St. Bernard of Clairvaux

December 2022


God of Hope,

You sent Jesus, the light of the world.

As we light our Advent candles,

one by one,

one week at a time,

May we rekindle within ourselves, the desire to make peace for Him.

May the flame of His presence grow brighter and brighter

in our hearts,

in our school,

and in our world.

May the God of Hope fill us with joy and peace this Christmas

by the power of the Holy Spirit.


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Administrator's Message

The season of Advent is a time of expectation, waiting, kindness, compassion and hope. We strive to prepare our hearts and our lives as we wait in great anticipation for the coming of Jesus. The birth of Jesus signifies a new beginning that heralds new hopes, dreams that light up our lives, and give it new meaning. Here at St. Bernard of Clairvaux School, we emphasize the implications of the birth of our Saviour through our Christian actions. We continue to foster a safe, caring, inclusive healthy environment where students can grow and learn.

We ensure that Advent is a time where we emphasize charity and social justice. It is a time to prepare the way, to make God real each and every day through prayer, charity and social justice. We will again answer the call to serve when we work with Eden for Change with our food drive, our Jordan Sock Drive and ShareLife fundraising initiatives. We will travel through the Advent season in song, dance and prayer during our virtual virtue liturgy, kindergarten Christmas songs, Gingerbread Family Night and we will celebrate mass together to prepare our hearts and minds for the coming of Christ. During the season of Advent, may God bless you and inspire you to prepare yourself and your children for the ongoing incarnation of the Divine in our midst.

We pray that you will be blessed with the spirit and gifts of the first Christmas—peace, love and goodwill toward all. May the promise of Christmas help to show God’s boundless love and may you be blessed with good health, prosperity and happiness throughout the New Year as we strive to work with you and for you in providing excellence in Catholic Education in our community.

Trustee Message - Brea Corbet

Please see below for a link to Trustee Corbet's website and December newsletter.

St. Bernard of Clairvaux would like to congratulate Trustee Brea Corbet on her re-election as trustee in our area. We look forward another four years of working with Brea as she serves the needs of our school community.

Catholic School Council

Pizza days are back! We want to give a huge shout out to our Catholic School Council for organizing our pizza days at St. Bernard of Clairvaux. A special thank you to the volunteers for their time and effort in preparing for, ordering, and delivering the pizzas to students.

The next school council meeting will take place on Monday, February 6, 2023 at 6:30 pm. All are welcome to attend.

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November 27 - Advent begins

November 14 - December 9 - Jordan's Sock Drive

December 1 - Christmas Food Drive begins

December 2 - Pizza Day

December 2 - Candy Cane grams delivered (purchased November 22 and 24)

December 5 - 9 - Hour of Code Week

December 6 - Advent Mass

December 9 - Pizza Day

December 13 - Candy Cane grams delivered (purchased December 6 and 8)

December 13 - Family Gingerbread Night

December 15 - Rosary Apostolate visits

December 16 - Pizza Day

December 16 - FDK Christmas Celebration

December 19 - 22 - Spirit Week

December 20 - St. Bernard's Got Talent

December 22 - Christmas Caroling

December 22 - Hope Liturgy

December 22 - Last day of classes before break

Our Catholic Faith

St. Josephine Bakhita

Mass Schedule

Saturday Vigil Mass: 5:00 pm

Sunday Mass: 7:30 am, 9:00 am, 11:00 am, 12:30 pm

Weekday Masses

Monday, Wednesday, Friday Mass 7:00 pm

Tuesday, Thursday Mass 7:30 am

Saturday Mass 9:00 am

School Advent Mass

We will be celebrating our Advent Mass on Tuesday, December 6 at 9:30 am in our school gym. All are welcome to attend.

Sacramental Preparation

Do you have a child that is in Grade 2 or older who needs to receive the Sacraments of First Reconciliation, First Communion or Confirmation? Please visit the parish website or contact Cecilia Vaz at the parish office for more information.

The following dates have been booked for St. Bernard of Clairvaux's sacraments:

First Reconciliation - March 6 -10 @ 4:00 pm

First Communion - May 13 @ 12:00 pm

Confirmation - May 2 @ 6:00 pm

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Our Virtue of the Month - HOPE

God helps us to keep on working for a more peaceful world even when we feel discouraged.

A hopeful person is …

  • inspired and inspires others
  • always counts on God to help them through tough situations
  • trusts that things will work out in God's way
  • one who sees the good in the world

God has given us this Advent season to focus our minds and hearts on the good all around us. We believe that God created the world and all of us in it to be good. However, sometimes bad things happen to us that we cannot explain. During these times, we tend to get mad at God for putting us through so much pain. We may get discouraged and forget that God is always with us to help. When you feel sad and alone, remember to never lose HOPE, pray to Jesus and things will get better.

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. (Rom. 15:13)

Ontario Catholic Graduate Expectations

I have a voice!

  • I speak, write and listen as Jesus would want me to
  • I care about others and speak up for them
  • I am honest
  • I think carefully before I react or speak
  • I respect all people and their languages
  • I listen to the Word of God

Because I have a voice, I will use it lovingly, and I will live my life like Jesus.

Rosary Apostolate

Praying the Rosary together in person with the Rosary Apostolate has begun. Class sets of rosaries have been given to each class. All classes will praying the rosary together once a month.

Thank you to Mrs. Craig and Mr. Rossit for organizing this initiative.

The Season of Advent

Advent marks the beginning of the Church’s liturgical year. The four weeks of Advent lead up to the celebration of Christmas. Advent’s familiar sights and sounds stir in us a readiness to receive our Saviour, while sharpening our sense of the world’s need for redemption and of the great mystery of God becoming human for us. Advent is a Latin word meaning the coming. The season of Advent is a time to prepare to celebrate the three comings of Christ: his lowly birth in the past, his mysterious coming to the world in the present, and his promised return in Glory at the end of time.

Advent is a special time of waiting. Since the latter half of the 6th century, Christians have set aside the four weeks before Christmas to remember and to celebrate that Jesus Christ is the one who comes. It is a time to celebrate light in the midst of darkness. Traditional symbols and customs help us to celebrate this special time of waiting.

The Jesse Tree

This Advent season, we will be continuing the yearly tradition of our St. Bernard virtual Jesse Tree. A Jesse Tree is a representation of the genealogy of Jesus as a tree with Jesse (father of King David) at the base and ornaments hung from its branches to remind us of other Old Testament figures. It is used as a reminder during the Advent season of the earthly heritage that the newborn king carries with him into the world.

During the week of December 12, students from Mr. Le Brun's class will narrate the Jesse tree each day on morning announcements, and the symbols will also be shared through our Twitter account. All families are invited to reflect with us on these symbols as part of their own preparations for the birth of our king.

ShareLife Campaign

St. Bernard of Clairvaux is continuing its tradition of generously giving for our ShareLife campaign. Students are currently purchasing candy cane grams with all proceeds going to ShareLife. Staff have been involved in ShareLife lunches to raise funds as well.

Thank you for your ongoing support of our ShareLife campaign. We look forward to more fundraising activities in the new year.

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Jordan's Sock Drive

We are continuing to collect socks for Jordan's sock drive up until December 9. Our goal is collect 1000 pairs of socks and we are getting so close. Please consider donating any new/unused socks to this wonderful initiative.

Mrs. Sauve will be giving all classes that collect 500 pairs of socks a pizza party! Thank you Mrs. Sauve!

Food Drive

Our annual Christmas food drive begins December 1.Help us spread the joy of Christmas and fill our boxes with non-perishable food items. Our food drive will run from December 1 to December 16. All items go to support Eden Food for Change.

Please find below a list of the most commonly needed items.

  • diapers
  • almond milk
  • canned tuna/salmon
  • canned meats
  • rice
  • gluten free products
  • juice boxes
  • olive oil
  • laundry detergent/dish detergent
  • Ensure/Boost

Thank you in advance for supporting our local food bank this Christmas season!

Egg Cartons Needed

Eden Food for Change needs empty egg cartons. If have you have any at home, please consider bringing them into the school and we will pass them along. Any little bit helps!

15th Annual ShareLife Poster Contest

The ShareLife Poster Contest is open to all Catholic elementary school students. Posters should be 11 x 17 inches and can be drawn, coloured or painted. It must be the student's original work and must clearly promote the ShareLife logo and the show the mission (Living the Gospel by providing for those in need). You are also welcome to incorporate the themes of the Ontario Catholic School Graduate Expectations.

The winning entries will be used as the 2022-2023 elementary school poster and distributed to schools and parishes of the Archdiocese of Toronto.

If your child is interested in participating in the contest, please the attached poster for more information.

Poster deadline is December 2, 2022.

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School Wide Initiatives and Events

Intermediate Volleyball

Congratulations to the intermediate boys' and girls' volleyball teams for an excellent season of fun and development. Both teams practiced hard and made their coaches proud with their on-court efforts, their sportsmanship, and their team play.

Thank you to coaches Le Brun, Antezza, Androulakis, Rossit, Comi for preparing the teams for play.

The coaches would also like to thank Mrs. O'Neill for taking the time to referee the games.

Flag Football

We are so incredibly proud of our flag football team. They dealt with many obstacles including inclement weather, fog, postponements and the team handled it with grace and good sportsmanship....and by winning the banner!

A special thank you to Coach Mr. Kostoff for sharing his knowledge (and desire to win) with the team. St. Bernard of Clairvaux is proud of all of you.

Teacher/Student Volleyball

Our annual teacher versus student volleyball will take place on Tuesday, December 6. All students are invited to bring a pair of socks for 'admission' to watch the game.

The teachers are looking forward to once again beating the students. Go Bears!

Chess Tournament

Mrs. Sauve and the chess team have been hard at work preparing for the Dufferin-Peel Chess tournament on December 8.

We look forward to hearing about all of their 'checkmates.'


Our choir is honoured to continue our annual tradition of singing for the Ontario Legislative Assembly on Tuesday, December 13. They will be singing Christmas carols in addition to their beautiful choir repertoire of hymns and songs.

Thank you to Mrs. Boles for leading our angelic voices in song.

Family Movie Night

Thank you to all of the families for attending our movie night on November 16. It was a smashing success. Lots of fun was had and lots of popcorn was consumed. We look forward to more family events in the new year.

Thank you to our Catholic School Council, student volunteers and teacher volunteers for making this event so enjoyable.

Eco School - Recycling Batteries

Our Eco School Team is challenging St. Bernard of Clairvaux to fill our recycling drum with batteries. If we can fill the drum with dead batteries, we have a chance to win $2000 for the school!

Please bring in any of the following dead batteries:

  • AA
  • AAA
  • C
  • D
  • 6V
  • 9V

Please do not send in any non-reusable batteries.

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Family Gingerbread Night

Santa is coming to St. Bernard of Clairvaux! On Tuesday, December 13, we invite all families to our Family Gingerbread night. Please see the flyer below for more information.

We have a variety of activities planned for the evening including:

  • A photo with Santa (hard copy and digital file to be delivered later in the week)
  • One gingerbread house per family to decorate (already assembled, peanut free)
  • Family trivia
  • Hot chocolate and sugar cookies available for purchase

Gingerbread kits and one photo/pose with Santa are $25. One additional pose/photo is available for an extra $5. Hot chocolate and cookies will be available for cash purchase on December 13.

Please note: all families must RSVP to attend the evening. there will be no opportunity to sign up on the evening of the event as space is limited. Please RSVP as soon as possible (using the link below) to reserve your spot.

Pizza Days

Please note the following dates for pizza in December.

  • December 2
  • December 9
  • December 16

Unfortunately, sales have closed for this session of pizza, but will sales will open up again for the next session in February.

Candy Cane Grams

Candy cane grams are on sale December 6 and 8. The cost is $1.00 each and may be purchased at school (cash only).

All candy cane grams will be delivered to the recipients on two dates: Friday, December 3 and Wednesday, December 15.

Cookie Sales

Our grade 8 students will be selling individual wrapped snowman sugar cookies (gluten-free also available) from Terra Cotta Cookies every Wednesday and Friday during the month of December as a sweet treat to help raise money for different graduation activities. The cookies will start selling on Wednesday December 7th. The cost for each cookie is $2.25

Christmas Spirit Week

Join in the fun this Christmas with a number of Christmas celebrations at St. Bernard of Clairvaux.

Monday December 19 - Christmas Tree Day

Tuesday December 20 - Purple and Pink Day

Wednesday December 21 - Christmas Character Day

Thursday December 22 - Christmas Holiday Headwear & Comfy Cozy Day

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DPCDSB Information

Christmas Holidays

Our last day of classes before the Christmas Break is Thursday, December 22, 2021.

Classes resume Monday, January 9, 2023.

We wish everyone a safe and restful Christmas!

Math at Home

Are you looking for ways to engage your family in math activities at home? Connect learning between school and home with the Board's Math@Home newsletters.

This month the focus is on coding. Have fun trying out the suggested coding activities at home.

2023 French Immersion Information

Year 2 Kindergarten parents/guardians who wish to learn more about French Immersion or wish to enroll their child in a Grade 1 French Immersion class for September 2023, are invited to attend an information meeting at one of the following virtual parent evening sessions.

Also, see attached link for further information.

School Region


Our Lady of Providence

St Angela Merici

St Joachim

St Pio of Pietrelcina

Session Date & Time

Tuesday, December 6, 2022

7:00 p.m.

Microsoft Meeting Information

Microsoft Teams Online Meeting

More information and meeting link can also be found on the website posted below.

School Region


All Saints

Divine Mercy

St Elizabeth Seton

St Gregory

Session Date & Time

Thursday December 8, 2022

7:00 p.m.

Microsoft Meeting Information

Microsoft Teams Online Meeting

Note about Microsoft Teams: For optimal access, use a computer device (desktop, laptop or Chromebook) or use the Microsoft Teams App.

Thrive Newsletter

Please see the link below for the Thrive Newsletter for December.

Flu Season

Please the following message from Peel Public Health.

It's cold and flu season!

Cold and flu season is here, and it is already a bad one. We want to remind parents/guardians that before heading to the emergency room, book an appointment with your family doctor or at your local local COVID Cough and Cold Flu Clinic.

If you are unsure if you need to take your child to the emergency room, you can:

Don't forget to continue practicing other protective measures such as hand washing, avoiding touching your face, staying home when ill and masking for 10 days after being symptomatic to help protect your children, yourself and others from viruses that are circulating.

Free flu shots are now available across Peel. You can get a flu shot at:

  • Family doctors' offices and walk-in clinics for adults and children over 6 months of age
  • Participating pharmacies for adults and children 2 years or older
  • If you don't have a health card you can get the flu shot from a community health centre or local pharmacy.

Weather Related Bus Cancellations/System Closures

As we approach the winter months and the potential of weather-related bus cancellations and school closures, we provide the following information.

Bus Cancellations

During the winter months, inclement weather and/or poor road conditions may cause the disruption of bus transportation.

If buses are cancelled in zone 1, St. Bernard of Clairvaux will remain open to students and staff.

There is no distribution of learning devices in anticipation of inclement weather-related bus cancellations.

While students unable to attend in person due to transportation cancellations are not required to access learning materials in the Learning Management System (LMS), they can if they choose to. Learning activities posted in the LMS specifically for inclement weather days provide opportunities for consolidation, curriculum enrichment or practice of skills already taught.

It is acknowledged that teachers will be supporting in-person students and therefore may have limited availability to support students not in attendance.

For students unable to attend in person, no remote access to the classroom will take place. Learning for students will be self-directed. Please be assured that teachers have been advised not to introduce new concepts on days in which buses have been cancelled. As always, parents/guardians can contact their child's teacher if they have any questions or require support.

Full System Closure

If there is a full system closure, where all DPCDSB schools and facilities are closed to students and staff, there is no switch to synchronous learning for the day.

Similar to bus cancellation days, students can access learning activities posted in the Google Classroom specifically for inclement weather days that provide opportunities for consolidation, curriculum enrichment or practice of skills already taught.

As always, parents/guardians can contact their child's teacher if they have any questions or require support.

Reporting Student Absences

Daily attendance and punctuality are very important and all students should be prepared to start their day of learning on time and with their classmates.

Thank you to all parents who have been calling the school and using the Safe Arrival website or app when your child has been absent due to an illness or an appointment.

To use the Safe Arrival School Messenger program, use the link provided below or you can down load and install the SchoolMessenger app from the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store. Please note that SafeArrival uses the SchoolMessenger app.

Alternatively, you can call the toll-free number 1-844-435-3440. Listen to and follow the instructions to report an absence.

Safety Reminders


St. Bernard of Clairvaux is an allergen aware school. We have a number of students in our school who have severe, life threatening allergies to peanuts, peanut butter, peanut oils, any peanut/nut by-products and dairy products. As in the past, we are asking you to not put any child at risk. Therefore, we are asking that peanuts, peanut butter, peanut oils, and peanut/but by-products not be brought into the school.

We are also asking parents not to send food items to school when celebrating your child's birthday. If you would like to send something, please consider alternatives such as pencils, stickers, etc.

We thank you for your continued understanding and support of the safety and well-being of all students.

Storage/Administration of Medication

Parents are responsible for ensuring that all medication and forms are updated annually. If your child requires medication, please have all the pertinent forms completed and returned with the medication to the office as soon as possible.

A reminder that students are not allowed to keep any medication in their desk, backpack or classroom (with the exception of a puffer or an epi-pen, if allergies are severe). All dispensing of medication (including Tylenol) requires medical permission and must be stored in the office.

Please use the link below if you need to update the medication on file or if you have any new medications that need to be dispensed at school.

Appropriate Dress - Cold Weather

The days are getting colder and it appears that winter has arrived. We ask that students dress appropriately with coats, hats, gloves, mitts, boots, snow pants etc. If they are dressed warmly, they are better prepared to participate in outdoor activities during recess and the lunch hour.

For health reasons and to help keep the school clean, we ask all students to have indoor shoes. Please note that in the event of an emergency evacuation, students will not have the opportunity to put their boots on. Thank you for your support in this matter.

Extra Clothing for the Winter Season

Often during the winter season we have students, for various of reasons, coming to the office with wet clothes from playing outside during recess. We recommend, for the younger students, that you place an extra pair of pants, a shirt and socks in their backpacks. This would help to avoid bothering parents at work when these situations occur.

It is also recommended that students bring appropriate snow gear to school during these winter months (snowsuits, boots, gloves, mitts). Students are also encouraged to have waterproof mitts/gloves or else an extra pair should they become wet. Thank you for your support!

Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow!

When the cold months arrive and snow and ice on the ground is plentiful, we all like to play in it and with it. Throwing snowballs and sliding on the ice is fun. However, as much fun as it is, snow and ice, can be very dangerous when lots of people are in a small area. In order for our school to be as safe as possible, the school rule must be that snow and ice stays on the ground.

There will be no snowballs, kicking snow or any other activity with snow or ice that could be harmful.

Winter Weather Concerns

During the winter season, the school receives calls from concerned parents as to how we determine when children will or will not be allowed outside for recess. On extremely cold days, we limit the amount of time that students spend out of doors. We obtain our weather information from the Environment Canada Weather Information Line and follow School Board guidelines.

Board Guidelines indicate that students will generally be outside for lunch and recess when temperatures do not fall below –25 degrees Celsius, with the wind chill. With the exception of these occasions, all children will go out for recess and the lunch break. We remind all students to dress appropriately for the weather.