Thursday, 27 August 2015

A look back....and forward too....

As the summer nears an end I want to re-connect and review some highlights from June as well as look forward to a new school year (only a couple of weeks away!!!).

JUNE 2015

Our last school year officially ended with a wonderful Commencement evening on June 26th.  It was an exciting night for Grads, Parents, and staff alike and the gym was packed.  Thank you to the staff members who organized and planned for our celebration.  The gym looked great and all of the preparation beforehand made for a smooth and well-run event.

Special thanks to Ms. Brooks, Ms. Vathy, Ms. Savoie, Ms. Holbrook, and Ms. Barns for their work organizing the diplomas, awards, program, and overall 'work' involved.  To Ms. Collett, Ms. and all of their staff team thank you for the preparation and organization of the gym - everything looked fantastic!

To our Grads - best wishes as you embark on the next phase of your educational path.  Whether you're moving away from home or staying close by I wish you all the best as you embark on new adventures.

2015-2016 School Year

Labour Update

As you may have read there has been a recent settlement between OSSTF and the Province around issues pertaining to 'large' province-wide issues.  Local bargaining has not yet been completed however we're optimistic that this will soon be complete.  Stay tuned to the Board website for any and all common messages around any Labout news.

What's that mean for my child?

School will begin with staff participating in co-curriculars and working with students outside of class.  
Board materials and other administrative materials will be coordinated through the main office and not via classroom teachers.  This may be as slight inconvenience over the first week or two however we'll work through them as well as possible and I do not believe that any significant challenges will present themselves.

Classes will commence and runs as scheduled - no disruption to classes.


Congratulations to our Grade 10 Civics Classes for their work on the Civic Mirror activity last year.  Yesterday I received notice that one of OTHS's class groups was chosen as the TOP GROUP IN CANADA !!!!!
Mr. Fraser's Blackrock group scored the highest rating of all groups in the country!  Way to go!

Follow this link to read more:  Civic Mirror
(there is an additional link on the attachment that will lead to a more extensive/detailed article)

Message to Parents

With the school year about to begin I'd like to share a few updates from the summer:

- we've been able to re-face a number of lockers (on-going plan to replace all over the next few years)
- new carpet in the theatre
- landscaping work.  We've had a company in to trim the hedges and to remove a number of plants that have either died, or become overgrown, at the front of the school.  The 'garden' area at the south end of the parking lot has also been refreshed.
- a number of modifications have been made to classrooms in order to improve accessibility for all students (doors widened, cabinets, etc. adjusted for accessibility)
- we're continuing to work to replace outdated furniture and equipment (the boring tables and chairs stuff !!!)
- new security cameras have been installed and we now have tremendous coverage across the entire school

Our Parking Lot Challenges

If you drive your child to school you are well aware of our challenges at the beginning of the day and at the end of the school day.  I'd like to ask our parent community to consider the following:

1.  Please encourage your child to walk to school IF you live within a reasonable walking distance.
- not only is this positive for their individual health and fitness, but countless studies support the fact that exercise improves brain function - and by extension student achievement.

2.  If you must drop off your child please make every effort to drive to the second door (closer to back of school) to drop your student.
- by driving further along the roadway you help alleviate the back-up that develops at the entrance along Devon Rd.

3.  The greatest congestion occurs between 8:00 a.m. and 8:15 a.m. each morning.  I know it's tough when you're running behind, but if you are able to drop off your child by 7:45 there is virtually NO line-up.
- thanks for taking care moving through the parking lot.  The students are not always the most observant early in the morning and our care and diligence is really important.

School Start Up news

Athletics - look for announcements for all Fall Sports Teams starting right away!
Photo Day - Friday, September 11th
Club Fair - OT is hosting a Club Fair Thursday, September 17th

Further September key dates will be shared asap....

See you soon......

J. Phillips

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