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					 Somenos Rural
Traditional School
       Handbook




           3030 Sprott Road
             DUNCAN, BC
               V9L 6A1
         Phone: 250-746-5258
          Fax: 250-746-8497




   To Think, To Value, To Know
STAFF LIST
REGISTRATION
                              Student Registration Process                        4
                              Daily Schedule                                      4
                              Student School Supplies Kit                       4-5
ABOUT OUR VISION, MISSION & VALUES
                             Mission Statement                                    5
                             Our School Vision                                  5–6
                             Supervision of Students                              7
                             Home and School Shared Beliefs and Values            7
ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT
                             School Plan for student Achievement                  7
                             Goals for 2009/2010 School Year
                             Assessment and Evaluation                            7
                             Attendance                                           8
                             Successful students                                  8
                             Helping at Home                                      9
                 Reporting
                             Parent-Teacher Conferences                           9
                             Student Led Conferences                             10
                             Helping Your Child at Report Card Time              10
                             Student Recognition                                 11
                             Honour Roll                                         11
                             Year End Awards                                     11
            Award Criteria
                             Academic Certificate (Honour Roll 3 terms)          12
                             Leadership Award (Eric Lundberg Plaque)             12
                             Athletic Award – Male & Female                      12
                             Citizenship Certificate                             12
                             Academic Award                                      12
                             Sport Certificate                                   13
                             Fine Arts Award                                     13
                             Primary Reading Award                               13
                             Intermediate Reading Award                          13
                             Scholarship/Citizenship/Sportsmanship Award         13
BEHAVIOUR
          Developing Positive Behaviour and an Orderly Learning Environment 14
                             Code of Conduct (Cowichan Valley School District)   14
                             Code of Conduct (Somenos Rural Traditional)       15 - 17
                             Bully Proofing                                      17
                             Field Trips                                         17
                             Riding the School Bus                               18
                             Consequences                                        18
                             Suspensions                                         19
                             School Uniform Dress Code                           19
                             Uniform Guidelines                                  19
                             Playground Rules                                    19
                             Inside Days – Bad Weather/Wildlife warning          20
                             Computer Use                                        20
                             Lunch Hour Routines                                 20
                             Telephone use                                       20

                       Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                        -2-
COMMUNICATION
                            Communicating Concerns                         21
                            Reporting to Parents                           21
                            Our School Communications                      21

CURRICULUM/PROGRAMS
                            Curriculum & Instruction                       22
                            Environmental Focus                            22
                            School Assemblies                              22
                            Homework                                       22
                            Home Study                                     22

HEALTH/EMERGENCY/SAFETY
                            Fire/Earthquake Drills                         23
                            School Closures                                23
                            Health & Safety                                23
                            Hospital/Homebound                             23
                            Lost & Found                                   23
                            Visitors                                       23

PARENT INVOLVEMENT          Parental Involvement - Making the Difference   24
                            Parent Advisory Council                        24
                            School Planning Council                        24
                            Daily schedule                                 25

YEARLY CALENDAR             School calendar                                25




                  Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                   -3-
                              Somenos Rural Traditional
                                   SchoolStaff
           Name                                 Position                            Location
    Mrs. Updesh Cheema                          Principal                 Classroom -
                                            Grade 5/6 – Div 1
                                                 Library                  Library
                                               Secretary                               Office
                                                                                    8:45 – 3:15
      Mrs. Janna Dowler                     Kindergarten                        8:57 a.m.– 3:00 p.m.
      Mrs. Shelley Ethier                 Grades 1/2 - Div 4
      Mrs. Danielle Ralfs                Grades 2/3 - Div 3
      Mr. Peter Thomas                    Grades 4/5 – Div 2
                                          Grades 5/6 – Div 1
                                                Music
                                         Learning Assistance                     Mon-Fri - mornings
         Sheila Lamont                  Noon Hour Supervisor                       11:55 – 12:55
                                        Educational Assistant                       9:00 – 3:00
      Ms. Laurel Deptuch                     Custodian                           3:30pm – 8:30 pm
                                            REGISTRATION
                                     Student Registration Process

This process is completed at the office at least 24 hours before the child attends class. New
registrants are asked to meet with the principal to exchange information about the children and the
rural traditional program. Birth certificates or passports are necessary for all students new to B.C.
Parents will be given a copy of the school handbook and be asked to read it over and go over it with
the student. Then, a meeting involving the student, parents and principal will be held. At that time,
parents and students will be asked to sign a student conduct letter of agreement.

                                                 Daily Schedule
                                                 8:57 Morning Bell
                                         10:15-10:30 Recess
                                       12:00 – 12:30 Outside Play
                                         12:30-12:50 Lunch
                                                 3:00 Dismissal
Kindergarten Hours from 8:57 am – 3:00 pm                Sept. 2011 Kindergarten hours from 8:57-3:00 pm
   The school secretary is available in the office from 8:45am – 3:15pm Monday to Friday. After hours
                     please telephone 746-5258 to reach our answering machine.

                                      Student School Supplies Kit

Parents have the opportunity to purchase a School Supplies Kit for the personal use of their children. Required
supplies will be replenished throughout the year by the school (pencils, paper, notebooks).

Parents not wishing to purchase the School Supplies Kit for their child, may purchase their own materials from a
retailer. A list of required supplies is available from the office. All students must have school supplies for the
second day of classes.




                              ABOUT OUR VISION, MISSION & VALUES

                              Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                   -4-
The Rural Traditional Program is still new to Somenos School. It began in 2003 at Cowichan Station, then
moved to Somenos Sept. 2006/07. In our school we value a welcoming and caring environment and the strong,
mutual support between families and the school. We believe all students can and will learn, and our professional
staff encourages all students to reach their full potential. Together we create the kind of learning environment
within which children will succeed both socially and academically.


This handbook has been prepared to communicate information about the school that will be of interest to all
parents/guardians of students attending the Rural Traditional Program. We believe that this handbook can help
establish common understandings and expectations for parents, students and staff. Please take the time to
study the information that follows and to discuss relevant points with your children.



                                             Mission Statement

                                        “To Think, To Value, To Know”

The Rural Traditional Program is committed to using a structured, teacher-directed approach to sequential
learning to promote reflective thinking, responsible citizenship and continuous learning. Our academic and
character education program foster respect for self, others and the environment and prepares students to meet
future moral, academic and global challenges.

                                              Our School Vision
At Somenos Rural Traditional School we believe it is important for students, staff and parents to have a clear
sense of the characteristics of a traditional school. It is also important for students, staff and parents to
understand the goals that the school is striving to accomplish and the contributions that each group must make
in order to achieve the school vision. The following vision statement is intended to provide the standards that our
school follows to be a Traditional School.

1.      Academic Emphasis
         Teacher-directed, best practices
         High expectations for achievement
         Mastery of content and skills (e.g. basics math facts, phonics, spelling)
         Most subjects will be taught separately
         Healthy competition and creativity encouraged
         Monitoring and frequent reporting to parents
         Structured sequential learning
         Regularly assigned homework

2.      Student Conduct
         Close student supervision
         Dress code and uniform
         Emphasis on respectful behaviour
         Orderly behaviour at work and play

3.      Parental Involvement
         Active in school life
         Play an advisory role in the program; educators have final say
         Active Parent Advisory Council
         Open and frequent communications
         Strong sense of unity between parents
         Co-partners in learning through the support of daily homework and the use of agendas
         Supportive of school’s mission and vision




                              Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                    -5-
4.      Staff Commitment
         Committed to school’s mission and vision
         Work individually and collaboratively to create conditions that promote student success
         Commitment to ongoing professional development

5.      School Consistency
         Common educational philosophy amongst teachers
         Strong link between mission, rules and behaviour
         Many consistent routines and resources from class to class and grade to grade

6.      Traditional Canadian Values
         Solid work ethic
         Strong family support
         Integrity of character
         Respect for self, others and the environment

7.      Environmental Focus
         Curricular activities focusing on own school grounds, local community resources, British Columbia
           and world environmental issues
         Relevance of local rural environment to modern life
         School Recycling Program

The Rural Traditional Program will:

                   Adhere to provincially prescribed and/or locally developed curriculum
                   Conform with collective agreements
                   Be funded at the same level as any other public elementary school

Somenos Rural Traditional School is a school of choice, offering an alternate program operating within the public
school system. The Rural Traditional Program adheres to provincially prescribed and/or locally developed
curriculum, with an emphasis on a consistent, structured approach to instruction. Clearly defined standards of
academic achievement and behaviour, characterize the school’s approach.

What makes us different?
      Along with the emphasizes in our School Vision…
Each classroom will have a common focus on the following:

    Orderly, structured environment
    Maximized instructional time for curriculum
    Importance of accuracy and care in the work that students produce
    Teacher directed, structured learning with some active and cooperative learning
    Homework that re-enforces and applies what has been taught
    On-going communication with families
    Teacher commitment to the school model and philosophy
    Recognize achievement through academic excellence, art, music and athletic awards


The concept of ‘Traditional’ means consistency in learning and teaching the Rural Traditional Program
with intent.
Please contact the school principal (746-5258) for further information.




                              Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                   -6-
                                         Supervision of Students
        To help maintain a safe, caring environment for students, supervision is provided:

        Before School: A teacher will be on supervision duty from 8:35 am – 8:57 am. Unless students are
        involved in a supervised sport or activity, they are encouraged not to arrive at school before 8:35 am and
        should depart by 3:10 pm when the last bus leaves. Students should arrive at school no earlier unless
        prior arrangements for supervision have been made.

        Lunchtime: A Supervisor will monitor student lunch hour – 12:00pm – 12:50 pm.

        After School: A teacher will be on duty until 3:15 pm or until the last bus leaves

                                           Home and School
                                        Shared Beliefs and Values

We believe the following attitudes; behaviours and commitments are necessary to make our school vision a
reality.

       Students work to achieve their full potential in a structured, teacher-directed environment where skills
        and concepts, in distinct disciplines, are presented in a sequential manner, consistently applied
        throughout the school.
       With teacher and parent support and help, students can master challenging curricula and we expect
        they will do so. We are prepared to work collaboratively to achieve this shared educational purpose.
       Students maximize their individual achievement when high standards and expectations are reinforced
        both at school and at home.
       Students develop self-esteem through a strong sense of identity and pride in their accomplishments.
       It is important to recognize the accomplishments of individual students and of the school.
        Accomplishments are a source of pride for all members of the school community.
       Decisions about learning are a shared responsibility among teacher, parent and student.
       Quality learning occurs through positive interpersonal relationships that include students, teachers,
        parents and the community working together and responding to change.
       A school dress code and uniform policy promotes a non-distracting learning environment


                                     ACADEMICS/ACHIEVEMENTS

                                School Plan for Student Achievement
                                   Goals for 2010/2011 School Year

       To improve student Literacy through a focus on Reading Comprehension/Reading for Learning through
        Differentiation Instruction.
       Social Responsibility: To develop personal responsibility, with a focus on respectful and considerate
        behaviour.
        Goals for 2011/2012 School Year – TBA


                                       Assessment and Evaluation
Assessment is the process of gathering evidence to show what a student is able to do. Evaluation is the
process of interpreting that evidence and making judgments and decisions based on that evidence. Assessment
and evaluation are part of the learning experience, with the goal of supporting and enhancing student learning.




                              Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                    -7-
                                                   Attendance
Regular attendance and being on time are two key factors to ensure student success. Every student who is
registered in a public school is required by law to attend each day. If your child is ill please phone the school
and leave a message on the answering machine. In the interests of safety and accountability, we ask parents to
accompany their child to the office if they arrive late. A note will be made in their agenda book, which will inform
the teacher that they have checked in.

Some parents have asked classroom teachers to provide work for students while they are at home ill, or for
students who go on holiday during school time.

Our manner of instructing students is best described as “interactive” meaning that we rely on a combination of
discussion between teacher and class, or upon student with students in order to develop ideas and reinforce
methods of using information. Very little of what we do is easily packaged without the instruction, discussion and
interaction referred to above.

For those students going on holiday we recommend that they do plenty of reading, and perhaps keep a written
diary to share when they return.


                                             Successful Students
Successful students are those students who consistently strive to do their best. Successful students:

           attend school regularly
           establish a homework routine
           are healthy, ready and able to work
           are well nourished and well rested
           are attentive in the classroom
           are active in class discussions and activities
           work in an organized and efficient manner in the classroom
           collect work missed when absent
           request extra help when needed
           become involved in school activities
           have realistic self-expectations and accept their capabilities and limitations
           take responsibility for their own work e.g. by balancing work and play time
           get encouragement and support from their family, who share realistic expectations
           get encouragement and support from friends, who share realistic expectations




                               Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                    -8-
                                              Helping at Home

Your can help your child at home by:

                   Establishing a consistent homework time.
                   Providing a quiet, regular space to work.
                   Providing materials (dictionary, pencils, etc.).
                   Participating in:
                        -practicing math drills
                        -listening to reading
                        -reviewing questions
                        -helping with spelling
                        -encouraging completion of tasks
                        -checking work for accuracy
                   encouraging and praising your child for his/her efforts
                   checking and signing the School Agenda




                                       Parent-Teacher Conferences

When parents and teachers work together they make an unbeatable team!

Conferences between parents and teachers contribute to the teamwork that helps students learn better. There
are a number of things that parents can do to get the most from a conference:

   Think about what you want to learn in the conference, and prepare some questions:
         How is my child doing in class?
         Does my child use his/her time well?
         Does he/she have good work habits?
         Does he/she have missed assignments?
         Does my child have friends?
         What can I do at home to support my child and his/her teacher?
   Talk with your child. Ask what he/she thinks the teacher will say.
   Be prepared to talk and to listen. Tell the teacher what you see at home. Talk about your child’s interests.
    Follow up, and stay in touch with the teacher.




                              Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                   -9-
                                        Student-Led Conferences

Student-led conferences involve an interview between parents and children regarding the progress they have
made at school. The conferences differ from the more formal parent-teacher conference as the child, not the
child’s teacher, takes an active role in explaining strengths and areas needing improvement.

One of the many advantages to student-led conferences is that the students accept responsibility for reporting
their progress to their parents. Student-led conferences help students become more accountable for their work.
The conferences also help students develop better communication and organizational skills. Students benefit
from taking a leadership role in showing what they have accomplished.

Our experience with student-led conferences has clearly demonstrated that they are a very effective method of
building students’ self-esteem, and allowing them to take pride in their accomplishments. The more children talk
about learning, the better they will learn!

During the first parent/teacher interview of the year in November, we have ten minute individualized interviews
between the teacher and parents. The student led conference is the format we use for our second
parent/teacher interview in February.


                               Helping Your Child at Report Card Time
When your child brings home a report card, it is a good time for you and your child to set goals for the next term.
Report card time can also be an anxious time for parents and children. Children may worry that they are not
living up to your expectations, and you may feel that you haven’t done enough. The report card offers an
excellent opportunity for both you and your child to learn together.

The secret is to remember the
“3-Ps’ – preparation, perspective and positive action:

Preparation
       Just before report cards are due, talk with your child. Ask, “What do you think your report card will tell
       us?” Then let your child tell you if he/she expects problems. Getting ready is helpful.

Perspective
       A report card is just one small measure of your child. There have been other report cards in the past,
       and there will be more in the future.


Positive Action
        Think of the report card as a chance to take positive action. Find something to praise: attendance,
        attitude, improvement. Then focus on areas that can lead to improvement. You may want to set a
        regular time each day to review spelling words, or you may agree to turn off the TV during study hour.
        From: The Parent Institute (Jan. 1991) Parents Make the Difference.




                              Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                    - 10 -
                                             Student Recognition
Success builds confidence and confidence builds self-esteem. We believe self-esteem plays a major role in
student learning. Students are recognized many times throughout the school year to celebrate their many
achievements and successes. Full school assemblies are held each Monday. Academic achievement, sports
involvement, citizenship and other student talents are recognized. Below is a list of awards available for students
and the criteria for each award.



                                                   Honour Roll
Honour roll students achieving A and B in all subject areas are recognized at school assemblies and in the
newsletter. Students who are on the honour roll for all three reporting terms will receive an Academic Certificate
at the Year End Awards Ceremony.



                                               Year End Awards

The year-end awards program is designed to provide recognition for the efforts of the students. Awards can be
earned in the following areas: academic, citizenship, and sports. An awards ceremony is held at the end of June.
The criterion for each award is reviewed at the beginning of the year and students are made aware of the
program.

The program provides an opportunity for students to
        engage in goal-setting
        participate in school activities, and
        challenge themselves

Students meeting the listed criteria will qualify for awards available, and students will receive a certificate on
Awards Day.

For a small number of awards, a school selection committee will choose one or two students who will receive an
Award on Awards Day.




                               Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                      - 11 -
Awards that Students can receive by meeting the listed Criteria

                                          Academic Certificate
                                    (Achieve Honour Roll for 3 Terms)

          open to all intermediate students (Grades 4, 5, 6)
          students must be on the honour roll for all three reporting periods
          in order to be on the honour roll, students must achieve an A and B in all subject areas



                                           Leadership Awards
                                           (Eric Lundberg Award)

        open to Grade 6 students
        problem solves and is a listener
        helps keep the playground safe
        helps supervise at lunch and recess time
       A student who is a role model for other students, demonstrates the Virtues taught through their daily
       interactions, supports younger students, regularly volunteers within the school.



                                     Athletic Achievement Award

         Grade 6 student
         Male Athlete of the year and Female Athlete of the year
         Participation in two or more sports (including practices and games)
A student, who consistently shows positive behaviour in games and practices. Who has participated in many
school sport teams showing great skill and has practiced great sportsmanship.


                                         Citizenship Certificate

        open to all students, K-Grade 6 (one name or two from each division is chosen)
       A student who follows the school rules at a consistently high level. Has positive behaviour and is
       consistent both within the classroom and around the school and works for the betterment of the school.



                                            Academic Award

        Grade 6
       A student who has achieved honour roll all three terms and has put his/her best effort into everything
       that he/she does. It’s an achievement with distinction.




                             Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                  - 12 -
                                 Sports Certificate

   Gr. 4/5/6 students involved in sports
   Demonstrates good sportsmanship
Awarded to students after participating on a school team.


                                  Fine Arts Award

    for grades 4 to 6
    must demonstrate an outstanding skill and participation level
A student, who demonstrates enthusiasm in the Arts and gives 110%. Stands out among the crowd
showing talent in various art forms.

                         Most Improved Reader Award

    One Primary and One Intermediate student
A student who demonstrates the most improvement in reading skills from September to June



              Scholarship/Citizenship/Sportsmanship Award

A student, who has demonstrated and practiced good citizenship and sportsmanship, but has also
done well academically. A well-rounded student.




                  Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                       - 13 -
            Developing Positive Behaviour and an Orderly Learning Environment

                                          District Code of Conduct
Policy

Several sections of the School Act clearly indicate the public expectation as to the circumstances under which
public schools will be conducted.

The Board encourages school staffs to maintain a supportive, respectful climate, proper order and discipline that
is consistent with Board policy, and believes that the responsibility for student conduct is shared among
students, staff and parents.

Students have a responsibility to respect the rights and dignity of others and to become actively and productively
involved in their own academic learning and social growth.

School staff members are responsible for establishing a supportive, respectful school climate in which structure,
support and encouragement assist the students in developing a sense of self-discipline and responsibility.

Parents are responsible for supporting a positive learning atmosphere, knowing and supporting school policies
and procedures, and encouraging their children to understand and respect these policies and procedures.

Principals have the right to regulate student conduct in order to preserve student and staff safety, to avoid
disruption of, or interference with, the rights of other students in order to maintain a positive school climate and
proper administration and operation of the school.

The Board has established a “District Code of Conduct” to be followed while on school premises, going to and
returning from school, during designated breaks in the school day, and at all school games and functions
whenever and wherever they are held.

                                                   Code of Conduct
The Board requires students to:

    1. Attend school regularly and punctually
    2. Observe school rules and school codes of conduct
    3. Respect the rights of others and their property
    4. Respect the health and safety of others
    5. Respect the educational process and the learning environment of others
    6. Act with due regard to the authority vested by the School Act and the Board in its employees
    7. At all times demonstrate behaviour that brings credit to their school




                               Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                     - 14 -
                                          School Code of Conduct

Purpose:

To establish and maintain a safe, caring and orderly environment, for purposeful learning.

The School Code of Conduct is purposefully reinforced with students on an on-going basis.

At our school we endeavour to focus on acknowledging positive behaviour, but recognize the need for a
consistent system of discipline in the event of unacceptable behaviours. Our philosophy is to support students in
learning to demonstrate responsible and respectful behaviour. A system of progressive discipline means that
students move along a continuum of consequences. We believe parental involvement is essential in this
process.

The Virtues program written for educators by Linda Popov is a school-wide initiative. The aim of the Virtues
Project is to transform the school environment by helping create a total environment of caring and respect. Each
month, students focus on one virtue that reinforces our behaviour guidelines. The virtue of the month is
discussed at assemblies and teachers reinforce the concept throughout the month with activities and
discussions. Virtues are universally valued by all cultures. Examples of some of the virtues we may focus on are:
consideration, responsibility, helpfulness, respect, self-discipline, courtesy, self-discipline. There are 52 virtues
listed in the program. We believe that language shapes character. The words we speak and the language we
use have power to inspire students. The language of the virtues helps us to encourage personal responsibility
and respect. It is a frame of reference for bringing out the best in students and ourselves. Virtue-based personal
boundaries help build healthy relationships and create a climate of calmness and safety.

Well established routines in the classrooms and within the school as a whole develop an orderly environment for
learning. Teachers and staff work with students to establish routines and behaviour expectations that create an
environment that is free of distractions. Students are expected to be respectful and courteous to others.
Personal responsibility is a virtue that is taught beginning in kindergarten, and is continually reinforced at all
grade levels.

Through class discussion, whole school assemblies, and direct one on one conversation, school staff members
work to ensure that students clearly understand the school’s expectations for conduct.


The school works to provide positive reinforcement for good behaviours and work habits by:

        a) Providing positive, encouraging written and spoken comments during class, on assignments, and in
           the daily agenda.

        b) Providing recognition for a job well done through sharing the news with the students' classmates,
           sending the student to the principal for acknowledgment of their achievement, making a good news
           call home, or by providing recognition at an assembly.




                               Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                     - 15 -
Conduct Expectations: School Code of Conduct Agreement

We expect Somenos students to conduct themselves at school, while going to and from
school, and while attending any school function at any location, in a caring,
supportive, well-mannered way, and set high standards for themselves academically
and socially.
At Somenos Rural Traditional School we have adopted the “High 5 of Respect” as
guidelines for our School Code of Conduct:

Respect    Learning
Respect    Environment
Respect    Property                                       QuickTime™ and a
                                                 TIFF (Uncompressed) decompressor
Respect    Others                                   are need ed to see this picture.
Respect    Self



Respect Learning
–Always do your best to, complete tasks to feel good about yourself
-Students complete Agendas; parents review and sign daily
-Give your full attention and do things carefully one step at a time
-Discover your true talents and give them your best

Respect Environment
-Do your best to recycle and compost to reduce waste
-Serve the earth by not wasting things, reusing and reducing garbage
-Care for other living things and the earth (planting, reducing energy, consumption, saving water,
beautification of the school)

Respect Property
-Take pride in wearing a proper, clean uniform
-Take care of your belongings, put them in their place
-Work together to help keep the classroom organized
-Be proud of the school and help keep it tidy

Respect Others
-Listen attentively without interrupting
-Keep your hands to yourself; respect others’ space
-Use good manners; be courteous and polite
-Be thoughtful about others and their feelings
-Honour others beliefs, customs, differences and heritage

Respect Self
-Be in control of your own choices
-Accept responsibility for your behaviour; do not blame others
-Take care of your mind and body, eat well, exercise regularly and get enough sleep
-“Its easier to respect others if you first respect yourself”




                             Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                 - 16 -
Unacceptable Conduct:
The behaviours below are not meant to be an all-inclusive list, but students must understand the following are
not acceptable:

       Behaviours that:
        - interfere with the learning of others
        - interfere with an orderly environment
        - create unsafe conditions

       Acts of:
        - bullying, harassment or intimidation including cyber bullying
        - physical violence
        - retribution against a person who has reported incidents

       Illegal acts, such as:
        - possession, use or distribution of illegal or restricted substances
        - possession or use of weapons
        - theft of or damage to property

                                                  Bully Proofing
As part of our emphasis on respect for self, others and the environment, we ensure that all of our students are
aware of the forms bullying can take. As part of our personal planning curriculum, we provide bully proofing by:

        a) Encouraging the students to problem solve

        b) Engaging the students in conversations to develop sympathy

        c) Setting assertive or verbal self defense strategies.

        d) Offering guided practice for the use of strategies in real life.

We consider bully proofing to be an ongoing initiative.

Rising Expectations:
As students grow older and more mature it is our expectation that they be held to a progressively higher
standard of personal responsibility and self-discipline and will face increasing consequences for inappropriate
behaviour.
                                                    Field Trips

Field trips, also called extended class experiences, are important educational events for the students in our
school. Teachers use these events to extend the school curriculum into real life experiences, to use experts in
our community as resource people and to provide “hands on” activities for students. These events are carefully
planned far in advance as part of teaching plans, and details and budgets must be submitted and approved. We
access money from our school budget and funds provided by PAC to keep costs for families to a minimum.
When a class is going on a field trip it is considered a regular school day and all students are expected to attend.
Parents are asked to have signed permission slips returned well ahead of the field trip date. Students who do not
return signed permission slips the day before the field trip will not accompany the class, but will remain at the
school. Parents who would like to volunteer to accompany the class must speak to the teacher well in advance
of the trip, as space is often limited. As these trips are teaching and learning experiences and are paid for on a
per student basis, it is not appropriate for siblings to accompany the class unless they are specifically invited.

Behaviour expectations for field trips are the same as they are in and around the school. Students are expected
to follow the direction of the teacher or parent leader, and display respectful and courteous behaviour at all
times.

Clothing for field trips and special events will consist of a red uniform shirt; long or short sleeved, with the school
logo. The bottom wear must be solid dark navy blue.

                                Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                      - 17 -
Parent drivers must complete a Volunteer Registration Form, must have a valid driver’s license, carry $1 million
liability insurance; drivers’s abstract and have completed a volunteer orientation session. Students are not
allowed in the front seats if airbag equipped.

                                              Riding the School Bus

Riding the bus to and from school and on field trips is a privilege. All students using the bus are expected to
conduct themselves in a safe and orderly manner at all times. Students are expected to follow the directions of
the bus driver and be respectful and courteous in all interactions while on the bus.

                                                   Consequences
We view general behaviour problems as learning opportunities. Everyone occasionally makes a mistake, and by
investigating and reviewing the cause of the behaviour, growth and change can occur. Within the classroom,
teachers establish a set of consequences for poor choices regarding behaviour. These consequences are set
according to the age and developmental stage of the student. Teachers endeavour to help the student review,
practice and remember what is expected. Special considerations may apply to students with special needs who
are unable to comply with expectations due to having a disability of an intellectual, physical , sensory emotional
or behavioural nature.

What happens when behaviours become strongly unacceptable, and "something" must be done?

It is our school practice to involve the principal, school counsellor, learning assistance teacher, and parents early
on in the investigation of learning or behaviour difficulties. Working together, the group develops a plan to
enable the student to make positive change.

Where the problem is a "small" break in routine, the classroom teacher works directly with the student to resolve
the situation. If the behaviour continues the teacher will involve the principal. If an aggressive, seriously
disruptive behaviour is involved, then the principal will become involved very quickly.

If a child is "sent to the office" then the principal will know that:

         (a) The child had a clear understanding of what was expected
         (b) He/she has engaged in this poor choice of behaviour several times.

A visit to the principal’s office will be recorded in the school discipline records as a summary of what occurred,
and the date of the event. The principal will discuss with the student the events that led up to being sent to the
office, and what might be done in the future to prevent a recurrence. If the student and the principal feel
confident that the student intends, and is able to make better choices, then the student is sent back to class.
Where the student shows lack of concern toward the incident, or a serious aggressive or discourteous response
regarding the incident, parents are contacted immediately. At this point we may involve some extra support for
the student by making a referral to the Counsellor or Learning Assistance teacher. Parents will be involved in
helping the student plan for positive behavioural changes.

At times we will ask a student to carry home a letter, and give it to the parent personally. The purpose is two fold:
to let the parent know what has happened, and most importantly to involve the student in the process so they
realize that we are all quite serious about looking for changes in behaviour. With parental support, this can be
effective.

The BC Human Rights code prohibits discrimination on the basis of an individual’s or group’s race, colour,
ancestry, place of origin, religion, marital status, family status, physical or mental disability, sex or sexual
orientation. Our school is a place where students are free from harm, where clear expectations of acceptable
behaviour are held and met and where all members feel they belong. Publishing, issuing or displaying any
statement, publication, notice sign, symbol emblem or other representation that indicates discrimination or an
intention to discriminate against a person or a group or class of persons to hatred or contempt will not be
tolerated.




                                 Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                        - 18 -
                                                 Suspensions

It is a serious matter when a student does not actively work towards improvement of unacceptable behaviours
which have negatively influenced the classroom environment, or the safety of other students. If the student is
brought to the office as a result of repeated poor choices in behaviour, then the principal must act on the
assumption that the student does not seriously believe we are firm in our resolve that the behaviour must
change. At this point the student may receive a suspension from school.

Suspension is a last resort, but a possibility if we are to preserve a safe and respectful environment where
students are able to focus on their learning. The Board Policy tells us that "although school attendance is
compulsory, it is also a privilege". The code of conduct for our school program involves, as it must, the student
realizing they need to make a change in the decisions they are making concerning their behaviour at school.
Theses changes will be most effective when there is support and communication between the home and the
school.

Notification:
In the event of serious breaches of conduct, school officials may advise other parties of those breaches
including:
- parents of student offender(s) – in every instance
- parents of student victim(s) – in every instance
- school district officials – as required by school district policy
- police and/or other agencies – as required by law
- all parents – when deemed to be important or reassure members of the school community that school officials
are aware of a serious situation or incident and are taking appropriate action to address it

Retaliation Prevention:
The school and the Board will take all reasonable steps to prevent retaliation against a student who has made a
complaint of a breach of a code of conduct.

                                       School Uniform Dress Code

There is a uniform policy at Somenos Rural Traditional School. The school shirt colour is a solid red with the
school logo on the left; the school crest is to be showing. The school shirts may also be plain white overlaid
with navy blue cardigans, pullover sweaters, polar fleece vests or polar fleece jackets with a school logo. The
bottom colour is solid dark navy, but denim blue jeans, track pants or sweatpants are not considered part of
the uniform. All items may be purchased through our school supplier, Cambridge & Co. Navy coloured tunics,
skorts, shorts and cotton pants are also available through some local retailers. The crested school items will only
be available through our school supplier, Cambridge & Co.


                                             Uniform Guidelines
1. Every child will need two or more red golf shirts with the school’s crest.
2. There are two different styles of golf shirt to choose from, long or short sleeves. The only logo permitted is
   our school’s official logo.
3. Girls may wear tunics, jumpers, box pleat skirts, skorts, shorts or a variety of solid dark navy pants with no
   logos, stripes or markings.
4. Boys may choose from several styles of trousers. They must be navy in colour. Navy shorts are also
   permitted.
5. Red, white or navy socks matching the school uniform are to be worn.

Only New arriving students are encouraged to wear plain red golf shirts or plain white shirts with their navy
bottoms until the logo school uniforms become available.




                              Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                    - 19 -
                                              Playground Rules

   Slides are for sliding down feet first not climbing up. Students are not to stand on the slides.
   Climbing is permitted on playground climbing apparatus only.
   No tag on the areas around the playground apparatus.
   Sideways swinging on swings is not allowed.
   Games which use equipment and/or the passing of a ball or projectile over a distance are only allowed on
    the field.
   No games in which the object is to hit someone forcibly with a ball or other object – as opposed to passing it
    to the other person.
   No sticks are allowed.
   No equipment or toys from home – except softball mitts.
   When waiting for the bus students place their bags in the line near the school and must stay in the yard
    outside the front door.

   During the school day play is permitted on the playground and the playing field.

Students may ride their bikes on the playground before 8:30 am and after 3:20 PM only

                             Inside Days – Bad Weather/Wildlife warning
When a day is designated as an inside day a number of options will be offered to students. Students will be
informed of the specific activities that will be available that day.

Leadership students will act as monitors/helpers, especially with games in the primary classes.

                                                 Computer Use

All students using the computer and internet must have an Internet Use Agreement signed by parents/guardians
on file. Food and drinks are not allowed in the computer room. Students may only use the Internet with the
permission and supervision of an adult.


                                            Lunch Hour Routines

Students go out to play at 12:00. At 12:30 the bell sounds and children go back to their classrooms to eat lunch.
Teachers are not on duty at lunch, and do not become involved in the supervision. Our noon hour supervisor
goes from room to room. We ask that each student stay seated during the 20 minute eating time. They may,
however, chat quietly with their friends. Unfortunately we cannot heat up children’s lunches. Unwanted or
uneaten food should go home. The school encourages litter less lunches and nutritional food. Soft drinks and
treats with high sugar content are not appropriate for lunch and snacks at school.
Staff will review the lunch hour rules with students who are having behavioural difficulties over the lunch break.
If repeated inappropriate behaviour occurs then the parents will be contacted and the principal, parent and
student will meet to discuss the issue. Ultimately, if the behaviour shows no improvement over time and with
intervention, the student will spend their lunch hour from 12:00pm until 12:45pm in the office.

                                                Telephone Use

Students are discouraged from telephoning home for forgotten books, homework, projects, lunch, field trip
permission slips, or changes of clothing. Use of the telephone to make social arrangements is not permitted.




                               Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                     - 20 -
                                         COMMUNICATION

                                       Communicating Concerns
In most cases problems are easily dealt with at the early stages. If parents have a concern it should be
communicated right away to the person most directly involved. At the Somenos Rural Traditional School we
would invite parents to follow these steps:
         Define who is closest to the problem. For example, if it is a classroom problem then the teacher is
             the person to contact
         Contact that person and make an appointment to express your concerns and seek a solution
         If the problem is not resolved at that level, then contact the principal for assistance
         If the problem is not solved with the assistance of the school principal, then parents may appeal the
             decision to the School District Office.

                                            Reporting to Parents

The Ministry of Education guidelines provide for the use of structured written reports at the primary level.
Structured written reports combined with letter grades are used in the Intermediate grades.

Detailed formal reports are issued three times a year, in November, March and June. Parent teacher interviews
are usually held in October and February. During the school year communication between home and school
happens on a continuous basis. Whenever the teacher or parent feels a need to discuss an issue,
arrangements are made for an interview. Teachers welcome parent requests for conferences at any time of the
year and often initiate a conference. It is always advisable to contact the school for an appointment.

                                        School Communications
Written communication to provide families with school information will be issued throughout the year. We ask
you to look for the following publications:

           Monthly Newsletter
            A school newsletter will be sent home once a month to help keep parents informed of school-related
            activities and news.

           Somenos Update
            A one-page sent as reminders for upcoming dates and events

           Class Bulletins
            Classes will keep families informed using regular calendars or information newsletters. These will
            vary from class to class. When a special event is planned there is often a permission slip tear-off to
            return to school.

           School Website
            Come visit us at our school website where you will find information about the school

           Daily Agenda Book
            Students will bring home their daily agenda book for parents to sign, Grades 1 to 6 only. The agenda
            book will contain information regarding homework to be completed, as well as reminders of tests
            and other events. Teachers and parents may use the agenda book for communication purposes.
            Parents are asked to make sure that students complete their homework before they sign the
            agenda. If students are inconsistent about homework completion, a letter will notify parents.




                              Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                   - 21 -
                                      Curriculum/Programmes

                                       Curriculum and Instruction
The school follows the curriculum as set out by the British Columbia Ministry of Education.
Learning supports available to students include:
                                                School Based Team
                                                Learning Assistance
                                                Psychometric Testing
                                                Counsellor
                                                Speech and Language
                                                Aboriginal Support

                                            Environment Focus
Our school is uniquely situated in an area that is bordered by farms, forests and rivers. Our school name and
mission statement reflect our desire to utilize our rural surroundings to enhance student learning.
All of our students study local ecologies as part of their science program so that by the end of Grade 6 they will
be knowledgeable about their environment and its relevance to modern life.

                                            School Assemblies
Regular assemblies are held each week on Monday mornings. The Principal conducts the assembly. Assembly
format will be as follows:
                       O Canada
                       Weekly birthday recognition / Song of the week
                       Class/group/individual presentations
                       Special recognition/ Announcements
                       Virtue of the month discussion
All staff and students attend assemblies and parents are always welcome.

                                                  Homework
Homework is the word that describes the out-of-class assignments assigned by a teacher. Homework may be
assigned for a number of reasons:
     to complete daily class assignments.
     to check student understands concepts taught in class.
     provide practice, or preparation for the future, e.g. reading ahead in a textbook.

At Somenos Rural Traditional School, students have an agenda book to help them become more self-reliant and
to support their efforts to take responsibility for their own learning. Parents are asked to check and sign the
student agenda each day. Even if your child does not have homework assigned on a regular basis, they should
read for at least 20 minutes every day at home, and work on a home study project.

                                                 Home Study

Home study is a broader term than homework. It involves those parts of schoolwork that students identify they
need to do, because they recognize they need to improve their learning. It is particularly valuable in promoting
individual study skills.
Home study includes:
      Reviewing concepts presented in class.
      Practicing basic number facts and vocabulary.
      Rereading the text and making summaries
      Reviewing and preparing for tests
      Reading extra books that will enhance understanding of a subject.
      Working on an individual research project.
      Seeing a project through to completion.

                              Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                   - 22 -
                                HEALTH/ EMERGENCY/ SAFETY
                                          Emergency Procedures

Fire/Earthquake Drills

Evacuation drills will be done a minimum of eight times a year. It is important that the school have on file
alternate names and telephone numbers for emergency use in the event evacuation of the school
becomes necessary.

School Closures
Occasionally students have to be sent home prior to the normal end of our school day due to power or heating
failures, etc. If it is necessary to close the school an announcement will be made over the following local radio
station: SUN FM 89.7 In addition, a phoning committee composed of parents in the school will be called by the
principal to help contact each family.

                                              Health and Safety
If your son or daughter is sick, please keep them home to prevent the spread of illness.

Emergencies and accidents do occur in spite of careful supervision of activities. School personnel handle
routine cuts and scrapes. However, there is no nurse at the school and schools are generally not equipped to
look after ill or injured pupils beyond band-aids or cold compresses. If an injury is severe, or requires parent
supervision or treatment beyond the school’s capabilities, the parent or guardian will be contacted.

It is important that you advise the school office of a person(s) to contact in the event of an emergency. Regularly
update the information by phoning the office with current telephone numbers so that in the event of such an
emergency the appropriate person can be contacted quickly.
Health and safety checks in the buildings and around the grounds are routinely done and any concerns are
brought to the attention of either the school district maintenance office, or the Health and Safety Officer.


                                           Hospital/Homebound
If for some reason your son/daughter must remain at home or is hospitalized we will be pleased to contact our
District Homebound teacher to visit and work directly with your child at home.

                                               Lost and Found
This is located near the front office in a bin. Very small items such as watches, keys, jewelry etc. are held at the
main office. At the end of the year any unclaimed items are sent to a charity.

                                                    Visitors

Visitors are asked to come to the office first, sign in with date and time and wear a numbered visitor tag while on
the school premises.




                               Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                    - 23 -
                                        PARENTAL INVOLVEMENT

                          Parental Involvement - Making the Difference!

Parental involvement is vital to a student’s success in school. Students whose parents are actively supportive
throughout the school year often have better grades, fewer learning gaps and higher self-esteem. For many
busy parents, the question of how to become active participants in the education of their children must also take
into account their own obligations to work during the day. Parental involvement can take many forms. When
parents are involved, students excel!

Your interest in your child’s daily work, projects and homework lets the child know that you are genuinely
concerned with his/her progress. Since it is parents who have the most influence over how children view
learning, it is important to stress the value of education and set performance standards, as well as to take an
active role in helping students achieve them.

When you take a few minutes to look over any papers or homework your child brings home to offer positive
comments, you are actively involving yourself. Our students complete their back and forth /agenda books
regularly. Your questions and comments in this book are valued by our teachers, and contribute significantly to
our understanding of your child.

                                        Parent Advisory Council
We have a very involved and active PAC group. Everyone is invited to meetings. These are held once a month
at the school. Notices of meetings are in the weekly school newsletter.

                                         School Planning Council
The School Planning Council, consists of three parents from the Parent Advisory Council, one teacher and the
Principal. This council meets many times during the year to discuss school workings and advises the Principal
on any school issues that may arise throughout the school year. The council also consults with the School
Growth Plan (school goals) for the following year and helps to monitor the current years’ school goals.




                              Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                   - 24 -
                    Calendar - School District No. 79 (Cowichan Valley)
                                       2010 - 2011
Sept. 7      School Opens
Sept. 27     District Implementation Day
Oct 7        District Early Dismissal-parent/teacher conferences
Oct. 11      Thanksgiving – No classes
Oct. 22      Provincial Pro-D Day
Nov. 4       District Wide 1 Hour Early Dismissal
Nov. 11      Remembrance Day – No classes
Nov. 12      District Day in Lieu – no classes
Nov. 24      PLC Early Dismissal (school goals)
Nov.25       First term report cards issued
Dec.-TBA     Winter Concert at Somenos
Dec. 17      Last day of class before winter holiday
Jan. 4       Classes recommence after winter holiday
Jan. 12      PLC Early Dismissal (school goals)
Feb.17       District Wide 1 Hour Early Dismissal – Parent/Teacher conferences
Feb. 18      PRO D Day – no classes
Mar. 3       District Wide 1 Hour Early Dismissal
Mar 14-18    5 Day District Closure
Mar. 21-25   Spring Break
Mar. 28      Classes recommence
Apr. 22      Good Friday
Apr. 25      Easter Monday
Apr 27       PLC Early Dismissal (school goals)
May 6        Pro D – no classes
May 20       Day in Lieu – no classes
May 23       Victoria Day – no classes
May 25       PLC Early Dismissal (school goals)
June 29      Last day of classes


                   Calendar – School District No. 79 (Cowichan Valley)
                                                 2011 - 2012
Sept. 6      School Opens – First Day of school for everyone except for Kindergarten students.
                                                                                            th   th
             Kindergarten students have interviews and attend small group instruction Sept. 7 – 13 and
                                                                         th
             regular attendance for Kindergarten students begins Sept. 14 .
Oct. 10      Thanksgiving – No School




                            Somenos Rural Traditional School Handbook
                                                  - 25 -

				
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