January 15th Update


Principal’s Message

Dear Parents,

We spend a great deal of time planning for the safety and security of your child while they are at school.  While we have mentioned various elements of student safety in previous posts, we have not provided a comprehensive overview of what we do to ensure your child remains safe at school.  In this issue, given the recent “bump” we felt in Vancouver last month (I’m referring to the earthquake that was registered on Vancouver Island), I felt it timely to provide you with a bit more information regarding what sort of Emergency Preparedness we have in place at Maple Grove.  Before I share the information, I would like to add that our engineering staff surveyed Maple Grove and determined that there was no damage as a result of the seismic event, and it’s business as usual at Maple Grove.  We are on the seismic list, and we are currently in the queue with other schools to go through the process (more on this as it becomes available).
Below is a list of considerations Maple Grove uses in different emergency situations.  We hope you find this helpful.  It is by no means a complete list, rather, it’s a snapshot to let you know that we do practice fire drills 4 times/year; earthquake drills 2 times/year; and lockdown drills as well.


  1. Fire Procedures
  2. Earthquake Procedures (3 Phases)
    1. Phase 1. Immediate Response
    2. Phase 2. Ongoing Response
    3. Phase 3. Long Term Response
  3. Job Summaries and Current Team Members
  4. Secure + Hold (CODE YELLOW)
  5. Lockdown (CODE RED)
  1. Fire Procedures
    1. Fire Bell Rings
    2. Teachers gather students attention to begin evacuation procedure
    3. Teachers instruct students to quietly line up at door to class (or wherever they are in the school).
    4. Teachers bring the emergency backpack for their class.
    5. Teachers lead the class out the nearest exit.  There should be no talking- as it’s imperative that students be able to hear commands directed by teachers.
    6. Teachers lead classes to the North gravel field (by the painted numbers).  Classes gather in order- Div 1-20.
    7. Teachers take attendance and send a runner to the OAA/ School Secretary.
    8. (If students are at a resource centre/ library/ or band/ etc, they will leave the building with the teacher they are presently with and meet up on the gravel field with their class.  If a student is in the bathroom, or away from their class and unsupervised, they are to exit the building at the nearest exit, and congregate on the gravel field with their class.  They are to report to their teacher so that they are accounted for)
    9. The admin and building engineer have a set of procedures that are listed in the orange and yellow emergency flipbook.
    10. Teachers wait in line with class until the “All Clear” bell is sounded (3 beeps).  Once sounded, teachers and students may re-enter the building

Buddy Classes (by Room Number)

Buddy Classes Buddy Classes
109 and 108 Library students, 207 and 205
106 and 104 203 and 201 plus any students from 215 (Literacy Rm)
213 and 211 313, 311, 310, 308, 308A
208 and 206 307, 304, 306, 306A, 309
305, 303, 301

Earthquake Response
Response to an Earthquake will be in three phases.

  • Immediate response, evacuation and attendance
  • Response to ongoing situation
  • Long term response.


Phase 1. Immediate Response, Evacuation and Attendance

  1. Earthquake starts
  2. Teachers direct class to Drop, Cover and Hold.  Wait for earthquake to stop.  Teachers direct class to start counting 60 seconds.  If aftershock occurs; class starts the re-counting process again.
  3. After 60 seconds, Teachers survey room quickly for any potential hazards or injuries.
  4. Teachers connect with buddy class(es) if possible AND direct students to gather their coat/backpack and line up to evacuate the classroom.  Teachers may also choose that if they haven’t been able to connect with their buddy class, they may direct their students to gather buddy class belongings if the class is not there.  Teachers will allow about 2 minutes for the collection of personal property.  Avoid wires, debris, fire, unsafe roofs.  If teachers are unable to assist buddy classes with belongings, the Teacher will contact the Command Post re: supplies for the buddy class.
  5. Teachers evacuate students using same route as fire drill unless unsafe; Teachers will leave students who are too injured to be moved.  Place tables over them. Flag with fluorescent tape (an adult may choose to stay with them)
  6. If the room is clear leave Room Clear sign on the door but leave door open.
  7. Teachers may “collect” any unsupervised students on your way.  Once safely out of the building, classes congregate on the North Gravel field in the same line up per Fire Drills.  All students join their own classes when safe to do so on the gravel field.
  8. Line up as for a fire drill and take attendance.  Note names of injured students left behind, injured students evacuated, extra people you have with you. Send information as soon as possible to Command Post.
  9. Place Division signs so that they are visible
  10. Direct volunteers or people with questions to command post.
  11. (If possible, teachers may have time to check rooms, washrooms, cupboards. Close door after checking rooms. Meet on North Gravel field)
  12. Students with minor first aid issues should stay with teachers. Use supplies in Backpack to treat. Wait for First Aid team to come by when they are able to begin their school population survey/assessment

While this is going on, parents may start showing up to check on students.  The parent wait zone will be on the Magee grass field area.  Teachers may start releasing students to parent- MUST BE IN-PERSON.  Parents MUST sign/initial the Homeroom List (For Evacuation) so that we are able to account for all students later.  Please use the space at the bottom of the list to note any persons other than parents who picked up students and where they took them, if not to their own homes.

Phase 2. Response to On-going Situation

  1. Emergency container opened by Engineer/Principal
  2. Command Post set up – Principal/Vice Principal/Engineer/Non-Enrolling staff
  3. Supplies delivered to classes e.g. tarps, water, lists etc.
  4. Command Post Roles
  5. Student Release in process

Phase 3.  Long Term Strategy- in some cases, it is possible that if we experience a major earthquake, we may be out on the field for a day or 2 or longer, while we wait for parents to make their way to the school- assuming that’s even possible.  In the event of a major earthquake, some staff may need to ensure the safety and security of their families too.  

Student and Teacher Release

  • Teacher release: Command post will release teachers who have family commitments and for whom there is a reasonable likelihood that they can get to their destination. Teachers will transfer their class responsibilities to buddy class or to command post
  • Student release. Remaining students will gather into pods with buddy classes together and older students with younger students. Command post will take over student release.
  • Do not tie the tarp to the fence as it might be electrified!
  • Teachers use class checklist to take attendance and include names of other people who are with you who are not on the checklist (this may include district staff or guests to the school). Use the red Emergency Status form to report any student/staff missing or injured, giving names and locations.
  • The Homeroom List (For Evacuation) provides a check list to indicate if anyone is missing or injured. Return the Homeroom List (For Evacuation) to Command Post/First Aid Station (by Emergency container).  Place bright yellow division sign at the front of the line so that it can be easily seen.
  • If a teacher is unable to retrieve the class backpack, assemble the class on the north field and then contact the Command Post for a class list, Emergency Status form, and blank labels.
  • Supervising teachers will try to keep children calm, quiet and together.
  • A record must be kept of students who are going with parents/guardians so that no one is lost. After the first 2 hours, high needs staff will send remaining students, with all completed Homeroom Lists (for Evacuation), to buddy class or Command Post.The above is not meant to provide everything to you, rather to give you a glimpse into some of our planning and thoughts around what we may do in an earthquake.4 + 5  We also regularly practice Lockdown and Secure + Hold Drills to ensure that students are safe in the event of an intruder.  Hold and + Secure essentially locks the external doors to the school.  Students are allowed to move in pairs throughout the building.  A Lockdown is a full and complete closure of the school.  External doors are locked.  Classroom doors are locked.  Drapes are drawn.  Lights off.  No noises.  Students hide or take shelter in a room, closet, cloakroom, storage room, etc.  There is no movement in the school.  It is a complete lockdown.  It can only be released when the treat(s) have been removed in consultation with the VPD.

    We hope you find this information helpful.



Foundation Skills Assessment

RE: Foundation Skills Assessment Testing



As per our last post, this message pertains to parents of grade 4 AND 7 students.  The deadline to excuse your child from writing the FSA testing (5 hours of in school time) is Monday, January 18th.

On Monday at lunchtime, your child’s teacher and the School-Based Team will review all grade 4 and 7 students and excuse student we feel would not benefit from writing the test- or those student who may find the testing procedure onerous.

As requested by the Trustees, Maple Grove sent home a letter from the Board of Trustees which shares some general information about the FSA, and also includes a second page that allows for parent exclusions for their child from writing.  This form is due Monday.
FSA testing will be administered in BC schools between now and February 19, 2016. 

It is important for you to know the following:

  1. The FSA is a set of annual tests assigned by the Ministry of Education. Results may provide a snapshot of how your child is performing in relation to provincial standards in areas of reading comprehension, first draft writing, and mathematics (numeracy).
  2. The FSA is not a thorough examination over time of all desired learning outcomes for students. The FSA is one of many measures used to determine how students are progressing and should be considered along with the ongoing assessments and professional judgments carried out by teachers.
  3. FSA scores are not part of the evaluations normally included in students’ report cards.
  4. FSA testing consists of both multiple choice and written response questions.  The writing portion consists of a long and short writing task. There is a booklet portion of the test and an online portion.
  5. The multiple-choice portions of the FSA will be done online.  The written response portions will be marked within school districts.
  6. The FSA testing process takes approximately 5 hours to complete.
  7. The FSA provides a snapshot of specific skills only.
  8. One of the purposes of the FSA is to help the province, school districts, and schools evaluate a variety of approaches to providing effective educational programs for a diverse range of students.  Schools like to analyze and review FSA scores by professional educators, together with analysis of data from other sources to enable school districts to plan for improvements to educational programs.
  9. Small differences in results between grades, between parts of the assessment, or from school to school should not be regarded as significant.  Comparisons of results between schools require that a variety of demographic, social, and cultural factors be taken into account.  The marked written response booklets will be sent to the parents, along with the individual student’s results, by the end of March 2014.
  10. The Ministry of Education expects students to write the FSA.  Schools may excuse students with special needs who have Individual Education Plans (IEPs) documenting a disability that significantly impacts their performance, and ESL students with insufficient levels of English language proficiency.  In addition, schools may excuse a student in the event of a family emergency, a lengthy illness, or other extenuating circumstances of similar seriousness.

Parents are asked to refer to the Board of Trustees letter if they are planning to excuse a child from participating in the FSA test.  If a parent completes the form asking for their child to be excused, we will honour their request.

There is lots of information at the Ministry of Ed website.    www.bced.gov.bc.ca and following the FSA links; or by googling FSA testing or following the enclosed link:


Parents have until Monday, January 18th to return their exclusion form.

Thank you in advance,
Mr. Evans





Bake Sale 2

Last Year’s Bake Sale was a big success!

Global Citizenship Club

The members of the Global Citizenship Club are working on their pillar of focus for health care in Ecuador.  They are planning a very busy year to raise funds for this cause, starting with a bake sale on Wednesday, January 27.   The primary students go to the boys’ basement, and the intermediates to the lunchroom to make their purchases at recess.

Parents, if you would like to make any donations of nut-free goods, please deliver them to the lunchroom on Wednesday before 9:00 am.  All items will sell for $1.00 and we would appreciate it if you could send individual items that we can sell at that price.

Reminder to Parents – if you are withdrawing your child from school before 3:00 pm. . .

For safety reasons, all students must be picked up from the office.  Parents need to sign them out with the actual time that they are leaving.  Students may not “wait at the corner” until their parents arrive.  Classroom teachers should be informed of the early dismissal with a note or email in advance.  They can then send the student to the office for the parent to meet them there.


Hello Parents,
Please take a moment to go to our PAC Blog. We have posted information about the Fundraising Campaign, our next PAC meeting, Earthquake Preparedness and BC Public Education Advocacy.

Want to receive these messages automatically?  Then simply click on the blue +Follow button at right hand bottom corner of our blog page and enter your email address.

Also a reminder that MapleGrove PAC is on Twitter.  Follow us @maplegrovepac

Have a great weekend!
Monica Tang, PAC Chair


VSB-SWIS Parent Workshop – Tuesday 19th January, 2016 @ 12:30pm in Room 214, Magee Secondary
Public Health School Programs
Topics include:
•       Vaccine Program in schools (Elementary/Secondary)
•       The role of a School Nurse
•       Resources (including mental health) available at the Pacific Spirit Community Health Centre

Speaker: Harj Johal, VCH Public Health Nurse

Due to limited space, please register with VSB Settlement Worker In Schools Elisabeth Chan at 778-227-5452 or email to echan@vsb.bc.ca

mss wksh 20160119

Upcoming Events:

January 20 – PAC Meeting (Digital Literacy)
January 25 to 29 – Turn off the screen week
January 27 – Family Literacy Day and Camp Read
February 8 – Lunar New Year and Family Day Holiday – no school
February 9 – Professional Development Day – no school for students


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