Dear Grade 6 and 8 students and families,

As the Waterloo Region District School Board (WRDSB) continues to keep Human Rights and equity at the centre of decision-making, we want to provide you with an update regarding year-end celebrations for students who are transitioning from one site to another for the fall of 2021.

To make sure all our Grade 6 and 8 students, who are transitioning to another school are recognized equally, and taking into consideration the varying financial impacts the COVID-19 pandemic has had on families, we are reimagining the way our schools celebrate and acknowledge these transitions.

Year-end Ceremonies/Celebrations

Knowing it is not possible to move forward with in-person celebrations, each elementary school will host their own virtual school celebration and ceremony to highlight and recognize our students. Our Grade 8s will celebrate on Tuesday, June 22, 2021, and Grade 6s will celebrate on Thursday, June 24, 2021. Please note, Grade 6 and 8 students enrolled in our Distance Learning program this school year will be included in their home school events.

Specific times and details will be shared by the home school on their website and social media channels in the coming weeks. These virtual celebrations will include school staff, students in Grade 6 and 8 who are transitioning schools and of course we will welcome families to be part of these virtual celebrations.

Being mindful of the current inequities in some of our current year-end practices, and how the pandemic has affected learning environments, specifically given the many students who switched between modes of learning, in addition to our inability to meaningfully offer student clubs, extracurricular activities or sports, individual year-end awards will not be handed out this year.

We understand there are many mixed feelings, but please know these decisions were made with a great deal of thought and consideration. Hosting virtual celebrations was not how we wanted to close the year with our students and families. However, given the current COVID-19 restrictions we are currently faced with, in addition to anticipating a continued limitation to social gatherings and our desire to keep students and families safe, our schools’ virtual ceremonies are our way to show our students and families that we can still celebrate this wonderful milestone, together.

We hope your child(ren) and your family will join school staff online to celebrate and mark your child’s achievements as we wish them continued success as they transition to their next chapter in their school lives.

Each school will be working with families, students, and staff to create their virtual celebrations. Please reach out to your school’s Principal or Vice-Principal for further information.

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