Monthly Archives: March 2020

St. Bernadette Newswire: Message From Chair of the Board and Director Of Education

Dear Families,

Please see attached a letter from the WCDSB Director Loretta Notten and Chair of the Board Bill Conway regarding Minister Lecce’s announcement today.  As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me directly.

Take care Bears!


The WCDSB has a special COVID-19 page on the WCDSB main website. The page contains links to important COVID-19 information and resources. This page will be updated on an ongoing basis and will be our primary mode of public communication as the situation evolves.

St. Bernadette Newswire: Update March 29th

Good Evening Bears!

I wanted to share some information with you as things are changing rapidly and I want to keep you informed.  As always, if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out.

As we move to teacher-led distance learning, our teachers have been working to contact students and families to find out who may need a Chromebook. If you did not hear from your child’s teacher, please contact the teacher(s).  Emails are found on our board website:

We are expecting an announcement tomorrow from the Ministry of Education with more details about the remote learning plan and timelines for the school year. Last Friday an announcement introducing WCDSBLearn@Home! took place. Click the link for more information: I would also suggest that you continue to monitor announcements teachers are posting on your child(ren)’s classroom platform.

Many of our planned events for the remainder of the school year have either been postponed or cancelled. We will let you know when we get the information. The opportunity to receive sacrament through the Church is on hold for now. Any questions about receiving sacraments can be directed to St. Joseph Church. If you have any questions about the events, field trips or pizza day money paid via School Cash Online, please feel free to reach out.

Father Brian continues to send out daily messages and scripture readings for our parishioners. Please connect with the parish at for more information. Our local diocese has set up a webpage with helpful resources so Catholics can remain in touch with their faith while churches are closed:

As mentioned earlier, more resources and information to help keep the learning process moving forward has been  provided  – including a link to all of the outstanding resources and ideas that were provided during #STEAMDays, as well as some important mental health and well being information.  A “How to Video” is also provided so you can activate the Read and Write app on a home device (laptops and ChromeBooks. Here is the link:   There will be more to come!

Nutrition for Learning has mobile locations set up, including times at St. Bernadette school, for food and snacks. Here is the link for the schedule updates:

Please stay tuned to Newswire for any school updates, and to the local news for any updates from the Government, Minister of Education or Minister of Health.  Things are changing fast and we will do our best to keep you informed.

Please remain confident that we are here to support you, as we walk as a hope-filled community of faith toward the season of Easter.

Stay Strong Bears!

St. Bernadette Newswire: BEARS Nation Update: March 25th

Dear St. Bernadette Families,

Just a quick note to say we are all thinking of our families during this difficult time and we are hoping all of you are keeping well and safe.  A special thank you to those who are working in essential services right now as you are keeping our community going.  Moving forward please know that our teachers will be reaching out to touch base with you shortly.

As directed by the Ministry and School Board, we are providing you with a few resources you may find helpful at this point.  Please understand that you are not expected to engage in all of the activities provided by rather use the resources as you see fit for your family and their needs.   In addition fact sheets about COVID-19 in different languages for our newcomers is also available at


Stay Safe and God Bless!
Al Simoes (Principal)

St. Bernadette Newswire: A Letter From the Board Regarding Extension of School Closure

From Loretta Notten (Director of Education) and Bill Conway (Chair of the Board)

Dear Parents/Guardians:

Since we reached out to you, the global situation in relation to COVID-19 has continued to worsen and here at home we have seen unprecedented actions taken by our federal and provincial governments.  As you know, schools are now closed and it would appear that this will stretch beyond the Easter weekend, although exactly when we might return to face learning is not clear.  These decisions are being informed by a concern for preserving the health and safety of all, and in this regard we know that each of us shares this common goal.  Nonetheless, the news that students will be home indefinitely may be disconcerting to you and your child.

For the full letter, please open the following link: Letter to Parents School Closure COVID 19 




St. Bernadette Newswire: Nutrition For Learning POP Up Sites

Good morning Bears Families!
Nutrition for Learning is providing a number of “Pop-Up” sites in our region.

Each morning starting at a time and location to be posted on the Nutrition for Learning website and social media channels our Nutrition for Learning van will be offering free snacks, yogurt, granola bars and cheese strings for school kids. The route will be posted on the Nutrition for Learning website at 8 am each day. Nutrition for Learning 

Nutrition for Learning will have volunteers walking with coolers beside our van down the streets posted on our website to meet kids at the end of their driveway or walkway but no congregating around the van/ truck will be allowed and we will ensure participants maintain social distancing (keeping 2 arms’ lengths or 2 meters between each child).
All Nutrition for Learning staff and volunteers have police vulnerable sector checks and have been trained in safe food handling and abide by all public health rules.
“We know our donors want us to be there for the students and we know how important it is to ensure our community overall safety first, as well as our staff, the kids, and the food. All the items we would distribute will be sealed and handled safely. We just want to get out to the kids.” states Mary D’Alton at Nutrition for Learning.
Nutrition for Learning is in 147 locations in Waterloo Region serving 3.5 million food items a year with universal access to food for hungry kids and minds.

St. Bernadette Newswire: A Letter From the Minister of Education

Hey Bears!

Please find attached a letter from the Minister of Education (Stephen Lecce) about the most current state of our COVIC-19 pandemic.

Minister Letter to Parents – EN – March 22 2020
Letter to parents -FR – March 22 2020

Highlights include:
– top priority in Ontario is to keep people safe
– all schools in Ontario which are publicly funded are closed until April 6th
– many people, including children are anxious about this virus, which likely comes from a place of uncertainty
– talk to them about the facts
– there is an online portal to use in order to access a wide variety of educational resources found at
– preparations are being made in the case that schools need to be closed longer than April 6th (i.e. continuing
coursework and credit accumulation, leveraging tools to promote student learning, etc.)
– no graduating student will have their ability to graduate impacted by the two week closure and COVID-19
– all standardized assessments have been cancelled for this year (i.e. EQAO for Grades 3, 6 and 9, CCAT for
Grade 4, CAT-4 for Grade 7 and OSSLT for Grade 10)
– schools are able to access funding to provide a “deep clean” of the building
– if you have traveled it is vital that you are self-isolating for 14 days upon your return
– if you think you have the coronavirus, you can take the sell assessment test  on to help determine how to seek further care
– as information changes and develops, we will keep you informed.

Take care Bears! Stay Healthy!

St. Bernadette Newswire: Father Brian Update (St. Joseph Parish)

To the faith communities of St. Joseph,

Blessings to you and your family on the Lord’s Day — a beautiful sunny day!!

The information I am forwarding is about a comprehensive, Catholic multi-media approach to religious education and adult faith formation: it is called FORMED. In this time of crisis — of isolation and anxiety for many — the St. Augustine Institute is offering a 40-Day free sign up. Normally it is a fairly expensive online approach to good Catholic content. I simply offer this opportunity to you: maybe you would like to look into the programs they have developed.

In a while, I will also forward the Salt and Light Mass times that are available daily on TV, Sundays and weekdays. It is one of many possibilities. I will also send you my short, very simple reflection on today’s Gospel, the 4th Sunday of Lent.

Beginning tomorrow, we, your parish priests, will be sending out by email a short daily reflection on the scripture readings of the day, as well as our videotaped reflections on Facebook.

I know we all miss being together on the Lord’s Day to celebrate the Eucharist, to receive Him in Holy Communion and to strengthen our belonging to the Body of Christ, the Church. We will do whatever we can to keep us united as a faith community in these difficult times.

The ministry of the St. Vincent de Paul Society in delivering food hampers has been forced to close but there are many people in our community in great need. They are not accepting food donations at the moment.: however, a monetary donation would be much appreciated. It could be dropped off at the rectory, using the mailbox slots in the parish office door. The Society of St. Vincent de Paul is looking at new and creative ways to offer help to the most vulnerable.

We have ordered extra copies of the Living with Christ  Sunday Missal 2019-2020. We will find ways to get them to you if you want one.

Finally, if there are people in the community who are sick and suffering, and would appreciate a few prayers for healing. Please let us know their names. Not only will we pray for them during our private daily Mass but we will let others know, namely those who are part of our Payer Network.

If you have any suggestions about how we can continue to share and put into practice our faith along this journey, our way o the Cross this Lent, we would love to hear from you. We are extremely edified (and humbled) because w hear of many good things that parishioners are doing to help their neighbours.

Stay safe and healthy. Be hope-filled.

Fr. Brian

As requested by His Excellency, Bishop Crosby, OMI, Bishop of Hamilton, please see attached further directives regarding COVID-2019   –     2020 FURTHER DIRECTIVES March 18



St. Bernadette Newswire: Learning At Home Update

Hey Bears!

The entire staff at St. Bernadette is hopeful that you are all staying healthy and doing your part in stopping the spread of this unprecedented virus.  We understand that there are a lot of resources and links, social media posts and “tasks” for your child(ren) to do over the next two weeks (until April 5th).

Please stay tuned to Newswire over the course of the next couple of weeks for simple, interactive and independent activities that your child(ren) can engage in so that they are continuing to learn and so that you able to find time to take care of yourself.

Here is the Ministry of Education link to “Learn at Home” website:

The Waterloo Catholic District School Board has launched STEAMDays.  In which each day of the week will dedicated to sharing fun questions, finding great answers and learning subject specific home activities.  See the link below for details:

Continue to check the school and board website for the latest information:
St. Bernadette:
Waterloo Catholic District School Board:

Stay healthy Bears!

St. Bernadette Newswire: School Cancellations Due to School Closure

Dear Families,

Any meetings or school events that were to occur between March 23rd to April 5th are either cancelled or postponed.

Extended Day will not be open over the March Break or between March 23rd to April 5th.  Families will not be charged for these days.

We will share information as it becomes available, so please stay tuned.

Have a safe March Break with your families!

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