St. Mary Catholic Secondary School
1918 Whites Road
Pickering, Ontario L1V 1R9
Telephone: Main Office: (905) 420-7166
Fax: (905) 831-1778
Guidance Office: (905) 420-8205
This agenda belongs to:
POSTAL CODE: _____________________________________
STUDENT NO: _________________HOME ROOM: ________
Join us in celebrating our Christian commitment to learn, to love and to serve.
We are called to celebrate and nurture the God-given talents of each student as we serve with excellence in the light of Christ.
Our St. Mary Catholic Secondary School community includes our parents, guardians, students, teachers, school administration, educational assistants, adult volunteers, secretaries and custodians. We invite all visitors to join with us as we grow in Christ through His words and actions.
We are called to Love
We are called to Serve
Every member of our community is valued.
We will turn our beliefs into actions.
We will constantly strive to respect and love each other as Christ taught us.
We will take pride in who we are and actively show that pride in the daily development of our talents, our deportment, and our contribution to our community.
We will strive to recognize Christ in ourselves.
We will affirm each other through active kindness, courtesy, compassion, respect, patience, forgiveness, and honesty.
We will strive to recognize Christ in each other.
We will each actively participate in the responsibility of maintaining the buildings, grounds and spaces that we share, created by God for all generations.
We will strive to recognize Christ in His creation.
At St. Mary Catholic Secondary School, all students, parents/guardians, teachers, staff, trustees, volunteers, visitors, parish and community members have the right to be safe, and to feel safe, in their school community. With this right comes the responsibility to contribute to a positive school climate.
Justice is the moral virtue that consists in the constant and firm will to give their due to God and neighbour. Justice toward God is called the "virtue of religion." Justice toward men disposes one to respect the rights of each and to establish in human relationships the harmony that promotes equity with regard to persons and to the common good. The just man, often mentioned in the Sacred Scriptures, is distinguished by habitual right thinking and the uprightness of his conduct toward his neighbour. "You shall not be partial to the poor or defer to the great, but in righteousness shall you judge your neighbour."
We promote the foundation of our faith through the Catholic Social Teachings and Catholic Graduate Expectations. The Durham Catholic District School Board and our schools focus on prevention, early intervention and progressive discipline as the key to maintaining a positive school environment in which students can learn and teachers can teach. We offer various strategies and initiatives such as:
When inappropriate behaviour occurs, schools are required to utilize a range of interventions, supports and consequences that are developmentally appropriate and include opportunities for students to learn from mistakes, while focusing on improving behaviour. In some circumstances, short term suspension may be a necessary tool. In the case of a serious incident, long-term suspension or expulsion, which is further along the continuum of progressive discipline, may be required.
Our students display the following behaviours:
Students at St. Mary Catholic Secondary School are expected to participate actively in the religious life of the school:
The Durham Catholic District School Board recognizes that a school should be a place that promotes responsibility, respect, civility, and academic excellence in a safe learning and teaching environment. A positive school climate exists when all members of the school community feel safe, comfortable, and accepted. With this right, comes the responsibility of all members of the community to work together to create a positive learning environment where all members feel supported.
Parents and guardians are welcome to visit the school to discuss an issue with teachers or administrators. In keeping with the Board's Access to School Premises Policy, please remember that anyone coming into the school must first sign in at the office and obtain a Visitor's badge. All staff members will be wearing photo ID and will question anyone whose presence is not expected.
If a parent/guardian needs to pick up his/her son/daughter during the school day, this must be facilitated at the office. Members of the office staff will call the student down to the office to be signed out. If parents send a friend/relative/designate to pick up their child, please advise the school in advance and ask the designate to provide photo identification at the office. If the student returns to school before dismissal, he/she must sign back in at the office so his/her attendance can be monitored.
Student achievement and success is dependent on a child's attendance at school. Did you know?
School attendance needs to be a priority at home.
Keep the lines of communication open with the school and your child's teachers.
"Regular attendance at school is critical for the student's learning and achievement of course expectation" (OSS-Program & Diplomas Requirements 1999 p. 35). Students must accept responsibility for work which has been missed due to absences.
Parents must call the safe arrival parent portal to report all absences at 1-844-288-7628 or by simply downloading the phone app. Absences may be reported until 1:30 p.m. daily and may be made in advance of an absence.
Parents are encouraged to use the Safe Arrival Parent Portal to record an excused absence, i.e. early or late arrival, including signing out for appointments etc. Students may also present a note to the attendance secretary prior to 9:30 a.m. that morning. Should a student become ill during the school day he or she MUST report to the attendance office prior to leaving the school premises to receive a "sign-out" slip. Parents will be contacted prior to permitting a student to leave the school. While students will not be penalized for excused absences, they will be responsible for any work missed. This work should be completed in consultation with the classroom teacher.
Should a student be absent from a final examination/culminating activity in a course, a doctor's note must be presented to the vice-principal upon the student's return. Only students with such medical certificates will be given accommodation regarding the missed exam. In absences of a medical certificate a mark of zero may be recorded for the exam.
Truancy is a non-excused absence from class or from school. Students who are truant will be assigned a detention or community service and parents will be notified. Subsequent truancies will involve parent contact and interviews, suspensions, referrals to the guidance counselor, the social worker or Child and Youth worker. Any work missed due to truancy must be completed on the student's time and to the teacher's satisfaction. If a student signs out, they must leave school premises.
Students are expected to arrive on time to all of their classes. Students who arrive at school after 9:15 a.m. must sign in at the attendance office. Persistent lateness will result in suspension.
Plagiarism is the act of passing off someone else's work as your own. A student who plagiarizes may receive up to a failing grade on his/her school work that was plagiarized. The expectation is that teachers introduce and review proper citation procedures with their students. Students are advised of resources to help with proper documenting.
Each student is issued his/her own locker. Lockers are not to be shared. Only Dudley locks, provided by the school on the first day of school are acceptable. Any other lock will be removed. Students are expected to leave their coats in their lockers. While the contents of a locker are a student's property, the locker is the property of the school and the administrators have the right to inspect a student's locker at any time. Students should not bring large sums on money or any valuable property to school. The school is not responsible for valuables left in a locker.
Participation in any extra-curricular activity is at the discretion of the administration. Students who participate in extra-curricular activities must represent the values of St. Mary Catholic Secondary School. At all times they have to show exemplary behaviour and respect for all persons or property at this school or any other location where they represent the school.
St. Mary Catholic Secondary School has the following bell times.
Warning Bell - all students to Period 1
|9:00 - 9:05 a.m.||
|9:00 - 10:20 a.m.||
|10:25 - 11:40 a.m.||
|11:40 a.m. - 12:20 p.m.||
Period 3A, Lunch 1
|12:20 - 1:00 p.m.||
Period 3B, Lunch 2
|1:00 - 1:40 p.m.||
Period 3C, Lunch 3
|1:45 - 3:00 p.m.||
For the latest information on PA Days, holidays, exam schedule and upcoming events visit our school calendar available on the homepage of our website.
Retreats are part of the religion program for every student at St. Mary Catholic Secondary School. Students in Grades 9, 10, 11 and 12 will participate in the retreat program. Besides individual class Masses, we celebrate school wide Masses with the entire student body and staff. There will be a reconciliation service during Lent followed by the opportunity for individual confessions. The sacrament of reconciliation is also available on a weekly basis by consulting the Chaplain.
As part of a student's religion education, he/she will be given in-class assignment/ reflections that focus on the concept of Christian community service. This work will be evaluated and weighted at five percent for the final grade for religion education. Students require 40 hours of community service to graduate.
The following activities do not count towards community service hours:
Any service work for community agencies, churches, service organizations, or any activity pre-approved by the principal or designate, according to pastoral need.
The official dress code of St. Mary Catholic Secondary School is a result of discussion with faculty, students, parent council and administration. Our school uniform is compulsory. All students are to wear the uniform during the school day. The school colours are navy blue, white and gray.
Students shall wear the uniform properly. The uniform shall be kept clean and in good repair and be warn neatly. Uniform clothing needs to be sized appropriately: neither too large nor immodestly tight.
For more information about the school uniform visit McCarthy School Uniforms.
Research showed that academic success is linked to the amount of time a student is in the classroom.
The Durham Catholic District School Board provides bus transportation for all students living outside the non-walking zone as set by the Board. Students are responsible for their behaviour on all school buses in the same way that they are in class. The use of bus transportation is a privilege and students who abuse it may lose that privilege.
All visitors to the school must report to the main office. Visitors on school business must sign the visitor book in the main office and wear a visitor pass. Students must not invite friends to the school. Any person on school property without permission is trespassing. Staff and students should report any strangers not wearing a visitor pass inside the school. Please report this person to the main office immediately.
Parking is available at our school. Students may not loiter in their cars in the parking area and must drive with due care. All students with cars must obtain a parking pass through the main office. An annual cost for parking may apply. Parking privileges may be revoked at any time for unsafe driving.
Smoking and smokeless tobacco are not permitted on school property at any time by anyone. Any use or possession by a student will result in a student being suspended by Administration. Students may be fined for violations by the Ministry of Health.
Students are not permitted to participate in gambling activities on school property - for example: dice/poker. Consequences for such behaviours will be dealt with according to the code of conduct.
We believe that safety begins with positive connections between the students, staff and parents. To foster these relationships, staff in the Durham Catholic District School Board use restorative practices, including classroom circles and small group conferences to build community within the classroom and the school.
Restorative practice is rooted in the same philosophical approach as Canada's Native Aboriginal communities. It rests on the belief that it is best to do things with people, rather than to them. When conflict arises, using restorative practice engages students in a fair process that responds to behavior in ways that strengthen and repair the relationship. It is collaborative rather than adversarial in nature.
The aim of restorative practice is to hold individuals accountable for their actions while restoring and repairing any relationships amongst each other and within the community that may have been harmed.
Catholic Restorative Schools will:
Our schools base their individual school Code of Conduct on the Ministry of Education Code of Conduct. As per Board Policy and the Ontario Safe Schools Act, a Code of Conduct will be developed in consultation with parents, teachers and the Catholic School Advisory Council. All members of the school community will be responsible for adhering to the expectations as outlined in this Code of Conduct.
Schools within the Durham Catholic District School Board focus on prevention, early intervention and progressive discipline as the key to maintaining a positive school environment in which students can learn and educators can teach. When inappropriate behaviour occurs, all staff members utilize a range of interventions, supports and consequences that are developmentally appropriate, that include opportunities for students to learn from mistakes, and that focus on improving behaviour. In some circumstances, short term suspension may be the method of progressive discipline utilized. In the case of a serious incident, long-term suspension or expulsion, which is further along the continuum of progressive discipline, may be required.
The provincial Code of Conduct sets clear provincial standards of behaviour. These standards of behaviour apply not only to students, but also to all individuals involved in the publicly funded school system whether they are on school property, on school buses, at school-related events or activities, or in other circumstances that could have an impact on the school climate.
The purpose of the Provincial Code of Conduct and the School Code of Conduct is:
The guiding principles are:
All members of the school community must:
All members of the school community must not:
In accordance with the Durham Catholic District School Board's Progressive Discipline Policy, when inappropriate behaviour occurs, schools are required to utilize a range of interventions, supports and consequences that are developmentally appropriate, that include opportunities for students to learn from mistakes, and focus on improving behaviour. In some circumstances, short-term suspension may be a useful tool. In the case of a serious incident, long-term suspension or expulsion, which is further along the continuum of progressive discipline may be required.
St. Mary Catholic Secondary School will use progressive discipline strategies as listed below wherever possible:
The following violations may result in a student suspension by the principal:
A student may be suspended for a minimum of one school day and a maximum of 20 school days.
The following violations for which a principal can suspend and may consider recommending to the Board that a pupil be expelled from school or from all schools of the Board include:
Before the principal or vice-principal makes a decision to suspend or recommend an expulsion he/she must consider all mitigating circumstances.
The following outlines the roles and responsibilities of our stakeholders in our schools.
The Durham Catholic District School Board provides direction to our schools to ensure opportunity, academic excellence, and accountability in the education system. It is the responsibility of the Board to:
Under the direction of our Board, principals take a leadership role in the daily operation of a school. They provide this leadership by:
Under the leadership of the school's principal, teachers and other school staff members maintain order in the school and are expected to hold everyone to the highest standard of respectful and responsible behaviour. As role models, teachers and school staff uphold these high standards when they:
Students are to be treated with respect and dignity. In return, they must demonstrate respect for themselves, for others, and for the responsibilities of citizenship through acceptable behaviour. Respect and responsibility are demonstrated when a student:
Parents and guardians play an important role in the education of their children, and can support the efforts of school staff in maintaining a safe and respectful learning environment for all students. Parents fulfill their role when they:
Our Chaplaincy Team Leader is available full-time to staff and students as a resource. He or she provides different ministries of Christ as the need arises. In particular, Chaplaincy will provide:
Program Support or Student Services are available to all students who require a quiet place to work or to receive assistance with assignments and tests. Peer tutors are available to assist as well as teachers. During class time, students must have permission from their teacher to go to Program Support.
Guidance provides programs and services for the entire school community that respond to the needs of students, parents, teachers and administrators.
The Guidance Resource Centre is available to students wishing to explore career and post-secondary educational options. Students are invited to visit the Guidance Resource Centre before or after school, during lunch or during their spares. The following types of information and/or services are available in the Guidance Resource Centre:
As well, students have access to the computers in the Guidance Resource Centre for educational purposes only.
The Durham Catholic District School Board provides a support team for its family of schools. The team consisting of the following professions:
The above resource staff are available to assist students at [name of school] through a referral procedure.
Student Identification (ID) cards are required to borrow books and materials from the library, use computers in the library, complete an Accelerated Reader test, go to school dances or purchase prom tickets.
If a student ID card is lost or missing, students can purchase a replacement ID card at the main office. A replacement fee will be charged.
The Durham Catholic District School Board is committed to providing safe learning environments for all students, staff, school visitors and community members. When student behaviours pose a potential threat to safety or serious harm to self or others, all schools in the Durham Catholic District School Board follow the Community Threat Assessment and Intervention Protocol (C-TAIP), which outlines how a school responds immediately to threatening behaviour.
This protocol involves supports from various partners, including community agencies, hospitals and police services. Personal information shared throughout this process will always respect and balance each individual's right to privacy while ensuring the safety of all. Visit our Board's Safe Schools webpage for more information or speak to the principal.
As we try to keep pace with social media that is so much a part of our students' lives, it is important to be reminded of people's right to privacy. While taking photos or videos at various school events, please be mindful that it is illegal to post/upload/share photos or videos of anyone other than yourself or your own child on the Internet or anywhere without the expressed consent of the person or their guardian. Sharing photos or videos of others without their consent is a privacy violation.
All school boards in the Province of Ontario are required by law to have a concussion policy and school board administrative procedures in place so that students, school staff and parents/guardians understand their role in preventing, managing and reporting suspected or diagnosed concussions.
Aconcussion is a clinical diagnosis that is made by a medical doctor or a nurse practitioner. The definition of concussion below is adapted from the definition provided in the concussion protocol in the Ontario Physical Education Safety Guidelines.
Our concussion protocol and tool includes responsibilities for Board and school staff, students and parents/guardians. Additionally, health units and sports and fitness organizations in Durham are using this protocol to raise awareness to help prevent and manage concussions.
It is importantt o note that all suspected concussions must be reported and a medical doctor or nurse practitioner make a diagnosis and participate in the Return to Learn and/or Physical Activity documentation process.
The concussion tool noted in the student agenda is a resource for school staff, parents/guardians and students. Parents/guardians and students are encouraged to contact your school principal for more details about the new concussion management and prevention safety protocols that exist to promote student safety and success.
Our students are going to live and work in a world where people use electronic devices regularly. They need to learn how to use devices in a respectful, responsible and ethical manner. Our Board's Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) procedures, School Codes of Conduct and Catholic Graduate Expectations will guide teachers in the process of teaching students what it means to be good digital citizens.
Secondary school students must complete the acceptable use agreement in order to use their electronic devices for educational purposes while at school.
"Do not be afraid of new technologies! These rank among the marvelous things -
Inter mirifica - which God has placed at our disposal to discover, to use and to make known the truth, also the truth about our dignity and about our destiny as his children, heirs of his eternal Kingdom" - St. John Paul II, 2005
Students enrolled in any science class must follow the safety rules as outlined in the Science Safety Contract below.
The following are general safety rules and guidelines associated with any and all science courses. Additional specific safety instruction will be delivered on an as needed basis. To participate in any science class, you and your parent or guardian must read, understand, and sign the agreement below. Failure to do so may restrict your ability to participate in experimental activities, and possibly result in disciplinary action.
Parent or Guardian signatures are required on the contract.
I, _______________________________ (please print), have read and agree to follow the above listed rules and guidelines. These rules and guidelines have been developed to ensure the safety of myself, fellow students, teacher, and the environment. I understand that failure to comply may result in disciplinary action. By signing this contract, I agree to cooperate to the fullest extent possible, including but not limited to, any oral or written instructions.
Student signature: __________________________
Parent signature: ___________________________
By signing below you are indicating that you have reviewed the information contained in the student agenda, and the related Board policies and you agree to abide by them. The following Board policies are available online and in the school office.
If student is younger than 18 years of age: I have discussed the information contained in this agenda with my child.
Student's signature Date
Parent or Guardian's Full Name (Please print)