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School Handbook:

School handbook information is included in the student agendas. 

To access all of the documents in the handbook, please follow 
this link.

Safe Arrival Program/Attendance Procedures

Attendance is recorded daily and students arriving after 9:10 a.m. are required to report to the main office before proceeding to class. 


The Safe Arrival program mandates that we contact a student's parent/guardian each day a student is absent.  Please let the school know the reason for your child's absence. You can send a note in your child’s agenda, call the school or leave a message on the answering machine by 9:10 a.m. or use MyFamilyRoom ( to let the school know of any absences.  Please do not text or email the teacher to report attendance (absence or early departure).

Late Arrivals and Unexplained Absences

A student arriving late for school must be accompanied into the school by their parent/guardian and sign in at the office for attendance and safety reasons.  The office staff will ensure the students gets to their classroom without interrupting the learning occurring at that time. 

In its quest for student safety, the UCDSB supports the “Unexplained Non-Attendance Program” for elementary school pupils as outlined in the Ministry of Education’s Policy/Program Memorandum 123.  This program works in conjunction with daily attendance procedures and will make reasonable efforts to account for students not in attendance at school. 

All unaccounted student absences will be followed up with a phone call to a parent/guardian.  Calls will continue to be made until a verbal confirmation regarding a child’s absence is obtained.  Attempts will be made to contact the emergency contact(s).  Follow-up on unsuccessful contacts will include contacting:

  • the Special Services Counsellor,

  • the police,

  • the Superintendent,

as appropriate.  Other subsequent steps might include contact with a neighbor, the bus driver, or a visit to the home. 

Supervision Before School

If you are driving your child to school, supervision on the yard starts at 9:00 a.m. No child is allowed in the school or on the yard before this time without parent/guardian supervision. In the case of an emergency, it may be possible to make special arrangements by contacting the office. 

Dismissal Procedures

If your child is being picked up at school as a planned absence, please put a note in your child's agenda. The note must indicate the name of the student being picked up, identify the person picking up the student and note the time the student will be picked up. The parent/guardian must sign out the student at the office as they exit the school. Students are not permitted to leave school grounds at lunch or recess to walk into town or visit the local convenience store. 

If dismissal plans for a student changes during the day, due to an emergency, please contact the school as soon as possible to advise of the change, preferably no later than 2 p.m. This allows us to notify students and teaching staff. The school telephone is typically very busy after this time of day and there is a risk that your dismissal plan changes would not be received before the end of the school day. 

At all times, anyone picking up a child at school is required to enter the school through the main entrance. Please report to the main office, identify yourself and advise the principal/office administrator that you are picking up the student.  The Office staff will ensure the student is ready and comes to the office for departure. 

There are occasions throughout the year when students believe they will be picked up at dismissal rather than ride the bus home. In order to avoid unnecessary worry for parents and caregivers, our policy is that students will be sent home on their regular bus if they do not have a note or a parent phone call has not been received. 

As a bus safety measure vehicles are restricted from entering and parking in the bus­ loading zone during morning drop-off and afternoon dismissal. Vehicles and pedestrians are not permitted to enter or exit the parking lot while buses are in the bus-loading zone. 


The Student Transportation of Eastern Ontario provides detailed guidelines for parents and guardians regarding the transportation of students.  An information booklet is given to every student at the beginning of the school year, and is also posted on the STEO website at Parents/guardians should be aware that school bus drivers can only pick up and drop off riders at one authorized regular daily stop.  Drivers cannot make changes to stops without authorization from the Transportation Department. Transportation for all non-school related functions is the responsibility of parents/guardians. Transportation cannot be provided for sleepovers, a homework project, to complete community service hours or for an after school job. These requests cannot be permitted for safety reasons.  

Dress Code

Students are to wear clothing that is neat, clean and appropriate for the school environment.  

Any clothing that promotes a lifestyle or an attitude that is contrary to a positive and safe learning environment is deemed to be inappropriate and cannot be worn.   

  • Clothing, accessories or items which promote or represent violence, tobacco, alcohol, drugs or any other form of prejudice, offensive language or sexual innuendo are not permitted.

  • Shorts and skirts must extend sufficiently down the thigh.

  • Clothing that exposes midriff, underwear, or a student’s bare back is not allowed to be worn.

  • Heavy chains, along with wrist bands or neck bands with metal spikes or other questionable items which may pose a danger to others are not permitted.

  • Please note that a specific dress code pertaining to footwear, jewellery or clothing may be required in certain areas such as the gymnasium for safety reasons.

  • Other clothing or accessories deemed to be inappropriate by the school administration. 

Parents/guardians may be contacted if a student does not adhere to the dress code.


Use of Personal Electronic Devices in the Classroom and School 

In recognition of their differing interests, abilities, and learning preferences, the Upper Canada District School Board encourages its students to select and use the supplies, equipment, devices and other resources they need to learn effectively at school and at home. 

The Upper Canada District School Board supports its students by providing an environment that allows students to bring supplies, equipment, devices and other resources of their own into the school and classroom in a way consistent with Upper Canada District School Board policies and values. 

Smart phones, cell phones, and other electronic devices are to be used in class at the discretion of the teacher and school principal.  The unauthorized use of a cell phone or an electronic device in class may result in the teacher asking the student to put the device away, keep the device at home or ask for it to be given to the teacher for safe keeping.  If this happens on numerous occasions the student may be asked to keep the electronic device at home.  

Photographs and Recording Audio/Video

On school property, no one is allowed to record audio/video or take pictures of staff or students at any time or anywhere unless they have the permission of the Principal/Vice-Principal and all of the people in the photograph, video or sound recording.  Taking a picture or recording someone without their permission could be an invasion of privacy and might lead to suspension, expulsion, criminal charges, or a civil lawsuit.    

NOTE: If a student violates any policy stated above the device could be confiscated. 

Weapons, Firecrackers, Matches, Lighters and Laser Pointers

The possession and/or display of weapons and firecrackers on school property are strictly forbidden.  Such possession may result in immediate suspension.  The public display or use of lighters or matches on school property is prohibited.  In the interest of student and staff safety, water pistols, toy guns and laser pointers are not permitted on school property. 

Skateboards/In-Lines Skates and Shoes with Wheels

Students are not permitted to use skateboards, in-line skates or “Heelys” on school property.  Students with wheels built into the bottom of their shoes are to remove the wheels before entering school property. 

Bikes on School Property

Students who live within biking distance of the school are welcome to bring their bike to school. As a safety precaution, students are reminded that wearing a certified bike helmet is a great piece of safety equipment to minimize the risk of head injury. Students are required to wear a bike helmet if they are riding their bike on school property or taking part in a school related cycling activity. The school and UCDSB are not responsible for stolen or damaged personal property.   

Damage to School Property

Students should report all damage of school property to the main office as soon as possible.  Students are responsible for damages to or loss of school property and should expect to pay for repair or replacement (property, books and facilities).

Nut Allergies

As many of you are aware, some students at schools have been diagnosed with severe allergies to peanuts,   peanut butter and nut products. In some cases even trace amounts of peanut butter and/or nut products could jeopardize the life of a child/person with this allergy. Currently, Rideau Vista does not have any students with nut allergies so it is not a ‘Nut-Free School” but this could change in the future.  If Rideau Vista becomes a Nut-Free school you will be notified at once.  In this case, we would ask that you avoid sending peanut butter or products containing nuts of any kind to school.  This would include imitation peanut butter or any soy butter in the school as it is hard to differentiate these products from real peanut butter or nut spreads.   


 Community Partners and the Police

The Upper Canada DSB is committed to enhancing and developing partnerships with community agencies and members of the community by establishing protocols which will establish clear linkages and formalize the relationship between the board and its partners. These partnerships will respect all applicable collective agreements.  The police play an essential role in making our schools and communities safe. The police investigate incidents in accordance with the protocol developed with the Upper Canada DSB. This protocol is based on a provincial model developed by the Ministry of the Solicitor General and the Ministry of Education.


Bullying or cyber-bullying will not be tolerated.  The intention of the school is to provide a positive and safe learning environment that will improve students’ academic, social, physical and emotional growth. 

The Definition of Bullying:

  • “bullying” means aggressive and typically repeated behaviour by a pupil where,

  • (a) the behaviour (physical, verbal, electronic, written or other means) is intended by the pupil to have the effect of, or the pupil ought to know that the behaviour would be likely to have the effect of,

  • (i) causing harm, fear or distress to another individual, including physical, psychological, social or academic harm, harm to the individual’s reputation or harm to the individual’s property, or

  • (ii) creating a negative environment at a school for another individual, and

  • (b) the behaviour occurs in a context where there is a real or perceived power imbalance between the pupil and the individual based on factors such as size, strength, age, intelligence, peer group power, economic status, social status, religion, ethnic origin, sexual orientation, family circumstances, gender, gender identity, gender expression, race, disability or the receipt of special education;

  • Cyber-bullying  - bullying by electronic means – includes but is not limited to:

    • (a) creating a web page or a blog in which the creator assumes the identity of another person;

    • (b) impersonating another person as the author of content or messages posted on the internet;

    • (c) communicating material electronically to more than one individual or posting material on a website that may be accessed by one or more individuals.


Aggressive behaviour may be intentional or unintentional, direct or indirect. It can take many forms, including physical, verbal, and social. If aggressive behaviour is physical, it may include hitting, pushing, slapping, and tripping. If it is verbal, it may include name calling, mocking, insults, threats, and sexist, racist, homophobic, or transphobic comments. If it is social, or relational, aggression, it is more subtle and may involve such behaviours as gossiping, spreading rumours, excluding others from a group, humiliating others with public gestures or graffiti, and shunning or ignoring. Social aggression may also occur through the use of technology (e.g., spreading rumours, images, or hurtful comments through the use of e-mail, cell phones, text messaging, Internet websites, social networking, or other technology).  NOTE: Under the police board protocol, the police will be notified if students are found to be sharing intimate images with each other.  

Reporting Bullying

Students must report any type of bullying behaviour to a trusting adult (verbally or in writing) whether it occurs inside or outside of the school. The trusting adult must then ensure that the Principal is contacted and informed of the bullying.  All staff must report any incident of bullying in writing to the Principal.  Safe School strategies will be monitored and reviewed each term to ensure all strategies are effective.  The School will conduct a School Climate survey every two years and report findings to the Safe Schools Team.  

Bullying Consequences:  There are many possible interventions and consequences for bullying.  A number of these can be found under the Progressive Discipline section and the Suspension and Expulsion section of this handbook.    

Bullying Prevention and Awareness Strategies:  Schools should have their own methods to help prevent bullying and to make students more aware.  Some of these could include:  Guest speakers for students, staff, and community members, individual or group counselling, Character Education Assemblies, Safety Plans for Students, Anti-Bullying Programs, Good Citizen modeling, Celebration and Recognition Assemblies, and Classroom discussions.  Contact the school to find out more information about this topic.  

Progressive Discipline

It is the policy of the Upper Canada District School Board, with respect to progressive discipline, to support a safe learning and teaching environment in which every pupil can reach his or her full potential. Appropriate action must consistently be taken by schools to address behaviours that are contrary to provincial and Board Codes of Conduct. 

Progressive discipline is an approach that makes use of a continuum of interventions, supports, and consequences, building upon strategies that promote positive behaviours. The range of interventions, supports, and consequences used by the Board and all schools must be clear and developmentally appropriate, and must include learning opportunities for pupils in order reinforce positive behaviours and help pupils make good choices. 

For pupils with special education and/or disability related needs, interventions, supports and consequences must be consistent with the expectations in the student's IEP and/or his/her demonstrated abilities. The Board, and school administrators, must consider all mitigating and other factors, as required by the Education Act and as set out in Ontario Regulation 472/07. The continuum of interventions in our progressive discipline model begins at the classroom level between the teacher and the student and then includes the student’s parent/guardian. 

Interventions may include but are not limited to:

Teacher-student meeting                                            Community service

Contact with parents                                                   Conflict mediation

Verbal reminders                                                         Peer mentoring

Written reflective assignments                                  Referral to counselling

Problem-solving activity                                              Meeting with parent

Time-out                                                                        Meetingwith parent/student/admin.

Quiet area to work                                                        Referral to community agency

Removal from class                                                       Withdrawal of classroom privileges

Update call to parent                                                    Restitution for damages

Office referral/detentions                                            Restorative practices

Home consequences                                                     Other interventions deemed appropriate

Some possible next steps that involve the Administration/Student/Teacher/Parent:

Update call to parent                                                    Meeting with parent                                     

Suspension/Expulsion                                                  Withdrawal from class                  

Meeting with student and teacher                             Conflict Mediation

Alternative to suspension                                            Referral to community agency                  

Referral to support staff                                              Community Service                        

Withdrawal of school privileges                                 Restitution for damages

Restorative practices                                                   Reflection activities 

When addressing inappropriate behaviour, school staff should consider the particular pupil and circumstances, including any mitigating and other factors as set out in the Student Discipline Procedures, the nature and severity of the behaviour, and the impact on the school climate. 


When a principal determines that a pupil has committed one or more infractions on school property, during school-related activities or events, and/or in circumstances off of school property, where the infraction has an impact on the school climate, a principal will consider whether that pupil should be suspended or be recommended to the Board Expulsion Committee. 

Activities for which suspension must be considered under section 306(1) of the Education Act

  • Uttering a threat to inflict serious bodily harm on another person.

  • Possessing alcohol, illegal and//or restricted drugs.

  • Being under the influence of alcohol.

  • Swearing at a teacher or at another person in a position of authority.

  • Committing an act of vandalism that causes extensive damage to school property at the pupil’s school or to property located on the premises of the pupil’s school.

  • Bullying.

  • Any act considered by the principal to be injurious to the moral tone of the school

  • Any act considered by the principal to be injurious to the physical or mental well-being of members of the school community

  • Any act considered by the principal to be contrary to the Board or school Code of Conduct

  • Opposition to authority

  • Habitual neglect of duty

  • Fighting/Violence

  • Use of profanity/swearing


    NOTE: If a pupil is suspended he/she is suspended from his or her school and from engaging in all school-related activities.  The student cannot be on any school property within the UCDSB without the permission from the school principal.


    Fire Drills

    When an alarm is sounded, the building is evacuated.   Each classroom has a fire exit instruction sign posted near the door which directs students to the appropriate exit.


    When the alarm sounds, students must file out in a calm and orderly manner while moving with their class, move away from the building once outside.  Attendance will be taken outside once the class is a safe distance from the school. You must cooperate fully with school officials and fire fighters.  A similar procedure is to be followed in all emergency evacuations.




    Lockdown – There is an imminent threat to staff and students inside the school. 

  • All Staff and students should go to the nearest classroom/room.
  • Staff and students are to remain away from doors and windows and out of the line of sight from the windows and doors
  • If staff and students are outside the school, they should run for cover behind the nearest solid structure or seek safety and security in a spot off of school grounds – they should NOT re-enter the building unless absolutely necessary for protection
  • Classroom doors and windows are to be locked
  • REMAIN QUIET!!!  - Make the classroom look, feel and sound empty.
  • No contact with office unless information about suspect/incident/bomb/fire.
  • No cell phone usage within the classroom.
  • Ignore the fire alarm unless there is clear evidence of a fire and an immediate threat to student safety
  • Washroom:  If a student is in a washroom and can’t go to another room immediately and safely during a lockdown they should enter a stall, lock the stall door and climb up on the toilet so their feet cannot be seen while remaining quiet.

  • ALL staff and students should remain in their safe location until they are removed by the police.   


Hold and Secure – The potential threat is outside the school. 

  • All exterior doors are to be secured

  • Staff and students should remain with their class in whatever location their class is located and secure themselves within the room.  

  • If staff and students are outside of their classroom (outdoors, hallway) they should go into the nearest classroom/office.

  • Classroom activities can resume within reason.

  • If students are in the washroom or hallway they should return to their class immediately.
  • No one is allowed in or out of the room until the code is cancelled.


Shelter in Place

A non-violent threat in the community or weather that places students at risk.

Students should remain with their class in whatever location their class is located

  • If students are in the washroom or hallway they should return to their class immediately.

  • If students are in the office, guidance or cafeteria they should remain there unless instructed otherwise

  • If students are outside they should re-enter the building with their teacher and go into a classroom.  


    Taking Medication at School

    The Upper Canada District School Board will not administer prescribed medication for students without the authorization of a licensed physician and the medication must be received within a properly labelled pharmacy bottle.

    The administration of prescription and / or non-prescription medication to a student is the responsibility of the student’s parent(s)/guardian(s).  Treatment regimes should, where possible, be adjusted to avoid administration of medication (prescription/non-prescription) during school hours.

    The Board recognizes that there may be exceptional cases where a student must have medication administered during regular school hours.  Students are not permitted to self-administer without the appropriate supervision and authorization on file.  In order for students to take medication or have medication administered at school the following steps must be followed:

    1. The Authorization for the Administration of Medication form must be completed and signed by a licensed physician and/or the parent(s)/guardian(s).  This form will need to be completed for every new school year and/or for each medication which requires administration by the school.  Should there be a dosage change for any medication a new form must be submitted. 

    2. All prescribed medication must be received within a pharmacy bottle and the label on the bottle must provide instruction on how to administer such medication.  The pharmacist medication information sheet must also be provided with the Authorization for Administration of Medication form. Non prescribed medication must be in its original packaging. 

    The Authorization for the Administration of Medication Form can be picked up from the main office. 

      Students are not permitted to transport or keep medication with them for safety reasons. The exception here is an epi-pen or asthma inhaler.

    Asthma Policy (Ryan’s Law)

    The school asks that all parents/guardians or students notify the school if their child has been diagnosed with asthma.   An individual student asthma management plan must be created for each student diagnosed with asthma, based on the recommendation of the student’s health care provider.  It is the obligation of the pupil’s parent/guardian to ensure that the information in the pupil’s file is kept up-to-date with the medication that the student is taking.  The school will ensure that all students have easy access to their prescribed reliever inhaler(s) medications.  A pupil is permitted to carry his/her asthma medication if the pupil has his/her parent’s or guardian’s signed permission.  This form is available in the main office.  If a school staff believes a student is suffering from an asthma attack they may administer medication, even if there is no preauthorization to do so. For more information about the board policy on Asthma please click on the following Asthma Procedure 4003.1 link.

    Anaphylaxis is a serious allergic reaction. It has the potential to be life-threatening, especially if the student also has asthma.  The school asks that all parents/guardians or students notify the school if their child is allergic to anything that could cause them to have a serious allergic reaction.  The most common triggers include peanuts, tree nuts, shellfish, fish, milk, eggs, soy, sesame seeds, wheat, insect stings, drugs, and latex.  Sulphite is often added to processed foods and beverages and can trigger an allergic reaction in sulphite-sensitive people.  Exercise-induced anaphylaxis (often in conjunction with a food allergy).  Students at risk for anaphylaxis should always carry an epinephrine auto-injector called an EpiPen® and know how to use it properly.  If the parent/guardian does not want their child to carry an EpiPen with them at all times the school will ask that the parent/guardian provide the school with an epi-pen so that it could be used in the case of an emergency with their child.  Parents, guardians and the school must work together to help students learn how to avoid the things to which they are allergic.  Students should wear special identification such as a MedicAiert® bracelet which provides medical personnel with important information.


    The Upper Canada District School Board (Board) recognizes concussions as a serious injury which requires appropriate follow-up measures to reduce risk of potential additional injury. Concussion awareness, prevention, identification and management are a priority for the Board. 

    The Board recognizes that children and adolescents are among those at greatest risk for concussions and that while there is potential for a concussion any time there is body trauma, the risk is greatest during activities where collisions can occur, such as during physical education classes, playground time, or school-based sports activities.  

    It is critical that a student with a suspected concussion be examined by a medical doctor or nurse practitioner as soon as possible on the same day.  If a student has a suspected concussion whether it is school related or not it is imperative that the school be made aware so that a Return to Learn/Return to Physical Activity Plan can be developed in collaboration with the school, home and medical practitioner.  Please view the UCDSB concussion procedure and appendices at the following links UCDSB Concussion Procedure 4001.1 & Concussion Procedure 4001.1 Appendices to view important information and all of the steps that must be followed and the forms that must be used if a student has a suspected concussion or concussion

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