COVID-19 Updates, Parents of BIPOC Children, Black History Month

Topics covered in this post:

children working on large art pieces in Grade 6

  1. COVID-19 Update

  2. Travel

  3. PPE

  4. Rapid Testing Program

  5. Vaccination

  6. Changing COVID-19 Protocols

  7. March Break

  8. Purim - March 16-17

  9. Nowruz - March 21

  10. Student Vaccinations Mobile Clinic

  11. Parent Education

  12. Lunch & Learn: Pathways to Positive Masculinity

  13. Meeting Space for Parents of JICS BIPOC Children

  14. JICS Read-a-thon

  15. Black History Month

  16. Music with Russell

  17. Music with Suzanne

  18. Drama with Sarah

  19. JK

  20. Grade 3

  21. Grade 5

  22. Upcoming March Events

  23. Upcoming April Events


1. COVID Update

a) Travel

We understand some faculty and families will participate in travel during the break. In addition to following Mandatory Travel Requirements as outlined at, we encourage all families to review Toronto Public Health’s Travel Pictogram which outlines expectations for self-isolation.

b) PPE

The Lab School will continue to require masks for students, faculty/staff and all adults on the school property until at least Friday, April 9. (This also applies to the Daycare Camp, March 21 – 25.) With many JICS community members travelling internationally during the Break, the mixed cohorting of students in camps, and the increase in positive cases in our school recently, we feel this is the safest approach to ensure all members of our community are safe and healthy. Approaching April 9, we will evaluate our data and communicate our new PPE policy to the community.

c) Rapid Testing Program

If you have remaining tests, please continue using them Sunday/Wednesday over the Break and uploading your child's results to Thrive. A new package of rapid tests will be distributed to all JICS students and faculty/staff following the Break. We will resume the weekly testing program (Sundays and Wednesdays). While we will no longer be able to upload results onto Thrive following March 31st, we are updating the mandatory JICS Daily Screening to include the information from the testing.

d) Vaccination

All eligible JICS Lab School children must be fully COVID-19 vaccinated for the 2022-2023 school year and provide proof of vaccination.

e) Changing COVID-19 Protocols

We will be evaluating the remainder of the COVID-19 protocols based on the recent Ministry and Government announcements and will communicate any new policies to the community following the Break. Thank you for your continued support as we make decisions that best serve our community and keep everyone safe.


2. March Break

March 14 to 25

We wish everyone a fun and safe March Break, March 14 to 25. The Winter Term ends on Friday, March 11 at 3:30pm (6:00pm for daycare students).

The Daycare March Break Camp will be open for registered students March 21 to 25. Registration for the Camp closes tomorrow by end of day. Email Anne Marie at to register!

School and daycare will reopen on Monday, March 28.


3. Purim

March 16-17

chag Purim sameach

May this Purim bring fun, laughter and celebration to your life!


4. Nowruz

March 21

Nowruz is the day of the vernal equinox, and it marks the beginning of Spring in the Northern Hemisphere. It also marks the first day of the first month (Farvardin) of the Iranian calendars. Typically, before the arrival of Nowruz, family members gather around the Haft-sin table and await the exact moment of the March equinox to celebrate the New Year. Traditionally, the Haft-sin (seven things beginning with the letter sin (س)) are:

  • Sabze – wheat, barley, mung bean, or lentil sprouts grown in a dish

  • Samanu – sweet pudding made from wheat germ

  • Persian olive

  • Vinegar

  • Apple

  • Garlic

  • Sumac

Following our March Break, we invite parents to suggest ways to help our students gain insight into the celebration of Nowruz. Please be in touch with your child’s teachers with ideas.


5. Student Vaccination Mobile Clinic

Toronto Public Health is hosting a School Mobile Vaccination Clinic TODAY at Davisville Junior Public School (50 Davisville Ave, Toronto, ON M4S 1E8) 3:30pm- 8:30pm. Please see the March 3 email for more information.

Once your child is vaccinated, please log in to your SFO account to update the school on your child’s status. At the end of the form, you will find a link to upload their vaccination certificate as well. Please be sure to also submit the SFO form!


6. Parent Education

March 31, 2022 | 12:30-1:30pm

Lunch & Learn with Denia Anderson

Pathways to Positive Masculinity - Raising Boys with a Healthy Understanding of Masculinity

event poster for March 31 2022 event at 12:30pm-1:30pm. Pathways to Positive Masculinity - Raising Boys with a Healthy Understanding of Masculinity. Lunch & Learn Parenting Series with Denia Anderson, MSW Candidate.

Hello JICS families!

I am pleased to run a “lunch and learn” focusing on fostering positive masculinity. It can be difficult navigating the many messages that boys receive from their environments of what it means to be a “man”. In this talk, I will share with you some of the literature on the impact of toxic forms of masculinity on children and their friendships, as well as provide some information and resources on what could be helpful for your children in developing healthier understanding of their masculinity. I will present for 30 mins and then open the space up to discussion and questions for the remaining 30 minutes. Have a wonderful March Break!

Denia Anderson is a Master of Social Work student at the University of Toronto; specializing in children and their families. This year, she completed her MSW placement at the JICS Lab School, under the supervision of Ellie. Prior to this year, Denia worked with many caregivers on strategies to manage behaviour and mental health concerns they have had for their children; primarily using CBT and narrative therapy. She is a strong advocate for using play therapy with children as it facilitates exploration of complex emotions, and allows for greater engagement in difficult conversations.



7. Meeting Space for Parents of JICS BIPOC Children

April 6, 2022 | 7:00-8:30pm

Last year, a group of parents of racialised children at JICS came together to discuss shared experiences at school and beyond. At that time, many of us were reeling from the disproportionate impact of the pandemic on our communities and the proliferation of incidents of anti-Black, anti-Asian and anti-Indigenous racism. We met in order to create a safe space for discussing the issues impacting our children, and as a means to collect and convey our observations, our needs as racialised families, and any advice to the school around equity and inclusion.

We would like to meet again, to continue where we left off. The next zoom meeting of the group is scheduled for April 6, 7 - 8:30 pm, where we hope to have a discussion about our experiences as JICS parents of BIPOC children and how and what other purposes the group might serve. If you would like to join, please RSVP here by Thursday March 31. A zoom address will be emailed to registered participants.


8. JICS Read-a-thon

Your donations will be used to replace lost and broken books, purchasing new books, and supporting authors, illustrators and storytellers to visit with students.

We are so grateful to our supportive community! Donations of $25 or more will be rewarded with a personalized book plate placed in a new library book.

Additional information for parents:

Online donations:


9. Black History Month

Here are more examples of how the legacy of Black Canadians, past and present, have been honoured at JICS:

Music with Russell

Throughout the year, music by Black artists from around the world is woven into the curriculum. In February, each class discussed their favourite artists.

In the class dedicated to Bob Marley, the children located Jamaica on a world map, discussed the history of Bob Marley's upbringing, watched a short documentary, learned and demonstrated what musically makes up Reggae, danced and listened to select songs from the greatest hits recording, Legend.

If you love to whistle, Sean Lomax is a world champion. Learn how its done with your child.

Music with Suzanne

The JKs and SKs explored sounds, instrumentation, songs and dances from the Caribbean throughout the month of February, including Steel Pan, Reggae, Calypso and Soca. They also learned call-and response songs from West Africa, and played musical games inspired by African-American clapping songs.