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Principal Message: Start-up 2022-2023 - Welcome Back!

September 1st 2022

Principal Start-up Message Hume Elementary: (Tuesday) September 6th, 2022

Hello, parent, guardians, and care givers of the Hume School community. 

The Hume Elementary staff are excited to start the 2022-2023 school year.  The opportunity to work with each of your children throughout the year is a great privilege and fills our hearts in the deepest of ways.  I hope in many ways you have managed a relaxing time as family over the course of the summer vacation.  Of course, it is likely for some of our families there were experiences through the summer vacation that were challenging in nature.  Our hope for all the Hume families was that you had/have a community of people around you to navigate the celebrations, memory building experiences, and challenges.  As the 2022-2023 school year begins, one of our aims is to expand everyone’s community of support through the school.

Our central focus is supporting children holistically in growing to learn the nature of their gifts and how to use them for good in the world.  As things arise through the year, please don’t hesitate to reach out to your classroom teacher, or myself (Mr. Kalabis – Principal), to collaboratively discuss, understand, and/or problem solve through the situation.  Compassionate communication, rooted in building mutual understanding, will be a key aspect in moving forward positively.

We have several staff we are welcoming to the Hume team this year.  We have Baylie Corner and Sumika Motoka joining us as Gr. 1-2 teachers.  We have Tanya Thayer, who will be taking on the Inclusion Support Teacher position.  We have Lalaine Gutowski working as a new educational assistant in the school.  Currently, our custodial staff in the building will be Harry Pillas and Gillis Leathwood.  Thank you to the custodial staff, Harry, Ken, and Michael who have worked so diligently to get the school ready for start-up.  A thank you to all the teaching staff who are working to get their classroom spaces ready to receive the children this Tuesday, September 6th, 2022.  As we all emerge from, what has been a historical 2 years, with its numerous and diverse impacts, lets keep our sights on the opportunities, learning, celebrations, and fun that should epitomize the school experience.

Please carefully read through the information below to help get your child(ren) ready for the first day and week of school.  The Hume staff remains committed to supporting a healthy and safe environment for everyone in the school.   

Where does my child go on the first day, September 6, 2022? (*New Kindergarten families please refer to gradual entry calendar)

All students will find their teacher from last year and line up at their class's cone.  Students new to Hume this year will need to locate Mr. Nugent-Smith and Ms. Carter, who will be standing near a table labeled “Welcome to Hume”.  Mr. Kalabis, Ms. Thayer, and our EA team will help to direct folks outside as well.  All teachers will be in the front of the field (Grade 2-5), or back of the school (Gr. 1).  Our new Kindergarten students will not be attending the first few days of school (see gradual entry calendar).  If you’d like, you can escort your child to drop them off, say a quick hello to the teacher and leave your child in our very capable hands.  We would like to keep the traffic to a minimum as it will be a busy time getting everyone organized and greeting new families/students to the school.  Please parents if you could move off the school property quickly it would help to support a smooth transition.   

What should my child bring?

Students should bring their backpacks, a FULL water bottle, snacks, inside shoes, and a note for primary students explaining what the after-school plans are for the child (bus home, mom or dad to pick up, etc).  Hume provides all the school supplies with the $40 school supplies fee.  The school air exchange system is currently circulating 100% new air from outside.  As such, the building can be quite COLD in the morning.  In the afternoons the building temperature can get quite warm if it is warm outside.  Students (and staff!) should dress appropriately. 

*Note: We have students in our school that have potentially life-threatening allergies related to insect stings and food related allergies (anaphylaxis) specifically allergies to peanuts and nuts.  The food allergies of students/staff, as guided by district policy 240, require us to be an “allergy aware” school.  There are several safety processes put into place at the school.  We ask families to exercise an awareness of these food allergies as a school community and to aim at ensuring snacks and lunches are “peanut free”. More information and specifics will come out on this topic. 

What should my child not bring?

They should not bring any toys, electronics, or extra school supplies.  Please keep things to a minimum on the first and second days specifically.

Is it half or full days this week?

We are starting with a half-day on Tuesday, September 6.  Buses will run 3 hours earlier than normal so pick up at the school is at 11:30 am.  If your child is a bus student, expect them home 3 hours earlier than normal.  Wednesday, September 7, and onward are full days ending at 2:30 pm each day.  Again, new Kindergarten families, please refer to the gradual entry calendar.

On Wednesday, September 7th, we will be doing a school wide activity with all the Grade 1-5 students.  In essence, they will rotate through a variety of stations throughout the day, supported by each of the staff members.  This is designed early in the school year to build community, review school wide routines, review school code of conduct (annually), meet all the staff members throughout the school, and have some fun together.  As such, on Wednesday, students will not be assigned to their regular class for the 2022-2023 school year yet. 

What class will my child be in this year?

On the afternoon of September 6th and 7th, staff will spend a significant amount of time working on class lists for this school year.  We place students in groups where they are most likely to be successful socially, emotionally, and academically.  This is a very thoughtful and intentional process that takes into account a whole host of considerations that is best for each child and the school as a whole.  Your child might not be in the classroom that they want as there are 225 children to consider in our school at this point.  Thanks for your understanding and patience in this process.  An email will be sent out on the afternoon of September 7th confirming your child’s class and teacher for the 2022-2023 school year.  Students will line up with the assigned teacher and class on the morning of Thursday, September 8th.  This will be their first day with their class for the 2022-2023 school year.

Can my child go to a friend’s home after school?

Courtesy riders who are not registered for bus service will be slowly implemented this fall.  Registered bus students can ride their own bus home after school.  Students need their electronic name tags to ride the buses in SD8.

What about the water at Hume?

There are water fountains available for staff and students when at school.  Classroom teachers ask that each child be sent with a full water bottle to school each day.  Labels on the water bottle (and everything else) is really helpful!

What is the drop-off time in the morning if I’m driving my child to school?

For right now we would appreciate it that parents drop off their children between 8:10 and 8:20 am.  We appreciate how busy the morning routine can be for families, but please work to have your child at the school on time as this really helps support a safe transition of everyone into the building and a consistent start to the day. 

What happens at the end of the school day?

Students will be dismissed in a staggered format.  The Gr. 1-5 students will be dismissed at the front of the school and the K’s will be dismissed from the back.  We are asking parents to be as prompt as possible when picking up their children after school.  The day ends at 2:30 pm.

*Note: We ask parents to keep any younger siblings off the playground equipment at the beginning and end of day, and to move off the property quickly as this really helps to support our supervisors in reducing the number the amount of traffic and keeping their attention on the children attending for the day. 

Pick-up and Late Arrival Protocol for Hume Elementary School

Other than in the morning, the front doors and all perimeter doors will remain locked throughout the school day so as to regulate/monitor guests coming into the school.  The front doors will be left unlocked from 8:25-8:40 am to support families/child(ren) arrivals.  Please do your best to arrive on time as it supports a smooth start-up to the child’s day of learning.  The school day starts at 8:30 am.    

Student Absence or Late – Hume’s Safe Arrival Program

What should I do if my child is going to be absent for the day or late?

It is extremely important for both parents and the school to know that each child has arrived at school safely.  To ensure this, we request that parents contact the school when their child will be unable to attend or will be late.   The most efficient way of doing this is via the school’s web-form, which can be found at: https://hume.sd8.bc.ca/absence-late.  Our school secretary, Arlene Anderson, then proceeds to contact each family by phone, whose child has not arrived and that we have not heard from the parent/guardian/caregiver.  This is a time-consuming process for the secretary.  We ask families to please use the online absence/late form to support us in the safe arrival process.

Arriving late

What should I do if my child arrives late at the school?

- If a child is late to school, they must sign in at the front office with the school secretary and in the late arrival book.

- We ask also that parents phone the office to let us know about the late arrival.

- We try to have a staff member remain outside, typically the principal, to greet students who arrive between 8:30-8:35 am.  The principal can then let students into the building and re-direct to office.

- The front door will be also left unlocked in the morning for children arriving late.

- For children in grades K-1, we ask that the parents escort their child to the office.

              - a staff member will then walk the child in K/1 to their classroom.

- For children in grades 2-5, we ask that parents bring their child to the front door, have them enter the building and sign-in at the office.

Pick-up Protocol

What should I do if I am picking my child up early from school for an appointment, family trip etc.?

If you are picking your child up early from school, we ask that you do the following:

Please let the teacher know in advance via email/class dojo, day-of note in mailbag or agenda.
Let the school secretary, Arlene Anderson, know (email or phone call)
Please come to the front office to meet your child and sign them out.  The Hume Staff will retrieve the child from the appropriate classroom. 
If picking up at lunch or recess, please ensure you sign your child out at the front office before leaving.  So that we can have a good transfer of care and communication to applicable staff members. 

Thanks for your support in these processes.  Please reach out to Sacha Kalabis, Principal, if you have any questions.

COVID-19 Protocols

What are the COVID-19 Protocols being followed for the 2022-2023 school year?

For the most part the school experience will be closer to what we would expect of a normal experience.  Our start-up and systems at the school will look very much like the systems we were following in the final 3 months of school last year.  For the most recent summary of safety measure being followed at Hume, please refer to the most recent Ministry Guidelines, which can be found here: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/education-training/k-12/covid-19-safe-schools.  Some specific FAQ can be found below.

What happens if my child gets sick at school?

If a child starts to show symptoms of being sick at school, we will follow safety procedures, we will call parents, keep the child safe and under supervision while parents come to pick them up.

Can I send my child to school if they showing signs of illness (including but not limited to COVID-19 symptoms)? 

No. Students, staff, or other adults are required to stay at home when sick, as this is one of the most important ways to reduce the introduction to and the spread of illness and COVID-19 in schools. Parents/caregivers and students are asked to regularly complet a health check.  A health check means a person regularly checking to ensure they (or their child) are not experiencing symptoms of illness (including but not limited to COVID-19 symptoms) that would limit their ability to participate fully in regular activities before coming to school to prevent spread of communicable diseases, such as COVID-19, within school settings.  Please use one of the following resources to assess your child(ren) daily for symptoms of common cold, influenza, COVID-19, or other infectious respiratory diseases before sending them to school:

the K-12 Health Check app
the BCCDC online Self-Assessment Tool,
call 8-1-1 or speak to your health care provider. 

Safety is our priority for your child, the rest of the children, and the staff at the school.   

What’s happening with learning groups?  Can my child play with their sibling during school hours?

We used learning groups for parts of last year to keep our contact with other students and staff to a minimum for parts of last year.    This year, the Provincial COVID-19 Guidelines for K-12 settings do not recommend learning groups.  As such, we won’t have learning groups for outside play.  Students can mix outside with their chosen friends and siblings.  We have worked to maintain many routines that will support the safety of staff and students. 

Are masks required?

The decision to wear a mask or face covering is a personal choice for everyone.  People can choose to continue to wear a mask throughout the day or during specific activities.  This choice will be supported and treated with respect.

See you on Tuesday morning!  Please reach out to Mr. Kalabis, Principal of Hume, if you have any questions.  I will do my best to reply quickly, although these first few weeks are especially busy. 

Sincerely, Mr. Kalabis and the rest of the wonderful Hume team.

 

Sacha Kalabis
Principal Hume Elementary School

Hume Elementary

310 Nelson Avenue

Nelson, BC  V1L 2M8

250 352 3186 (office)

250 825 2037 (Sacha) 

sacha.kalabis@sd8.bc.ca

https://hume.sd8.bc.ca/