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.
IMPORTANT UPDATE – Our September Meeting will be 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 first School Council meeting of the year on Tuesday, September 14, 2021, at 7 pm. The meeting will be virtual, here is the Google Meet link:
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.
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.
There will be a meeting with divisional personnel and school-based leaders on August 25, 2021, to discuss the guidelines. In addition, school staff will be meeting on August 27, 2021, to discuss the implementation of the 2021-22 Guidelines for Maintaining Safe & Healthy Schools in Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic at Father Leonard Van Tighem School. Once we have finalized our site protocols, we will share them with our school community.
We continue to plan to keep some of our protocols, but it appears that the coming school year will include a normal start, and the government will lift all health restrictions. This is terrific news. We do not expect to share more information regarding our September start at Father Leonard Van Tighem School until the end of August.
We want to thank all the members of our community for their support during this pandemic.
June 29, 2021
The first day of school for our students will be Wednesday, September 1, for all our Grade 1 to 9 students. Our Grade 1 to 7 students attend all day. Our Grade 8 and 9 students only attend the afternoon starting at 1 pm. Our Grade 7 students receive lunch as part of the Grade 7 Orientation. The school busses will be running for the beginning of the day and the end of the day. There is no noon bussing; therefore, our Grade 8 and 9 students need to find their own transportation to school that day.
The first day of school for our Kindergarten and Early Learning Program students will be on Monday, September 13.
As we finish this school year, we can be proud of what we accomplished. Firstly, we survived. Although there were many ups and downs, we could complete a school year during a global pandemic, which is quite an accomplishment. Secondly, we came together as a community. Throughout the positive cases, close contacts, and pivots to and from at-home learning, our students, parents, and staff were able to support each other. We did not do everything perfectly, but we supported each other throughout the school year.
Going into this school year, we were unsure what the school year would look like; this is true for next year, but now that we have had a year’s experience, we will be better prepared. We plan on having a typical start, as much as possible, in September. Some protocols will be out of our control as we await provincial and divisional directives. Some of our COVID-19 protocols were popular in our school community, and some were not; therefore, we have decided to keep some and throw others away. In deciding what to keep and remove, we reflected on what was best for students in mind. Although we expect to have to adapt in September, here is a list of protocols we plan on removing and keeping:
Protocols (or changes) we are removing:
Keep students in strict cohorts. This is subject to the lifting of either the provincial or divisional mandate;
Require social distancing in our canteen lineup;
Require students to stay in cohorts during recess and break times. This is subject to the lifting of either the provincial or divisional mandate;
Keeping a closed campus for our Jr. High students during lunch. This is subject to the lifting of our divisional order;
Mandatory masking in our Grades 4 to 9 and elementary music classes. This is subject to the lifting of either the provincial or divisional mandate;
Rather than students moving from class to class in our Jr. High, require teachers to move class to class;
Close our library to student use;
Requiring our librarian to visit classes rather than have students visit the library;
Spread out student lockers in each of our classrooms;
Require staff to sign-in daily;
Follow a locker schedule to begin and end the day. We will need to maintain a structured protocol for locker use, so we do not have all our students at their lockers at the same time;
Student written prayers read by the office staff. Students will read their prayers over the intercom;
Announcements later in the morning. Announcements will be at the beginning of the day.
Protocols (or changes) we are keeping:
Teachers will continue to meet and dismiss students from muster points outside of the building. Our staff found this to be an effective way to start the school day. For our younger students, our staff found the use of muster points to be an effective way to communicate with parents daily. Once staff bring their classes into the school, our Jr. High teachers will take their homerooms to their lockers before going to class and our Elementary teachers will take their classes directly to the classroom and send students to their lockers right after morning announcements. We may have to adapt or revisit this protocol depending on the construction of our new portable classrooms. We will share a map of muster points closer to the start of the school year;
We will continue to use multiple entrances and exits. Our staff felt this improved on congestion in our hallways;
Keep all our outside doors locked. Many members of our community, including students, parents, and staff, felt keeping all the doors closed dramatically increased a sense of security in our school;
Keep the school building closed to the public. Similar to doors being locked, keeping our school closed to the public increases the security and safety of everyone in our building. Our younger students had an increased sense of responsibility as they needed to perform their locker duties by themselves. Our school population continues to grow. Not allowing the public in our hallways helped to alleviate congestion. Also, our Gathering Space will act as a learning space throughout the day;
When needed, parents will be able to volunteer in the classroom;
Close our mezzanine during lunchtime to our Jr. High students;
During inclement weather, our staff will open the mezzanine;
Having all our students eat in their classrooms;
Before the pandemic, our Grade 1 to 3 classes ate in the canteen. Our staff found that students were a lot more settled in their classroom and ate their lunches;
Require all Jr. High to go outside for part of the lunch break;
Play O Canada weekly over the intercom at school;
We will continue to reflect and adapt our plan as we know more information about the start of the school year.
Finally, here are our office hours for the end of August:
For all our returning families, we look forward to welcoming you back to our school. For all our new families, we welcome you to our community. Have a terrific, safe summer.
We are continuing to plan for the 2021-22 school year, and we want to share information about our school’s staffing. Please know, though, this plan is continually evolving as we try to meet the needs of our students best. As we learn more, we will update this page. Thank you for trusting us with the care and educational needs of your children.
September 20, 2021 Update
We are pleased to announce we have an additional half-time caretaker at our school. Please join me in welcoming Mr. Shawn Toker to our staff.
Mrs. Alvarez (3A) will be away for the next four weeks. We are glad to welcome back Mrs. Baczuk, who will be temporarily replacing Mrs. Alvarez. We wish Mrs. Alvarez a quick recovery.
September 3, 2021 Update
Mrs. Kasprick will be starting her maternity leave on Tuesday, September 7. We wish Mrs. Kasprick and her husband all the best as they will be welcoming their new baby into their family later this month.
September 2, 2021 Update
We are glad to announce Miss Rhiece Cordes has joined FLVT in the role of Success Coach. Please join me in welcoming Miss Cordes. Since the role of Success Coach is new to us, here is a brief description of the role of a Success Coach:
June 25, 2021 Update
We want to share that Mrs. Kasprick will be going on maternity leave at the end of September 2021. During September 2021, Mrs. Kasprick will be supporting a variety of students and programs in our Jr. High. We are glad to have Mrs. Kasprick start the year with us, and we wish her all the best once she starts her leave.
June 24, 2021 Update
We are glad to announce our staffing for next year is now complete:
Joining our Jr. High staff is Mrs. Patti Kroker. Mrs. Kroker will be one of our Grade 8 Homeroom Teachers;
Mrs. Carol Swanson is joining our staff as our new Administrative Assistant.
Please join us in welcoming both Mrs. Kroker and Mrs. Swanson to our school community.
Here is the most up-to-date list of our Jr. High homerooms and teachers:
June 21, 2021 Update
Here are our Jr. High homerooms and teacher:
There is still one Grade 8 Homeroom that will still have to announce.
June 16, 2021 Update
Here are our elementary homerooms and teachers:
We are happy to announce that Ms. Pelletier and Ms. Boutland are remaining on staff.
June 12, 2021
Early Learning Program
Mrs. Kroetsch is returning as Program leader;
Both Mrs. Walcheske and Mrs. Clarke have accepted positions at Ecole St. Mary’s. A big thank you to both of them for all they did in helping our young students:
Mrs. Ellen Bran will be our Speech-Language Assistant in ELP, and Ms. Sarah Cassidy and Ms. Tanya Slomp will be Educational Assistants in the program. We welcome all of them to our community.
Mrs. Wilson has recently accepted a position at CCH for the next school year. We want to thank Mrs. Wilson for all she has done for our community and wish her all the best in her new role. Once we have filled the office staff vacancy, we will share this information with our community.
Mrs. Roccatti is returning to our Kindergarten classes;
Mrs. Demers, Mrs. Elhert, Mrs. Henderson, Mrs. Kundrik, Mrs. Loose, Mr. Overes, Mrs. Sawchuck, and Mrs. Zrim all return to assist in our Grade 1 to 9 classrooms.
At this point, we are still completing our teacher staffing for next year; this includes Mrs. Braun’s replacement. We hope to be able to share our teaching staff and homeroom teachers very soon.
University of Lethbridge Practicum Students: We will be having three U of L Practicum Students in the fall. Mrs. Alvarez will mentor Ms. Norton in Grade 3, Mr. Templin will mentor Mrs. Walz in Grade 1, Mrs. Rogers and Mrs. Martin-Weersink will mentor Miss Wright in our elementary music program.
Federal Grant Program
During this current pandemic school year, we were able to access a Federal Grant Program and hire some additional staff, including Miss Johnson (Jr. High Teacher), Ms. Pelletier (Numeracy Teacher), and Mrs. Paniagua (Educational Assistant). Unfortunately, the Federal Grant Program is not continuing next school year, and Miss Johnson, Ms. Pelletier, and Mrs. Paniagua will not be returning next year. We thank all of them for sharing their gifts with us, and we wish all of them the very best.