Keeping you engaged and informed
Keeping you engaged and informed
Ward 11 Weekly Update header
Week of March 16, 2020 - March Break

March Break

No question this March Break is not what most of us planned for a few weeks ago...
In spite of the unknown and the fact that information and instructions continue to change, we are being guided by Public Health and our individual actions will have a profound effect on others. 
For those needing some resources for their children/youth, please see below... if you find others, please share and I will include them next week.
Hope everyone stays safe, follows the advice of public health experts and stays healthy.
TDSB Virtual LibraryAccess eBooks, videos, and more learning resources for all grades from home! Click on the orange "i" at the top of the Virtual Library for the Learnmark (login required) & descriptions of purchased/licensed resources
Scholastic Learn at Home: Free Resources for School Closures Day-by-day projects to keep kids reading, thinking, and growing - Scholastic Learn at Home provides 20 days’ worth of active learning journeys designed to reinforce and sustain educational opportunities for those students who are unable to attend school. Please share these free resources with your students and your students' parents to keep the learning going. 

Coronavirus Information

The Ontario Government announced that all Ontario schools (including those at the TDSB) have been ordered to close from March 14 to April 5, 2020 amid ongoing concerns about Coronavirus. Director Malloy provided a parent letter on Friday afternoon.
Through this Ministerial Order from the Minister of Education, the Ontario government is ordering school boards to close schools to minimize contact between people, especially children, in order to contain the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). For this reason, all childcare centres located inside TDSB schools will also be closed and all TDSB Extended Day Programs will be cancelled from March 14 through to April 5, 2020.
The health and safety of all students, staff and school communities is our top priority. In partnership with public health officials, the Toronto District School Board is closely monitoring the current situation with regards to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19)
If you have any health-related questions, you can call Toronto Public Health at 416-338-7600, Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., and on weekends from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Translation is available in many languages.
As it notes in the letter, the Ministry of Education has indicated that it will be providing resources that will be available online to support student learning during the closure. Once these are provided, we will post a link on our website -
Other Important Links

Coronavirus: Managing Stress & Anxiety

In recent weeks, news of coronavirus (COVID-19) has been at the forefront of many of our minds. For some, the news has increased anxiety and concern about personal risk. The first step in managing this type of anxiety is educating yourself. So, here we are going to talk about what the coronavirus is, signs of infection, prevention recommendations, and the current risk to Canadians.- Canadian Mental Health Association, Kelowna
Table of Contents
  • Coronavirus: What is it?
  • How to Reduce Coronavirus Anxiety in the Workplace
  • 7 Tips to Manage Anxiety and Worry about Coronavirus
  • How to Manage Anxiety about Coronavirus (COVID-19) that becomes Overwhelming and Turns into Panic
  • Talking with Children about Public Health Emergencies like Coronavirus
  • Up-to-date Information about the Coronavirus
TIPS - Talking with Children about Public Health Emergencies like Coronavirus
First, it’s important to ensure the conversations are age-appropriate. The types of frank conversations we can have with high school and university-aged children are not the same as the conversations we’d have with those pre-school or elementary-aged.
When it comes to younger children, don’t overshare and burden them with information or worries. But do answer the questions they ask. Be honest but conscious of age and learning level (the same way you might with answering questions about where babies come from).
Children are curious and want to learn about the world around them so they are bound to ask questions. If you don’t know the answer, tell them you will find out. Or depending on the nature of the question and the age of the child consider researching the answer together. Even though children are curious, feeling secure and safe is important to their psychological well-being. Be honest but always attempt to reassure them of their safety.
Finally, help educate children about their health and how to be conscious of staying healthy and preventing diseases. Identifying actionable things we can do individually to keep ourselves safe and healthy can help all of us manage anxiety, fear, and helplessness. This is also true for children regardless of whether or not they are able to accurately identify these emotions. Make sure these things are; a) something that is within their control, b) something they can do on their own or mostly on their own, c) realistic and attainable.
ANOTHER RESOURCE - Please also see Coronavirus disease (COVID-19): What parents should know - How to protect yourself and your childrenUNICEF

Labour Update

School boards and unions share a commitment to public education and work together towards positive labour relations. The collective bargaining framework for the education sector features a two-tier bargaining process, involving both central and local bargaining. Learn more about the process.
Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario (ETFO) - Update March 13, 2020 On March 9,  ETFO received formal notice from the mediator and resumed central negotiations Wednesday March 11. And on March 13, ETFO announced following the March break, ETFO members will continue to engage in work-to-rule strike action but will not engage in full withdrawal of service rotating strikes that were scheduled to begin on Monday March 23.
Ontario Secondary School Teachers' Federation (OSSTF) - Update March 13, 2020 On March 6 the OSSTF announced they would pause all full withdrawal of service job actions beginning next week. And on March 13, OSSTF/FEESO announced information for their members and included they will welcome any opportunity to work with the Ministry of Education and Ontario’s school boards to ensure that our schools are safe places for our students, and for the educators who work with them.
Please click on the Labour Relations webpage for updates

Financial Facts

The Board approved Financial Facts at the last Board Meeting - you can find it on the 2020-21 Budget webpage
We highlighted the funding gaps that remain in our budget regardless of the Grants for Student Needs (GSNs). Historically, when collective agreements were bargained locally, decisions were made through local negotiations about salaries and other working conditions. Then issues like salaries were mandated to be bargained centrally and there is no way to change our salaries or bargain for something else because our salaries are higher. So, funding gaps remain in our budget.
We did not create this situation. We cannot change this situation. Nor can we afford this situation.
We will continue to advocate to government to fund the gaps! For more detail, please read TDSB 2019-20 Financial Facts at a Glance.

Policy Consultations

We Want to Hear From You
The Toronto District School Board (TDSB) is committed to open and inclusive policy decision-making and values community input and participation through consultation. Consultation is a two-way communication process between the Board and external participants, including students and their parents/guardians, school councils, advisory committees, community members, different levels of government, service agencies, professional organizations and union partners. The objective of consultation is to gather public input regarding options, alternative courses of action, as well as to identify unintended effects for various participants and to find solutions. 
Policy development and reviews are carried out in accordance with the policy review schedule that is approved by the Board of Trustees and is revised on a regular basis. To view the latest policy review schedule, please click here.
We would like to know your thoughts about our policy decisions by inviting you to our policy consultations. Please click on the policy of your interest to see the current draft. You are welcome to provide your comments, including suggestions on the wording and provisions of the draft policies, questions or recommendations using the contact information below.

Records and Information Management Policy -  Deadline: By April 14, 2020 Draft New Policy Email:
Objective: The Records and Information Management Policy supports the Toronto District School Board’s commitment to the effective, efficient and secure management of recorded information, regardless of format or media. The Policy is consistent with subsection 171. (1), par. 38 of the Education Act which states the Board may institute a program of records and information management. 

Specialized Schools and Programs Policy - Deadline: April 20, 2020 Draft New Policy Video: - Survey:
Objective: To affirm the Board’s commitment to providing focused specialized programming in both local schools and in district-wide specialized schools or programs, and to improving access for all students to these programs. Learn more: Email:

Parent and Community Involvement Policy (P023)
Objective: To establish a framework for building and supporting parent and community involvement in the Toronto District School Board. We are currently reviewing P023 – Parent and Community Involvement Policy and are inviting feedback from our community as we develop the first draft of the policy. Learn more, and share your voice at

New Invitations

Day of Pink - April 8, 2020

Please join us as we broadcast LIVE from the TDSB boardroom on April 8 at 1pm - - marking 50+ years since the Stonewall Riots and the birth of Pride. The event, hosted by the TDSB’s Shari Schwartz-Maltz, is in recognition of International Day of Pink, an international anti-bullying event. International Day of Pink has one purpose, to create a more inclusive and diverse world. We do this by encouraging young people to challenge social norms, ask more of their educators, and stand up against bullying towards their 2SLGBTQIA+ peers. The event will feature the following performances and interviews:
  • Drag Queen Jordan/Baby Bel Bel – performance and discussion on the power of drag to unleash diversity and promote inclusion
  • riVerse – a Toronto-based pop/R&B group whose mission is to “represent the unrepresented”
  • Stonewall Veteran and Human Rights Activist Martin Boyce – discussing  his experience at the Stonewall Riots and why it is considered the most important event leading to the gay liberation movement and the modern fight for LGBTQ rights in the Unites States
  • Jennifer Aja Fernandes from The ArQuives – presenting the app “Queerstory” and the various sites and sounds of Toronto’s queer history
  • Grey – proud TDSB student discussing his courageous story about gender transitioning
  • Executive Director of Rainbow Railroad Kimahli Powell – talking about how his organization monitors and responds to state-sponsored violence affecting the LGBTQ community
Sure hope we're back and can tune in!

Future Ward Forums 

Please hold the following Ward Forum dates to engage with other parents/caregivers -
  • April 28, 2020
  • June 2, 2020

Recommended School Year Calendar 2020-2021 

The 2020-2021 school year at the TDSB is recommended to begin on Tuesday, September 8, 2020 following the Labour Day long weekend. This is to be confirmed by the Ministry.
The un-official school year calendar for the Toronto District School Board runs from September 1, 2019 to June 30, 2020, inclusive.
  • The last day of class for elementary students is June 29, 2021
  • The last day of class for secondary (full year) students is June 27, 2020
  • The last day of class for secondary (semestered) students is June 28, 2020
PA Days & Statutory Holidays
  • PA Day  September 2, 2020
  • PA Day  September 3, 2020
  • Thanksgiving  October 12, 2020
  • PA Day  November 20, 2020
  • Winter Break December  21, 2020 - January 1, 2021
  • PA Day (Elementary)  January 15, 2021
  • PA Day  February 12, 2021
  • Family Day  February 15, 2021
  • March Break  March 15 - 19, 2021
  • Good Friday  April 2  2021     
  • Easter Monday  April 5, 2021
  • Victoria Day  May 24, 2021
  • Elementary School PA Day  June 4, 2021
  • Secondary School PA Day (Full Year Schools only)  June 28, 2021
  • Secondary School PA Day  June 29, 2021
  • Board-wide PA Day  June 30, 2021

School Year Calendar 2019-2020

The 2019-2020 school year at the TDSB begins on Tuesday, September 3, 2019 following the Labour Day long weekend. For more information about important dates and holidays for the upcoming school year, please refer to the 2019-20 School Year Calendar.

The official school year calendar for the Toronto District School Board runs from September 1, 2019 to June 30, 2020, inclusive.
  • The last day of class for elementary students is June 25, 2020
  • The last day of class for secondary (full year) students is June 23, 2020
  • The last day of class for secondary (semestered) students is June 23, 2020
PA Days & Statutory Holidays
  • March Break  March 16 to 20, 2020
  • Madatory Closure March 16 to April 5, 2020
  • Good Friday  April 10, 2020     
  • Easter Monday  April 13, 2020
  • Victoria Day  May 18, 2020
  • Elementary School PA Day  June 5, 2020
  • Secondary School PA Day (Full Year Schools only) June 24, 2020
  • Secondary School PA Day  June 25, 2020
  • Board-wide PA Day June 26, 2020
Also please note - 
  • Passover begins sunset of  Wednesday, April 8, 2020 and ends nightfall of Thursday, April 16, 2020
  • Ramadan 2020 will begin in the evening of Thursday, April 23, 2020 and ends in the evening of Saturday, May 23, 2020 (dates may vary)
  • Eid al-Fitr 2020 will begin in the evening of Saturday, May 23, 2020
Gr. 9 Math:  2nd Semester: June 2-15, 2020
Primary/Junior EQAO:  May 19-June 1, 2020

Also please note Days of Significance - click for the complete list 2019-2020
You may also find this Days of Significance Resource Guide helpful
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