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December Newsletter

posted Dec 1, 2015, 12:33 PM by Sean Crookshank   [ updated Dec 3, 2015, 5:58 PM ]

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As we enter the Holy Season of Advent the children and teachers are busy preparing to make this season a very spiritual and meaningful time for all of us. Advent is a time to prepare our hearts for the arrival of Jesus. One of the symbols of Advent is a wreath with four candles (three purple, one pink). We look forward to our weekly Advent celebrations and the fellowship that is shared at these events as we light each of our Advent Candles. On behalf of the staff and students of St. John Paul II Catholic School, I wish you all a very Merry Christmas, a Happy New Year and a safe and enjoyable holiday season.


Sean Crookshank




With the upcoming cold weather in mind, please be aware that Board policy dictates that students will be outside for recesses unless the wind-chill is –25° or greater. Please take special care in ensuring your children are properly dressed for the weather.


If you are in need of winter clothing for your child, please contact the Snowsuit Fund on Donald Street (613.746.5143) or do let us know as we have some extra jackets.


ST. IGNATIUS MARTYR PARISH BAKE SALE, 518 Donald St., Saturday, December 12th, l0:00 am- 2:00 pm. Assortment of delicious baked goods:  cookies, pies, breads, loaves, squares, etc., and Fruit Cakes by the Cistercian Monks.


On Wednesday, December 16th at 11:15 a.m., students from Kindergarten to Grade 6 will be sharing a turkey luncheon in our school gym. We look forward to celebrating Jesus’ birthday as a school community.  We ask that students bring a plate and fork in a plastic bag with their name marked on it.


St. John Paul II Catholic School has very exciting school fundraising initiative. Every month (last Monday of every month) at Broadway Bar and Grill on Orleans Blvd, they are hosting a sponsorship night for our school. During that evening they will donate 10% back (on the subtotal) on every dollar spent by those who indicate that they are there from our school community. Furthermore, in addition they will donate 5% back every time a student, teacher or parent visits the restaurant. This is a great way to spend time with family and friends and help raise funds for our school.  Friendly reminders will be sent home via Synervoice as we get closer to the date each month.  Hope you are able to make it out and support our school.


Please inform family, friends and neighbours living within our school boundaries that the official Kindergarten Registration for new students takes place towards the end of January. By December 31st, 2014, the child must be four years old to qualify for Junior Kindergarten, or five years old to qualify for Senior Kindergarten. Please call the school for more specific information.


The staff of St. John Paul II School continues to be committed to the safety of our children both in the school and outside in our playground. With snow comes the inevitable snowballs that can potentially inflict serious injury to students. Our school has a snowball policy, which was enforced with the first snowfall. As outlined to the children, the policy will be as follows: First incident: 1 day of supervised indoor recesses, parents informed; Second incident: 3 days of supervised indoor recesses, parents informed; Third incident: one week of supervised indoor recesses, parents informed; Fourth incident: consequence to be determined after an interview with the student and his/her parents and the principal. This policy will be reviewed with the students on a regular basis as we feel that the establishment of a clear policy will help the students understand the serious nature of a snowball throwing infraction.


Everyone knows how bad it feels to be sick. Follow these tips to help prevent the spread of germs:

·        Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 15 seconds.

·        Wash your hands after using the washroom, changing a baby’s diaper, or touching animals, before eating, before and after preparing food, and when your hands look dirty.

·        Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if you can’t wash your hands.  Use a squirt the size of a quarter (dime-size for young children) in your palm, rub palms together, rub the back of each hand and around each thumb, and don’t forget your fingertips.  Rub for at least 15 seconds until dry.

·        Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or your upper arm, not your hands! Throw the tissue away and wash your hands right away.

·        Keep your hands away from your face to help keep germs out of your body.

·        Stay home when you are sick, have a cough or a fever.

For more information contact Ottawa Public Health at 613-580-6744 or visit


We have gone paperless. All newsletters (school and classroom) and as many other items as possible, will be posted on our school website ONLY or sent electronically. No paper copies will be sent home, unless a specific request is made. School newsletters are always published on the first of each month, so check our website at the beginning of each month. We will also let you know of the latest postings through Synrevoice, a call out program that phones each family and/or contacts them by e-mail.   Please make sure that the school has your most up-to-date e-mail address.  Our website can be accessed at


Please join us for our next meeting Dec. 7th at 8:00 p.m. in our Learning Commons.  We would love to have you there.


The St. JPII Drama Club will be presenting Twinderella on March 7 & 8th.  Please mark those dates on your Calendar.


Often students and parents wish to thank their teachers at Christmas time with a small token of appreciation. St. JPII School has adopted the Gift of Reading program. It is a program where, instead of purchasing a gift, you make a donation to the Gift of Reading fund. The money will be used to purchase books for our school library. When you make a donation, you receive a card for each of your child’s teachers that can be coloured and decorated by your child. Your child’s name will be put on a bookplate in the front of a new book purchased with the Gift of Reading funds. Info has been sent home.


Catholic Character Formation:

At St. JPII, we strive to develop the whole child. We are concerned not only about what they learn academically, but also about who they are becoming. The Catholic Graduate Expectations (CGE’s) help guide our efforts in this area. Each month we will focus on one of the Beatitudes of the Catholic Character Formation.

For October, the gift of the Holy Spirit was Because I am a believer and is connected to the Catholic Graduate Expectation that develops and demonstrate their belief in God and his teaching.

For November, the gift of the Holy Spirit was Because I have a voice which is connected to the Catholic Graduate Expectation that describes Catholic students who know “to act and speak like Jesus would want us to”.

Learning Skills and Work Habits: The development of learning skills and work habits is an integral part of a student’s learning.   At JPII, we strive to develop six fundamental skills & habits important for learning and for life.  For the October and November the focus was on responsibility and self-regulation.

Congratulations to all our winners!


Our Boys’ and Girls’ Volleyball Teams recently participated in the school board tournaments. Our boys’ team was coached by Mrs. Saunders and Ms. O’Toole  and showed skill, sportsmanship and enthusiasm. Congratulations to Joseph, Spencer, Kasra, Adriel, Justin, Samuel, Callum, Damian, Arnesh, Isaac, and John.

The girls’ team was coached by Mrs. Brennan. Their hours of practice paid off as they played with considerable skill and demonstrated an excellent understanding of the rules. Congratulations to : Nakya, Cadie, Anaja, Shyler, Trinity,  Eve, Sarena, Alyssa, Megan, and Hailey D


In the event of a severe snow or ice storm, parents are reminded that local radio and T.V. stations will begin broadcasting cancellation of transportation starting at 6:00AM. Generally the schools remain open. Parents who drop off their children are reminded that they must make arrangements to pick them up as well - once buses have been cancelled in the morning they do not run for that entire day.

The Board provides a link on the school’s website to inform parents of bus cancellations.   As well, one can visit OSTA website for the latest updates on bus cancellations, current late buses, etc.



Fifth’s Disease is a very mild childhood illness that presents itself with an initial “slapped cheek” rash. The disease is quite harmless and can often go unnoticed and is not considered reportable under the Ottawa-Carleton Health Department guidelines. The Health Department, however, does advise that some caution be exercised for pregnant women, if not immune, as there is some risk to the health of an unborn baby. For the safety of our teachers, as well as our volunteer parents, we ask that you report any cases of Fifth’s to the school office as soon as your child has been diagnosed.

Reminder:  Last Day of Class: Dec. 18th, 2015 and First Day Back: Jan. 4th, 2016


St. John Paul II School

1500 Beaverpond Drive

Gloucester, ON  K1B 3R9

Phone: 613-744-3591
Twitter: OCSB_JPII