Welcome Back!

Dear Parents/Guardians of da Vinci Alternative Public School,

It’s a real pleasure to be back in good health to start a new school year. I hope you had a refreshing and enjoyable summer with your family. I would like to acknowledge the hard work and dedication of all our staff last year during my absence, and the support of the school community for this wonderful little school.
I’m especially delighted to welcome Carol Shea to our community as my co-principal for this year. Carol has spent several years as vice-principal in schools with French Immersion programs and brings a wealth of background in supporting students with special needs. This additional support will help us maintain continuity of program and provide stability for both school communities over the coming year. Our thanks to Mary Jane McNamara, Superintendent of Schools, for her advocacy.

Parents are our partners – we share the responsibility for our children’s success. As we begin this exciting new school year, if you have questions specifically about the Special Education process, feel free to call Carol Shea.
If you have questions regarding students in da Vinci Alternative Public School JK – Gr 6 or regarding EQAO or bussing, please direct your questions to Beth Mills. As co-principals, we will work together to support both schools.

Our staff has spent considerable personal time over the past weeks planning for effective learning, and preparing attractive and welcoming classrooms. Our school hallways and classes sparkle, after a busy summer of hard work by our caretaking staff, Angelo, Louis and Dave. We are blessed with a committed staff!

What’s new this year? Please make sure to check this website for upcoming events and information.

  • ENTRY: The da Vinci entry bell for all da Vinci students rings at 8:50 am.
  • New this year, students will line up by class at their designated spot inside the schoolyard.
  • Classroom teachers will pick their class up outside and escort to the classroom via the Spadina doors. We believe this will allow for a calmer, more focussed start to the learning day.
  • Dismissal for da Vinci Kindergarten students is at 3:05 pm in the schoolyard.
  • Dismissal for da Vinci grades 1 – 6 is at 3:15 pm at the Spadina doors.

Please note: The Lansdowne instructional day is 30 minutes longer than da Vinci, due to the International Language program. Entry and dismissal times of the two schools differ by 15 minutes at the beginning and end of the school day.

  • We are looking forward to continuing work on the schoolyard rejuvenation with the Outdoor Space committee, incorporating the work from last year with OPAL around Loose Parts play. We are pleased to have a new storage shed for play materials.
  • A big change for us is the addition of before- and after-childcare, which has permits for all the classrooms on our first floor. It’s exciting to finally have on-site care for our students. We know there will be some challenges, with over 75 students enrolled in the program. The classroom space is shared with classroom teachers and International Languages programs. Safety and security is our prime concern, especially at the beginning and end of the school day.
  • Some important changes to note for the basketball/tennis court:
    • 8:30 to 8:50 am The court is reserved for the use of the in-school childcare only.
      (due to childcare licensing regulations.)
    • 3:30 to 4:00 The court is reserved for TDSB-bussed students only at this point.
      (the increased numbers of bused students, waiting in front of the school was a safety concern)

You will receive a number of important forms and information this week. TDSB permission forms have been streamlined (yay!). We ask that you return them to us by Friday, September 15.

Carol and I wish you and your children a safe, happy and enjoyable year full of growth and discovery. May the spirit of curiosity and the joy of learning be with you!

New School Times

**NOTE** start and finish times have changed (from last year). The new times are as follows: 

Entry bell at 8:50 a.m. and dismissal at 3:15 p.m (3:05 for kindergarten). Please take note of this important change.

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.

Bike, Walk & Roll Event – Thanks and highlight video

Thanks to everyone who came out this morning for our annual Bike, Walk and Roll to School event. The rain held out it was great fun for all. Thanks to U of T’s Bike Chain for providing bike tune-ups, to Riders Cycle and Board for the super obstacle course and to our Community Officers for teaching us about road safety. Thank you as well as to the many local businesses, including Carmen’s City Market, Starbucks, Blue Banana, Wanda’s Pie in the Sky, Second Cup, and Sweet Pete’s, who supported the event through donations of food and raffle items.

Finally, a big shout out to Sarah Warden and the many parent volunteers who brought snacks and helped set up, run, and clean up the event.

What a great celebration of sustainable and healthy transportation!

-LLPS & da Vinci Eco Team

Please see the video slideshow from the morning:

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

Earth Day Celebrations

A big thank-you to all who participated in the Earth Day Assemblies on Friday, April 21, 2017. Both assemblies were mc’d by students, with the Primary assembly featuring songs and poems from various classes while the Junior/Intermediate assembly included student statements about water, poetry and videos about how to preserve the environment. If anyone has photos to share, please send them to peyton.leung@tdsb.on.ca.

The celebrations continue as we extend the Clean Toronto Together campaign over the following week and through to the rest of the year, assigning classes times for them to help clean up the schoolyard and/or surrounding neighbourhood.

Environmentally yours,

The LL/daV Eco Team