Safe School Update
Please see the following document to find out what activities and plans the safe school committee has put together for the school year.

Student Dress Code
Please see the revised OCDSB Student Dress Code.

Allergy Smart School
At Westwind Public School we strive to create a safe and healthy environment for all students. We have a growing number of students who have life threatening allergies to different foods. For some students, severe allergic reactions can be triggered not only by eating foods, but also by their touch and smell. We are an allergy smart school and as such we make every attempt to minimize potentially fatal allergic reactions. It would be challenging at best to ban/eliminate all allergens, so we endeavour to minimize and control allergens through education. Nut allergies are more prevalent in our school, so we request that parents refrain from sending peanuts and nut products to school. Teachers will communicate with families if there are additional life threatening allergens in the classroom. We rely on and greatly appreciate the cooperation and support of our families in keeping our classrooms and school safe and healthy environments. If your child has a life threatening allergy, please ensure that the school office is aware of this. Thank you to all parents and staff who have provided input during our discussions on managing food at Westwind. Please go to the link Food Guidelines at Westwind Public School.

Safe and Caring Initiatives
Westwind's Bullying Prevention and Intervention Plan includes information regarding the strategies we are taking as a school to nurture a safe and welcoming climate for all students, staff and parents. The Safe and Caring document provides some additional information regarding some of these activities which have been organised to support our Bullying Prevention and Intervention Plan.

Lock System at Westwind Public School

To support the safety and security of students and staff and to limit access to unknown persons in the building, all external doors to the building are locked throughout the day. Visitors wishing to enter the building use the buzzer at the front door to contact the office and identify themselves. The office staff will verify via video/intercom and allow access into the building.   Students who arrive after the 9:15 entry of their class at their designated door must report to the office via the front door to be signed in, prior to admission to class.

Families whose children attend the Extended Day Program (EDP) require access to the building to sign their children in/out of the program between 7:00 am to 9:00 am and between 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm.  EDP users will be provided with a code to use at the pinpad at the front door.  This code is updated regularly to promote confidentiality.  For security, parents/guardians should not share the pinpad code with their children. 

Lock Down Procedures

In keeping with our commitment to maintain a safe learning environment for all students, we recognize that in life threatening situations where there is an active threat, the safety of students and staff at the school is best ensured by Safe School Procedures. The purpose of Safe School Procedures is twofold: first, to prevent persons at the school from being harmed during a life threatening situation and, second, to clear the way for emergency services to respond to the life-threatening situation. As with fire drills, we need to practice these procedures to ensure we are well-prepared in the event of an emergency.

The attached reference guide outlines three safe school procedures which we will practice during the course of the school year: Lockdown, Secure School and Shelter in Place. The chart provides information about the procedures, and their implementation within the school. We encourage you to discuss these procedures with your children to assist them in feeling more comfortable with the practice.

School Supply List for 2020-2021

The OCDSB has a Common Voluntary School Supply list.  Parents may chose to provide the materials on the list for their child(ren).  At Westwind, we have abbreviated the OCDSB supply list to request only those items which are preferred by our teaching staff, to reduce unnecessary purchases.  In particular, we ask that you do not send geometry sets to school, since very few of the pieces are actually used in class and we can provide the necessary equipment for your child. If you do purchase a geometry set, please leave it at home for home use.  Please, see attached document for the Westwind school supply list.

Combined Grades

The Ottawa-Carleton District School Board follows the philosophy of the Ministry of Education in recognizing the unique and special characteristics of every student. Our programs are designed to meet individual needs of students in a variety of organizational structures within schools.

As outlined in the Ministry of Education’s resource document, Combined Grades: Strategies to Reach a Range of Learners in Kindergarten to Grade 6 (2007), a class of combined grades is composed of students from two or more adjacent grades who are grouped with one teacher for instruction.

Combined classes are often created when the number of students does not allow for the establishment of appropriately sized, single-grade classes. In other circumstances combined classes are created to most effectively meet the learning needs, stages of development, and/or learning styles of students.

In all classrooms, whether single-grade or multi-grade, there is a range of students and the teacher’s goal t)o meet the needs of all learners remains the same regardless of the classroom organization.

Within a class of combined grades each student works towards the achievement of their grade-specific curriculum expectations. When there are common concepts and/or skills across grades, students in the class often work together. When there are differences between the grades, students work on the concepts and/or skills specific to their grade. Assessment, evaluation, and reporting are grade specific.

Current research indicates that multi-grade classes foster social growth and independence, practice in cooperation, respect for others, and increased motivation to learn. Older children act as models and guides for the younger children which gives the older children an increased sense of self-esteem and responsibility. Younger children adjust to school and routines more quickly by observing and imitating the older children. Both groups can learn from each other.

The information above can be found on the OCDSB Website: http://www.ocdsb.ca/med/pub/Publications%20%20Updated/combined%20Grades.pdf 

Additional information on Combined Grades can be found on Ontario Ministry of Education Website: http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/parents/combinedClassrooms/combinedClassrooms.pdf

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