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Letter to Parents Sept 2021
09/07/2021

Dear A.Y. Jackson Students and Parents/Guardians:


I hope this email finds you well and that you have had an enjoyable summer and well deserved break. We are really excited to be welcoming everyone back to school!! 


In particular I would like to extend a warm welcome to our new students in all grades. Our J-Crew will be running Grade 9 orientation activities next week and will provide more orientation activities and academic follow-ups throughout semester 1. This year will continue to look different than in years past; please know that we are going to do everything we can to help our students navigate school and find success. 


One of the biggest changes this year is that we will have a staggered lunch hour. Junior students will eat lunch between 11:00 and 11:45 a.m. Senior students will eat lunch between 12:00 and 12:45. This is necessary to ensure every grade has a distinct, clean, and safe space in which to eat their lunch. Our Library Learning Commons is not available as a lunch space until the renovation of that area is completed. We also do not want to create overcrowding by having 850 students on a common lunch hour within limited indoor space, especially on rainy or cold days when leaving the property is not desirable. 


Our Bell Schedule will be reviewed as part of the re-opening process in consultation with our School Council and OCDSB leadership. If and when it is determined that we can have larger groups of students together for lunch we may return to a common lunch time for all students. 


Despite a high vaccination rate, the potential for the virus to spread in our school and community is still present and significant. With so many staff and students with young children (4-11) in their homes who are not yet vaccinated, we need to take particular precautions to limit the spread. Lunchtime remains our busiest time and we have limited space in the school due to ongoing renovations in the Library. 


Students will continue to have time to eat and drink during the remainder of the day. Teachers are permitted and encouraged to allow body-breaks so students can walk or work outside or take time to eat or drink after lunch during Block B. 


A.Y. Jackson 2021-2022 Student Bell Schedule

Junior Timetable



Senior Timetable


START 

END



START 

END


9:15

9:30

Travel (Classrooms Open)


9:15

9:30

Travel (Classrooms Open)

9:30 

11:00

BLOCK A.1.


9:30 

12:00

BLOCK A

11:00

11:45

LUNCH


11:45

12:45

BLOCK A.2.



12:00


12:45


LUNCH

12:45

12:50

Travel


12:45

12:50

Travel

12:50

3:20

BLOCK B


12:50

3:20

BLOCK B

3:20

3:25 

Travel


3:20

3:25 

Travel

3:25


Bus Loading


3:25


Bus Loading

300 Minutes of instruction

45 Minute Lunch


300 Minutes of Instruction

45 Minute Lunch


School Schedule and Calendar

The first day for classes this year is Thursday, September 9th.


This year students will be attending two courses each day.

● Week 1 (Sept 9/10) Morning Block A. Afternoon Block B. 

● Week 2 (Sept 13-17) Morning Block C. Afternoon Block D.


An approved calendar for Week 1 and Week 2 designations for Semester 1 will be posted on the OCDSB website in the coming days.

 

School protocols

  • Students must complete the COVID-19 self-assessment each day before coming to school.
  • Please view the Ottawa Public Health Website for more information.

  • Students must wear a mask at all times each day.

  • Water fountains will be closed for drinking; however, water filling stations will be available for students to fill their own water bottles.

B.Y.O.D. To support learning in longer blocks of 150 minutes, students are encouraged to Bring Your Own Device. This is both helpful in observing Covid protocols and provides students with ongoing access to teachers’ Google Classroom, websites, or VLE. Chromebooks are a very reliable and cost effective solution.  The school will have a limited supply of Chromebooks within each room to support students. 


Arriving at school. Students will be welcomed into the building at 9:15 am each morning. Once in the building, students are asked to go directly to their Block A class.To control traffic flow in the building, students will be assigned an entry point to the school each day. Homeroom teacher will assign the entry for each class. This will be communicated via an email from the homeroom (Block A) teacher prior to the first day of school. Students who have a spare/unassigned class in Block A should report to the main office at 12:30 p.m. on September 9th. Students will be informed via email. 


Please see the school floor plans attached for your convenience. 


Lockers - We will be assigning lockers on an as-needed basis later in September. Grades will be separated as much as possible in locker areas. 


Lunch hour - Students are encouraged to eat their lunch outside each day weather permitting. For students wishing to stay in the building for lunch hour, each grade has been assigned an area in the school to eat their lunch. 

  • Grade 9: early lunch in the Cafeteria.
  • Grade 10: early lunch in The Upper Pit or Upper Cafeteria/Balcony. 
  • Grade 11: late lunch in the Cafeteria.
  • Grade 12: late lunch in The Upper Pit or Upper Cafeteria/Balcony. 

Food Services. Please note that at this time cafeteria and vending services will not be available. During the lunch hour students may eat outside or remain within a grade designated area within the school. Students will not be permitted to wander throughout the building during the lunch hour.


Student Timetables: Block A teachers will send each student an email letting them know what room to go to on Thursday, September 9th. Students will receive their full timetables in their Block A class Thursday morning.


Students with Spares: Students with a morning spare should arrive at school during the lunch hour. Students with afternoon spares should leave for home during the lunch hour. 


Transportation:

Information regarding transportation can be found at the Ottawa Student Transportation Authority Parent Portal here http://www.ottawaschoolbus.ca/ Students who are taking OC Transpo buses will not require a Presto pass to board buses to or from school for the first week. Further information will be provided soon. We will issue Presto passes to qualifying students during this time. 


Course Changes:

Course changes can be requested directly through our A.Y. Guidance Department website here: https://sites.google.com/ocdsb.ca/ayjacksonguidancedepartment/home  Our Guidance team will review the following course change requests: level change, missing prerequisite, and change of post-secondary pathway. 


Thank you for taking time to review all of this information. We look forward to welcoming our students back to school on Thursday. Best wishes for an enjoyable long weekend. 


All the best, 


Patrick McCarthy, Jon Cappello, and Janice Isaac.

The A.Y. Admin Team


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