Dear Falkland Families,

Welcome to the 2021-2022 school year at Falkland School. I can't tell you what a relief it is to have all our students, staff and families safe and sound. This summer has been incredibly draining on our little community with the constant threat of nearby wildfires. I hope now that the evacuation alert has been lifted for our area, families are beginning to feel a bit more calm and settled again.

At this time, we welcome 15 new kindergarten students and 3 new students to the community which brings our total student enrollment to 114. A special "Welcome to the Wolfpack" to these students. We wish our 7 students heading off to PVSS best wishes as they transition into grade 9 at the high school. We also wish our several students, along with their families, who have moved to other communities, the very best. You all will be missed.

Based on our current enrollment, I am happy to report that the district approved a 6th division. You can read more about configuration below. Grade 3 is the only group that will be separated into two classes. Parents of students in this group will be notified of their child's classroom placement this evening. Ms. Gudmundson will be working in the new division until the position is filled.

There are several ways we keep parents informed of the happenings at our school: e-newsletters, weekly emails, our website, and Facebook. Posts on our website automatically go on our Facebook page so please LIKE or FOLLOW US on Facebook. Please feel free to email me or Dani, our School Secretary, if you require information or have questions. We can also be reached by phone 250-379-2320 between 8:00 am and 2:30 pm.

School fees, which include school supplies for classroom use, are due on Friday, September 24th. Your prompt payment is appreciated as it allows us to replenish our budget quickly for the purchase of learning resources needed for the start of the school year. Click HERE for our fee schedule. Combined fees include $54 for Division 1 (school supplies, performance fee, agenda, lock rental), $51 for Division 2 (school supplies, performance fee, agenda) and $43 for our other divisions (school supplies, performance fee only).

Please CLICK HERE to review the Back to School Information for all schools in BC. You can access the Provincial COVID-19 Communicable Disease Guidelines for K-12 Schools HERE. For information about the SD83 Communicable Disease Plan, CLICK HERE. For specific information about our site-based measures for staff, students and visitors, CLICK HERE. If you have questions about the mask wearing mandate for students in grades 4 and up, CLICK HERE. This information was also emailed home on Friday, September 3rd. It is important to use this HEALTH CHECK TOOL if you are wondering whether or not to send your child to school. Principals have legal and moral authority to protect the health and safety of our students and staff while at school. Please contact me if you have specific questions or require a deviation from the plan.

Welcome back to Amber Gudmundson, teacher, Melissa Hansma, CEA and Donna Gregersen, Indigenous Support Worker. Welcome to Reta Moerike, our new school counsellor, Bonnie Strotman, our new Custodian, and Jean Brighouse, our new Speech Language Pathologist and Julia Albano-Crockford, our new music teacher. We will update you soon on the successful candidates for any outstanding positions needing to still be filled. We are currently seeking a part time StrongStart facilitator for our school. If you know anyone interested with an ECE Certificate, they can access the job description and qualification necessary on Make a Future HERE.

The focus of this e-newsletter will be the USUAL important information at start up for students and parents at our school. While much of this information is the same as what was provided in past school years, please ensure you re-familiarize yourself with them so you can help your child find success.

As always, I welcome your thoughts, questions, suggestions, or any concerns regarding all aspects of Falkland School.

Warmest Regards,
Mrs. Cull
Communicable Disease Plan Summary on Key Points
What is the same:

  1. Staff and students are to continue to do their own Daily Health Check and should remain home if they are not feeling well.
  2. Mask wearing indoors for all K-12 staff and visitors as well as students in grades 4 to 12, including at their desks and on school buses.
  3. Mask wearing indoors strongly encouraged for students in kindergarten to grade 3, however this remains a personal and family/caregiver choice.
  4. General cleaning of the premises, and the cleaning and disinfecting of frequently touched surfaces, will occur at least once in a 24-hour period.
  5. Continued focus on rigorous hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette. Please scroll to learn more about when students are required to hand sanitize.
  6. Maintain building air ventilation as per standards and specifications for ongoing comfort.
  7. Classes will be encouraged to find opportunities for learning to take place outdoors when possible.

What is different:

  1. Students will no longer be organized in learning groups/cohorts.
  2. Schools will work to implement measures such as respecting others' personal space instead of 2 metres physical distancing.
  3. A new Communicable Disease Plan will replace our District’s COVID-19 Safety Plan. It will have many similarities to our current Safety Plan but will reflect any ongoing measures and additional measures to be implemented as advised by public health.
  4. Regional Medical Health Officers will now have the authority to implement additional safety requirements at a regional, district or school level during times of increased community transmission of COVID-19.
  5. School gatherings and events will align with provincial/regional public health recommendations and orders.
  6. School sports, extra-curricular activities and assemblies, theatre and dance performances, staff gatherings and meetings can now occur but are subject to direction of the Local and Regional Health Officer.
We would like to take this opportunity to remind parents that an appointment must be made in advance of entering the school. We value the opportunity to address matters promptly (same day) as this is ideal in any problem solving scenario. Please call Dani at the school to make an appointment with Mrs. Cull or your child's classroom teacher. It is important to Mrs. Cull to be accessible to parents. If you do not yet have her cell phone number, you can contact the office to request it. A quick text or phone call is encouraged to help answer any questions or queries you may have.

Visitors both indoors and outdoors are required to follow our site-based health and safety measures in place for your health and safety as well as our students and staff. This includes ensuring necessary space is available between you, staff, students and other parents at all times, including outside the fence. Emphasis has moved from 2 metres to respecting personal space and preventing crowding.

While visitors are permitted on our school grounds before school and after school, our preference continues to be to drop off and pick up at the fence. Parents are encouraged to keep their time on the school grounds for pick up and drop off brief so that as much space as possible is available for students and their play.

Parents are encouraged to contact their child's classroom teacher if they have questions about their child's learning. Face to face meetings can continue, please prearrange your visit in advance to ensure that our procedures for visitors are adhered to.
Please refer to our bell schedule for the 2021-2022 school year. In order to promote a classroom community in Division 1 (home of grade 8s) all students in the class follow the schedule set out for the grade 8 students. This helps to build a more cohesive classroom culture. Click HERE to access the 2021-2022 bell schedule.
Calendar 2021-2022
Click HERE to access the 2021-2022 SD 83 calendar containing statutory holidays and professional development days. Please ensure these important dates, including early dismissal and reporting dates are in your family calendar.
Student Placement
Staff work very hard, given the constraints of class size and composition, on a variety of scenarios to best meet the educational needs of our students school wide.
When one grade is split into two classrooms, we work hard as a staff to consider the best learning environment for your children. Our goal is to create balanced classrooms taking into account social emotional factors, friendship issues, sibling issues, class size, and then the strengths and needs for the overall composition of the class. Academic reasons are also considered, however, learning standards from all the grade levels in a class will be addressed. Providing a rich, meaningful educational experience is important in every classroom. We know that change is difficult, but your trust in our staff and their rationale in student placement is important to us and much appreciated. Thank you parents who contacted me to provide input about their child's placement. This is also something we consider.

Division 6 (Grade K - 15 students) Mrs. McAfree
Division 5 (Grade 1 - 19 students) Ms. Richoux
Division 4 (Grade 2/3 - 19 students) TBA
Division 3 (Grade 3/4 - 19 students) Miss Minchenko
Division 2 (Grade 5/6 - 22 students) Ms. Barker
Division 1 (Grade 7/8 - 20 students) Mr. Clarke
Information from PAC
Our next PAC meeting is on Wednesday, September 15th. Elections will be taking place for several of the following positions:

Vice President
Student Planning Council
Hot Lunch Coordinator

All parents are welcome and more information about format will be forthcoming.

Please contact Adina Clements, President (250-463-5750), Megan Jackson, Vice President (250-379-2527), or Shelly Cull (250-833-2806 or 250-379-2320) to discuss ways you can get involved and contribute to your child's school experience.

PAC has their first fundraiser of the school year already in motion with apples from Davison Orchards. CLICK HERE for more information. Orders are due on Wednesday, September 29th and will be delivered on Wednesday, October 13th. An order form will be coming home soon in your child's backpack.
Problem Solving Process
When you advocate on behalf of your child, the way in which you express your concerns has an effect on the outcome. Click HERE to learn more about the steps to follow when you have a concern. You can access the parent brochure HERE.

It is important to address concerns in a timely manner so they can get solved and a common understanding can be achieved. It is important that students perceive staff and parents working together as partners in supporting their learning.
Movement Pathways at Falkland School

We are very excited about our new movement pathways in our hallways. This was an initiative we started at the end of last year. To check out some pictures, CLICK HERE. Thanks Marcy Corke and Monique Richoux for your help with this committee.
Regulatory Signage posted in our School Zone

I am happy to report that finally we have regulatory signage posted on Tuktakamin, Poderosa and along Chase-Falkland Highway to help keep our students safe. A very special thank you to Rene Talbot, and representatives from the Ministry of Transportation for your support in making this happen for the children in our community.
Falkland School Routines and Procedures

Please note there is no supervision at the school prior to 8:00 am and after 2:28 pm when our bus leaves.

Students should arrive to school after 8:00 am. Students are to stay outside until our morning bell at 8:09 am. Teachers will meet students at their outside line up when instruction starts at 8:12 am.

BEFORE SCHOOL: Breakfast Club is open to all students each morning at 8:00 am until the morning bell. In order to allow for sufficient spacing, students will be encouraged to eat their breakfast outside, weather permitting, and/or leave once finished eating to make space for additional students. Full bellies help students be ready for learning.

RECESS: At least two teachers are on duty at recess time. The far field is restricted to students in grades 6/7/8.

LUNCH: At least two lunch hour supervisors are on duty during eating time and outside during lunch playtime.

AFTER SCHOOL: Students are asked to head home promptly at the end of day bell. Supervision is available for bus students until 2:28 pm or whenver the bus leaves. Students are more than welcome to return to school after 2:30 pm at the descretion and supervision of their parents.
Student Use of Office Phone
Students are able to access the office phone to make calls home if deemed necessary by the classroom teacher. Phone passes are provided by the classroom teacher and we prefer calls are made home during the break times. Due to the volume of phone calls at the end of the day, the phone in the office is not available for students to make after school arrangements. Please ensure after school plans are in place in advance for students.
We are more than happy to deliver a message to your child regarding after school arrangements if necessary. If you need to reach your child during the day while at school, please call the office and leave a message if no one picks up. Our school secretary will deliver the message to your child. Please do not leave messages regarding transportation after 1:30 pm as we cannot guarantee we will be able to get the message to your child before the end of the day. If your child has a cell phone, it must be kept in their backpack while at school, even during breaks. You can read more about our use of personal technology below. Please contact the office if you need to reach your child during the school day.
Pick Up and Drop Off
Students are able to arrive to school anytime after 8:00 am.

WALKING: Students are expected to enter and leave the school grounds by using one of the three openings in our chain linked fence. Please DO NOT have your child enter using the parking lot entrance at any time. Students are expected to use pathways and avoid walking through the parking lot.
Please remember our walkways are for walking only to ensure enough space can be available for students, staff and visitors. While our preference is for parents to drop off and pick up their child outside the fence, parents are permitted to enter our school grounds before and after school briefly for pick up and drop off. Visitors need to ensure pick up and drop is brief so that as much space as possible is available for students and their play.
BY VEHICLE: Due to limited parking for staff, we ask that parents do not enter the parking lot to drop off their child. We ask that visitors park along Tuktakamin, our frontage road. It is encouraged that parents drop their children off on the school side of Tuktakamin Road near one of the three openings in our chain linked fence. Students are expected to enter the school grounds immediately using the openings in our chain linked fence, not the parking lot entrance please.

BY BIKES/SCOOTERS/SKATEBOARDS: Students are expected to dismount their bikes/scooters/skateboards at one of the three openings in our chain linked fence and walk their bikes/scooters/skateboards along the pathways. Helmets must be worn. Bikes must be locked up at the bike racks. Scooters and skateboards can be stored in the office if there is no room in the classroom. Students are not allowed to ride their bikes/scooters/skateboards on school grounds during the school day. Students are asked to walk their bikes/scooters/skateboards along the pathway to one of the openings in our chain linked fence to leave the school ground at the end of the day.

BY BUS: Students are dropped off at the school at 8:00 am. At the end of the school day bus students are asked to place their backpacks in a line up at the flag pole. Students can play on the small playground while they wait for the bus. Students need to practice hand hygiene before boarding the bus.
Hand Hygiene

Our focus on hand hygiene is to prevent the spread of communicable diseases. The following table outlines when students and staff, as well as visitors, will practice hand hygiene.
Mask Wearing at School
Our expectations at Falkland School around mask wearing is consistent with information provided by our Provincial COVID-19 Communicable Desease Guidelines fro K-12 Schools and information from our SD83 the Communicable Disease Plan We will adjust our expectations if/when we receive new information from the provicinal, regional and/or local health authorities.

It is manditory for all staff, visitors and students in grade 4 and up to wear a mask while inside. Mask wearing is strongly recommended for students in Grades K-3 but this remains a personal and family/caregiver choice.

If anytime you have questions about mask wearing, please contact Shelly Cull, Principal. CLICK HERE to access a Q&A about mandatory mask wearing in schools.

We are excited to announce that we now have two water bottle filling stations at our school. These have replaced the water fountains on the main and upper levels of our school. Clean and filled waterbottles are important for students to have at school. Students are able to access our handsfree waterbottle filling stations when needed. However, students are encouraged to bring their water bottle home at the end of each day for a clean and a refill. This will help to minimize the number of students in the hallway and reduce hands on frequently touched surfaces. Fewer students in the hallways also helps to ensure enough space for staff and students traveling to alternate learning spaces in our school.
Washroom Access

As part of our usual classroom management practices, the number of students out of the room at any given time in limited to one. Teachers will develop a sign in and sign out procedure as usual. The number of students in each washroom is limited to the number of stalls in each washroom. Washroom use in the case of an emergency will not be denied. Our traditional StrongStart washroom is available for students in an emergency situation and is also an option for students who prefer a gender neutral space.
Leaving Early and Arriving Late - please contact the office
Falkland School is a closed campus which means that once students arrive at school they must remain on school grounds for the rest of the day. Students are not permitted to leave school grounds during the instructional day, unless accompanied by their parent. If you need to pick your child up early or are arriving late, after the first bell, please ensure you contact the office to ensure our sign in and out procedures can be followed.
Reporting Absences

Please contact the office by phone (250-379-2320) or email ( if your child is absent. For safe arrival purposes, please contact the office anytime before 8:30 am. Do not contact your child's classroom teacher to report your child's absence. Please include the reason for their absence in your message. If your child is unwell, it is important to note your child's symptoms in case other students are absent with similar symptoms. While reasons for your child's absence are confidential, they help us determine additional cleaning and disinfecting that may be required in the case of a respiratory or gastrointenstinal outbreak at the school.

Complete this HEALTH CHECK daily before sending your child to school each day.

You can access a variety of tools HERE to determine if testing or other recommended followup is suggested with your health care provider.
Use of Computer, Internet and Personal Devices
Wi-Fi is available throughout the school and can be accessed on personal devices. In order for students to access it on their personal device, parents must give their consent on Parent Connect and students on Student Connect after agreeing to the Digital Citizenship Policy. Students are not permitted to share their login password or use another student's login and password to sign in.
We support the use of personal devices for educational use in our older grades. However, if students choose to bring their device to school, the school is not responsible if it gets lost, broken or stolen. We encourage students in our younger grades to leave all technology at home.
If students bring technology to school, it should NOT be visible at any time during the school day, including recess and lunch. Personal devices should be kept in backpacks or lockers (Div 1) unless they have the expressed consent and supervision of their teacher for its educational use in class.
Smoking/Tobacco/Vaping Products
Healthy school and workplace environments are essential to the quality of learning and working. In accordance with School District policy, Falkland School and its grounds are smoke-free (including our parking lot while in your vehicle) at all times - evenings and weekends. The use or possession of tobacco or vapour products by any student is a Bottom Line Behaviour and is immediately referred to school administration where, as with all bottom line behaviours, School District Policy, 1030.10, Student Suspensions, will be implemented. Please see information regarding our Student Code of Conduct here.
First Aid and Administration of Medication
Serious first aid will be administered by staff with First Aid Training. In the event of a serious injury or illness, parents will be contacted. If parents cannot be reached then the emergency contact person you identified will be contacted.
If your child has a medical condition and has been prescribed medication that needs to be administered during the school day, please contact the office to complete the required forms. We are unable to administer any medication without the required documentation in place. Please do not send medications to school, prescription or otherwise, with your child, unless it is part of a school medical plan developed in collaboration with the school principal.
Peanuts are Allowed at School
We did not receive notice of any life threatening peanut allergies this school year. So until such time that we do, students ARE allowed to bring food containing peanuts to school.
Meal Programs
Thanks to the generosity of our community and continued support of the Rotary Club, we are able to keep our breakfast and lunch top up program in place for the 2021-2022 school year. Donations of eggs, milk, bread, yogurt, fruit, cereal and other healthy options for breakfast are welcome as well. Students can access the Breakfast Club (StrongStart Space - Rm 29) when they arrive to school at 8:00 am. Access is dependent on space available. Students are encouraged to eat their breakfast outside weather permitting and to leave the room once they are done to allow space for others.
We are Scent-Aware
Spray deodorant and perfumes are not permitted to be used in the school due to potential allergic reactions from students and staff. We ask that students and guests in the school be mindful, before entering our building, of the impact strong smells have on others and avoid the use of strong perfumes. Thank you!
Indoor Footwear
Students are expected to have a pair of shoes designated for inside use available to wear while inside the building only. Non marking running shoes are preferred so they can be used in the gymnasium during PE. This helps to keep students safe and our school much cleaner.
Thank you for your cooperation. In case of emergencies, shoes must be worn at all times, sock feet are not permitted.
Nutrition and Healthy Choices
There is an established link between good nutrition, healthy development and academic achievement. In accordance with School District policy, Falkland School supports and promotes healthy nutrition. This is a responsibility shared with parents. We will continue to educate students about the benefits of eating nutritious foods and encouraging nutritious food choices.
To this end, we ask that you not send foods/drinks with large amounts of sugar to school. Please do not send your child to school with candy or pop or pop like drinks, such as ice tea, some flavoured carbonated and non-carbonated waters, including vitamin water, sports drinks, etc. Did you know there can be as much sugar in fruit juice as a can of pop? We kindly request you send your child to school with water in a reusable water bottle. Water is recommended as the drink of choice in the newest Canadian Food Guide 2019.
We Go Green
In the 2018-2019 school year, our Me to We Leadership group started a We Go Green initiative to help our students learn ways to reduce their impact on the environment.
While we get our recycling and compost program up and running again, in our classrooms with students volunteers, we ask that students continue to take their recycling and food compost from their lunches home each day.
Weather/Air Quality Policy
Students stay healthier and learn better with opportunities to play in fresh air during play times. It is important that students come to school prepared for the weather - sun, rain, snow, warm, cold, hot. In the winter months particularly, please send your children to school with gloves, toques, winter boots and warm coats. It is up to the Principal to decide whether conditions indicate that students should stay indoors (ie. too wet, windy, smokey or cold). Our guideline for weather too cold for outside play is colder than -13.

Due to nearby wildfires, the air quality health index tool will be monitored closely and may impact our ability to access the outdoors and limit vigorous play while outside. Again, it is up to the Principal to decide whether conditions indicate a change in usual practice.
Emergency Preparedness
Each year, we conduct safety drills to ensure we practice and are prepared in the event of a real emergency. Each year we conduct 6 fire drills (3 in the Fall and 3 in the Spring), 2 earthquake drills, and 1 lockdown drill in case of intruder.
Student Code of Conduct and Violent Risk Threat Assessment
Click HERE to access information about our Student Code of Conduct, Discipline Philosophy and Bottom Line Behaviours.

Included is a Fair Notice document outlining our Violent Risk Threat Assessment protocol and procedure in School District 83. To keep our school and community safe staff, parents, students and community members must report all threat-related behaviours (verbal and/or written, online and/or on paper) to the school principal to ensure a response, utilizing the appropriate authorities, occurs. Threats are taken seriously, investigated thoroughly and responded to accordingly.
Dress Code
The North Okanagan-Shuswap School District expects all students to dress in a respectful manner which is appropriate and conducive to a positive as well as safe learning environment. Appropriate dress is considered to be that which:

  • Is safe and respectful of self and others;
  • Is free of any reference which promotes alcohol, drugs, gangs, hate, obscenity, profanity, racism/discrimination, sex and/or violence;
  • Is not disturbing or distracting to others within the school setting;
  • Is similar to office or retail workplace attire.

At Falkland School appropriate coverage is expected in all learning environments (playground, classroom and gymnasium). Students wearing clothing which is too revealing, including bare backs, bare midriffs, spaghetti straps, plunging necklines, muscle shirts, or clothing not suitable for the task at hand, will be asked to wear something more appropriate, or be given something to wear.

Underwear needs to be under your outerwear, and therefore, should not be visible. Footwear must be worn at all times. Inside shoes are mandatory for all students to be sure our school stays clean.

We ask that hats and hoods be removed once students enter the building. Hats and hoods may be worn during breaks and lunches while outside.

In conclusion…please, Dress For Success.
Information on Upcoming Events
Orange Shirt Day - Wed., Sept. 29th
Orange Shirt day is on Thursday, September 30th. Due to the recent announcement of September 30th as a new annual statutory day to commemorate the history and ongoing trauma caused by residential schools and to honour those who were lost and the survivors, families and communities who continue to grieve, students and staff at Falkland School will hold Orange Shirt Day on Wednesday, September 29th.
Students and staff are encouraged to wear an orange shirt in support of reconciliation and hope for generations of children to come. Teachers, with the support of Donna Gregersen, our Indigenous Support Worker and Sandra Eustache, our Secwepemc Langauge and Culture Teacher, will be providing age appropriate learning opportunities to better understand the impact residential schools had on children and families.
2021 Terry Fox Run - Fri., Sept. 24th
Students and Staff will be participating in our annual Terry Fox Run on Friday, September 24th. We will learn about Terry's contributions and participate in a run. More information will come soon.

We will be collecting loonies or toonies to send off to the Terry Fox Foundation.
FSA Administration - Oct. 4 - Nov. 12th
The Foundation Skills Assessment is an annual province-wide assessment of all B.C. students’ academic skills in grades 4 and 7, and provides parents, teachers, schools, school districts and the Ministry of Education with important information on how well students are progressing in the foundation skills of Reading, Writing, and Numeracy. Administration of this assessment starts on or after October 4th and will be completed by Nov. 12th. A schedule and more information will come out closer to the end of September to parents of students in grades 4 and 7 with more information.

Picture Day - Tues., Oct. 12th
Lifetouch photography are tentatively planned to be at our school on Tuesday, October 12th, after the Thanksgiving long weekend, to take individual photos of students and staff.
Information about StrongStart in School District No. 83
StrongStart is a parent participation program for children 0 - 5. We do not yet have a StrongStart facilitator at Falkland School for the 2021-2022 school year. StrongStart programs in SD83 will be opening the week of Tuesday, September 21st.

Click HERE to access the StrongStart job posting and be sure to share it out in the community.

250 - 379 - 2320| |