Recently, we completed our annual We Are All Treaty People poster contest. Thank you to all the students that entered it and thank you to our School Council for providing the prize money. We had 297 student entries!
Here are our 2021 winners:
First Place: Isabelle L. 2J
Second Place: Kinley U. 3K
Third Place: Asheli S. 2J and Piers L. 3K
First Place: Paisley C. 5G
Second Place: Ethan B. 6W
Third Place: Aniston W. 5R
First Place: Emily C. 9C
Second Place: Brynlee B. 7J
Third Place: Annelise H. 8G and Dorothy K. 9H
Thank you again to everyone that supported this project.
Please consider supporting our School Council Winter Fundraiser. All funds raised will support our HAWKS Virtue Program and School Community Meal events. Also, any unspent money will be carried over to the next school year.
Also, please see the below email outlining our divisional procedures:
October 15, 2021
Dear staff and families of Holy Spirit Catholic School Division,
On Tuesday, October 5, 2021 the Alberta Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Hinshaw, the Minister of Health, Jason Copping, and the Minister of Education, Adriana LaGrange, announced further public health measures for schools. The measures are to protect students, staff, and school communities so that in-person learning can safely continue.
Process for Grades K-6
If a student in grades K-6 has a “confirmed case of COVID-19” as communicated to the school division by Alberta Health Services, the school will send a “case notification” to the parents/caregivers of students in the “class cohort.” A notice is not sent to all the parents/caregivers of students in the school. If parents would like to keep track of total number of cases in a school, they can access this information being tracked by Alberta Health Services at this link: COVID-19 school status | Alberta.ca
No further action beyond notification is taken if the number of cases remain 1-2 in a class over the course of a five-day period. If there are 3 or more cases over the course of 5 days, a notice of a “Period of Exclusion” will apply (see below for details).
Process for Grades 7-12
If a student in grades 7-12 has a “confirmed case of COVID-19” as communicated to the school division by Alberta Health Services, the school will send a “case notification” e-mail to all the parents/caregivers of students in the school. Parents can track the total number of cases at a school by accessing the information tracked by Alberta Health Services a this link: COVID-19 school status | Alberta.ca
As per the Health Order, there is no Period of Exclusion process in place for grades 7-12. With that in mind, a class cohort notification system is not in place for grade 7-12.
2.Period of Exclusion from In-person Learning – For Grades K-6 ONLY
During any five-day period, if there are three or more members of a class cohort who are found to be a confirmed case of COVID-19 who attended school during the members’ infectious period within that five-day period, the class will be “excluded” from in-person learning. The period of exclusion will be “10 consecutive calendar days” counted forward from the last day a member of the class cohort who tests positive attended in person at the school during the member’s infectious period. Recognizing this sounds complicated, not to worry. The “Exclusion Letter” will identify the date of return of your child to in-person learning. When a class cohort moves to at-home learning because they fall under a period of exclusion, instruction will be delivered via Google Class. Schools and teachers will provide specific instructions regarding access to at-home learning during a period of exclusion.
3.Public Reporting – ALL GRADES
As noted in #1, Alberta Health has started the process of posting the number of COVID cases in all schools throughout Alberta. Any school with two or more COVID-19 cases will appear on the COVID-19 School Status List located here: COVID-19 school status | Alberta.ca
This list will include any COVID-19 cases at the school that were infectious while attending school over the last 14 days.
A school is classified as being in “Outbreak” if there are 10 or more COVID-19 cases within a 14-day period that were infectious while at school. Parents/caregivers will receive an Outbreak Notification letter if this occurs in their school. Alberta Health Services will work with the school division to review outbreak control measures at the school and additional measures to limit further spread may be implemented.
Alberta Education has informed us that rapid testing may be available by late-October for Kindergarten to Grade 6 schools experiencing outbreaks. If implemented, the rapid testing program will be voluntary.
If you are unclear as to the measures as outlined in this letter, please contact your school principal.
Before school started, our elementary teachers decided to change the format of our traditional Meet the Teacher event. Due to the possibility of large crowds in the school and the classroom, our elementary teachers will be creating a short video introducing themselves. Once the video is ready, we will be sending it out to parents.
Before school started, our junior high teachers also decided to change the format of Meet the Teacher. Our junior high teachers planned to open their classrooms on Wednesday, September 15, from 4:30 -5:30 pm. They were hoping to be able to meet a variety of parents. Due to the different nature of elementary and junior high classes, we thought we could manage the number of people. However, given the recent surge of COVID-19 cases in our province, particularly in Lethbridge, we believe it would be prudent to avoid a potentially large gathering. Therefore, we are postponing the planned in-person Meet the Teacher event for our Jr. High.
I appreciate your understanding as we continue through the pandemic.
Here is the update from our Superintendent regarding contact tracing:
September 17, 2021
Good afternoon Holy Spirit Catholic School Divison families:
Earlier this week, senior leaders and school-based administrators met to discuss whether, as a division, we should be sharing with our families and communities self-declared positive COVID cases which are brought to our attention by parents. As you well know, there are many views on this which are extremely polarizing in nature.
While many would argue that passing this personal and private information to our public gets the word out about the seriousness of this dreadful disease, we are not a health authority and we no longer have Alberta Health Services (AHS) doing contact tracing, which took place during the entirety of last school year. As such, and after careful consideration, we have decided that we would NOT be sharing this information, for many reasons, but to name a few:
Not all parents are comfortable sharing this information with us and the absence of complete disclosure from everyone could present an inaccurate sense of what might actually be going on in the community, which might suggest a false sense of reality and safety;
There is a very heavy stigma associated with identifying as COVID positive;
There will be significant unrest and increased anxiety if members of the community know of a positive case in a school that was not reported to us;
There could be serious ramifications around false or inaccurate reporting;
By the process of elimination, disclosure of a positive case in a classroom could lead to identification of an individual;
Over communication of positive cases will send a message that may desensitize the issue;
The public’s uncertainty of what a close contact is can cause people to gossip, especially when no specific information given; and
As there are people who present without symptoms, individuals may not be aware that they are COVID positive.
The bottom line is that COVID-19 is real AND in our communities. Each of us must be vigilant in how we protect ourselves in the choices we make around health measures (staying home when sick, masking, hand sanitizing, physical distancing, and doing the Alberta Health COVID-19 Self Assessment Tool on a daily basis for everyone attending or working in our schools).
As always, we are continuing to report to AHS absences of 10% or more at each school in our division. Parents and guardians may receive a letter from AHS when this threshold is reached at respective schools.
I wish to thank all of you for your continued support in these very challenging and trying times.
Gratefully yours, Ken Sampson, Superintendent of Schools
September 10, 2021
We want to take this opportunity to share with our FLVT community the current policy regarding COVID-19 Contact Tracing. Many of you may remember the process last year of our school working with Alberta Health Services (AHS) to inform parents of a positive case in a classroom and identifying the students in the class cohort as close contacts. Self-isolation and recommended COVID-19 testing followed.
Now, AHS does not require schools to contact trace; it is prohibited. Contact tracing is the responsibility of the individual that has tested positive for COVID-19. If we have a confirmed positive case at school, and to our knowledge, we have not, the school will not share information with parents, classmates, or staff. Again, according to AHS, any contact tracing is the individual’s responsibility that has tested positive. Although this process change may be difficult to understand, it is the process the school must follow.
To summarize, we can no longer share with our community that a member has tested positive. Instead, it is incumbent upon the individual to connect with everyone who may have been in ‘close contact’ during the infectious period.
Thank you to our executive for their willingness to serve our FLVT community.
October School Council – Virtual
School Council is a very important part of our school. It is a place to give parents a voice and provide valuable input to the school. Please join us for our October School Council meeting on Tuesday, October 19, 2021, at 7 pm. The meeting will be virtual, here is the Google Meet link:
Alberta Health Services is planning to administer COVID-19 immunizations to only those students who had previously submitted a signed consent form on Tuesday, September 28, 2021 at Father Leonard Van Tighem School. Immunizations will occur from approximately 9 am till noon.
Again, this is only for those students who submitted signed consent forms.
September 9, 2021
Our government has a COVID-19 Vaccine Program for schools. The program is for Grade 7 to 12 students. Please see these documents for more information:
This program is voluntary and requires parental consent. Only if interested, please complete the consent form and return to the school office by Wednesday, September 15, 2021. If needed, the office has some paper forms that your child may pick-up to take home.
Currently, we do not know the exact date that the program will occur at FLVT.
Please contact the school if you have any questions.
October 12, 2021 Update
Please read this important letter from our Superintendent:
October 12, 2021
Dear families of Holy Spirit Catholic School Division,
Throughout this pandemic, the school division has been collectively steadfast in our commitment to keeping our students and staff safe – physically, mentally, spiritually, and academically. We continue to assess and implement measures that we believe will have a positive impact on the health and safety of our schools.
Immunization, as communicated by Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, is the most effective means to prevent the spread of COVID-19, mitigate outbreaks, and protect ourselves and children who cannot yet be vaccinated. In an effort to maintain in-person learning while ensuring the comprehensive health of our staff and students, it has been determined that all individuals in direct contact with our schools must be fully vaccinated unless they require an accommodation pursuant to a protected grounds under the Alberta Human Rights Act or participate in a regular, rapid testing program that ensures they are not COVID-19 positive.
This requirement, which will come into effect on October 25, 2021, will apply to all staff, visitors, contractors, volunteers, and personnel from community agencies who come into our school buildings. This does not apply to students. Currently, children under 12 are still not eligible for vaccination and there is no provincial legislation that requires K–12 students to have specific vaccinations. Further, in keeping with the Education Act, every child in Alberta is entitled to have access to an education program.
More information will be shared as appropriate. In the meantime, I ask again for your prayers and support of our staff, who continue to go to incredible lengths to ensure that the needs of all of our students are met.
Sincerely, Ken Sampson, Superintendent of Schools
October 6, 2021 Update
Yesterday our government provided an update regarding COVID-19 measures. Part of the update included changes to measures in schools, particularly concerning contact notification, sharing information about cases at schools, and at-home rapid testing. Please click on this link for a summary:
Once these new measures’ effects are determined at our school, we will share specific information with our community.
September 23, 2021 Update
Yesterday, we shared the new COVID-19 Alberta Health Daily Checklists. Unfortunately, these new checklists have caused some confusion. Our division is awaiting clear direction from Alberta Education regarding household close contacts. Therefore, we ask parents to continue to use the following flowchart as our guide:
September 22, 2021 Update
Lately, we have received a lot of questions whether parents should be sending their child to school if they have some symptoms or if they are a close contact due to a positive case in a household. Therefore, we want to share with you the most recent COVID-19 Alberta Health Daily Checklist (both for adults and children):
For Children Under 18 (llink temporarily removed)
For Adults 18 Years and Older (link temporarily removed)
September 20, 2021
Our school division sent out an announcement on September 16 sharing the new restrictions concerning our divisional COVID-19 Protocols. We want to take this opportunity to share how the new restrictions affect our FLVT students:
Masking – There is no change in the masking policy. All staff, visitors, and K to 9 students are required to wear non-medical masks. The only exceptions are for students who have a medical exemption, for students while doing physical activities or while students are outside.
Elementary Cohorts – There will not be a significant change for our elementary students. Previously to the new restrictions, we were only allowing grade-level gatherings. So, for example, our 1P and 1T students could gather together. Now, all elementary homeroom classes will not be able to interact with other classes. However, cohorts will be able to interact with different cohorts outside.
Spectators – As per our divisional policy, spectators will not be allowed. However, we are currently hoping to live stream our events soon.
September 16, 2021
As you are aware, our province has announced new restrictions. Our school division will be sending out a notice sharing some specifics soon. One further restriction that we want to share with our community right away is the decision that all indoor sporting events will be closed to all spectators effective immediate. So, for example, today’s after-school volleyball game, and all other games, is closed to the public.
We appreciate your patience as Southland Transportation looks to improve its services. Southland Transportation is in the process of adding routes and drivers, so we hope our buses will be on time for drop off and pick up in a few weeks.
Also, just another friendly reminder that you must register by the end of the month if you are a fee-paying student (living less than 2.4 km away and are eligible to access bussing). Southland Transportation will be finalizing routes based on the end-of-month registrations. For example, if you plan to access bussing once it is cold and register after the end-of-month, Southland Transportation will not change the established bus routes. Users will be required to follow the regular bus routes. Please register for bussing if you plan to access bussing at any point in this school year. Here is the link to register fee-paying students: https://www.holyspirit.ab.ca/schools/transportation/lethbridge_schools_transportation
FLVT Bussing Information (Fee-Paying Students)
Please read this important information regarding transportation registration for fee-paying students. It is essential for families that are paying for bussing to register as soon as possible. Southland Transportation is currently building bus routes based on the students that have registered for bussing.
This is just a reminder to let us know if your child will be accessing transportation under the “Eligible -Fee-Paying” category for the 2021/2022 school year. All eligible riders must register, and only registered riders will be permitted to ride the school bus. In September, schools will be assigning transportation fees to approved riders using our SchoolCash Online program after finalized registrations and routes.
Click on the School Engage link on the bottom left corner of the screen.
Select the Student tab on the top left-hand side of the screen. Then select the name of the student you are registering for transportation services.
The Transportation Form should appear under the “Forms” section on the right hand of the screen. Select the “Open” button next to the appropriate form.
Complete and submit the form.
Thank you in advance for your prompt completion of this form. Should you have any questions or require assistance, please contact your child’s school for more information, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.