School Announcements & News
School Climate Survey
Our upcoming school climate survey for students in grades 4-12 will be taking place in April.
The survey will ask respondents to comment on matters about bullying, equity, inclusivity, and harassment at school in accordance with the Ministry of Education policy #144 “Safe Schools”.
Students in grades 4-6 are asked to complete the Our School Elementary Survey while grades 7-12 students complete the Our School Secondary Survey. The survey will be open to respondents between April 3rd to April 28th, 2023. Students will complete surveys in class. Student participation is voluntary, however all students are encouraged to participate. All responses to the Our School Student Survey are confidential and will help to enhance the student experience.
Parents and Guardians are also encouraged to complete a school climate survey called the TBCDSB Parent/Guardian Survey. This survey link will arrive in the coming days by letter and board email. Parents who require any assistance in completing the survey are asked to contact their child’s school as arrangements can be made to complete the survey at the school.
Parents/Guardians who complete the survey, will have the opportunity to select a separate link to enter a draw for participation prizes. This will protect the anonymity of the participants.
If you have any questions regarding the survey, please contact your child’s school principal, view the Frequently Asked Questions (below) or Paul Mackett, the board’s district contact for the school climate survey at 625-1540.
WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF THE CLIMATE SURVEY AT THUNDER BAY CATHOLIC DISTRICT SCHOOL BOARD?
The Thunder Bay Catholic District School Board is conducting the survey to collect student identity information and feedback on student experiences. The Climate Survey will be conducted at all schools.
This information is used to:
DO OTHER SCHOOL BOARDS IN ONTARIO COLLECT STUDENT IDENTITY DATA?
Yes. For example, Lakehead Public Schools, Ottawa Catholic School Board and Waterloo Catholic District School collect student identity data. The Ministry of Education supports this important endeavour. Student identity data will help the Thunder Bay Catholic District School Board know our students better. This will include questions about student identities such as racial/ethnic background, religious belief, disability, etc. The data can be used to shed light on gaps that need to be addressed for access, achievement and well-being.
WHEN WILL THE CLIMATE SURVEY BE CONDUCTED?
The Climate Survey will be conducted at all Thunder Bay Catholic District School Board’s elementary and secondary schools from April 3-28, 2023. Students in grades 4-12 will have the opportunity to complete the survey during class time, with the support of their classroom teacher. Parents will receive a link to complete the survey during the April 3-28, 2023 window.
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO COMPLETE THE CLIMATE SURVEY?
It will take approximately 30 minutes to complete the survey.
DO PARENTS/GUARDIANS/CAREGIVERS HAVE TO CONSENT FOR STUDENTS TO COMPLETE THE CLIMATE SURVEY?
Completing the survey is voluntary. Parents, guardians or caregivers and students can choose to opt out. Should you choose to opt out, please inform your child's school Principal. We encourage parents/guardians/caregivers to discuss the survey with their child(ren).
DO I NEED TO ANSWER EVERY QUESTION?
The Climate Survey is voluntary. The parent/guardian/caregiver or student who is participating may choose to skip a question if they do not wish to provide an answer. However, it is important to note that the higher the completion rate, the more accurate and reliable the information will be for decision-making.
HOW CAN I FIND OUT MORE ABOUT THE STUDENT CLIMATE SURVEY?
For more information you can also contact the principal or vice principal at your child’s school. Contact information is available here if you have a specific question.
WHAT IF I CAN’T ACCESS THE CLIMATE SURVEY ONLINE?
You can make arrangements to complete the survey in a private area at your child's school. Students in Grades 4 -12 who are unable to complete the survey in school with the existing support or accommodation have the option of completing it with their parents/guardians/caregivers at home.
HOW WILL RESPONSES BE KEPT CONFIDENTIAL?
The Climate Survey student data is confidential. This information will be held in strictest confidence and kept securely in an electronic database. Access is restricted to authorized personnel. A confidential database will hold the responses. Personal information is collected under the authority of the Education Act, RSO 1990, c. E-2, and will be used in compliance with the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, RSO 1990, c. M-56. Parent survey information is anonymous and cannot be identified.
HOW WILL SURVEY DATA BE USED?
The information collected will be used for educational and research purposes to further equity of access and outcomes. Student data will be collected from all the schools at this Board; individual responses will be combined for reporting purposes. Reports will discuss trends and themes in schools, not individual experiences. Should you have any additional questions, please call the principal or vice principal of your child’s school. Additional information is available on the website, or by calling the Board school climate survey lead, Paul Mackett 625-1540.
Cold and Flu
The cold weather has arrived and we all are spending more time indoors.
With close contact between us, the level of flu, COVID-19, RSV and a variety of other illnesses/diseases continue to circulate within our community.
What can we do to keep ourselves and one another safe?
- Stay home when sick!
- Wear a mask in crowded indoor spaces, including schools
- Use the Ontario Schools Screening tool and following instructions provided
- Seek medical attention when necessary
- Wash your hands, frequently
- Cough into your elbow
- Get all vaccines you are eligible for
TBCDSB continues to be a mask friendly space! Schools continue to supply masks to all staff and students who want one! Hand sanitizer is available and our amazing custodians keep our schools squeaky clean!
Thank you for continuing to consider others during cold and flu season!
Family Literacy Day + Holocaust Remembrance Day
Each 27th of January, we come together to commemorate Family Literacy Day and Holocaust Remembrance Day.
Through our love of reading, we inspire those around us to learn more about the Holocaust while also raising awareness about the importance of reading and literacy.
This year, we have shared our love of reading through a Board wide survey asking our staff for their favourite reads in four categories: Holocaust Literature, Children's Literature, Young Adult Literature, and favourite Adult Literature.
We’re recruiting for various positions:
- Occasional Teachers
- Supply Custodians
- Supply Student Support Persons
- Supply Designated Early Childhood Educators
- Supply Office Staff
- Classroom Aides
Come meet us!
Date: February 1, 2023
Time: 3:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Location: 459 Victoria Ave West (Our Board Office)
Everyone is welcome and encouraged to bring a resume
Chair & Vice-Chair Re-elected
Trustee, Francis Veneruz has been re-elected as Chair of theThunder Bay Catholic District School Board and Trustee, Dina McFarlane was re-elected as Vice-Chair.
As a mother, grandmother and retired teacher, I am an advocate of children, their well-being and their educational environments. Catholic Education is near and dear to my heart and I look forward to working alongside my fellow trustees while we continue to advocate for our children and their future. - D. McFarlane
I am truly honoured and privileged to be re-elected as Chair of the Board. Together with my fellow Trustees, we look forward to serving our community. The staff at TBCDSB continue to amaze me and I am incredibly proud of each individual who makes such a difference within our Board and community. - F. Veneruz
The election took place last night during the inaugural Board meeting.
Respiratory Viruses and Illness in our Communities.
As we enter into the wintering months and flu season, please keep the following in mind:
- Use the school screening tool before attending class.
- Clean your hands using soap and water or hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching your face.
- Avoid shaking hands and use alternative greetings.
- Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or sleeve; get rid of used tissues immediately in the garbage and clean your hands.
- Keep a distance of 2 metres from those showing symptoms (e.g. cough).
- If you are feeling ill, stay home.
Hold and Secure | St. Ann
As a precaution from a situation in the school yard, St. Ann School was placed in a brief Hold and Secure, which has now been lifted.
Thunder Bay Police Services have determined the area is safe. A regular dismissal will commence this afternoon.
We appreciate your understanding during these circumstances, as our students and staff are always our priority.
TBCDSB is not affected by CUPE
With current negotiations ongoing with many educational union groups across the Province, it is important to understand unions within Thunder Bay Catholic.
Our Unions are comprised of:
OSSTF - Students Support Professionals and Early Childhood Educators
OECTA - Teachers (Elementary and Secondary)
COPE - Secretaries
UNIFOR - Custodians
As we enter into negotiations, it is important to provide information concerning our unions, and their members. With CUPE positioning to strike Friday, this labour action will not affect our Board as we do not have CUPE employees.
School will resume as normal on Friday, November 4th.
We will continue to keep you informed on any impacting labour action within our Board.
School Boards are optimizing air quality within schools with improved ventilation and filtration. Measures are dependent on the type of ventilation and feasibility within the context of school facilities and related building systems.