Principal's e-letter March 3, 2017

posted Mar 3, 2017, 9:52 AM by William Barrett   [ updated Mar 3, 2017, 9:55 AM ]
Dear parent/guardian,

Today all students were given a copy of an Opioid Discussion Sheet for Students.  The Ottawa Catholic School Board and Ottawa Public Health have asked all high schools to give students a copy of this which helps students understand the current concern around drug use and the death of two high school students.    Please ask your son or daughter to share the sheet with you and take some time to talk about the issue with them.  There is also a version for parents.  Copies of both info sheets are available on the school website  (in the announcements section) and in the school office.  If you have any questions or concerns please contact the school.  Next week the Rideauwood substance abuse counsellor associated with our school will be presenting to all students, talking to them about the current concern around Fentanyl and drug overdoses.  

The deadline for having courses selected for next year was Wed March 1.  Student services teachers are meeting with students who have not yet completed this task.  Please contact our Student Services department if you have any questions.  

A reminder that we will be holding Parent-Teacher interviews on Thurs March 23.  Information about the sign-up process will be sent home on Mon March 6 and will also be on the website at that time.

Thanks to all that received an Immunization notice from Ottawa Public Health and followed up on it.  When this process started back in November we had over 200 students who needed to update their immunizations.  Today we are down to three!    Parents who continue to have questions about immunizations are asked to contact OPH at 613-580-6744, ext. 28020 or immunization@ottawa.ca 

Encourage your son/daughter to continue to bring in cans for our annual "Royals/X-men Canned Food Drive".  We are aiming for 10,000 food items this year and are off to a good start.  All cans go to support the food bank at Shepherds of Good Hope.  The drive ends on Thurs March 9.  

Student council had another good spirit week.  A highlight was Wednesday's Pius trivia challenge, won by the Gr. 12 class!  Today we held a pep rally at lunch to celebrate the Senior Boys Basketball team who won the Tier Two city championship on Wed evening in a close fought match with Samuel Genest.  Congratulations to all the players and thanks to coaches Lama and Zaremba for their leadership and commitment to the team.  It has been a while since we've hung a boys basketball banner in the gym.  It will be good to see it go up!

We had Ash Wednesday liturgies for all students.  As always Richie did a great job helping us enter into a spirit of prayer and taking time to think about what Lent means for us today.  He challenged all students to: think of one thing that they will "say no to" each day and to "speak life", ie. be positive in their language towards each other.  

St. Pius X has partnered with Ken's Academy and Cultural Exchange to offer student exchanges for interested students.  Ken's promotes exchanges to Spain.  The deadline for applying for next year has been extended to  Friday Mar 10.  There was an info meeting on Thur March 2 but you can still get information by contacting the company rep, Melissa Moloney, at eontario@culturalexchange.es

CSPA, the OCSB's parent group, presents an info night for parents, "Special Education and Your Child", on Mon March 27 at 6:30 at St. Patricks H.S.  Check out the school board website for more info.

And finally I wanted to highlight a couple of upcoming events for our music students.  St. Pius X will welcoming a special guest conductor, Douglas Payson Sturdevant, to class on March 7.  He is the former Principal Trumpet of the NAC Orchestra and is working with Mr. Corkett to prepare students for a special performance at the Aberdeen Pavilion on March 24th as part of the city's "Ignite 150" activities. Mr. Sturdevant is sure to provide professional insight on performance practice for brass players in particular, but also on the musical interpretation of the pieces that the St. Pius Concert Band will be performing that day along with over 1000 students from across the region.

A number of music students will also be attending the annual OCSB Music Workshop at the Nepean Creative Arts Centre in Bells Corners, on March 21, 22, 27, & 28, where concert band and voice students from across the school board will be attending workshops of enrichment activities in large ensembles directed by music specialists from our board, in sectionals led by clinicians, culminating in a public performance on March 30th at Notre Dame High School.
A reminder to please check out the calendar on our website for a full listing of school events.

Have a good weekend!

Bill Barrett
St. Pius X
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