September 16th Letter
September 16, 2020
Dear ESDH Students and Families,
It has been absolutely wonderful to welcome our new and returning Schoons back to school! The past week has been busy one adjusting to the new routines of school and for some, getting used to setting that morning alarm clock. After six months apart, it may take a little longer this year to adjust, but we will all get there.
The most important routine for all of us is to practice the public health protocols. Nova Scotia’s Back to School Plan includes multiple public health measures that are most effective when they’re layered together and followed consistently. Here is a link from HRCE regarding shared health: Our shared health depends on our shared actions at home, on the bus and in school .
I want to thank our Schoons for respecting each other and our community in adjusting to these new routines. We are a community that depends on each other to do our best to stay healthy by practicing the layered public health protocols that includes masks and social distancing when possible. To our families, thank you for your support and reinforcement of a community approach to practicing these public health protocols.
To our amazing staff, who have gone above and beyond for preparing for our Schoons, thank you! Even with masks on, we could see the warm, smiling eyes of our staff members welcoming our Schoons back to school and, despite some initial anxieties, our Schoons seemed happy to be back too!
Together, we will make this a great year!
ESDH - Principal
Please note the following reminders/updates:
HRCE Transportation: Please know that the Halifax Regional Centre for Education (HRCE) is actively working with our transportation providers to address these concerns in both the short and long-term. If you have any transportation questions, please reach out: email email@example.com or call 902-431-4723.
PowerSchool: If you are not able to login to PowerSchool, please contact Ms. Gaetz (firstname.lastname@example.org )and arrangements can be made to reset forgotten passwords. This is a great way to stay on top of your student’s progress and attendance. If any of your contact information (phone numbers, emails, address…) has changed, please contact the school to have that information updated in PS. Daily announcements will be uploaded to the “Daily Bulletin” in PowerSchool for easy access for students and families.
Professional Development Day P-12 on Friday, September 25th: Please note that there are no classes for students as staff are learning on this day.
Fire Drill: We completed a fire drill today. All schools in NS are required to complete 3 in the fall and another 3 in the spring. Thank you to all staff and students for their cooperation.
Emergency Management Planning
The safety and security of our students and staff is a top priority for ESDH and the Halifax Regional Centre for Education. We implement a number of measures as part of a comprehensive plan aimed at ensuring our school remains a safe place for our students to learn.
One of the procedures our school will be practicing is a Lockdown drill. During a Lockdown drill, classroom doors are secured and students remain inside the room until instructed by administration and our RCMP Liaison Officer to resume activities. All exterior doors are locked and no one is permitted to enter or leave the building. Students are kept inside the school and classrooms when circumstances make it safer to stay in the classroom rather than evacuate. Just as we prepare our students to properly respond to a fire drill, they also need to be aware of the proper response during a Lockdown drill. These drills should be treated with the same level of importance as fire drills. Administration will be reviewing expectations of behaviours and procedures with all students and staff as we all have a responsibility for safety. We will be conducting a Lockdown drill in partnership with our RCMP Liaison Officer during the week of September 21-24th.
We will also be practicing a Hold-and-Secure drill. During hold-and-secure, students remain in their classroom with doors locked as instruction continues. Hallway access is not permitted unless otherwise directed by administration. A typical reason for using Hold-and-Secure would be to limit hallway traffic due to a medical need. We will be having a Hold-and-Secure drill the week of September 28-October 2.
Should there ever be a need to Relocate our school population, please know that our first relocation site is the Musquodoboit Harbour Community Centre (rink - 97 Park St). Our second site is the Musquodoboit Harbour United Church of Canada, 7964 Highway 7. Various media outlets would be used for communication to the community in cooperation and support from HRCE.
During all drills, students are expected to follow public health protocols of wearing masks and, when possible, practice social distancing.
We expect continued support and understanding from our students about the importance of these safety drills. Please take the time to speak with your son/daughter about these procedures and reinforce their importance. We practice these drills to ensure our school remains a safe place for teaching and learning.
Friday, September 25 - Professional development Day- no classes for students; staff are learning
Wednesday, September 30 - Orange Shirt Day- As a collective act of reconciliation, wear orange to promote awareness of the impact of residential schools on our indigenous communities and the experiences of residential school survivors.
Wednesday, September 30 - Picture Day