true testament of Faith in Action!
 
St. Conrad Used Uniform Sale
 
We realize how quickly children can grow out of their school uniform, and the need to continuous purchase uniform pieces throughout their elementary school career. St. Conrad’s will have its first used uniform sale Thursday November 9th, 2017 from 4pm-6pm. All uniform items (shirts, sweaters, pants, etc…) will be sold for $2 and proceeds will go to the school. We ask that any parent who has school uniform pieces that their child is not wearing (i.e. due to size) to please donate to the main office by November 8th. Please use your discretion as to what to donate based on its use. We invite any parents who would like to purchase uniform pieces to come to the school foyer on the 9th. We look forward to this event and if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to call the school.
 
St.  Conrad—Allergen Aware School
 
As you are aware St. Conrad Catholic School is an allergen aware school. There are children in attendance who suffer from severe and life threatening allergies to certain foods, such as peanut butter and nut products. Exposure to the smallest quantities can cause severe, life threatening reactions. We at St. Conrad would appreciate the cooperation of the entire school community in NOT sending any lunches or snacks that contain peanuts or nuts, which could  potentially harm a child. In addition, please do NOT send WOW BUTTER products as a safety precaution for other children. It is not easily identifiable as peanut-free. Please make sure that all of your children’s caregivers are aware of food restrictions. We look forward to your cooperation in making this a safe year for all our students.
 
Dental Screening at St. Conrad
 
Toronto Public Health (TPH) provides dental programs to children from Junior Kindergarten to Grade 8. To identify children with oral health problems, a screening program is offered to students in accordance with the Ontario Ministry of Health requirements for mandatory health programs. The screening is an assessment by a dental hygienist using sterilized instruments. The dental hygienist will assess the need for topical fluoride, scaling, sealant and any other obvious dental needs. As a follow up to the screening, only parents whose children are identified as requiring dental services will be notified. A note to that effect will be sent home with your child/ren for your information and action. You may also receive a phone call from T.P.H. dental staff to assist you in accessing care. Please be advised that this screening assessment does not replace the dental examination done by a licensed dentist. If you do not wish your child/ren to be screened, please inform the school. For additional information, please contact us at the phone number listed above or visit us at http://www.toronto.ca/health/dental/children_youth.htm. Dental screening at St. Conrad C.S. will be on Nov 9, 10, 13, 14, 16, and the 17th 2017.
 
St. Conrad CSPC CORNER
From the CSPC Executive
 
Greetings fellow parents! The month of October has been very busy as we launched our yearly chocolate bar fundraising campaign.  We are proud to say that this event was extremely successful as chocolate bar sales were through the roof!  Our students sold over 500 chocolate bar boxes making this endeavour the most successful fundraiser ever!  We would like to thank every family that participated in the fundraiser. The top sellers were:
· First place—with 30 boxes sold…Andrew Frietas
· Second place – with 17 boxes sold…Liliana Riberio                                              
· Third place –with 15 boxes…Mario Abate Garibaldi
· Fourth place—with 10 boxes(tied) Vanessa Furlano and Mehleese Mazza                                                            
  On another note, the CSPC council would like to officially invite all our parents to our 5th annual Cultural Christmas get together taking place on December 3. This event celebrates many cultures that make up our community with a huge festive, Christmas lunch. All that we ask of participants is to bring in their favourite Christmas dish. Everyone can taste and enjoy many flavours from places all around the world right in our St Conrad gym. This festive afternoon is filled with fun, laughter, food and maybe even a visit by old St. Nick. More information will be coming out shortly.  
 
Big Box Fundraising Event—New to our school this year is the Big Box of Cards is a set of 33 all-birthday cards for the low price of $33.
 
· Our campaign runs from Thursday, November 16th to Monday, December 4th. 
· A starter box of cards can be sent home at the request of parents.  Please note that students are responsible for the condition of the box and to pay for the box if it is not returned to the school. For your convenience Parent Council will be in the Atrium the evening of November 16th so you can pick up your box
· Payment for all boxes sold is to be made when orders are placed.
· All order forms and payments should be returned on Monday, December 4th only.
· The starter box must be returned if you are not ordering any boxes, otherwise keep it and it will be delivered as one of your orders. Boxes must contain all 33 cards.
· Please make cheques payable to " St. Conrad Catholic School"
 
Don't forget our amazing prizes!!
· Pizza Party for the top selling class.
· Grand Prize, for every three boxes of cards your family sells, their name will be placed in a draw to win a $400 Gift Card to Great Wolf Lodge in Niagara Falls.
Good luck and thank you for your participation in this fundraising campaign! Please remember that all funds raised will go directly towards initiative that benefit the students.  Once again a big “THANK YOU” to all the students, staff and parents for all their help this past month.  Our next meeting is on November 22 at 7pm.  Please come out and have your say to help shape your/our kid’s experience at St Conrad!
 
 

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