On behalf of the Parent Advisory,
the Staff, and the Students of Hillcrest School
A Reference for Parents and Staff
1180 20th Street, S.E.
Salmon Arm, B.C. V1E 2J4
This handbook was put together for our school by parents and staff. Each year we review and update the handbook to ensure it will be useful to Hillcrest families.
The handbook is intended to be an introduction to our school. Through this booklet, we hope to communicate to you our philosophy and goals so that you may become more familiar with our learning environment at Hillcrest School.
We welcome parent participation and input. If you have any questions regarding any facet of our school’s operation, please feel free to contact us. We want you and your children’s experience at Hillcrest School to be a positive and a productive one.
Best wishes for a successful year!
Bill Hagardt, Kathy Dunfield
Table of Contents
Welcome ………………………………………………………………………………………………………… page 2
Table of Content …………………………………………………………………………………………….. page 3
Introduction …………………………………………………………………………………………………… page 4
Mission Statement ………………………………………………………………………………………….. page 5
Policies and Procedures ………………………………………………………………………………….. page 6
Student code of Ethics
Placement of Students
School Supplies Fees
Cold Weather Policy
Lost & Found Policy
Student Telephone Use
Accident and Medical Procedures ………………………………………………………………….. page 15
Accident and Injury Procedures
Other Communicable Diseases
Bell Schedule …………………………………………………………………………………………………. page 16
Safety Programs …………………………………………………………………………………………….. page 17
Arrive Safety Absenteeism
Special Programs …………………………………………………………………………………………… page 18
Library Fine Arts
School District & Community Resource Services
Learning Resource Program
Extra Curricular Activities ……………………………………………………………………………. page 20
Team Selection Policies
Year End Recognition
Helpful Information……………………………………………………………………………………….. page 22
Parent Advisory Committee
Important Phone Numbers
School District Calendar
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Hillcrest School, which opened in 1972, is nestled in a forested play area at the top of the hill in Salmon Arm. Not only are the academics pursued, Hillcrest has a full sports, and fine arts program, computer lab and multi-purpose area in which to pursue cooking, career and personal planning programs.
Everywhere there is a caring and sharing attitude. Children of all abilities are integrated into their peer-group classrooms with modifications made so that all pupils can participate to the best of their ability. Children are encouraged to get along together with cooperative learning and conflict management skills taught right from their first school experiences in Kindergarten through to Grade five.
Parents are encouraged to come and participate as helpers or observers. Come and join us at Hillcrest and share in the excitement of your children’s elementary years.
The handbook is intended to be a reference for parents and staff when they require information about Hillcrest policies and procedures. These are subject to periodic review. Any suggestions for alteration or changes should be directed to the Principal or Vice-Principal.
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The mission of Hillcrest School is to provide a positive educational experience for all students in a safe and comfortable environment. We encourage acceptance of differences. We emphasize cooperation, caring, and respect for self and others.
We seek to provide a challenging curriculum with flexibility to meet the individual learning needs of each student. The school’s program will address all aspects of human development, including aesthetic, artistic, emotional, intellectual, physical, and social development and responsibility.
In partnership with parents, and the community, our goal is to nurture life long learning, essential for our future in a global society.
“At Hillcrest School Everyone Belongs”
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We at Hillcrest would appreciate your support and co-operation on the following school rules and guidelines.
a) Bicycles: Students who bring bikes to school must keep them locked up on the bike stands during school hours. Bikes are not to be used between 8:10 am and 2:45 pm. Bikes are to be walked on the school grounds. All students must wear a helmet and our very young students are to be accompanied by an adult.
b) Gym Strip: Grade Five students are requested to wear shorts, T-shirts and running shoes for P.E. It is recommended that these items are kept in a small gym bag clearly labeled.
c) Indoor Footwear: Outdoor footwear is not permitted in the school building. In order to keep our school clean and reduce the damage to the flooring, students are therefore asked to have a pair of slippers or indoor shoes (non-marking soles) available to wear for safety and health reasons, stocking feet are not advisable.
d) Permission to ride on the School Bus: Notes are required for those students who wish to ride on a bus other than their regular bus. These notes are to be given to the Principal or secretary who can grant permission only if adequate seating is available.
e) Leaving the School Grounds: Students are not permitted to leave the school grounds at any time during school hours unless they have written permission or are on a school supervised activity. There is a sign-in sign-out sheet for parents to use if they pick their child up for lunch.
f) Skateboards, Scooters and Rollerblades: The staff at Hillcrest recognizes that skateboarding, scootering and rollerblading are enjoyable and healthy physical activities for all ages. Rollerblades can be worn to and from school, but not used during regular school hours. Skateboards and scooters are not permitted to be used on school grounds during school hours. Helmets are to be worn while travelling to and from school.
g) GTing is permitted at Hillcrest School and is a great source of fun and excitement for our students. We have two excellent runs. A schedule has been established to allow all students an equal opportunity to slide on both runs. Due to the speed and potential hazards of this activity, certain behavioural expectations have been established and are enforced. GTing is only permitted when weather and snowfall conditions are conductive to safe sliding. The use of a helmet is recommended
Code of Conduct
The Code of Conduct applies while at school, at school related activities, and in other circumstance where engaging in the activity will have an impact on our school environment. Our goal is to provide a safe and caring school environment in which our students can learn and thrive.
Students are expected to act in a safe, responsible and respectful manner and to treat others with politeness and consideration.
Student Code of Ethics
Students are expected to become responsible citizens as they learn the connection between their rights and their responsibilities.
1. I have the RIGHT to learn. It is my RESPONSIBILITY not to inferfere in the learning of others and to work quietly and complete assigned work.
2. I have the RIGHT to attend school. I have a RESPONSIBILITY to attend class on a regular basis and practice appropriate decision-making procedures.
3. I have the RIGHT to feel safe and to be treated with respect and courtesy. I have the RESPONSIBILITY to treat others with respect and courtesy and not physically or verbally harm or threaten anyone.
4. I have a RIGHT to hear and be heard. I have a RESPONSIBILITY to listen quietly when others are speaking.
The staff of Hillcrest School would like to work together with you to reinforce the already established sound behaviour expectations of your children instituted by the home, the family unit and the community.
By its very nature, the school deals with children from sometimes very diverse backgrounds of parental expectations for behaviour. Because discipline patterns established in the home may differ, the school must be prepared to establish and enforce general and specific expectations for behaviour which are, in themselves, what any individual can see as being good and meaningful.
It is therefore expected that staff involved in this school will encourage the following guidelines for student behaviour:
1. Be respectful to self and others
2. Be respectful to property
3. Be responsible for your own learning and work to your full potential
4. Be responsible for your own decisions and accept the natural and logical consequence
5. Demonstrate fair play in all activities at all times
6. Show support for each other’s efforts – be inclusive of everyone
The intent of these guidelines, of course, obviously applies not only to youngsters but also to all adults.
Discipline Procedures Restitution
The students of Hillcrest Elementary School are aware of their rights and responsibilities as a student and are aware of the District’s Student Code of Ethics.
All minor offences are handled on the spot in the class, halls and other general areas of the school.
The discipline cycle is implemented at the office level for the following major offences or continuous disruptive behaviour:
1. Hitting, roughing, physical abuse, fighting (we are a total hands off school)
2. Throwing objects in an unsafe manner, such as rocks or sticks
3. Defiance of authority, including lunch hour supervisors
4. Disrespectful and abusive language
5. Damaging or stealing property
The first time, the student is typically given a warning and a logical and natural consequence. The student must complete a plan of action worksheet which defines the problem and offers an alternate solution. The supervising adult discusses the plan with the student and reminds them of their responsibilities. The parents are not notified unless the teacher, Principal or Vice-Principal deems it necessary. This will depend on the seriousness of the offence. A record of this incident is kept in the discipline binder in the office.
Subsequent infractions may include any of the following depending on circumstances:
Natural and logical consequences
Out of school suspension
Suspended until District hearing
Parents will be notified by telephone or letter and the student completes a plan of action. A record of this incident is added to the discipline binder.
If a serious violation occurs at any time, an immediate in-school suspension or out-of-school suspension may occur.
Special consideration may apply to students with special needs, if they are unable to comply with this Code of Conduct due to having a disability of intellectual, physical, sensory, emotional, or behavioural nature. The special needs of the student as outlined in a Individual Education Plan or a Behaviour Plan.
What is Restitution
Our school believes in the philosophy of restitution which is that all people/students make mistakes. We attempt to work with students to identify the mistakes they have made, identify the reasons, and to find ways to ‘fix’ their mistake or to make it better. This does not mean that there are not consequences for behaviour but it is about students accepting responsibility and making it right. The key for restitution lies in each student accepting responsibility for their own actions. This is usually most successful when this is supported at home.
Restitution involves creating the conditions for students to fix their mistakes and return to the group strengthened, knowing a better way. It is a form of positive discipline that keeps the dignity of all involved attached. Restitution is a creative and individualized way to help children develop into self-directed and self-disciplined individuals. Restitution is invitational and is offered as an opportunity for children who have not violated our bottom-line behaviours.
In Reference to the BC Human Rights Code
Hillcrest Elementary School promotes the values expressed in the BC Human Rights Code respecting the rights of individuals in accordance with the law – prohibiting discrimination based on race, color, ancestry, place of origin, religion, marital status,
physical or mental disability, sex or sexual orientation –in respect of discriminatory publication and discrimination in accommodation, service and facility in the school environment.
The school will treat seriously behaviour or communication that discriminates based on race, color, ancestry, place of origin, religion, marital status, family status, physical status, physical or mental disability, sex or sexual orientation (prohibited grounds set out in the BC Human Rights Code).
Placement of Students
The placement of each child is carefully discussed by a group comprised of the child’s present teacher, possible teachers for the coming year and any other teachers involved in the student’s learning, as well as the Principal. The resulting placement takes into account the whole child. The following factors are considered when grouping children:
1. Diversity in development (academic ability)
2. Unique learning needs
3. Teaching styles
4. Social dynamics
5. Family relationships (e.g. siblings)
7. Gender balance
8. Parent information
Parents with specific educational concerns who may require a special placement for their child/children should make a written request to the Principal by mid-May. The letter should outline the educational reasons for the request. An appointment may be needed to clarify the request.
School Supplies Fee
All students have a mandatory school supply fee. Some classes, usually the primary classes purchase student supplies and then collect the cost from the parents. This allows for students to have standardized supplies and keep the costs down. Intermediate and a few primary classes purchase Home/School Planning Books. These costs are collected from parents in September.
Hillcrest School Activity Fee
Hillcrest School levies an annual activity fee. The activity fee assists in funding a variety of programs that are organized throughout the school year and are not covered under the regular school budget. Provincial legislation does not allow schools to charge a mandatory activity fee. Our PAC and staff feel the programs supported by the school activity fee are important for our students. We are requesting parents continue to pay the activity fee so that these programs can continue.
These include professional groups such as Axis Mime and Green Thumb Theatres. In addition, activities such as the Gymnastic Program, Primary swimming and Sports Day are subsidized by the activity fee.
This annual fee paid at the beginning of the year eliminates the necessity for students having to bring money to pay for each activity. No child shall be denied access to a school sponsored program for financial reasons. If circumstances do not permit payment of a fee please contact the Hillcrest School Principal.
Cold Weather Policy
The staff at Hillcrest promotes outdoor activities and under normal circumstances expects students to go outside during recess, lunch breaks, and to remain outside until the first bell rings in the morning. However, under poor weather conditions, students will be permitted to stay inside.
Lost and Found Policy
Valuable items that have been lost at Hillcrest School are turned in to the main office. An announcement follows over the school intercom letting students and staff know about these lost items. People collecting them are asked to provide a brief description to the secretary.
For clothing and footwear items, we also have a large lost and found box located outside the gymnasium. This is easily accessible to students and parents and personal items can be collected anytime. Unclaimed items are sent to the local thrift shop at various intervals during the school year.
Student Telephone Use
The school telephones are primarily for school staff business. For the most part, student use of the telephone is restricted to emergencies or for educational purposes. Students are asked to get a written note from their teacher to be given to the secretary before using the telephone. Arrangements such as going to a friend’s house or staying to watch a game, should be made prior to coming to school.
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Accident and Injury Procedures
Essential first aid will be administered by the classroom teacher or supervisory personnel available. In case of a serious injury, the child will be referred to the staff member with first aid training.
It is very important that changes in home telephone numbers, emergency numbers or family doctor’s numbers be reported immediately to the school secretary. If the child requires emergency medical treatment parents or guardians will be contacted.
In case of an illness, if necessary, the parents or alternates will be contacted immediately and asked to escort the child home.
Medication will be administered by qualified personnel and only after a medical request form has been forwarded to and approved by the school authorities.
In the event that a child is recognized as having head lice, parents are contacted immediately and given the proper instructions to deal with the problem. Prior to returning to his/her class students must be checked and found free of nits (see School District Policy 9070.3.e).
Other Communicable Diseases
From time to time a number of communicable diseases circulate through the school system. At Hillcrest, we take proper preventative measures to ensure that there is a low incidence of these occurring within our schools. If they do arise, however, parents are contacted. The child may return to school after proper treatment.
9:50 - 10:05
11:35 - 12:00
Lunch Play Time
12:00 - 12:20
Lunch Eating Period
8:13 - 10:41
11:35 - 2:10
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Arrive Safely Program
To ensure the safety of your children, the Parent Advisory group operates the Arrive Safely to School Program.
If your child will be late or absent, please call the school before :50 a.m. or 12:00 p.m. Our answering machine is left on overnight, so you may call to report your child’s absence at any time. Those students who are absent and whose parents have not called in to report their absence will be phoned by a parent volunteer. Please be sure to leave a work number or an emergency number in case you are unable to be contacted at home.
Hillcrest has a computer lab with thirty computers, all Internet accessible. All students from grades K – 5 are scheduled for computer use during school hours. The lab is also available to students beyond class time for project work and extra-curricular activities. All computers are networked, which allows student work to be printed on a laser printer. To assist computer lessons, a specialized projector is available in the lab. The Hillcrest Parent Advisory has contributed funds on an annual basis to help us build a state-of-the-art lab.
All Hillcrest students receive music instruction from a music specialist teacher. Various methods are used. “E.T.M.” (Education Through Music) employs song games to encourage singing, creative movement and socialization. ORFF instruments are used for accompaniment to songs. Movement to beat is stressed, rhythm and pitch notation, leading to literacy in vocal and instrumental music is a goal of the music program. Intermediate students learn recorder, ukulele, folk dancing, guitar and African drumming.
Hillcrest’s Library is in the center of the school. The books are catalogued and checked out on a computer. Children and parents may borrow the books for a period of two weeks. The children have a scheduled library period for learning about skills and are encouraged to use the facilities for both recreational and research reading. Three computers are available for Internet access and CD ROM use.
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School District and Community
School District: (1) music/band teacher; (2) speech/language athologist; (3) area counsellor; (4) integration facilitator (special needs); (5) family life co-ordinator.
Community: (1) public health nurse; (2) dental team; (3) physiotherapist
Learning Resource Program
The learning resource program is designed to provide services to the school and its students through assessment, direct instruction and consultation. The program is intended to support students who have special needs in one or more academic areas. These students would be receiving the major part of their education in a regular class with direct/indirect Learning Resource Teacher support and may require some assistance in the Learning Resource Room. A request can be made to the Learning Resource Teacher by the teacher or parent when it is apparent that the student is having difficulty. After some diagnostic testing the classroom teacher, parent, and Learning Resource Teacher will work together to develop a program which will best fit the needs of the child. During the times of
intervention, contacts will be made with the family to keep them informed of progress. The Learning Resource Teacher will consult and/or involve district specialists as needed.
Hillcrest School offers a swimming program in the Spring for primary students. The school will send home a reminder with a form to fill out prior to the lessons.
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Grade 5 students at Hillcrest are given the opportunity to participate in a limited spectrum of extra-mural sports. Last year only basketball had a schedule and tournament. Other sports opportunities are cross country running and track and field which are organized at the district level by the elementary athletic association.
Throughout the year, the staff at Hillcrest attempts to provide opportunities for all students to engage in a variety of physical activities outside of the regular classroom program. These activities include dances, fun day events, and intramural sporting challenges. These activities change with the seasons and generally take place during the lunch hour. Their aim is to promote life-long physical fitness and health, while developing good co-operation and sportsmanship skills and attitudes.
A number of traditional events have been established at Hillcrest School over the years. These may change, however, from time to time depending on the goals and needs of the staff, parents, students, and community.
1. September – Terry Fox Run
2. October – U.N.I.C.E.F. Fundraising event
3. December – Christmas Concert
4. April – Spring Carnival
5. May – Parent ‘Thank You’ Tea
6. June – Year End Assembly (Grade 5 students)
7. June –Staff Appreciation Luncheon
A number of cultural performances are held throughout the year. Parents are welcome to attend these.
The year-end recognition program at Hillcrest School consists of the following:
1. The grade five leaving celebration ceremony is a recognition of students who have been at our school and reached this landmark in their education with good self images, a sense of who they are, and a desire to move forward in the lifelong process of learning. We celebrate each student’s uniqueness through ceremony, music, and pictures but do not single students out as they have all brought what they can to our school.
2. The Parent Advisory recognizes those staff members who will be leaving Hillcrest School. These members may be moving on to another area for personal and professional reasons.
3. Classroom celebrations and awards are at the discretion of the classroom teacher.
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WELCOME TO HILLCREST
Parent Advisory Committee
Our educational system value parents and has been designed to include them. The Hillcrest Parent Advisory is a body composed of parents of the students of Hillcrest Elementary School.
President: Angela Carson Past President: Leigh-Anne Chapman
Vice- Presidents: (Shared) Vicki Maurer & Sharmmon Richardson
Secretary: Kim Webster Treasurer: Lisa Bennett
School Planning Council: Laurie Bannister, Abby May and Heather Nash
Members of the PAC meet regularly at the school with the school’s executive and interested teachers. They usually meet once a month.
Some of the aims of the Parent Advisory group include:
1. Provide input and support into the school’s annual growth plan, to help make decisions and policies for the school.
2. Present speakers in various areas of interest to the parents to familiarize them with their children’s educational programs.
3. Provide support for the students and parents and a liaison between home and school.
4. Provide a forum for raising questions and concerns.
5. Fundraise to compliment and enhance the funds provided by the School Board to enrich the children’s education.
Everyone is welcome and encouraged to attend the Parent Advisory meetings. A note and agenda are sent home as a reminder of the day and time prior to the meeting. Babysitting is available.
Important Phone Numbers
1. Hillcrest School
2. Mr. Hagardt (Principal)
3. Mrs. Dunfield (Vice-Principal)
4. School Board Office
5. School Transportation Office
For those parents concerned they may contact the office for further information regarding boundaries within the Hillcrest enrolment area.
Formal report cards are issued three times a year with interim reporting occurring in between. Formal report cards used at Hillcrest Elementary School conform with District and Ministry of Education guidelines. They may be accompanied by an interview at the request of the teacher or the parent.
Approximate issue dates for the three formal report cards are at the end of November, prior to Spring Break, and the end of June.
Interim reporting periods are usually mid-October and mid-February.
Please feel free to arrange a meeting with the teacher to discuss your child’s progress.
In the event of an emergency some basic provisions are now being stored at the school.
Each classroom will have a Comfort Pail that includes:
- emergency contact phone numbers - wet wipes
- a red ribbon to tag the classroom door if additional help is needed
- two candles and some matches - a garbage bag
- a ziploc bag for each individual in the classroom which contains an emergency
blanket, and hard candies.
The pails will be taken out each time a fire drill is run.
In addition, the school is storing drinking water, some candles, matches, a flashlight, a battery operated radio and some batteries. Several of the staff are trained in first aid and the school is equipped with some first aid supplies. In addition, several staff members own cellular telephones. If relocation is necessary, students will walk to the gym at Shuswap Junior Secondary at 832-6031.
Should there be an emergency, it is the school’s desire to:
- be prepared
- provide some measure of comfort to students and staff members
- keep the parents informed of their child’s well being.