Phone: 519-621-0371

October Newsletter

“We are an autumn people. We are always called to be in the process of growing and changing. May our minds and hearts be open to this inner season, which is a part of us. May we trust you, Autumn God, who calls us to grow. ” (Out of the Ordinary, J.Rupp)

Principal’s Message

It was wonderful to see so many families visit the school during our Open House and Meet the Staff Night. The support of our school community is truly appreciated.

During the Week of Oct. 2nd, we will be collecting non-perishable food items for the St. Vincent de Paul Society. Bins are located at the front entrance of the school; please feel free to drop off any non-perishable food items into the bins. A representative from the St. Vincent de Paul Society will pick up the donations from St. Francis School on Oct. 6th in time for the Thanksgiving Weekend. Thank you for your support of this school wide initiative.

We welcome Mr. Gibson and Ms. Oliveira to our St. Francis Custodial Team beginning this first week of October. We wish both Mr. Hookey and Ms. Beaudry all the best at their new schools.

Our school community will gather together for our Opening School Mass, the Feast Day of St. Francis, on Oct. 4th at 1:00 p.m. to celebrate in faith and to give thanks for all of our many gifts that we bring to St. Francis. Our Mass will be at St. Ambrose Parish; if it rains on this day, then the Mass will be in our school gym. We have many reasons to thank our loving God. St. Francis Catholic School Community is indeed one of those many reasons.

Many blessings in this season of Thanksgiving, R. Bumbacco Sodaro, Principal

Cash on Line:

Go to:

  • Select the “Get Started Today” option
  • Complete the 3 registration steps


School Website:

Please visit our St. Francis School website at When you have a chance, please subscribe at the bottom to receive electronic messages from the office, newsletters and school reminders. As items are tweeted, you will receive those too.

Attendance/Late Check Program

It is very important that if your child(ren) is ill, has a medical appointment, or will be late for any reason, that you contact the school with the necessary information: full name and grade, teacher’s name, and reason your child(ren) will be absent. Our school answering machine is in service 24 hours a day. Please note that we must receive a call from a parent or caregiver. If your child(ren) does not arrive at school, and you have not contacted us, we will attempt to contact you at home or at your place of work. Please keep us updated on current and active phone numbers.


A concussion is a type of brain injury that is caused by a bump, blow or jolt to the head. Concussions can also be caused from a fall or blow to the body. It is extremely important to seek medical attention if signs or symptoms of a concussion are present: ringing in ears, headache, fatigue, irritability, vision imbalance, difficulty concentrating, dizziness, nausea, vomiting. For more information on concussion and injury prevention, please visit,

If a student happens to get a bump, blow or jolt to the head at school, a phone call will be made to parents/guardians to determine one of the response options:

  • Come to the school and assess student
  • Pick up student
  • Provide permission for student to remain at school

A copy of the Symptoms/Sign form and Parent Handout will be sent home to all students if there is a bump, blow or jolt to the head while at school.


Celllular phones are not permitted to be used at school, during school time, including recesses. If students require cellular phones specifically for safety reasons, to and from school, the students must be sure that the cellular phones are placed in a safe location and turned off. The school is not responsible for lost or damaged cell phone devices. Electronics that are found at school such as cellular phones will be removed from the student, and forwarded to the office. The items will be returned to the student after a parent/guardian has been notified. A parent/guardian will be asked to come to the office to pick up the items, as these items will not be returned directly to the student. This also applies to other electronic devices (laptops, Ipods, tablets, cameras) that are brought outside by students and not used for instructional purposes.

There will be opportunity for students to bring personal devices such as laptops, Ipods, and tablets to class for instructional purposes (ie. research) under the direction of staff who have assigned the work. These devices are for classroom use only. Students will be required to complete the form, “Students Acceptable Use of Outside Technology Equipment/Student Personal Electronic Device Consent Form” which is kept on file for the school year. This form has already been sent home on the first day of school. Please note that the school is not responsible for lost or damaged personal devices.

Special Lunch Days

LunchBox Orders will be on Wednesday’s featuring local restaurants (, and Domino’s pizza will be offered on Monday and Friday’s. Please be careful of the deadlines for placing orders via Cash on Line.

Visitors at School

Parents/guardians are asked to help make our school a safe one by remembering the following guidelines. Throughout the day, schools often have many visitors who enter the school. The Board policy is that all visitors to a school must sign in at the main office. This policy is designed to protect children from coming into contact with a stranger. Your understanding is appreciated. If you are dropping off lunches, kindly report to the main office. We will then have your child(ren) come to the office to get his/her lunch.

Catholic School Council

Our next school council meeting is on Wed., Oct. 4th. We will meet in the library at 5:30 p.m.. All are most welcome to attend.

Safe Schools Team

Our goal as a school community is to track the behaviour at recess, so to work collaboratively with parents/guardians and students to address the reason for the behaviour, and supports that may be required to de-escalate the behaviour. To track the behaviour at recess, all staff has Green Slips to record incidences that are then forwarded to classroom teachers. When a Green Slip is given, this information is communicated to the parent/guardian via a label in the agenda book. The following chart indicates the common consequence for students if 1 to 3 Greens Slips are received for the same student. Please note that every month, the Green Slips start anew.

Green Slip 1: Walk with Staff at AM Recess

Green Slip 2: Walk with Staff at AM and PM Recess; Office Detention

Green Slip: Parent Meeting with Teacher, Principal Student

Safe Schools Team ~ Virtue of the Month

As part of our St. Francis school community, each month there is a “quality/descriptor” that is a focus and fostered throughout the school. For October, the focus of the month is being a good communicator. When students display this quality, they demonstrate their ability to be a good listener and speaker; to wait patiently and respectfully for their turn to speak; make appropriate eye contact when speaking in a respectful manner, particularly when attempting to resolve a conflict. These are the look fors the staff will be looking for when recognizing the student of the month for October.

Waterloo Catholic Nutrition Policy

To foster healthy eating in the school, the Waterloo Catholic District School Board Elementary School Food and Nutrition Policy has been adopted. The purpose of this policy is to ensure that our students are exposed to healthy food choices and messages consistent with Canada’s Food Guide, and that the policy is aligned with PPM150, as per the Ministry. The policy was developed with direct input from the Region of Waterloo Public Health and the latest research regarding school nutrition and health.

Having a school nutrition policy will benefit families, students and our schools, as it will reinforce the classroom healthy eating lessons, and eating well will be easier if nutritious foods are always available at school. The policy identifies that if food is used for class and school celebrations, events/gatherings, then the food or beverages offered will have maximum nutritional value. These products are higher in nutrients, fibre and lower in unhealthy fats, salt and sugars.

Along with this policy, schools may designate up to ten days during the year as special event days. They may choose on these ten days to offer or sell foods or beverages from the not permitted category, not having maximum nutritional value. Our ten days for this year include Halloween, Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Bake Sale, Graduation, Classroom Pot Luck Days, School Closure Celebration, Spring Open House and Math Night, Mission Day. Thank you for your support as we continue to promote a healthy school nutrition environment.

 Waterloo Catholic Communication Guidelines for Parents/Guardians

The Waterloo Catholic District School Board has established communication guidelines for parents/guardians and staff. Parents/guardians are requested to follow the steps noted below to ensure prompt and efficient resolution to their questions or possible concerns. At St. Francis Catholic School, we encourage a cooperative, constructive, and respectful approach in resolving concerns with students and adults.

Step One: Speak with the Teacher / Staff Member – Issue Resolved.  If issue is not resolved, proceed to Step Two.

Step Two: Speak with the Principal.  If you have not spoken to the Teacher / Staff member directly, the principal will ask you to do so. Should you not wish to do so, the principal will involve the teacher in a three-way discussion. The principal may request, at any time in the process, that you put your concerns in writing. The principal may involve, at any time in the process, others whom may be helpful in resolving the issue of concern; supports from the school board, employee group representatives, the local parish, and community agencies.

 Step Three:  Contact Supervisory Officer, Laura Shoemaker

Step Four: Contact Director of Education, Loretta Notten

Step Five: Complainant may register as a delegation to address the Board of Trustees. Information on how to register as a delegation to the board is available on page 12 of the WCDSB General Operational and Procedural Bylaw:

 The Role of Trustees: Parents/Guardians may contact any trustee at any time. The trustee will assist the complainant in following the process outlined above.

 The Role of the School Council: The School Council is not a forum to discuss parent-teacher-student issues. If these matters are brought to any School Council member or any School Council meeting, the concern is to be referred immediately to the principal who will ensure the proper process is followed. For all other school-related concerns and/or suggestions that do not involve taking the matter up first with a staff member, the communication should be directed to the school principal.