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					                     ST. FRANCIS OF ASSISI SCHOOL HANDBOOK
                      St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Elementary School
                      60 McDonald Avenue, Cambridge, ON N1R 4J2
                       Telephone: (5l9) 621-0371 Fax: (5l9) 621-0376


"Learning, growing, and transforming the world together as faithful disciples of the Risen Lord."

At St. Francis of Assisi School, we provide an excellent academic program and opportunities for students
to experience growth in spiritual, intellectual, social, emotional, artistic and physical domains. The
recognition of the child as a whole is most important to us. We believe in working with parents to
provide a valuable learning experience for each child. Our Imagine Bullying Prevention Initiative
supports a peaceful environment in the spirit of St. Francis of Assisi.

Telephone Numbers
St. Ambrose Church –Father Irek Koziak & Father Jacek Kryn              519 621 2013
Reporting Absenteeism                                                   519 621 0371
WCDSB Transportation                                                    519 570 0915 (ext. 4349)
Bus Company (Student Transportation)                                    519 648 9548


Principal                                               Rob Dalley
Office Staff                                            Lynn Bartlett

                                 STUDENT HANDBOOK 2009-2010

This agenda belongs to:

Name:           ____________________________________

Colour House: __________________

Address:        ____________________________________

City:           ________________________Postal Code:____________

Teacher:        ________________________Grade:__________________

I have read and understood the contents of the St. Francis School Handbook.
I will live up to the expectations outlined for me.

                                         Student Signature

We have read and understood the contents of the St. Francis School Handbook.

                                          Parent Signature
Agendas are a shared responsibility between home and the school.

Agenda Expectations for staff and students:
1. Agendas will be used for students in grades 1 to 8.
2. Front inside cover page must be signed by student and parent.
3. Agendas are to be used to help with the communication between home and school.
4. Parents and teachers are asked to check and sign agendas on a daily basis from grades 1 to 8.
5. Students are asked to use them to list assignments and reminders.
6. Scribbling or any markings on the cover and/or inside the agenda is not permitted. Students will be
   asked to purchase a new agenda from the school if the agenda is not used properly.
7. Agendas are to be used as a tool to help the communication between home and school.

8:30 a.m.                Arrival
9:40-9:55 a.m.           Recess
11:15-12:15 p.m.         Noon Hour
1:35 –1:50 p.m.          Recess
3:00 p.m.                Dismissal

Please be advised that teacher supervision (as per the Education Act) begins at 8:15 a.m. and that students
should not be arriving prior to this time for safety reasons.

SPECIAL DAYS                                                   REPORT CARD DATES
September 8, 2009                       First Day of School    December 4, 2009
October 12, 2009                        Thanksgiving           March 26, 2010
Dec. 21, 2009 – Jan. 3, 2010            Christmas Break        June 25, 2010
March 15 - 19, 2010                     March Break
April 2, 2010                           Good Friday            PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT DAYS
April 5, 2010                           Easter Monday          October 16, 2009
May 24, 2010                            Victoria Day           November 6, 2009
June 29, 2010                           Last Day of School     April 16, 2010
                                                               June 30, 2010


Safety of the pupils is a concern that both the home and the school share. We respectfully request that
you follow these procedures:
1. If a child will be absent in the morning or all day please call the school prior to 8:30 a.m.
2. Likewise, if the student will be absent in the afternoon, please telephone the school before 12:15 p.m.
3. If a child is absent and the school has not been notified, then the school will attempt to call the parent
    or guardian as soon as possible after 9:00 a.m. or 12:45 p.m. If you cannot be contacted, please be
    sure the office has emergency contacts that can verify your child’s location. Please be sure to update
    these as necessary.
4. Students will be marked late if they are not entering the school with their classmates. We encourage
    students to arrive 5 minutes before the bell rings.
5. For your convenience, the school has a telephone answering machine for after-school hours. You
    may leave your message on the tape. When notifying the school of the absence, include your child’s
    name, grade, reason for absence and the expected duration of the absence.

Please notify the office at any time during the year when any of the following changes occur:
        i)       address                                  ii)     place of employment
        iii)     phone number – home, work or cell        iv)     emergency contact
        iv)      babysitter or daycare

If you wish to withdraw your child during the course of the day, please come to the office to make your
request or send a note to the classroom teacher. Do not go to your child’s classroom. Before taking
your child from school please sign our “ Sign Out Book” kept outside the office. Your son/daughter will
be called from class to meet you. This procedure is in place to ensure your child’s safe dismissal.
Are you going on vacation, visiting relatives for three days or more and it’s not a regular school holiday?
The procedure is to complete an “Intent To Be Absent” form before the child leaves. You can pick up this
form at the office.

It is a rare occasion when our school would be closed. However, severe weather conditions, power
failure, water or heat loss could cause a school closure. It is imperative that the school know where your
child is to be sent in the event of such an emergency closure.
Early in the school year you will be asked to complete a form indicating what action should be followed if
a school closing becomes necessary. During such emergencies the school relies on the information
contained in the form to get your child(ren) home safely. It is important that you discuss the
arrangements with your family. Please inform the school of any changes in your arrangements during the
school year.
During periods of severe weather, your best source of information about possible school closures and/or
bus cancellations is a local radio station or School Board website Please do not call the
school. The following radio stations begin broadcasting information about school closings and/or bus
cancellations at 7:00 a.m.
                                         CHYM FM 96.7              CKKW AM 109
                                         CKGL AM 5                 KOOL FM 105.3
It is important to remember that when bus transportation is cancelled and you choose to transport your
child to school, getting your child home is also your responsibility. Even if weather conditions improve
the buses will not resume operation. You could also get this information from the Board’s website

Volunteering has special rewards for everyone involved. Parents and community friends who give of
their time and talents contribute significantly to the education of our students. We strongly encourage
you to become involved in a number of ways:
         -Working directly with students on reading, and other academics
         -Sharing topics of particular interest/expertise
         -Assisting with the preparation of learning materials and special themes
         -Supervising during class outings and providing transportation to sports events
         -Assisting with Breakfast Club
         -Being a member of the School Council
Occasionally parent volunteers are needed to drive students to these events. Please be sure, if you choose
to volunteer that the minimum liability insurance you carry is $1,000,000.00. Also, before driving please
sign the Driver/Owner Assurance of Insurance Coverage form available from the office.
Note: Volunteers who work within the school will be required to have a Criminal Background Check and
wear identification tags in the school.

Parents/guardians or other family members are very welcome to become involved in our school
community as volunteers for classroom help, field trips or as spectators to our special events. However,
for the safety of our children, all visitors to the school must report to the office and sign in. The doors to
the school will remain locked except at recess times for security reasons. This is common School Board
Policy across the Region to discourage intruders.

The safety of the children is uppermost in our minds. We ask for your cooperation in the following areas:
The school is not responsible for administering medication of any type to the students. However, if a
situation arises and medication has to be taken at school, please contact the office in writing or by phone.
WRITTEN AUTHORIZATION from parents/guardians is necessary. Medication Forms are available for
this purpose from the school office. Medication must be kept at the school office.
Please note: In this regard we assume if the child is well enough to come to school, s/he should be able
to participate in outdoor recess and physical education.

In case of emergency, students may use the school telephone for local calls only, with written permission
from a teacher. Students are not permitted to tie up the school telephone for personal calls (i.e., forgot
homework, forgot gym clothes). Responsible planning by our students will eliminate the need to call
home during the day. Please note that students may not have cell phones, pagers or walkie-talkies at

Children who are staying for lunch are supervised and eat in their rooms from 11:15 - 11:35 a.m.
Weather permitting, they then go outside and are supervised outdoors. During inclement weather, lunch
students are supervised inside the school. Students not staying for lunch are asked not to arrive back for
school until 12:15 p.m. Only students in grade 8 will be allowed to bring in a note to receive special
permission to leave at lunch time with their friends. Verbal consent to leave school property will not be
accepted. Students in grade JK to grade 7 are to stay for lunch if they indicate this on the form given out
in September unless they are going home with a family member. Grade 8 students can go home for lunch
if a note is received with the following information:
 - date        -where they are going       -who they are going with      -parent signature
Pizza days, or other “fun” lunch specials, are planned at various times during the school year. The small
proceeds made from these events help to support classroom activities. Students are expected to sit in their
seat during lunch and eat respectfully, which includes cleaning up their area after they eat.

Breakfast Club/Milk Program/Special Lunches
Chocolate and white milk is available for purchase each day. Money is collected throughout the year.
Students can purchase a milk card, which is stamped each time they buy milk. Pizza days are offered
every week (if volunteers are available to assist with this program). The Breakfast Club will continue next
year with the help of volunteers. Please contact the office if you are willing to assist with this program.
The Breakfast Club program is open to all students and is free. This is a wonderful program for all

W.C.D.S.B. Elementary School Food and Nutrition Policy (New for September 2009)
It is important that our students come to school properly nourished. Please ensure that they have a good
breakfast in the morning and are provided with nourishing satisfying lunches. We encourage snacks such
as fruits and vegetables (i.e., celery and carrot sticks) and juice, as opposed to pop and sugar drinks,
especially for the morning recess break.

New Policy:
Purpose: To ensure that a variety of nutritious foods and beverages are promoted and provided in the
elementary schools of W.C.D.S.B.
Highlights of the Policy:
Schools are asked to review the food served for special lunches, special activities (including fund raisers)
and special events to ensure that the nutritional value is high. School staff is asked to review eating
practices of students at schools and to help educate students about eating foods with a high nutritional
We are fortunate to have a milk program and a breakfast club at St. Francis School, which helps our
school community, get a head start with the implementation of this new policy. Parents/Guardians are
asked to send nutritious snacks and drinks to school with their children

We encourage all parents to make a healthy choice and not drive to school. If you drive your child to
school, please pay attention to the bus zone and the no stopping and no parking areas along McDonald
Ave and near the school. Park only in areas where it is designated by the City of Cambridge or the
Region. Parents with children in car seats are allowed to use the school parking lot before and after
school. Volunteers are allowed to use the parking lot during the school day.
The safety of the children is crucial at all times. Please exercise extreme caution and drive slowly near the
school. Also ensure that your children do not run across the street to your vehicle.

Textbooks and other materials are supplied to students for use during the year. These items remain the
property of the school and students are responsible for exercising proper care. Books are to be returned at
the end of the year and students will have to replace any books that are lost, damaged or defaced (graffiti)
at the replacement cost.

The school library is open Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Students are requested to return
the books within the designated loan period (two weeks) in order to ensure that as many students as
possible have access to resources. All library resources should be treated with care and should be
protected while in transit. Library materials, which are lost or damaged, must be paid for or replaced to
the satisfaction of library staff. Parents are responsible for paying for materials lost or damaged.

The following items are not allowed at school. Personal entertainment items are not allowed because they
don’t promote co-operation and community building between students (i.e., IPods, Game Boys, Cell
Phones, and Cameras). Certain equipment is not allowed for the safety of all staff and students. (hockey
sticks, baseball bats, mini hockey sticks, and hard balls).

Students who take bicycles, scooter, skateboards or roller blades to school are expected to observe the
following rules:
        Heelies (shoes with wheels) are not allowed.
        Bicycles, scooters and skateboards must be walked across safety locations.
        Students must dismount their bikes, scooters and skateboards when on school property.
        Students are to walk bikes to and from bike racks and are to lock them in the bike racks.
        Students must wear approved safety helmets.
        Roller blades must be replaced by shoes once the student arrives on school property.


The ‘Dress Code for Students’ is the standard for student dress at St. Francis of Assisi School and is
consistent with the provincial Education Act, related regulations and Board policies. The ‘Dress Code” is
intended for all students enrolled at the school (Junior Kindergarten – Grade Eight). Students are
expected to dress in a modest, clean and neat fashion, in attire suitable to the school situation. While the
‘Dress Code’ addresses student dress, it is recognized that the school staff have a moral and professional
responsibility to be role models for the pupils. They should dress appropriately and in a manner that is
consistent with the expectations for students.
It is expected that each student will comply with the ‘Dress Code’ during a regular school day or when
attending a school-related activity off campus (i.e. field trip, athletic event). Exceptions may be allowed
when approved differently by the administration of the school (i.e. wearing of hats on “Hat Day”).

The following guidelines will be observed to promote a positive learning environment:
1) Crop, halter, off-the-shoulder, spaghetti string tops, see-through or revealing tops and muscle shirts or
   tops exposing the midriff are not to be worn. (The three-finger rule applies to sleeveless tops.
   Undergarments must not be exposed.)
2) Hemmed shorts and walking shorts are permitted during the warm weather season. (Skirts and shorts
   must be as long as the fingertips when arms are held at the side.)
3) Clothing with any derogatory or inappropriate writing or pictures is prohibited.
4) Hats, including bandanas, are not to be worn inside the school.
5) Outdoor wear (boots, coats, gloves, fingerless gloves, etc.) is not to be worn in the classroom.
6) For physical education, students are expected to wear a T-shirt, shorts and running shoes.
7) Clothing with excessive chains, sharp metal studs or clothing that is related to “Gangs” in any manner
   will not be tolerated.

Consequence: Students who are inappropriately dressed will be reminded of the school dress code; the
student may be sent home to change. Students who persistently have dress code infractions may be
The dress code for students in Junior Kindergarten to grade 2 will allow for some flexibility with these
rules. (i.e., sun dresses are allowed to be worn)
In addition to the above policy, please be sure to dress your child in warm clothing during the winter
months. Parents are asked to label articles of clothing and school bags. Please use a permanent marker.
In wet weather, we suggest that your child have an extra set of clothing in case he/she gets wet.

Staff may be reached at the school at (519) 621 0371. If a staff member is unavailable to come to the
phone a message can be left and he/she will return your call as soon as possible.

Step One                                          Step Two

    Speak to the Teacher                          Speak to administration
    Issue resolved                                If you have not spoken to the teacher
                                                  The principal or vice-principal will ask
                                                  you to do so first.
                                                  Administration will involve the
                                                  teacher in the discussions.
                                                  Administration may request at any
                                                  time in the process, that you put your
                                                  concerns in writing.
                                                  Administration may involve, at any
                                                  time in the process, others who may
                                                 be helpful in resolving the concern:
                                                 supports from the school, employee
                                                 group representatives, the local
                                                 parish, community agencies.
        1) The role of the Trustee: You may contact the trustee at any time. The trustee will direct you
           to follow the process outlined above.
        2) The role of the Catholic School Council: Catholic School Councils were established to advise
           the principal on matters such as the school curriculum and the school code of behaviour.
           School Councils are not forums to discuss parent-teacher-student issues. If there is a concern,
           it is to be referred immediately to the principal.
        3) Issues with non-teaching staff are to be discussed with administration only. Any concern
           brought forward by non-teaching staff or parents regarding non-teaching staff are to be
           communicated to administration. Administration will then bring the concern forward to the
           appropriate party.


St. Francis School Code of Behaviour:

The St. Francis Code of Behaviour is aligned to our board’s standards of behaviour. At St. Francis,
everyone is expected to contribute to a safe, secure and positive environment within our school and
The purpose of discipline is:
    • To show students what they’ve done wrong
    • Give them ownership of the problem
    • Give them options to solve their problems
    • Leave students with their dignity in tact

School Behaviour Expectations:
   • Students should enter and move through the building in an orderly manner, using the assigned
       entrances and exits.
   • Students should respect and obey staff, parents and volunteers by remembering to always use
       good manners.
   • Students should respect the playing of the National Anthem and prayers by standing still and
       singing appropriately.
   • Students should stop and listen to announcements and be fully prepared for instruction each day.
   • Students may not throw snowballs or stones in the playground or on school property. No rough
       physical contact games are allowed.
   • For safety reasons, students must stay on our school property and respect yard boundaries at
       recess times.
   • Students may only be in a classroom, gym or storage area when supervised by a staff member.
   • Dress code must be followed at all times.
   • Passes are required when students enter the school at recess or noon hour.
   • Students are to respect the property and resources of St. Francis School and the staff and students.

All students are expected to comply with the rules and expectations of the school and staff.
These rules and expectations are based on respect for self and others.

Positive Behaviour Strategies Used at St. Francis School
   • As a school community we will focus on pro-active discipline strategies that encourage the
        prevention of bullying and other infractions against individuals.
   • Teachers and school personnel will work with students to develop proper attitudes and
        behaviours. Minor problems on the yard or classroom will be resolved by the supervising staff
   • The strategies below are examples of preventative measures that will be used by the school which
                 Conflict resolution strategies including teaching “Imagine A School Without Bullying”
                 Conferences with peers or staff to encourage student responsibility for behaviour.
                 Weekly class meetings that include agendas developed by staff and students to deal with
                 issues that may arise in the school.
                 Communication with parents that include: phone calls, newsletters, behaviour tracking
                 sheets and interviews.
                 There are times when students who are having difficulty can be referred to the school
                 Youth Care Worker for support in dealing with peers and other issues that may be
                 developing both within the classroom and the school yard. This requires parental consent.

Students who demonstrate inappropriate behaviour such as failure to meet student expectations, as well as
being in violation of the Safe School Act, will be assisted by one or more of the following supportive
• Immediate conflict resolution supported by the staff involved
• Corrective dialogue between the staff and student
• Written and verbal apologies
• Restitution of materials
• Counselling by school staff members such as youth care worker or through outside agencies
• Parental involvement
• Implementation of homework/behavioural contract
• Loss of privileges
• Detentions
• Community service work
• Involvement of student services staff and/or outside support agencies
• Discretionary suspensions by the principal
• Expulsion
• Possible involvement of the police

A Student Incident Report will be completed for any student who behaves inappropriately in the
classroom, school or schoolyard. A copy of the report will be sent home so that parents are kept
informed. Reports are also sent home to help staff and parents deal with incidents quickly and efficiently
and to request parental support.
Student Incident Reports include:
    1. A Green slip (i.e., not following playground rules, not including other students, being out of
        bounds) is given to students for minor incidents. If a student receives three green slips in a
        month, a yellow form will be sent home to parents to inform them of the concern and request
        their support.
    2. Office Referral Form (green sheet) is used when a student is sent to the office from the
        classroom. This form is sent home to help communicate with parents and request their support.
    3. Incident Tracking Form (yellow form) is used when a student does something inappropriate
        outside (i.e., not listening to staff, being physical). This form is sent home to help communicate
        with parents and request their support.
    4. A classroom tracking form is created and used by individual teachers for tracking and
        communicating issues that occurred within the classroom.