WR Best November 2023 Newsletter
Posted on 11/01/2023

W.R. Best November 2023 Newsletter

Upcoming important dates at W.R. Best:
Nov. 3 – Picture retakes & Classroom group photos
Nov. 6 – School Council meeting 6pm
Nov. 6 – Int. Girls Basketball Game @ Terry Fox
Nov. 7 – Deadline for theme basket donations (thank you for your support!)
Nov. 7 – Future Wildcat Day @ Eastview – Gr. 8 permission on SchoolCashOnline
Nov. 7 – Int. Boys Volleyball Game @ Cundles
Nov. 9 – Progress Reports Go Home
Nov. 9 – Jr. Girls Volleyball Game @ Shanty Bay
Nov. 10 – Remembrance Day - Ceremony 10am

Nov. 10 – Int. Girls Basketball Game @ WR Best
Nov. 14-17 – Parent Teacher Conferences
Nov. 14 – Jr. Girls Volleyball Game @ Terry Fox
Nov. 14 – Int. Girls Basketball Game @ WR Best
Nov. 16 – Int. Boys Volleyball Game @ Shanty Bay
Nov. 17 – PA Day (no school)
Nov. 21 – French Immersion Info Night @ Forest Hill 6pm
Nov. 21 – Int. Girls Basketball Game @ Guthrie

Nov. 23 – Jr. Girls Volleyball Game @ WR Best

Nov. 27 – Jr. Girls Volleyball Game @ WR Best
Nov. 28 – Int. Girls Basketball Regionals @ East Bayfield Community Centre
Dec. 1 – Math Road Rally
Dec. 6 – Parents’ Night Out – Holiday Edition!

Days of awareness: www.scdsb.on.ca/about/equity_and_inclusion.

Our school calendar: www.wrb.on.ca/calendar


Principal’s Message

I hope this monthly newsletter finds everyone well.  Our students had a great day yesterday, October 31st celebrating our spirit day – Halloween.  We had lots of activities including a school parade, Halloween activities, a “few!” treats, and a Haunted House created by our Grade 8s for students in Grades 4-7.  It was wonderful to see the smiles on the faces of all our students, and the colourful box of crayons our staff dressed up as.  Spirit Days really show our incredible school and community character – well done Bobcats!

This month, all students will be receiving their Progress Report on Thursday November 9th.  Progress Reports will provide families with information about their child’s learning skills and curriculum learning from September to November.  A Progress Report is different from a Report Card, and does not contain student marks, but rather a progress indicator.  The purpose of this is to foster rich conversations about how your child is learning so far this year.  We are proud of the work our students are doing so far this year!  During the week of November 13th, please make an appointment to meet with your child’s teacher for a conference.  Book your conference here: www.schoolinterviews.ca Enter code: bmtb4

If your schedule changes, you can easily re-book online as well.  Should you encounter any difficulties, please reach out to us at school – we are happy to help!


Our online school calendar is regularly updated with all the activities happening at WR Best.  You can find it at the bottom of our main school page, or here: https://wrb.scdsb.on.ca/calendar   Please check back frequently to see what is going on!  If you prefer a printed calendar, you can print the calendar (select landscape on your printer settings and page 2 only).  


Say “cheese” on Friday!  Proofs of school photos went home yesterday for all students who had their picture taken during our first picture day.  This Friday is re-takes and class group photos.

Picture Retakes & Classroom Group Photos
Missed getting your school photo taken last month? Picture Retake Day is Friday, November 3rd! Classroom group photos will also be taken. Put on your favourite outfit and bring your best smile to school that day. Say cheeeeeese!!


Theme Baskets

Just a reminder that we ask that your contribution to your child’s classroom themed basket is sent to the school by Tuesday, Nov. 7th! Parent council volunteers will assemble the baskets in time for them to be displayed at the Parent/Teacher Interviews Nov. 14-17. Please see the email that was sent to families on Oct. 26th for more details. ***TIP!*** if you are donating gift cards, use Fundscrip and WR Best will get a portion of the sales back! To support our school, follow these steps with our WR Best Invitation Code:


1. Website – fundscrip.com

2. Top right corner – Click on the green box = “Support a Group”

3. Enter our Invitation Code – 9U8E2G and click “Search”

4. Follow the step to create an account and you are all set to start purchasing

your Gift Cards!


Parents’ Night Out – Holiday Edition


Do you want to go holiday shopping or out for dinner with no children? Do you want a night to yourself to relax and recharge? We can make it happen!  The Grade 8 class is doing some fundraising over the course of the year to offset the cost of the grade 8 trip and graduation. One of our fundraising initiatives is going to be Parents' Night Out: Holiday Edition, taking place on Wednesday, December 6th, 2023.  The Grade 8’s (and teacher supervisors) have graciously offered up their services to care for your children while you have a few hours to do whatever you like! Students in grades K-5 are eligible to attend, and it will run from 4:30 pm- 7:30pm at W.R. Best School. Stay tuned for more info!


Remembrance Day

The SCDSB has a time-honoured relationship with our local Royal Canadian Legions through the annual poetry and poster competitions and the annual poppy campaign. For the 23-24 school year, it is our intention to support the poppy campaign once again. Families interested in making donations can do so by visiting the Royal Canadian Legion’s poppy campaign at the following link:


Our Remembrance Day ceremony will be held on Friday, November 10th, 2023 at 10:00am. Families are welcome to attend.


Terry Fox

Thank you to everyone who asked their family and friends to donate to our school run. We had a beautiful day for our run, and we had a great time running together. Our school raised $1,790 for the Terry Fox Foundation! We surpassed our goal of raising $1,500 and we earned an extended recess. Congratulations Bobcats!!!!!!

November PA Day
Please note that Friday, Nov. 17 is a PA Day for all SCDSB students. Please refer to the 2023-24 School Year Calendar on the SCDSB website for more information: www.scdsb.on.ca/elementary/planning_for_school/school_year_calendar.  

Below is a summary of the activities planned for the Nov. 17 PA Day:

Full-day parent/guardian-student-teacher conferences
Topic:                                         Communication to parents/guardians about student progress through
                                                    parent/guardian-student-teacher conferences
Host:                                      ­   
Simcoe County District School Board elementary schools, including
                                                    Grades 7 and 8 in Grade 7-12 secondary schools
Presenter(s)/facilitator(s):        Elementary educators

Elementary educators will meet with students and parents/guardians to discuss student progress thus far this school year, including areas of strengths and next steps for improvement.

Communication to families regarding inclement weather days
Please note that APM A3020 – Inclement Weather, 3.1.2 states that “parents/guardians are to be reminded, in writing at appropriate times (October and January) each school year, that it is their responsibility to decide whether or not it is safe for their child(ren) to leave for school under severe weather conditions.”

Inclement weather and bus cancellation information reminder

All information regarding cancelled buses in Simcoe County is posted on the Simcoe County Student Transportation Consortium (SCSTC)’s bus information website at www.simcoecountyschoolbus.ca. Our school is in the CENTRAL zone. When buses are cancelled, schools remain open for student learning, unless otherwise noted. School staff are expected to plan for such emergencies in order to transition students who are unable to attend due to inclement weather, to their online platforms (Google Classroom and/or SCDSBhub [Brightspace by D2L]) and continue with academic programming. It is always a family decision whether or not it is safe for their child(ren) to leave for school under severe weather conditions.


The Consortium and bus operators try to make the decision to cancel school buses before 6 a.m. and make every effort to post announcements before 7 a.m. Inclement weather cancellations are effective for the whole day and buses cancelled in the morning will not run at the end of the day. You can follow the Consortium on Twitter @SCSTC_SchoolBus for bus cancellations and other information. You can also subscribe to receive bus delay notifications here: https://scstc.ca/Subscriptions/Login.aspx.



Parents’ Guide to Assessment, Evaluation and Reporting

Learn to navigate the world of assessment, evaluation, and reporting with this new guide for parents/guardians. Created to support parents’/guardians’ understanding of assessment, this guide was designed to effectively empower you to actively engage in your child's educational journey. The guide has been posted to the Simcoe County District School Board’s website and can be accessed at https://tinyurl.com/2urcm2tm.  

Subscribe to Kindergarten Connections!
Will your child be turning four in 2024? If so, the SCDSB invites you to Kindergarten Connections! This is a monthly enewsletter informing families of everything they need to know about preparing their child for school, as well as registering them for Kindergarten in the SCDSB. To learn more and subscribe, visit the Kindergarten page on the SCDSB website: www.scdsb.on.ca/elementary/planning_for_school/kindergarten.

EarlyON Child and Family Centres
The foundation for lifelong learning and health is built in the early years. EarlyON Child and Family Centres across Simcoe County offer programs for children prenatal to six years of age and their parents/guardians and caregivers. They offer access to play- and inquiry-based learning supported by How Does Learning Happen? Ontario’s pedagogy for the early years, information on child development and developmental screening including Early Referral Identification Kits (ERIKs), parent/guardian education, referrals to community resources, nutrition information, and post-natal resources. Check with your local EarlyON provider: https://linktr.ee/earlyonsimcoe  


How is your infant, toddler, or preschool child developing? 

Is your child meeting their milestones? Age-appropriate speech and language skills are critical to your child’s ability to read, write, and be successful in school as well as to their ability to engage with their peers. Free services are available to support you with your child’s development. Preschool speech and language programs are located across the County of Simcoe. Call (705) 739-5696 or 1-800-675-1979 to complete a developmental screen. The earlier we work together the better!

Licensed Winter Break school-age child care programs

Child care programs for children in Kindergarten to Grade 6 are provided by independent, third-party child care operators in some SCDSB schools. To support your child care needs, some operators offer child care on PA days and holidays including over the Winter Break. Registration in advance is required. 

Please contact the child care operator directly to discuss fees and to register. More information and contact numbers can be found by visiting: www.scdsb.on.ca/elementary/planning_for_school/childcare_before_after

Join us! A learning series for parents/guardians with Pine River Institute
Mental health and well-being continues to be a key strategic priority within the SCDSB. We are pleased to continue our partnership with the Centre for Family Initiatives at Pine River Institute (CFI@PRI) to provide several curated learning sessions focused on student mental health and well-being to SCDSB families.

There are eight webinars specifically planned for parents/guardians and other caregivers during this school year. 


Nov. 9, 2023          Understanding and managing screen time, part two - social media edition

Nov. 30, 2023        Helping parents align

Jan. 11, 2024        Sleep hygiene     

Feb. 8, 2024          Self regulation for kids
Feb. 22, 2024       
Self regulation for teens
March 28, 2024    
Building parents' resiliency
April 18, 2024       
Vaping, weed, and alcohol 


We hope you save these dates in your calendar and join us for these learning opportunities. For more information and to register, please visit the SCDSB website: https://bit.ly/3jGaC74.


Pine River Institute is a live-in treatment centre and outdoor leadership experience for youth aged 13 to 19 struggling with addictive behaviours and often other mental health issues. Combining therapy with a fully-accredited education program, PRI reinforces the healthy life skills required for a successful future. CFI@PRI extends PRI’s knowledge, experience and evidence-informed treatment approach to families and care providers in the community to support youth mental wellness and prevent the need for more intensive interventions.  Learn more about PRI by visiting their website at www.pineriverinstitute.com.

High school information events for Grade 8 students
Is your child starting Grade 9 next year? High school information events will take place in-person this winter! Student leaders and staff at the school will give an overview of what’s new and what to expect. Learn about courses offered, as well as information about teams and clubs. Please visit the SCDSB website at www.scdsb.on.ca/secondary/planning_for_high_school to find details on your high school’s info night, and contact the school directly for more information.

Looking for Employment? Join Our Team!
Curious about what employment opportunities are available at the Simcoe County District School Board (SCDSB)? The SCDSB is hosting several job fairs throughout Simcoe County during the month of November; come by and speak with one of our representatives at any of the following events!

YMCA of Simcoe Muskoka Employment Services (Midland)
Thursday, Nov. 2, 2023
9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Job Seekers | YMCA of Simcoe/Muskoka (ymcaofsimcoemuskoka.ca)

TRACKS Employment & Resource Service (Collingwood)
Thursday, Nov. 9, 2023
11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
TRACKS Employment Services - One-stop resource centre for Employment Ontario Services | Located in Collingwood and serving Georgian Triangle communities of Clearview, Wasaga Beach, and Town of the Blue Mountains

FOCUS Employment Services (Alliston)
Tuesday, Nov. 14, 2023
3:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Job Seekers - FOCUS Community Development Corporation (focuscdc.on.ca)

Agilec Employment Services (Orillia)
Wednesday, Nov. 22, 2023
12 to 5 p.m.
Employment Services - Agilec

For more information about employment opportunities at the SCDSB, visit: www.scdsb.on.ca/joinourteam.

Grade 1 French Immersion information
The Simcoe County District School Board (SCDSB) offers French Immersion (FI) at select schools throughout Simcoe County beginning in Grade 1. The goal of the FI program is to enable students to communicate in French with a high level of proficiency, enabling them to function with ease in both French and English. Upon graduation from the program, students will communicate in French with confidence in a wide variety of real-life situations.

Grade 1 FI family information nights are held annually in advance of the application process for the following school year. This year, FI family information nights will be held in-person throughout the month of November at the respective FI school locations. The designated Grade 1 FI site for our school is Forest Hill Public School. The information night for this school will be Tuesday, November 21st at 6:00pm in the library. Please RSVP to this event using the following link:



The SCDSB board-wide electronic applications for the Grade 1 FI program for all sites will open Friday, Dec. 1 at 9 a.m. and close at 4 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 15. Entry into the FI program is determined through a digitally randomized lottery system.

Nov. 28 is Eat Well to Excel Day in Simcoe County
Eat Well to Excel is a Simcoe County non-profit community partnership that supports our school’s student nutrition program. The funding provided by Eat Well to Excel allows us to supply students with access to healthy snacks during the school day.

The pandemic and increasing food costs have caused a significant financial strain on many families in our region and new data shows that 1 in 3 kids in Canada are at risk of going to school hungry. Kids that are hungry struggle to retain knowledge and keep focused throughout the day. They are also at an increased risk of experiencing poor mental health and a compromised immune system. With your support we can maintain and hopefully improve our program to provide a consistent supply of healthy food to our students.

You can make a donation by visiting eatwelltoexcel.ca. You can either support the county-wide program or direct your donation to our school. Please include our school name in the comment box to ensure the donation goes directly to our program. A tax receipt will be emailed to you.

For more information about Eat Well to Excel visit eatwelltoexcel.ca.

Knowledgehook math tool
Knowledgehook is a digital math assessment and practice tool that has been purchased for all K-10 SCDSB classrooms. This tool is accessible to students at home so that they can practice math skills, either assigned by their teacher or on their own. Ask your child about how they use Knowledgehook in class and learn more at: www.knowledgehook.com.

Supporting oral language development at home
Within the revised language curriculum, there is a focus on supporting students to acquire the knowledge and skills relating to the foundations of language. Oral and non-verbal communication are foundational components of language skills. Over the years, students develop their listening and speaking abilities using a variety of strategies and skills, including word choice and syntax, to become effective communicators. 

Here are some ways you can support oral language development at home:

  • Engage your child in conversations about things that interest them
  • Talk to your child and listen responsively
  • Ask and answer questions
  • Share oral stories
  • Read aloud to your child
  • Talk about the books you read together
  • Singing and playing together

Mental health promotion strategy of the month
Well-being is a strategic priority in the Simcoe County District School Board, and our mental health and well-being department provides monthly strategies to support student and family well-being.

This month’s strategy is Let It Go. This practice helps students focus their attention, calm feelings of anxiety, and manage stress. To practice Let It Go at home, have your child/youth sit comfortably and take a deep breath. Share the following exercise with your child/youth:

  • Use your fingers to gently massage the top of your head
  • Still in massaging motion, bring your fingers to your forehead, eyebrows, temples, around your eyes, cheeks, and jaw
  • If you notice tension anywhere – let it go
  • Finally, massage each of your ears and end by gently pulling your earlobes

Keep in mind to take your time with each area, especially where you hold the most tension.

Practicing Let It Go can be done any time of the day or at regular times, such as at mealtime or before bed. You may try this technique on your hands using a massaging motion to focus on each finger, thumb, and palm. Consider doing Let It Go with your child/youth to model the strategy.  

Visit the links below for Let It Go posters from School Mental Health Ontario:
Elementary -
Secondary -

Find more easy and fun mental health activities to do at home visit: https://smho-smso.ca/online-resources/easy-and-fun-mental-health-activities-for-home/

Follow the mental health and well-being social media accounts (@SCDSB_MHWB) to see how well-being is being supported in our schools.

Dental screening and services for kids ages 0-17
Good dental health is an important part of your child’s general health. The Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit’s Oral Health Community Program offers free dental screenings in daycares, schools, and health unit offices for children and youth aged 0 - 17 years. Dental screening can identify and inform families that their child has a dental concern.

Health unit staff can also help children/youth and their families access free preventive services and treatment through the Healthy Smiles Ontario (HSO) Program. For more information regarding these services visit: www.simcoemuskokahealth.org/Topics/Dental.

Information provided by the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit