Families First: free parent education workshops

SickKids CCMH offers a variety of different topics relevant to community parents and focuses on concerns that children and youth may be dealing with. These parent education workshops are free to attend, and offered at both location sites, Sheppard and Maitland.  Presently, they occur monthly, and registration is required. 

Child care is available. Select titles below for more information on the workshop and on how to register.

Helping your child cope with worries
Introductory workshop for parents of children with mild to moderate anxiety

Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2018
6 to 8 p.m.
114 Maitland Street, Toronto
SickKids Centre for Community Mental Health


How to validate so your teen will talk
Building trusting relationships with your teen to help reduce their anxiety, manage stress and develop more meaningful communication

Thursday, Feb. 22, 2018
6 to 7:30 p.m.
1645 Sheppard Avenue West, Toronto
SickKids Centre for Community Mental Health

Immunization Information

Thank you for your assistance in updating immunization requirements for your children!  Improving immunization coverage reduces the spread of diseases and keeps our students and staff healthy.

Updates for the 2017-18 school year

Toronto Public Health is assessing the immunization records of students in Grades 2, 3, and 4. The varicella (chickenpox) vaccine is mandatory for all children born in 2010 or later. If your child does not have all the needed vaccines, please contact your health care provider.

Avoid student suspension:

Parents, please make sure to update your child’s vaccinations:

  • Online at www.toronto.ca/immunization
  • Call the Immunization Information Line at 416-392-1250

Reducing barriers

For children without access to health care services, please contact your community health centre or Toronto Public Health. They provide the following free services:

  • vaccination clinics, by appointment at www.tphbookings.ca
  • translation of foreign immunization records
  • language interpreter services on our phone line

Thank you for helping to keep our children healthy.

Halloween Celebrations at da Vinci

On Tuesday, October 31 at 1:30 pm –     We will have our Traditional Halloween parade around the block with both schools.

  • Parents are welcome to join us for the parade – it’s always fun to be part of the excitement.
  • Please meet your child’s class outside in the schoolyard at 1:30.
  • If it rains, the parade will be a mini-march inside the schools and around the gym.

Classroom celebrations will focus on the fun and fantasy associated with this traditional festival.  Children are welcome to dress up, if they wish.

We know that there is a powerful use of the imagination when children take on a new identity through wearing a costume.  We suggest that students wear costumes that reflect the Waldorf inspiration of the school, so their borrowed identity reflects a character worthy of emulation – perhaps characters from traditional tales and rhymes, noble beings (animal or person), heroes from myths and legends, creators (farmers, builders, crafters, artists).  

Please check that your child can safely walk around and climb stairs in their costume.

Please help us celebrate in the spirit of Waldorf:

  • No violent, sexualized or commercially-focussed costumes.
  • No masks to be worn during school, for safety’s sake.
  • No weapons or replica weapons at all. Please save those for home use.


Food is usually part of each class’s celebration, but we ask that you send only healthy and natural foods – no sugary or salty snacks. Your child’s teacher will send information home about the specific kinds of food they wish to have as part of their classroom activities.

After Halloween, please do not send candy to school. We have many children with life-threatening allergies, and often treats handed out at the door may contain contaminants or allergens such as nuts or nut oil.


If you do not wish your child to take part in Halloween celebrations, for religious reasons, please let your child’s teacher know so we can make alternate arrangements for their supervision.

Thank you

The Faculty

Jodi Smith, Bernadette Pugh, Ticia Heibein, Jolan Canrinus, Elizabeth Pasternak, Peyton Leung, Kasia Kania, Stephanie Guy

Beth Mills, Carol Shea, Co-Principals                                

Hallowe’en Safety Tips
Hallowe’en provides an opportunity for parents and children to spend time together creating costumes, carving pumpkins, planning trick or treat activities and participating in family parties. Hallowe’en is a big event at schools and provides opportunities for parties, creative activities, art programs and impromptu history lessons. Hallowe’en is also a time for students, parents, and schools to take extra care to ensure safety and security.


If you are concerned about trick or treating, here are some basic safety rules to follow:

• Children should NEVER eat any treats until parents have had a chance to go through them and inspect them. Parents should look for tampering of packages and discard any they believe to be unsafe or unknown.
• Have your child carry a flashlight.
• NEVER go into a stranger’s house.
• NEVER trick or treat with people you do not know.
• Trick or treat only at homes you know.
• Children should always stay in groups if no parent is present.
• Younger children should ALWAYS be accompanied by an older person.
• Accompany your child when trick or treating.
• If you cannot accompany your child, then know the route your child will take.
• Flame resistant (retardant) costumes are in order. Keep costumes short and remind children to stay away from pumpkins with candles in them.
• Remind children to stay away from pets they do not know.
• Remind children of road safety rules. Cross only at corners. Do not criss-cross the road. Go up one side of the road and down the other side. Never cross between parked cars. Walk facing on-coming traffic if there is no sidewalk
• If adults are driving their children, drive slowly, with lights on and be cautious when pulling to the side of the road.
• Children should wear their own shoes when trick or treating. Wearing costume shoes/boots can be dangerous and uncomfortable.
• Remind children that not everyone celebrates Hallowe’en, and to avoid any homes that have no lights on. Also remind children not to run through neighbours yards or gardens.
• With older children, be sure to know what other events (such as parties) they plan on attending.
• Set time limits when children should return home.

Lockdowns and Firedrills

The safety of students and staff is a top priority at our school. Though no one ever wants to see an emergency happen at a school, it’s important for school staff to be equipped to deal with those situations, should these occur.

The TDSB has taken steps to ensure your child’s safety while in school. Each school has developed emergency preparedness plans that include steps staff will take in the event of an emergency, how staff will get students away from possible dangers, and how students’ families will be contacted.

One aspect of emergency preparedness is the lockdown and fire drill. Lord Lansdowne and da Vinci have completed the first of six mandated fire drills and our first lockdown drill.

All schools are required to conduct a minimum of two lockdown drills and six fire drills each school year. Lockdown drills, like fire drills, are an essential component to ensuring student and staff safety. It is important that all staff and students are prepared and know how to respond in cases of emergencies. The drills last approximately 5 minutes. They ensure that our plans are effective and can also help us identify any safety concerns.

Communication is also very important in any emergency situation. The emergency contact information kept on file is important in helping this happen. It lists the people who can pick up a student from the school. If you have not yet provided this information to the office or have updates to the information on file, please make sure our office staff have that information as soon as possible.

OPAL Play Day Monday June 26, 2017

On Monday June 26, 2017, da Vinci and Lord Lansdowne will be having an OPAL Play Day.

Students will be going outside to play according to a schedule being created by the OPAL Lead Team. We are asking that parents ensure students are prepared for outdoor play that day (e.g. hat, sunscreen, bottle of water etc.), including having a change of clothes, as there will be water play.

Annual Walk and Roll to School event on Tuesday, June 13

The daVinci and Lord Lansdowne Eco-Team is organizing our annual Walk and Roll to School event on Tuesday, June 13 from 8-8:45 AM. The event ties in with Bike Month in Toronto, which celebrates active and sustainable modes of transportation on this day and every day.

Activities will include refreshments, information about road safety from our Community Officer, bike safety checks by Bike Chain and Riders, a bicycle obstacle course, as well as a raffle for students.

Please note, students must be supervised by an adult until 8:30 AM, as teachers will not be on duty until then.

If you can volunteer, please contact Sarah Warden at: wardenwinky@gmail.com

Kindergarten Before- and After-School Program

Dear Parents/Guardians,

This year our school surveyed parents for their interest in a fee-based Before-and-After-School Program for Kindergarten and Gradel to Grade 6 students. Based on this year’s survey completed during February, there is initial interest in a program for September 2017. A program will only run if there is a firm commitment from enough parents (i.e. fee deposit).

We are currently working with a child care operator to provide the FDK and Gradel-6 Before- and After­
School Programs.

Registration is required to ensure a space for your child in the program and to confirm a program’s viability.

The child care provider at Lord Lansdowne/daVinci will be holding a registration for the Before-and-After ­School Program on Friday, May 5, 2017 at 8:00 -10:00 a.m. and 3:00 – 4:00 p.m. Please contact Kimberly Stevenson at 416-925-2103 ext 5110 for more information.

Transportation to and from the Before-and-After-School Program is not provided and will be the responsibility of parents/guardians. If your family is currently receiving a child care subsidy, you will be able to keep your subsidy for the
Before-and-After-school Program. The City of Toronto oversees fee subsidies. For information regarding a subsidy, please visit the City’s website at www.toronto.ca/children or call 416-392-5437.

If you have any questions, please contact our school office.

Yours sincerely,
Acting Principal
Hana Maire